The elevated High Line
o;ers one of the city’s
finest strolls; red snapper
crudo, David Chang–style,
at Má Pêche; the iconic
Manhattan style of the
JW Marriott Essex House.
( brokenkilometer.org) is more churchlike; first
impressions are vital, so it’s best to know little
more than to hush conversation after entering.
In fine weather, an al fresco option is a
stroll across Brooklyn Bridge, finished in 1883
as an engineering marvel intended to ease
Manhattan’s population crunch and siphon
off residents to more pastoral Brooklyn. For
the best snapshot-ready views, hop the subway
one stop into Brooklyn (A/C to High Street or
F to York Street) and stroll back toward the
skyscrapers. Otherwise, you can also dawdle in
some of the buzzier hubs in this outer borough: Dumbo, home to Brooklyn Bridge Park
( brooklynbridgepark.org), or Williamsburg—
head for the main drag of Bedford Avenue to
explore cutting-edge cafés and stores.
The hushed, moneyed Upper East Side remains
the city’s upscale shopping hub, home to
flagship outposts of most of the world’s top
brands. Visit the three-story Madison Avenue
shop of understated Italian womenswear brand
Max Mara ( maxmara.com), packed with
timeless camel-hair coats and classic suiting.
Nearby, the atelier of late jeweler David Webb
( davidwebb.com) is crammed with the show-stopping, globally inspired baubles for which
the American designer—beloved by Elizabeth
Taylor and Jackie Kennedy—became known.
A little farther south, in Midtown, the iconic
shopping drag of Fifth Avenue is the other
option for impulse buying. Jewelry legend
Harry Winston ( harrywinston.com) also has
its worldwide headquarters here, a store filled
with the large, brightly colored stones that he
helped popularize—and that everyone from
Jennifer Lopez to Madonna has since worn.
Ferragamo ( ferragamo.com) has brought
its leatherworking know-how directly here
from Florence, Italy, offering everything from
handmade shoes to silk scarves; buy a ballerina
flat here in tribute to the style invented by the
firm’s namesake founder, Salvatore.
EATING & DRINKING
Keith McNally has been a fixture of New
York’s food scene for more than three decades;
the onetime child actor creates restaurants
with cinematic glamour and menus packed
with comfort food classics. His best known is
Balthazar ( balthazarny.com), a SoHo staple
inspired by a French bistro—try the chicken
paillard—while his newest is Augustine
( augustineny.com), a rowdier brasserie in the
Financial District; its signature burger is slathered in onions sautéed in single-malt whisky.
The Korean-American chef David Chang has
earned a reputation as a mold-breaking force
since his first Momofuku ( momofuku.com)
outpost opened in the East Village in 2004.
Chang has gone on to create an empire of
intriguing spots, each riffing on the mainstays
of Asian cooking, whether upscale Má Pêche,
fried-chicken hub Fuku or his latest, Nishi, a
dazzling Italian/Asian mashup—try the spicy
beef pasta with mint and crispy shallots.
A superb spot for evening cocktails is the
SOUTHGATE Bar & Restaurant inside the
JW Marriott Essex House New York
( jwmarriott.com), with its unbeatable setting
on the edge of Central Park. Floor-to-ceiling
windows offer views out over the green space,
with cozy nooks to nestle in while you sip a
martini. Expect a top-notch drink, thanks to
New York’s place at the center of the cocktail
revival movement over the past two decades.
The Dead Rabbit ( deadrabbitnyc.com), a retro,
Irish-themed lounge in the Financial District,
recently earned the title of World’s Best Bar at
Tales of the Cocktail, the Oscars of bartending.
Sip a punchy Irish coffee in the taproom
downstairs or head up to the parlor for oysters
and a cocktail or two; the thimble of house
punch on arrival is a welcoming gesture. The
other must-try martini mecca is the East
Village’s Death & Co ( deathandcompany.com),
a speakeasy-styled space on a quiet street that’s
deliberately dark and romantic. Give your
number to the doorman if there’s a wait; even
the most impatient New Yorkers will admit the
city’s pleasures are worth holding out for. [