Worth getting out of bed for
Madison Square Park is the nearest patch of greenery, offering not only sun-basking space and mini-rambles, but also a packed calendar of art exhibits, open-air concerts, readings and kids’ events. There's nothing musty or dusty about New Museum at 235 Bowery (+1 212 219 1222), which exhibits creations by off-the-radar artists, including works in digital media.
Ace Hotel’s own restaurateur, Brit chef April Bloomfield is also the brains behind celebrated NYC gastropub The Spotted Pig (+1 212 620 0393) at 11th and Greenwich. Here, she presents a mouthwatering nose-to-tail menu with a smattering of seafood, drawing on the best of British and Italian culinary tradition. For an equally carnivorous adventure – this time French – make reservations at Resto and share one of the signature 34oz cotes du bouef. Head over to BLT Fish (+1 212 691 8888) on West 17th for a diner-style fish-and-chip basket in the ground-floor Fish Shack, or opt for the more elegant environs of the main restaurant upstairs. It’s only open for dinner and attracts shoals of people, so be sure to book. For Italian bar-style dining, great pastries and delicious gelato, secure a spot at a communal table in Taralluci e Vino (+1 212 228 5400) in Union Square. Though its name sounds like an obscenity, Momofuku, on 171 First Avenue, serves up heavenly fare, including peerless pizza pie and flavour-bomb noodles. Hudson Hall (+1 212 554 6502), housed within the Hudson Hotel at 356 West 58th Street, is designed in imitation of an Ivy League cafeteria; the stylish space is kitted out with long communal tables and red brick walls; diners help themselves to the colourful, international cuisine. Chef Shea Gallante keeps critically acclaimed Ciano (+1 212 982 8422) in the Flatiron district interesting with a daily-changing menu. It’s all about the ingredients with its dishes, with a focus on sustainable, local offerings. And there are some great eco-friendly details in the eatery itself, such as repurposed wood from a farmhouse. Intimate and relaxed there’s a warm ambiance from decor that includes exposed brick walls, a central fireplace and warm-hued leather banquette seating. Sexy, low-lit Boqueria (+1 212 255 4160), on West 19th Street in the Flatiron District, serves up crispy croquettes, matured Serrano ham and ice-cold white sangria.
No red ropes, no fussy doormen, no hype, just a low-key, friendly atmosphere, a wide-ranging wine list and a cracking martini at Black Door (+1 212 645 0215) on West 26th.
Named after the owner’s pet turtle, Penelope (+1 212 481-3800) at Lexington and 30th, is a real find. This bar, bakery and café is the essential stop-off for home-style comfort foods such as Nutella-stuffed French toast, mac and cheese, and ladle-loads of home-made meatballs. No cards, just cash.
17 March St Patrick's Day Parade, when thousands flock for the big Irish celebration. April If you’re bonkers for OTT bonnets, get involved in the Easter Parade on Easter Sunday. April–May The Tribeca Film Festival, co-founded by Robert de Niro, takes place in lower Manhattan. June–August Free alfresco screenings at Bryant Park Summer Film Festival. October Costumes and music bring the streets alive for the Columbus Day Parade, which celebrates the time Chris first stumbled across this land. November The Thanksgiving Day Parade takes place on the fourth Thursday. 30 November Rockefeller Center Christmas tree-lighting ceremony.
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Smith extra at Ace Hotel New York
A large bottle of Rudy's Barbershop bodywash or a bottle of red or white wine