If you've known me for than a second you know I can't go too long without returning to the ancestoral homeland. Every trip to NYC makes me feel more centered, focused and, I realize how odd it sounds as I write the words, more relaxed.
I try not to do the same things as I did before so this time I tried a new, well, everything. Starting off the new, I stayed at the Chelsea Hotel
. If you feel you have a bohemian spirit, staying here will test that theory. The Chelsea
has an interesting history, a camp and playground for writers and artists from an era gone by, it always stuck in my mind that it could have been the location where Sid Vicious (allegedly) murdered his girlfriend in the 70's. The hotel is quirky in decor, layout and patronage, although I think the all-night parties and rampant drug use are gone with the new management and an unfortunate upscaling of the neighborhood. Still, The Chelsea
will never host the Champagne sipping UES debutinas, nor the investment bankers they begrudgingly marry. Pluses to the The Chelsea
are large rooms, incredible location and relatively good rates. Chelsea Hotel, Entrance Chelsea Hotel, 8th floor stairwell
Honorable mention for this trip goes to the restaurant/bar called Public
in Nolita (Elizabeth & Spring). I was late getting into the city so I didnt arrive for dinner until midnight, about 5 minutes after they stopped serving food. But the Pineapple Pink Peppercorn Caipirinha
will be remembered!
The highlights were many for the 48 hours.Equus
, the new play making its opening on Broadway last week, was excellent. If you are not knowing, try renting the movie version circa 1977 starring Richard Burton. Its an intense and interesting pyscho-sexual drama involving the interaction and inversion of a very disturbed and isolated young man and his equally disturbed analyst. The acting by Daniel Radcliffe was extraordinary. He is convincing, clever and he is showing his intent and ability to wriggle out from under his illustrious Harry Potter stigma. He also seemed to be quite at home stripping down to nothing and staying that way. Equus @ Broadhurst Theatre
Food recommendations for this trip are two:Empanada MamasHells Kitchen
763 9th Ave @ 51st
I loved this place and went 3 times in 2 days. We have empanada shoppes in Houston, plenty of them but none with the variety EM's has. Personal favorites are the Brasil
(ham, potato, cheese and olives) Spicy Chicken
(hot red pepper in the dough and the pulled chicken) and the Reggaeton
(pork, curry, rice, veggies). Definitely make liberal use of the green sauce that will already be at the table. Service is fantastic and trust me when I say this is one of the few sit down restaurants in NYC where you'll be able to lay down a $20 and walk away with change. Empanada Mamas, Hell's KitchenHighlineMeat Packing
835 Washington St @ Little W 12th
Upscale, stylish and trendy but not oppressive. Very impressive Thai fusion, particularly the Ginger Mohito and the Black Thai Tuna Tartar (chopped tuna, basil, orange and thai bird chile). Go early or late for dinner as reservations are not accepted.
The other new place I tried was the NYC Eagle
. Waaaay out near 11th Ave where you can almost feel the Hudson, I found where every gay man over 30 with facial hair goes on a Saturday night. I liked it. Its dark, cavernous and crowded. It could've been naughty but that wasnt what I found on the rooftop patio for the hours I was there. The friend I went out with, went away with a lovely Englishman leaving me alone to watch the city and crowd by myself. At 330a I made my way out of the building, crossed the street, passed the strip club, the hip hop bar, every Italian man from Brooklyn and a strip of lonely subsidized housing. At 4am I found myself turning the corner to The Chelsea. And I thought, here I am, 4am at 23rd & 8th with hundreds of other people like me, all quietly walking home, soaking it all in, happy but unaffected.
I love New York.
Labels: NYC, Travel