Last night invited by my dear friend Michael Romei, Chief Concierge at the Waldorf Tower and General Secretary of UICH Les Clefs d’Or, along with our other friend Alejandro, we shared and enjoyed a lovely evening at one of the most iconic restaurants of New York, the Bull & Bear Prime Steakhouse. VIP treatment right from the start, when we were informed that we were seating at the Waldorf Astoria’s General Managers table, and the excellent service, efficient and professional, but yet friendly and relaxed. There is so much history and myth in this room, that makes the whole gourmet experience even more enjoyable and rich. Every week, when the three of us are in New York, we get together to try a new restaurant and share week with each other.
Yesterday, invited by their General Manager, I got to explore around the new and recently inaugurated VICEROY New York City. An urban retreat, right on 57th Street, located steps away to some of my favorite restaurants in town, and centrally located, for those looking to experience New York City in full and beyond the usual city attraction. Do not be deceived by the look of their lobby, which is tiny, understated and has not much character. The façade is defined by two shoulders – made of iron-spot black brick – that define, frame and ground the building’s front elevation. Over-scaled, fluted, cast-glass bricks march over the building’s twenty-foot storefront. Above this street façade, glazed black brick-and-metal muntined windows continue up the thirty-story building to comprise the bulk of the façade. When lit from within, they create the effect of a glowing lantern. These windows relate the new hotel to much of the traditional, iconic architecture in the neighborhood.
This morning I came, invited by the General Manager, to do a quick site inspection of the fairly new The High Line Hotel, right across the High Line in the heart of Chelsea, over 10th Avenue between 20th and 21st Street. Formerly Desmond Tutu Conference Center. .Each of The High Line Hotel’s 64 rooms (including 5 beautiful cosy Suites) evoke a bygone era of a graciously decorated guesthouse. Guests will enjoy staying in light-filled rooms featuring beautiful hardwood floors and one-of-a-kind locally sourced furniture. Oversized beds with crisp cotton linens provide a perfect night’s sleep, and plush robes invite you to relax after a long day. All rooms feature large windows offering dazzling views of the High Line Park or their enclosed private-garden oasis. Guests are encouraged to enjoy a perfectly brewed espresso prepared by our Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea baristas in the lobby. I reality liked the hotel, it is the type of properties I enjoyed, where boutique, quaint with basic limited services, meets understated luxurious touches, with a twist of local charm. NOW the great surprise to me, was the Refectory ballroom and staircases, which immediately transported me to a medieval atmosphere. This is a space you may rent for multiple private events, and more so for weddings, with access through a private garden, to the local Chapel. Enjoy my photo album.
As every year at the Rockefeller Center in Manhattan, here is the Holiday Spirit. Hope you enjoy it. Merry Xmas and Happy Holidays to everyone.
Last night we assisted to the 2013 Rickard Tucker Music Gala at the at the Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, in New York City, where Soprano Aylin Perez, performed live wearing two Rubin Singer couture designs. Aylin Perez, winner of the 2012 Richard Tucker Award, is increasingly in demand at the world’s leading opera houses and cultural capitals. Read the full post, see videos and photos at Rubin Singer Blog.
So las night I experience a VIP backstage of SNL – Saturday Night Live, and got to hang out with Lady Gaga, during and post the show. I must be fully honest, I never cared much for her, and yes I got hooked up many time to her songs and marketing, but tonight I saw a different side of her. The live performer, the professional and the human being, and I must say I was impressed by them all in no particular order.
If there is something that always intrigues and interests me about iconic landmarks and destinations, is to dig deep into their apparent facade and learn about the myths and legends behind them. You saw my recent post on Buenos Aires, from my visit last week, and now New York. Invited to join this exclusive group of luxury concierges of Manhattan, by my friend Michael Romei, I took part of this exclusive behind the scenes 3hs tours of Grand Central Terminal and Beyond. The tour was conducted to detail and perfection, by Docent-in-Chief Daniel Brucker, who not only is an erudite in the subject, but also is known and referred as “The Keeper of Grand Central’s Secrets”.
Last week, I had a express stay at the Hôtel Americano in New York City, member of the Grupo Habita and Design Hotels. Located in the heart of the Chelsea between the High Line and the Hudson River. Quaint small hotel, very happening, on a rather quiet street, only two blocks from the Hudson River Park over 27th Street, between 10th and 11th.
Inspired by the history and rise of the apothecary in Europe as well as the artistic influence of absinthe dens in 19th century Paris, Apothéke is the first of its kind. The entire experience from wandering down a hidden street to find the entrance, to tasting the first sip of a specialty cocktail made with exotic herbs and fruits – is a privilege. I have only experienced such take on mixology before at The Alchemist in Manchester, UK.
Fabulous evening last night in West Village, New York trying two fantastic venues I would strongly recommend. The sophisticated, sexy chic and exclusive private rooms at Omar’s La Ranita, over Filthy Vodka Martinis and great company. After that, onwards to a classic Italian dinner at Morandi Restaurant w/ Rubin Singer. Just priceless TGIF in Manhattan.