Your Personal Concierge
Pre-Holiday Shopping, Dining and Events
Bring on the Holiday Season! November in New York City is the time to shop for everything from portable luxury gifts to cool toys. Then, cozy up with a cold-weather cocktail and innovative cuisine. Concierge Dana Steer of Viceroy New York (120 W. 57th St., 212.830.8000) shows you how.
Q: What have guests been asking about the most lately?
A: The whole “local” movement seems to be shaping people’s requests. Luckily, there’s no shortage of restaurants for the discerning “locavore.” Also remarkable is just how popular the High Line continues to be. This has really reinvigorated the dining and gallery scenes in West Chelsea.
Q: On the dining front, what are some new places along with a favorite tried-and-true?
A: Beautique has one of Midtown’s most beautiful dining rooms—both the decor and the patrons! White Street in TriBeCa is one of this season’s hottest openings. The large, buzzy space in a historic building is serving an American menu with global influences. And I loved the ribbon pasta with short ribs at new swanky hot spot The Monarch Room in the Meatpacking District. For brunch, no one beats Sarabeth’s, now with several locations around the city. This concierge’s standby for Italian, etcetera etcetera, serves the theater-loving denizens of Hell’s Kitchen. The handmade potato gnocchi with black truffle and parmigiano is a must!
Q: What are some shops you’d recommend that are great for travelers?
A: Bergdorf Goodman is still No. 1 in terms of accommodating the special needs of my guests. The store will deliver right to the hotel and do its best to advise on shipping as well. Across the street from Bergdorf’s, at Smythson of Bond Street, you can buy a multitude of ultra-fancy gifts that will even fit in a carry-on. Besides stationery (which is exquisite), Smythson also sells diaries and leather goods that can be personalized. Call ahead to your concierge so it can be monogrammed ahead of time and ready for pickup!
Q: What about great spots for holiday shopping?
A: For the child in your life, visit Kidding Around in Grand Central Terminal (or on W. 15th St.), which has curated creative gifts. STORY in Chelsea is one of my favorite stores because it changes its look, storefront and “story” seasonally. There is a wide range of price points for everything from apparel to books to gadgets.
Q: What are some must-attend events in November?
A: The New York City marathon on Nov. 2 is sure to inspire! Stop by Central Park South for a great place to cheer on the runners, who come from all over the world. On Thanksgiving, skip the crowds at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and go see the balloon inflation the night before along Central Park West.
Q: What are some great city activities for autumn?
A: There’s not a bad time for cocktailing in Manhattan, and now we can start enjoying our booze in holiday style! Try the Snowday—vanilla vodka and hot chocolate—at Stone Rose Lounge and Whiskey Park.