You can find a toy store anywhere, but there’s nowhere like New York’s FAO Schwarz. The flagship store is more than 150 years old and children and adults alike still line up around the block for a chance to shop inside. FAO is known for its selection of high-quality toys and life-size stuffed animals.

Last night, I took a trip to the Upper West Side to visit Palais des Thés, an intimate teashop teeming with 100 aromatic teas—from black and green varieties to oolongs and white teas. Once I entered the space, which is accented with mint green and pale blue hues, as well as large photographs of tea plantations and several canisters and boxes of tea displayed throughout, I was offered a cup of refreshing iced tea.

Early this week I went to Metropolitan Fine Arts & Antiques in Manhattan’s bustling Midtown West neighborhood. I had never been to the store and was expecting a small space packed with a large concentration of one particular item. Lamps? Maybe vases? Oil paintings? I was eager to find out.

The best spot to find unique vintage or custom jewelry isn’t a retail storefront in the Diamond District. Global Gold and Silver—with locations in Midtown Manhattan, Brooklyn and New Jersey—is a jewelry company that buys, sells and custom-makes pieces without the retail pricing you’ll find elsewhere.

Recently I traveled to Chelsea to check out Loehmann’s, a department store where savvy shoppers can save big bucks on designer finds. At the time, the store was gearing up to debut its brand new look. The famed off-pricer has flip-flopped the first and second floors, putting fashion at the front door.

A jewelry designer once told me “a good statement piece makes or breaks an outfit.” In the same vein, an interior designer friend once told me “it’s all about the finishing touches.” So, when I visited Macklowe Gallery—a tony, family-owned establishment on Fifth Avenue in Midtown East, which specializes in French Art Nouveau furniture and objects, Tiffany lamps, lithographs, antiques and estate jewelry—I was sure I’d find something spectacular.

Greenpoint’s independent bookstore, Word Brooklyn, is home to an array of literature, author events and friendly staff members.

New York City is full of weeklong events—the most famous of which is probably Fashion Week. However, the City That Never Sleeps also boasts Restaurant Week in the winter and even a week dedicated to pampering and wellness in the spring: Spa Week.

New York City is full of specialty stores, and Tender Buttons is definitely one to visit. The quaint shop, in a brick townhouse on the Upper East Side, is bursting at the seams with buttons for sale—housed in display cases and wooden drawers. Several antique buttons are even mounted and framed on the wall.

I know quite a few people with children, and it seems more often than not—be it a holiday or birthday celebration—these friends, parents and relatives find themselves searching for that perfect gift, one that the younger set will cherish for a lifetime. I tell these grown-ups to head to Kidding Around.


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