I sit here beginning this post at 4:30am. #JetLagProblems With hair greasier than the film leftover in the carton from your Friday night kebab - attractive - with eye bags (which definitely do not come courtesy of Chanel) keeping in theme with the "I'll wear another colour when they invent one darker than black" dress code - sexy - and nails with more chips than your local chip shop - Jesus, I should start my own business writing dating profiles for people, I'm on to an absolute winner here - basically looking like shit rubbish but feeling - despite the total lack of sleep - on top of the world.
You see, just in case you don't follow me on social media - which you totally should by the way, especially if you want to see pointless photo's of food, London, makeup, my bed and even more food ;) - or have read my previous post, then you'll know that I was in New York for 5 days, last week. If I'm being totally honest, I never really planned to do much of a New York post because I decided not to lug around a big DSLR, and it was basically just a trip that I wanted to live in the moment, and not through my camera screen. However, I have received a few requests to see a New York post and of course, I got ridiculously snap happy with my iPhone anyway, despite best intentions.
So, this will be a combination of possibly useful/quite possibly completely useless, tips and quickly taken iPhone snaps of food, shopping and the sights of New York. It will have absolutely no structure whatsoever, the photographs may be of a shocking quality - the photography
snob lover in me cries a little inside at the lack of sharp focus, composition and depth of field #FirstWorldProblems #GetOverYourselfYouTit - and I may get ever so slightly soppy/mushy/[insert your own "drippy" synonym here] as it was quite simply, the trip of a life time.
Let's start with the food. (Because what in life comes before food? Nothing I tell you... nothing!)
Now, this is NYC. It's humongous, it has every single cuisine/style of restaurant you could wish for, so I'm not going to bore you to death with every meal that I had - deciding to change the habit of a lifetime, about bloody time... - so I thought I'd include some pictures and a couple of little thoughts/tips/general word vomit when it comes to eating in New York.
- Bistango: If you're staying in Manhattan, or even if you're staying elsewhere but head over to Manhattan for a day, then you need, yes need, to head to Bistango in the Kips Bay area. It's an Italian restaurant that serves incredible gluten-free pizza, pasta and desserts. (I would highly recommend the Carrot cake but there really is something for everyone including Red velvet cake, Key lime pie, Apple tart *snaps out of day dream and wipes drool from around my mouth*) The waitresses/staff are also so lovely and informative too. By far one of my favourite meals of the entire trip.
- Jennifer's Way: I actually trekked about an hour and a half out of the way to head to Jennifer's Way after hearing that they did gluten free doughnuts. Well, they might have done GF doughnuts but they certainly didn't when I finally made it there. They do do a cracking Jam tart though. Which I didn't get to picture because I scoffed it in a matter of seconds. #FatBloggerSays
If you don't have coeliac disease - or even if you do, I found the options in the US much better than in the UK - and you're looking for a down to earth, laid back, Americanised dining experience, then Times Square is the place to head to. There is just the most incredible atmosphere there - lively, friendly, bustling with people but not overwhelmingly so, and also the home to all of the stereotypically American restaurants; Planet Hollywood, Hard Roc cafe, TGI Friday's, and every possible diner that you can ever imagine. If you love shrimp - which I do - or Forest Gump - which I hang in my head in shame and admit that I've actually never seen it - Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. does great food, has a really friendly - if a little cheesy, but we all love a bit of cheese, right? - vibe and just a great atmosphere. Plus you have a great view of the bright lights of Times Square. A nice, laid back, easy option.
I'm sure if you are heading to New York for the first time, then you have probably got a mental list of places you would like to visit/attractions you'd like to see etc. - or, let's face it, you'll head to more established bloggers New York posts who give you useful tips and tricks and don't just bombard you with photo's and verbal diarrhoea ;) - but here are my
probably completely ineffectual - thoughts.
The Empire State building - Lots of people recommended that I check out the Rockefeller or the Chrysler building instead of the Empire state due to price, views etc. However, as a first time New Yorker but definitely one that will return - I am already planning to return in the summer - I thought I'd start at the top. No, literally at the bloody top. 102
poxy, scary as fuck, terrifying floors up. Obviously as I didn't check out the others, I can't compare to the previously mentioned however in my honest opinion... I can't imagine anything topping the incredible views that you get from the Empire state. I mean, a picture speaks a thousand words - and so do you, you boring cow now shut up... - so I'll let them speak for themselves. Simply breathtaking!
The Statue of Liberty - Something that I think you have to go and see if you want the full New york experience. I really enjoyed it, but if you could only chose one or the other, I'd recommend the Empire State. I actually found the views of Manhattan from the ferry that takes you over to Liberty Island much more jaw dropping than statue experience in itself. (nothing against the statue of Liberty, just check out those views though [insert heart eye'd emoji here])
The 9/11 memorial site - Humbling, touching... something beautiful that was born out of something so incredibly horrendous. The 9/11 attack is something that I remember as if it were yesterday and has always had an effect on me ever since, so I am so glad that I managed to see this for myself. PS I was genuinely happy to be there, next time I'll just have to convince my face of that...
Times Square - I feel like Times Square could be slightly Love or Hate in the fact that yes, it is completely incredible, magnificent, surreal... it's pretty much Piccadilly Circus on a much, much larger scale. But I could see how some people might think that it slightly borders on tacky? Now, I'm all for a bit of tacky sometimes (classy bird!) so it's right up my street, but if bright lights
and epileptic fits aren't your thing, take a little stroll down 7th/8th avenue until you reach Central Park. Again, apologies for the shocking photo's that really do not capture the beauty (...or any beauty at all)
Central Park - This place holds the most special place in my heart after this trip (which I'm sure I'll go into at a later date, 10 points for any intuitive guesses why [insert inconspicuous, side grin here]) and unfortunately, again my photo's and words just can not do justice to how stunning it really is. The architecture of the bridges, the layout which is almost akin to a theme park, the never ending paths... utter perfection! We also walked for over an hour on the first day and didn't even see a quarter of the park, go hard or go home America! Soppiness over, let's move on to the superficial, good stuff ;)
Bearing in mind the nature of this trip - i.e booked totally at last minute with no consideration for the fact that I hadn't saved/budgeted for it, and the fact that I'm freelance /self-employed - I hadn't intended on spending a huge amount on shopping. And I didn't (Well, not in comparison to what I could quite easily have spent) but what I did purchase, I completely love. Which totally cancels out the frivolity of it all, right? Right...
I limited myself to just a couple of shops, and of course one of those were Sephora. I received so many recommendations but in the end, I opted for things that were totally necessary* in my collection.
I use the term "necessary" as loosely as Katie Price uses her va.... *beep* Ok, Ok, let's stop there!
Kat Von D Tattoo Liner in Trooper - Liquid liner is a product that I don't feel I have ever truly found the one. I've liked many, loved few, but never truly fallen head over hills in love with any (Erm, yes, it is possible to fall in love with a liquid liner and don't let anyone tell you otherwise!) Hopefully this will be the one.
Formula X for Sephora nail polish in Blazing - I already own this formula in the shade illusionary, and it is stunning. It has quickly become one of my most used polishes, a stunning colour but even better formula. It took all of my might* to stop myself from picking up 10 different shades. In the end I opted for blazing, a beautiful metallic brown toned Red. Unique to my collection - although not according to the boyf "why do you need that, you've got a million reds as it is?" - and the perfect all year round transitional shade.
*Might = my boyfriend dragging me in the other direction ;)
Makeup Forever Aqua liner in M 50 - Another liner, I know, but I seriously was in the market for a long lasting brown khol liner. I watched this on my first day in New York and this bad boy would not budge when I tried to scrub it off. Seriously excited to get going with this.
Makeup Forever HD Foundation - I've owned this before and loved it. It photographs amazingly and lasts well all day, perfect for a party or wedding.
Wet n Wild lipsticks in Within those adobe walls & Think Pink - Inexpensive, easy to wear pinks. (Because I really needed to add more to my collection [insert covers eyes emoji here] Think pink is a bright neutral, comfortable to wear matte lipstick. Within those adobe walls is a moisturising, glossy peachy pink. Both stunning, and both leave me with regret that I didn't pick up more.
Let's bring this incredibly long ramble/photo explosion/general waffling to an end now shall we? Because I am well aware that whilst reliving my trip may be lovely for me, it might not be so interesting for you. As I mentioned above, I had no intention of doing a full NYC post but now I'm at the end of it (Many and many tears in #WifiProblems) I'm glad I did. New York was especially memorable for me for personable reasons - which as I also mentioned, I'm sure will probably crop up on this blog soon - and I'm so glad that in years to come I'll be able to look back and remember some of the highlights of this trip.
What I would love to know - if you're still alive and with me [insert hand clap emoji here] - is what your highlights of New York were if you've been? Or if you haven't been but would love to go one day, what do you want to see whilst you're out there?
Also, do you have any of the products I hauled, if so I would love to hear your thoughts on them :)
As always, thank you so much for reading. I hope you enjoyed this post.
Labels: Haul, Lifestyle, New York, Personal, Review, Travel, Travel blogger