Explore New York City like a local with advice from these five design professionals, who share advice on where to grab food, shop for unique gifts, take in the art scene, sip on some cocktails and more.
Founder, Lindsey Adelman Studio
Begin with a cozy breakfast: Start your day at The Smile, a cozy spot in the lower level of an 1830s townhouse on Bond Street. The menu has a lot of great options, but I tend to get the egg sandwich: ham, gruyere and caramelized onion on an English muffin.
Do a little shopping: Head to Lower Manhattan to check out a few shops I find personal and inviting. First is Ted Muehling; anyone who appreciates form over function in jewelry should give this organic space on White Street a look. Next, Kirna Zabete‘s poppy boutique on Broome Street is a must for avant-garde fashion junkies (think: Stella McCartney, Dolce & Gabbana, Celine). And around the corner, The Line has a carefully curated collection by designers like Loewe and Pierre Hardy.
Dinner recommendation: End the day with dinner at Houseman, an American eatery with excellent comfort food in a quiet West SoHo block. The atmosphere is pretty and friendly–a true neighborhood spot.
Theo Richardson, Charles Brill
and Alexander Williams
Founders, Rich Brilliant Willing
Get in some cardio: Walk or run at the Brooklyn Heights Promenade. It’s the perfect vantage point for taking in the beautiful view of Manhattan, no matter what the weather might be.
Take in the sights: Head to Dumbo and stop by The Powerhouse Arena, an amazing gallery, boutique, bookstore, and performance and events space. There’s always something exciting going on there. While in Dumbo, take a ride on (or at least a picture of) Jane’s Carousel — a historic landmark built in 1922 that consists of two chariots and 48 carved wooden horses. It’s on the river for another great view.
Make time for a snack: Stop for a pastry-themed snack at Dumbo’s Burrow Patisserie, which is owned by Ayako Kurokawa, the former patisserie at The Modern at The Museum of Modern Art. The pastries aren’t just delicious; they’re also perfect fodder for Instagram.
Explore some public art installations: Walk around Brooklyn Bridge Park. Bring your yoga mat and enjoy the tranquility of the area, or simply take in Manhattan’s breathtaking skyline view. Be sure to catch the public art installations in the park, specifically the OY/YO sculpture by Deborah Kass. It has become iconic to the DUMBO area due to its size and unique shape.
Grab a slice: Have lunch at Grimaldi’s Coal Brick-Oven Pizzeria for, what I very firmly believe is, the country’s best pizza. It’s worth the wait! Then, stop by The Lighthouse beer and wine concession stand inside the archway under the Manhattan Bridge for a local brew.
Get cultured: Peruse DUMBO’s popular galleries. My favorites include Mighty Tanaka, Spring Design & Art, A.I.R. Gallery and Smack Mellon–each shines a light on unknown artists, both local and international.
Hunt for unique gifts: Wander down Wythe Avenue and pop into Mociun, which sells one-of-a-kind jewelry by Caitlin Mociun as well as pottery and quirky home goods by local artists and craftsmen like Shino Takeda. Once you reach Grand Street, visit Sprout Home for flowers, terrariums and other gifts, then head to Sharktooth for beautiful vintage textiles and rugs.
Do a little perusing: Visit The Journal Gallery, my favorite spot for great art and smart, innovative exhibitions. Then walk to Bedford Avenue for Malin Landaeus (my hidden gem for vintage finds) and In God We Trust, which designs and manufactures its clothing and jewelry in the United States.
Grab cocktails, and take in the scenery: For small plates and a pre-dinner drink, Hotel Delmano on Berry Street is a romantic date spot and a Williamsburg favorite. Head back to the Wythe Hotel to enjoy a spectacular view of the sunset over Manhattan from The Ides rooftop bar.
Artist, Matt Austin Studio
Take a ride: Explore the new Second Avenue Subway, and check out the giant Chuck Close mosaic murals at the station. His works are beautiful colorful portraits.
Don’t be scared of color: Dash off to Kremer Pigments Inc., a hidden gem in Manhattan for anyone who likes colorful paint. I shop here for glorious pigments for my mural projects, and I often buy a jar to give to clients as a gift to place on a shelf; lapis lazuli is my current favorite.
Don’t forget about lunch: Get cozy at a table at La Bonbonniere, a diner with all the essential old-school Greenwich Village charm. Order the BLT; it’s one of the best in the city.
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