Living in New York City my early years taught me 2 things, to seize the moment when it presents itself and if you don’t ask, you won’t receive. Most of these areas I went to and found out on my own but, some of them are also recommendations from New York locals, family, and friends! These are just a few locations that I’ve personally visited and are a must-see in my opinion! All the way from restaurants to the simple attractions that took my breath away as a little girl
1. Times Square
New York is the hub for creativity and Inspiration. The Architect alone gives me a deeper and deeper admiration for the city every time I go back home to visit! I had to put Times Square on this Hot Spot list because if I didn’t would I be a true New York City native if I hadn’t? Times Square, formerly known as Longacre Square, was renamed in 1904 after The New York Times moved its headquarters to where Times Square is now. Upon entering Times Square, your greeted with huge futuristic billboards and huge big brand name stores, stories high up off the ground. Besides the annual New Year’s Eve ball drop which began on December 31, 1907, that attracts over a million visitors to Times Square every year, what really stood out to me as a memorable memory was the Naked Cowboy along with his Naked Cowgirl and Naked Cow Grandma! They stay in times square all day half-naked posing and taking pictures with tourists and people from all over. The best part of all is that Times Square is free to visit and open to the public! One visit to Times Square and you’ll have stories to tell your grandkids!
2. The Museum of Modern Art
The Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan also known as MoMA, in my opinion, is one of the best top tier Museums in the world and one of New York Cities’ best Hot Spots. MoMA has two locations, in Midtown Manhattan and Queens. If you’re an art buff like myself then not only will you enjoy all of what this museum has to offer but you’ll delight in the fact that this museum is free on Fridays from 4:00 to 8:00 pm. One thing to keep in mind is that the lines can be very long on Fridays so get there early for a smoother admission! MoMA is a true art temple hosting delightful temporary and permanent collections from all over the world and remarkable installations. The view from the top floor is lovely in the five-floor building. MoMA is unique and you ‘ll see some things you won’t have the chance of seeing them again! It’ll feel surreal to see Van Gogh’s Starry Night up close and in real life! Plus, if you are a big fan of Frida Kahlo, Monet, Matisse, you will enjoy this museum. If you love design and art, it’s a must for your NYC bucket list.
3. Washington Square Park
Colin Huggins. Remember that name. Why is it so special? Well, He’s the famous New York piano man, he even made an appearance on the television show Louie. Every day Colin wakes up he brings a huge Steinway B grand piano all the way from his apartment to play in the streets of Washington Square Park! Whenever you feel like roaming down Washington Square Park, I suggest you bring a friend or at least some snacks and something to do, so that way you can enjoy the beautiful tunes coming from Colin’s piano. When I first saw Colin, I thought he was there by accident and I caught him on a good day. Only to find out that he is there almost every day! How about that for a neat thing to do on a day in New York City!
4. Central Park
Central Park is one of the most visited urban parks in the United States and one of the most filmed locations of the world, with an estimated 38 million visitors each year flying to New York to visit this Hot Spot. I had to add this to the list because I remember a story I was told in public school as a little girl as to how the Central Park Zoo was formed. Apparently shortly after Central Park was built, random inhabitants of New York kept leaving exotic animals from birds to bears in the Zoo which later forced the city to make the Central Park Zoo an actual thing and house exotic animals! I always found that story to be particularly funny because if you know anything about New York is that the people who inhabit the city are unique to New York, in that you will know a New Yorker when you bump into one. The New York State acknowledged the Zoo which made it the second publicly owned zoo in the United States! Central Park is home to many free and not so free attractions. Like in the winter one of my favorite things to also do was to go ice skating in the lake and in the summer it’s free to park-goers to get a rowboat and go on the lake! Central Park is also home to the Metropolitan Museum of Arts, there’s an open-air theatre, a huge children playground which legend has it that Frederick Olmstead would’ve not wanted the children’s playground, because he believed that children should be allowed on the grass, the park was designed for walking and relaxing. There’s so much to do in Central Park but overall, in my opinion, it is the ultimate New York Hot Spot.
5. Chelsea Market
My art lovers, foodies, and tourists will love this next Hot Spot named Chelsea Market. To end this great list of New York Hot-Spots I had to add in my favorite one-stop-shop. If you are the ultimate Gen-Z-er then you will appreciate how hipster, aesthetically pleasing, and Instagram-able Chelsea Market is! Chelsea Market is in the area of Manhattan and is a perfect experience to do after exiting the High-Line! Annually attracting roughly around 6 million national and international visitors annually Chelsea Market proclaims to be one of the most trafficked and written-about destinations in New York! In the 1890s Chelsea Market was home to the Nabisco Factory warehouse where Oreo cookies were invented! Today Chelsea Market has more than thirty-five vendors with super trendy, super great stores selling everything from, tacos, gourmet perfectly aged cheese, fresh seafood, Gelato, coffee, cheesecake, peanuts, and Crêpes Suzette’s! This remodeled warehouse is filled with alternative New York designer shops, Pop-Up clothes stores, hundreds of art galleries, and a ton of bars and restaurants. The service at Chelsea Market is fast & efficient, and the food is fabulous. There’s even entertainment! Chelsea Market hosts events where coveted designers can host sample sales of their products. Chelsea Market has lots of shops, but in my opinion, over 90% of them are food-related! You can come alone but I suggest hopping on over to Chelsea Market with a friend to relish in all of what Chelsea Market has to offer.
New York is where I was born and raised and in my opinion the heart of who I am today. All the places listed above are places I used to frequent as a child with various family members and have solidified spots in my memory bank. I’ve truly had memorable experiences at each of these unique Hot Spots and you will too!
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My very first job was being a product consultant at Sephora so from an early ripe age of 18 I was thrusted into the beauty world. Then I went to college where I took on many social justice hats, became president of my lovely organization and also became a founder of a huge initiative for black history month at USF-Tampa that earned me an award for excellent leadership. In my free time, I write blogs, watch youtube documentaries on how to save the world and spend time with my favorite person in the world, my mom.