When it comes to the city that never sleeps it’s often hard to know where to visit when you’re awake! I’m no expert on NYC, but if you’re a small fish in a big pond it’s always good to get insider info. Here’s some pointers from our recent trip stateside! 

Fun Activities: If you’re anything like me and like getting out and about, here are two of my favourite things to do in the city this time of year –  row boating in Central Park and ice skating at the Rink @ The Rockefeller Centre. An hour round the lake in the park is great fun and good for burning cals (providing you are the one doing the rowing!). It runs until November and is only $15 for the hour. Although there is no food allowed and drinks require a $35 corkage fee, if you’re feeling cheeky you can smuggle supplies on with you and drink your bubbles discreetly. Skating is another matter as you need all your hands and concentration to stop yourself falling over! The sessions run in 90min blocks and you need to pay extra to hire your own skates. It’s definitely worth the money and is a good way to start feeling festive! 

Best Irish Coffee: Who would have thought you’d be able to find a great Irish Coffee outside Ireland! Well it turns out Tanner Smiths in Midtown serves just that. Maybe the Irish owners helps it along, but this busy bar offers a traditional Irish welcome, coupled with the coolness of the best NY venues. 

Blow n Go!: Let’s face it girls, styling our hair is always tricky on holiday, so why put yourself through the torture when the experts can do it for you! One of my favourite hair spots is Dry Bar which is essentially a blow dry salon that offers you drinks when you get beautified! They are all over the city so you should one close to you and you’ll be able to try a Dry Martini, Cosmo or Mai Tai – and that’s just the hair styles!

Cocktails with a View: The Top of the Rock is probably one of the best known locations for checking out the city, but I like a place to enjoy it that serves it up with cocktails! Although the view from the Rainbow Rooms is hard to beat, the $65 per head to book is table outside is less agreeable. My top tip is The Spyglass Rooftop Bar in the Archer Hotel. Great drinks list, friendly staff and plenty of seats outside to soak up the view.

Sizzling Steak House: Hands down I can say that Quality Meats is up there with the best steak house in Manhattan. Busy, buzzy and with amazing staff (ask to be seated with Phoenix), if you love steak this is somewhere you MUST try. Big, bold and very American, don’t be surprised when you see half a cow land on your table. Another top tip is to say what you’re celebrating when booking – we got a complimentary birthday dessert here and in practically every bar/restaurant we booked!

Don’t just stick to Manhattan: Some would argue that Manhattan is the centre of the world, but we ventured across the bridge to Williamsburg and the centre of the hipster world. This up and coming neighbourhood is a must see – particularly if you have a top knot and a long beard :0). The rooftop bar at the William Vale is worth a visit as it the House of Small Wonder, which offers an authentic Japanese experience.

Spotting local hidden gems from the world of beauty, health, fashion, tourism and hospitality. I have my ear to the ground (quite literally) to keep you up to date about the new or interesting products and services from our neck of the woods. If you know one – get in touch @GSpotsBlog or grainne@gspots.biz