New York City has been a buzz this week, from the fifteenth anniversary of 9/11, to the arrival of the presidential candidates for the Commander-in-Chief forum to everyone’s favorite New York Fashion Week. If you find yourself in our neck of the woods sometime soon, check out some of the newest and hottest places to visit as temperatures fall in NYC.
NYFW Summer Soiree
If you weren’t invited to the Yeezy Season 4 launch this week hit up the NYFW Summer Soiree September 15 to be treated like the true NYC fashionista you are. Studio 15, Runway Passport and Jenna Cumbo paired up to bring you the NYFW Summer Soiree at The Chester at Gansevoort, where you can sip on cocktails, shop for brand new fashion-week pieces, get complimentary makeup touches and get a super cute photo taken by renowned photographer Jenna Cumbo. Bonus points for the event: a portion of proceeds will be donated to Kleos Microfinance Group. Look good and feel even better at this charitable get-down. Don’t forget: Tickets for the event are available on the Summer Soiree website.
The Vendy Awards
If fashion week left you feeling a little hungry, make sure you stick around for the 12th annual Vendy Awards on September 17. The first street-food competition series in the U.S., the Vendy Awards host annual sidewalk cook-offs in New York, Philadelphia and Los Angeles. This year, soul food restaurants from Harlem, Bengali specialties from Jackson Heights and many more will be battling it out for the prestigious Vendy Cup, all while raising money to support The Street Vendor Project, which provides legal aid, advocacy and loan access to city street vendors. Vendors at the event can also win various categories, like best vegan, best dessert and best rookie. Don’t forget: Cast your vote for your favorite truck so they can win the people’s choice award! The awards are taking place from 12:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Governor’s Island, so plan your meals accordingly. Remember: No food is for sale at the event, your ticket (available online) gives you all-you-can-eat access to the city’s best street food, drinks, entertainment and more.
Raise your glass – sorry, steins – to the start of Oktoberfest NYC! The official dates for Oktoberfest are Saturday, September 17 through Monday, October 3, but you’ll likely find some people celebrating a little sooner and a little later than that. Some not to miss events: Oktoberfest in Central Park on September 13; Munich on the East River on September 23; and Watermark’s Octoberfest on September 17. The traditional Bavarian festival originated in Germany and is celebrated all over the U.S. each fall by drinking large amounts of beer, wearing your favorite pair of lederhosen, snacking on some pretzels and getting down with some polka dancing. NYC’s Oktoberfest is sure to offer great brews, bratwurst, beats and bonding so bring your favorite drinking buddies down for a good time.
If you can’t make it to Italy any time soon, don’t worry, Eataly has got you covered. And lucky for you, Eataly has just opened their second New York location this past August! Upon entering Eataly Downtown, guests will be greeted with an extravagant display of bread – the theme of the location. Eataly Downtown is located on the Third Floor of World Trade Center Tower 4 and is open daily from 7 a.m. – 11 p.m. The Italian marketplace boasts a number of small cafes, elaborate dining options, bakeries, wines, coffees, and even classes. Returning restaurants include La Pizza & La Pasta, La Piazza, and Il Pesce. Orto & Mare, a new vegetable and seafood-focused restaurant, will offer Eataly's first extensive breakfast menu. At Eataly, they say “we cook what we sell, and we sell what we cook.” For those who wish to bring the flavor of Eataly home, over 10,000 Italian products will be available at several markets including fresh mozzarella, pasta, and gelato.
Queens Comfort and Burnside Biscuits – Astoria, Queens
If you’re looking to escape Manhattan for a morning, try brunch in Queens. Queens Comfort and Burnside Biscuits are worthy options (both are located in Astoria). Burnside Biscuits focuses on southern cuisine — its brunch menu offers two-, four- and eight-piece fried chicken meals. While, Queens Comfort serves, of course, comfort foods like the buttermilk pancakes and maple cheddar sausage gravy in a relaxed family-friendly environment. Visitors will want to note that Queens Comfort only accepts cash and cannot seat parties larger than eight. Also, these spots are popular with locals on the weekends, so be prepared for a wait during brunch hours.
As the weather gets cooler, don’t think you’ve got to stop hitting the rooftop bars of the New York skyline. Enter: Bar 54. The Hyatt Times Square bar has a new way to enjoy their expansive terrace no matter what the weather. Last winter, Bar 54 introduced The Bubbles, which are two cozy, clear igloo-type rooms that guests can sit in and drink in, all while being outside. We can’t tell you when The Bubbles are making their grand return, but we can tell you that Bar 54 is the highest rooftop bar in the City, so you know it’s going to offer the best views. Guests can enjoy views of the Chrysler Building, all of lower Manhattan, and Times Square from inside the big bubble. We suggest making advance reservations for this posh hideaway, but it can also be privately booked for parties of up to 10 people. Have a big group of friends? Book both a private space indoors and The Bubbles for the ultimate party. There is also the ability to customize the experience with a sunset experience or champagne celebration.
Nitehawk Cinema – Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Looking for some entertainment? Nitehawk Cinema (136 Metropolitan Avenue, Williamsburg, Brooklyn) shows both new and fan-favorite movies with a twist. This theater has a gourmet concession stand, tableside food and beverage service. We suggest ordering a cocktail in the downstairs bar, Lo-Res, before the show in one of the three theaters. If you’re here in October, we also suggest checking out the theaters Fourth Annual Halloween Movie Marathon. From midnight through dawn on October 29, Nighthawk is hosting “A Nite to Dismember” and showing The Exorcist, The Black Cat, The Legend of Hell House, Night of the Demons and Babak Anvari’s Under the Shadow. If you’ve got little ones, check Nitehawk’s website for certain Saturday’s throughout October where they are showing kid-friendly movies.
Museum of the Moving Image – Astoria, Queens
Astoria is home to one special museum that will excite both adults and children. The Museum of the Moving Image, on the campus of the historic Kaufman Astoria Studios, is an absolute must for fans of the TV and film industries. Visitors will learn about film, TV and digital media through exhibits, artifacts and interpretive programs. Before its close on September 18, be sure to check out the “Arcade Classics: Video Games from the Collection” exhibit. The exhibition features more than 30 playable video arcade games released between 1971 and 1993, so prepare for a blast from the past. The museum’s core exhibit, The exhibit “Behind the Screen” has more than 1,000 items relating to film, including classic video arcade games (the kids will love it), masks and makeup worn by Robin Williams in “Mrs. Doubtfire,” vintage film cameras, licensed merchandise from “Star Wars” and “Star Trek,” and, our favorite, interactive experiences, where guests can create their own animation and sound effects. Groups and families can arrange a private tour by contacting Leigh Wells at [email protected].
Brooklyn Botanic Gardens – Crown Heights, Brooklyn
While most famous for its Cherry Blossom Festival, the Brooklyn Botanic Garden offers tranquil sights in all the seasons. In addition to the blossom-lined Cherry Esplanade, there is also a Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden that incorporates wooden bridges, stone lanterns, a viewing pavilion, a torii (gateway) and a Shinto shrine, as well as a series of indoor conservatories displaying everything from desert plants to a collection of bonsai trees. Opening September 15 is the Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s new Water Garden. The wetland and riparian environment spans one-and-a-half acres of innovative sustainability features. Designed by award-winning landscape architecture firm Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates, the garden highlights the beaufy of water elements at the gardens with a restored and expanded pond and brook system, home to more than 18,000 new plants. Good to know: You can check out what’s blooming at www.bbg.org/bloom, and admission is free before noon on Saturdays, except for days with special events. Tip: The Brooklyn Botanic Garden is full of amazing sites, but it is not a park. If you’re looking for a place to picnic, check out Brooklyn’s Prospect Park.
Wherever you go, be sure to check Luxury Travel Advisor for the best tips and places to visit across the globe.