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You’ll never guess what Conwell Coffee Hall is hiding…

Surprise! Conwell Coffee Hall Houses a Secret Immersive Production

Back in March, we announced the opening of Conwell Coffee Hall, a gorgeous new caffeine hub housed in a former bank lobby at 6 Hanover St. It felt, as we said, like a “place where magic just might happen” — and we weren’t just wowed by the Art Deco details. It turns out that Conwell Coffee Hall is harboring an exciting secret; and trust us, it’s life changing.

Be sure to check out Conwell Coffee Hall next time you’re in the area, which is worth it for the spectacular decor and delectable grub alone…though you’ll find more than that, if you look hard enough.

A Year After the Grand Re-Opening, What’s in Stock at Century 21? 

It’s been about one year since the grand re-opening of Century 21’s flagship location, which brought thousands of enthusiastic shoppers to Lower Manhattan. A year later, the store’s four levels of clothing, perfume, shoes, accessories, household goods and much more continue to delight shoppers looking for affordable designer goods.

We stopped by Century 21 to see what’s in stock and chat with customers, and it turns out that even though Century 21 is one of Lower Manhattan’s most famous stores, it’s also one of downtown’s best kept secrets. The wares and bargains here are truly excellentread more about our experience, and be sure to swing by 22 Cortlandt St. to get a firsthand look at the goods!

Governors Island Spa QC NY Will Be Even Bigger, More Relaxing This Summer

Good news for those of you who love being pampered with a side of Lower Manhattan’s striking skyline: QC NY, everyone’s favorite Governors Island spa, is expanding its offerings this summer. In July 2024, a new 15,000-square-foot building will add even more luxurious experiences including sensory saunas, waterfalls, a salt room, an ice room, a lavender room, a relaxation room with waterbeds and Casa QC, an Italianesque bistro.

You can find more pricing and information here. BYO stress (but we promise you won’t leave with it).

Bask in the Glow of the Festival of Lights at These Hanukkah Events

Eight crazy nights are just a few days away! Hanukkah runs this year from December 7 through December 15, and Lower Manhattan is celebrating in style with lots of menorah lightings and other events. You can get a tour of the New York Stock Exchange, enjoy an all-you-can-eat sufganiyot buffet, party on a rooftop and much more. Here are six options in the neighborhood.

Rockefeller Park Menorah (and Tree) Lighting

On December 7, Rockefeller Park will be full of holiday cheer for observers of both Christmas and Hanukkah. The joint tree lighting and menorah lighting kicks off at 6 p.m. and will feature carols, drinks, treats and performances from Broadway’s Sam Primack, who starred in “Dear Evan Hansen,” as well as the chorus from PS/IS 276. Feel free to bring a toy with you for the Coalition for the Homeless’s toy collection. They’ll be accepting unwrapped gifts at 75 Battery Pl. on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. if you miss the park celebration.

Hanukkah Celebration at Bowling Green

On December 7, the Jewish Learning Experience is hosting a celebration at the “location of the first Jewish community in North America” that dates back 369 years. It will feature the lighting of a grand menorah, Hanukkah treats, music, balloons, face painting and more. The event starts at 4 p.m. at Bowling Green Park.

Menorah Lighting and Celebration at the Seaport

The Seaport will bring its six-foot-tall menorah to life right after sunset on December 10 on the Heineken Riverdeck at Pier 17. From 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., the lighting ceremony will feature latkes, hot cocoa, live music, arts and crafts, face painting and other treats. Hosted by the Jewish Learning Experience, the free event will also feature a menorah made of chocolate.

Menorah Lighting at the New York Stock Exchange

Not every menorah lighting is in a park; this one happens right outside the New York Stock Exchange, and comes with a chance to enter the famous “pen” inside the building. On December 11, the menorah lighting party will feature sufganiyot and other holiday treats, and a live performance from rapper Nissim Black. Plus, every 10th registration comes with a special VIP entrance to the NYSE pen. The event runs from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.; register here.

Rooftop Hanukkah at the Hyatt Centric

On December 12, you’re invited to the rooftop lounge of the Hyatt Centric at 75 Wall St. for a huge party that includes an open bar, sushi buffet and menorah celebration. The festivities run from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. and will feature a menorah lighting by youth community leaders, tunes from DJ Leviticus and loads of food: a sufganiyot-and-latke buffet and an all-you-can-eat sushi buffet by the in-house chef. Tickets are $54 before December 7, and $72 afterwards.

Menorah Lighting at FDNY Engine 4

Proper fire safety is key to any lighting ceremony (well, one that includes real candles, at least) so there’s no better place to celebrate than at one of our local firehouses. FDNY Engine 4 (42 South St.) is hosting a menorah lighting celebration on December 13 from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. It’s also a chance to check out the FDNY equipment and learn about fire safety.

Art Is All Around Returns With Two Art Installations, Lunchtime Concert Series

This week the Downtown Alliance’s Art Is All Around campaign returns with two newly installed interactive art pieces — “Optik” and “Roseaux” — plus, later this month, a free lunchtime concert series. The art will be on view through June 21, and the concerts will take place on Wednesdays at 12 p.m., beginning May 17.

“Optik,” on display at Cortlandt Way, was created by the Urban Conga in collaboration with Serge Maheu. “Roseaux,” at 200 Water St., was created by 1ToMn in collaboration with UDO Design and Serge Maheu. And New York-based musician/producer Svetlana Shmulyian is programming the weekly concert series set at both locations. You can check out Shmulyian’s lineup here.

Restaurant Week Is BACK: 25 Delicious Deals in Lower Manhattan

Just in time for peak outdoor dining season, everybody’s favorite culinary event is back and ready to feed budgeting New Yorkers looking to try the best restaurants in the city. And Lower Manhattan’s first-rate dining rooms are turning out, with generous Restaurant Week deals: Two- and three-course prix fixe meals hitting a range of price points for the diner who craves a little affordability — maybe even an ability to try ’em all.

The promotion begins Monday, July 18, through Monday, August 21. You can read more details at the Restaurant Week site, but for your convenience, see the following for the participating restaurants below Chambers Street:

  • Anassa Taverna (104 North End Avenue)
  • Barbalu (225-227 Front Street)
  • Bill’s Bar & Burger—Downtown (85 West Street)
  • Blue Smoke (255 Vesey Street)
  • Carne Mare (Pier 17)
  • Casa Taqueria (40 Gold Street)
  • Del Frisco’s Grille (250 Vesey Street, Brookfield)
  • Felice (15 Gold Street)
  • Firenze Ristorante Toscano & Bar (101 Liberty Street, Eataly)
  • The Fulton (Pier 17)
  • Industry Kitchen (70 South Street)
  • La Pizza and La Pasta (101 Liberty Street, Eataly)
  • Mad Dog & Beans (83 Pearl Street)
  • Malibu Farm (Pier 17)
  • Morton’s The Steakhouse (136 Washington Street)
  • One Dine at One World Observatory (117 West Street)
  • Route 66 Smokehouse (46 Stone Street)
  • Sant Ambroeus (200 Vesey Street)
  • Schilling (109 Washington Street)
  • Seamore’s (250 Vesey Street, Brookfield)
  • Stout NYC FiDi (90 John Street)
  • Temple Court (5 Beekman Street)
  • Treadwell Park (301 South End Avenue)
  • The Tuck Room (11 Fulton Street)
  • Vino e Grano (101 Liberty Street, Eataly NYC Downtown)

Happy eating!

How To Get To The Statue Of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty turns 136 years old this year, and that’s maybe how long it’s been since you’ve considered visiting the iconic monument. In movies, the statue has paraded through the streets of Manhattan as an avatar of New Yorkers’ spirit (“Ghostbusters 2”), been dressed up with Captain America’s shield (“Spider-Man: No Way Home”) and destroyed in basically every kind of disaster, but the good ol’ Lady Liberty is still standing as strong as ever.

If you never visited on a school field trip or with your out-of-town family, it’s worth seeing for yourself up close at least once. Here’s how to get there.

Ferry Cruises

You don’t need a ticket to enter the Statue of Liberty or Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration, but you do need a ticket to ride the ferry to get there. Here’s a very important part: the only vendor authorized to sell tickets to Liberty and Ellis Islands is Statue Cruises. If someone else tries to sell you a ticket, don’t buy it!

Tickets include round-trip ferry rides, an audio tour, access to the Ellis Island Museum and the Statue of Liberty pedestal (the crown of the statue is currently not open to the public). Ferries run from morning through late afternoon. Check here for updated times.

Where To Get Tickets

You can buy tickets at the Statue Cruises ticket booths in Castle Clinton in Battery Park, or in Liberty State Park on the New Jersey side. Get your tickets online in advance to cut down any confusion when looking for the ticket booth. Tickets start at $23.80.

Boat By, For Free

This is a hack we will repeat to our tourist friends until the Harbor runs dry: The Staten Island Ferry is a perfectly fine, and free, way to see the Statue of Liberty. The ferry leaves from Whitehall Terminal, goes right by Lady Liberty, providing some perfect picture opportunities (twice, with the round trip). Plus, you can buy cheap beer on board the boat too.

Tags: Statue of Liberty

New York City Tourism Update

As we wrap up 2021, we look back at a year full of challenges, but also a time with many green shoots of growth—the return of Broadway, the return of international travelers, the return of New York City tourism. Even in the context of the Omicron variant, there remains plenty of supporting data indicating an ongoing return for New York City. Despite the high-profile Broadway cancellations of the last few days, and the early end of the Rockettes’s run, a look at the Broadway League’s new resource for schedules shows the majority of shows going forward as planned. (And grosses have been up, while capacity holds steady.) Other data points include:

We remain optimistic for the prospects of a full recovery, beginning next year and really heating up in the spring. We wish all of our guests: future, current and past a wonderful holiday and a Happy New Year. After all, New York City is ranked as the nation’s most festive city—more than double our nearest competition!

NYC Tourism Update

Although the Delta variant’s impact on the economy is drawing most of the headlines, it’s worth noting the good news for New York that’s out there as well. The city will not be competing with European destinations in light of new international restrictions. On the domestic front, the number one fall destination for lodging searchers? That would be New York City. NYC will be ready to greet these visitors—many coming for longer stretches than usual—as reopening news continues to post:

Twenty years ago New York City suffered terrible losses in the September 11 attacks. We have listed highlights of the city’s commemorative events below. Along with NYC institutions, City Guide remembers the lives of the victims, the strength of their families, and the sacrifices of first responders, recovery workers, and volunteers. Many of us questioned what kind of city would come back in the wake of so much destruction. As we remember this solemn anniversary, we should also keep in mind the outpouring of support NYC received, and the exponential growth of the city as a tourism destination in the years since. Although we are again facing challenges, we have another chance to show the world New York City’s extraordinary resilience.

COVID Restrictions Lifted

Day 473 and it ends. COVID restrictions have been lifted in New York. Yesterday the governor’s office made the announcement as the state hit the 70% adult vaccination threshold. This means no more social distancing or capacity limits—at least as far as the state is concerned—for sports, malls, gyms, movie theaters, or camps. Health screening is done. So is contact tracing. Despite the many losses of these past 473 days, we expect the city to move to a more celebratory stance, and the latest slate of launches supports that:

NYC Re-Opening Update

The situation for city tourism is changing in a New York minute. The latest guidance from the Governor gives us extended bar and restaurant curfews, zoo and museum capacity expanded to 50%, and movie theaters up to 33%. Sports and large event capacity moves to 25% as of May 19th. The city’s COVID rate is the lowest its been in almost five months. In addition, there are plenty of green shoots on the reopening front, especially for culture:

On the national recovery front, restaurant sales spiked last month to return to 2019 levels. The most recent retail sales report suggests the U.S. will see its fastest growth since 1984. Since the first of the year, Google searches for hotels are up 92%. With each passing day, recovery draws closer.

NYC Re-Opening Update

We are again overflowing with reopening news, as vaccine eligibility further expands and the CDC greenlights travel for those who’ve got their shots. Live theatre, music, and comedy have returned at least in part—even Jerry Seinfeld is back. The mayor has promised public health resources to get Broadway open by September. You can finally put a premiere back on your calendar: Diana: The Musical has set its opening night for December 16th. Headlines like City Hospitality and Tourism Prepping Spring Awakening and For New York City, Glimmers of Hope and Signs of Revival are popping up all over. Payrolls boomed in March, much of it thanks to hospitality and leisure. On the reopening front, there is much to be excited about: