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Top Picks for Celebrating St. Patrick's Day in NYC

Harald Mootz
,
Concierge, The St. Regis New York
Harald Mootz
Concierge, The St. Regis New York
2 E. 55th St.
212.753.4500

 With St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner on March 17, Harald Mootz, concierge at The St. Regis New York and director of Concierge Relations for Les Clefs d'Or USA, has several top picks for how to celebrate this cultural and religious holiday. To honor Irish immigrants’ contributions to New York City, Mootz suggests taking the Little Ireland and Little Italy History & Tasting Tour, provided by NYC Discovery Walking Tours. The tour, held Sat., March 16 at 1:30 and 3:45 p.m.; and Sun., March 17 at noon and 2:45 p.m., not only commemorates St. Patrick’s Day but also the Italian holiday St. Joseph’s Day. On the tour, you will enjoy a stroll through former Little Ireland—with its Irish heritage sites—and a history and tasting tour of Little Italy—with specialties ranging from pizza and prosciutto bread to St. Joseph’s cake. Stops include Five Points, made famous in Gangs of New York; the birthplace of Cardinal Hayes; Mulberry Street; Banco Stabile; and the Church of the Most Precious Blood. The tour costs $27 per person, including food. For reservations and meeting place, call 212.465.3331. To further learn the history of the Irish in New York City, venture to lower Manhattan to the Irish Hunger Memorial. “It is a solemn yet beautiful reminder of struggles others have endured,” Mootz says. The uniquely landscaped plot uses soil and native vegetation brought in from the western coast of Ireland, as well as stones from all of the different counties of Ireland. The sight also incorporates a rebuilt 19th-century Irish cottage. For delicious food and lively libations, head to the Irish-owned-and-managed Lillie's Union Square, “It’s a great place with phenomenal ambiance and delicious food to warm up in these late winter days,” Mootz says. The antique, carved-wood bar and furnishings were acquired from a Victorian mansion in Belfast, Ireland. Mootz recommends the cottage pie (made with Guinness) and a pint of Smithwick’s to “warm your festive soul!” For those who wish to abstain from drinking, stop by Regis H.S. on Sat., March 16 for the Sober St. Patrick's Day celebration. Be sure to sign up quickly as the tickets are free. Click here to sign up. Of course, you can always head to the famous St. Patrick’s Day Parade down Fifth Avenue, which attracts two million spectators and more than 200,000 marchers every year.