Escape NYC with these Summer Day Trips

Escape the hustle and bustle of New York City this summer with day trips rich in history, filled with excitement or just spent with friends. Next time you need to take a break make sure to check out our favorite spots in New York.


Governor’s Island is a 172-acre island in Upper New York Bay, a quick ferry ride from the financial district. Still apart of New York City, the island costs the simple $2 ferry trip. The bike path is a highlight, wrapping around the island with city views, and purchasing rentals is easy and affordable. Governor’s Island also holds large acres of open fields perfect for playing a game of softball or a nice picnic. If packing a picnic seems like a little too much to plan check out the terraced food court which features a variety of vendors and a mini beer garden!


New York Botanical Gardens

Not to be confused with the also great Brooklyn and 6BC Botanical Gardens, the New York Botanical Gardens is located in the Bronx and consists of 28 specialty gardens, including a conservatory, children’s adventure garden, and a 40-acre old growth forest. Truly unique and incredibly beautiful, the gardens are an enjoyable shakeup for your Manhattan acclimated senses. You’ll also have the option to combine the serenity of nature with classic cocktails at the Hudson Garden Grill within the park (but consider making reservations in advance).


Golf Courses

The New York City area has numerous public golf courses to take advantage of for players of all skill levels. For skilled golfers who don’t mind spending a pretty penny, Trump’s Ferry Point Golf Course located by the Whitestone Bridge is a great option with fantastic Manhattan skyline views. For golf fanatics, Bethpage Black located in Farmingdale Long Island is a must try. The course was a two-time past US Open venue, and a future PGA Championship and Ryder Cup venue. For novice golfers looking for an easily accessible course, Van Cortland Park in the Bronx is a great spot. Van Cortland Golf Course happens to be the oldest public course in the United States!


Summer time means the heart of baseball season. Families looking for a fun outing can’t go wrong with a trip to Yankee Stadium or Citi Field. Whether you’re die-hard fans or just looking to soak up the sun with some friends, both stadiums have an abundance of great food options, as well as fun places to experience before the game starts. Notable grub options at Yankee Stadium are Lobel’s, Mighty Quinn’s, Nathan’s, and Bareburger. At Citi Field there’s Momofuku, Shake Shack, Dō (cookie dough), and Blue Smoke. Before the game Yankee Stadium has Monument Park and Citi Field has a small whiffle ball stadium for the kids to play on. Once the game starts, it’s time to root on your team to victory!



Fire Island/Hamptons

In the summer, Fire Island and the Hamptons are two hot spots for affluent Manhattan beach goers. Fire Island’s popularity continues to grow as a secluded car-free island with a fun yet small-town feel. The Hamptons remain a happening location with great beaches and upscale entertainment. For those looking to spend a weekend living luxuriously, Fire Island and the Hamptons are great options.


Long Island Vineyards

The northern coast of Long Island has over a dozen vineyards to choose from with the majority located on the North Fork. Wine drinkers can spend the day sipping wine and walking along the rows and rows of grape vines. The closest vineyard to Manhattan is Harmony Vineyards in St James, about an hour and a half drive. Besides the basic wine tasting and vineyard enjoying activities, Harmony Vineyards hosts events such as trivia night, Drink-In Theatre, and Test Your Fun Tolerance. Remember to have a designated driver if needed!


lighthouse - 70 pine

Sleepy Hollow

Sleepy Hollow is a village located in the town of Mount Pleasant in Westchester County, about an hour north of New York City. The village is known for the scary tale of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and you can experience it this fall at Philipsburg Manor. We warn you, the haunted trail has inhabitants who are ready to make sure you never leave! If you do make it out alive, Sleepy Hollow is rich in history and has great spots to tour and hike on, including the old Rockefeller Estate or Kingsland Park and its Lighthouse.


Storm King Art Center in Mountainville is an outdoor museum with one of the largest collections of sculpted artwork in the world. The combination of natural beauty and sculpted beauty makes for a must-see experience. The collection of sculptures is eclectic and fascinating, for example Tomio Miki’s giant ear. The 500-acre terrain in the lower Hudson Valley has rolling hills, vast fields, and grandiose woodlands. Bike rentals are available and make for a great way to experience the art and landscape. Storm King Art Center is an hour plus drive north from Manhattan.



Fort Tryon Park/The Cloisters

At the northern tip of Manhattan, you’ll find Fort Tryon Park and The Cloisters. Fort Tryon Park is a great place to enjoy the outdoors on a day trip. The park is massive with tons of paths and trails over all sorts of terrain. Located right off the Hudson, the views are the best around, and there’s a dog park, children’s playground, and a restaurant so you don’t have to miss brunch. For those more interested in learning than relaxing, The Cloisters Museum is the move. The museum specializes in European medieval architecture, sculpture, and decorative arts, and the experience is certainly unique.

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Where to Catch the Fireworks on July 4th in Manhattan

Macy’s annual Fourth of July fireworks are back over the East River for the fourth year in a row. The display kicks off at 9:25PM on the Tuesday and the fireworks shoot off from five barges on the East River between 24th and 41st streets. The fireworks are always fun to watch with friends and family, so we have a list of outdoor and rooftop bars in Manhattan that are perfect viewing spots for the spectacle.


Mr. Purple Rooftop Bar


Mr. Purple, a rooftop bar and restaurant on 180 Orchard Street, captures the vibrant and artistic spirit of the Lower East Side. Mr. Purple is gigantic with multiple interior spaces and multiple terraces to provide different experiences within one location. The bar is one of today’s trendiest spots and has a beautiful rooftop to enjoy the July 4th fireworks.

Watermark Bar

The Watermark Outdoor Bar in Downtown NYC

Watermark Bar, located in FiDi on Pier 15, hovers over the East River and has some of the best views in Manhattan. The 10,000 square foot venue has two levels and fits hundreds of excited firework enthusiasts.

The Heights

The Heights Rooftop Bar

The Heights, a rooftop bar at the Arlo NoMad on 11 E 31st Street, has a relaxed atmosphere perfect for a casual fireworks viewing event. The bar does have a glass floor area, which is an exhilarating experience for those who are interested in one. Besides cocktails, The Heights serves good pizza and cold pressed juices.

The Crow’s Nest

Crows Nest Bar In Downtown Manhattan

The Crows’s Nest, located on top of the Water Club, has the best views in Manhattan for the fireworks. Situated on the East River at 30th street, parallel to the spot the fireworks will be released from, The Crow’s Nest will be booming on July 4th. Besides providing a spot that puts the fireworks right in front of your face, the festive seasonal rooftop bar has great cocktails and burgers.

The Water Club

Waterclub Outdoor Bar in Downtown NYC


For those interested in dining, the Water Club is a high-end restaurant with glass windows that enable great seating for the fireworks. The well-renowned restaurant will most likely acquire a reservation far in advance, so get a move on it!

Rare View Rooftop Bar

Rare View Rooftop Bar


Rare View Rooftop Bar has a fitting name. The Chelsea located bar has one of the best rooftops in the city with an intricate drink and food menu. If you think you might enjoy a mango mojito and brisket quesadilla with your fireworks, we think you might enjoy Rare View Rooftop Bar.

230 Fifth Rooftop Garden Bar


230 Fifth Ave - NYC Rooftop Bar

230 Fifth Rooftop Garden Bar is New York’s largest rooftop bar in Manhattan. Located at 27th and 5th, the rooftop bar is lined with green felt creating a cool summery feel. 230 Fifth also has a fancy indoor lounge area that will have views of the fireworks as well.

A60 Rooftop Bar

A60 Rooftop Bar


A60 Rooftop Bar, located in Soho on the top of the New York’s Thompson Hotel, has two sections. One is a private area for hotel guests, private parties, and invited guests (many being celebrities). The other is open to the public. The rooftop bar better resembles a chic terrace bar, but the views are fantastic and the tiki vibe is fun.

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How to Plan for Graduation Weekend in NYC

Graduation weekend is fast approaching, which means many accomplished students will be making the infamous walk across the stage. Proud parents will be crying in the crowd, taking pictures, and doing other embarrassing things that parents do. It truly is a special time for all those involved, but it can also be a rough weekend if you aren’t careful. Parents are going to want to spend all day with you touring campus and the most overbearing of the parents might even suggest setting up camp in your room. That’s why you need to plan; to make sure that doesn’t happen and you can keep some freedom while also showing your parents a good time. Graduation parties are the best parties, and we don’t want to see you miss out. To get you started, here is our graduation planning checklist and some tips to go along with it.


Graduation Planning Checklist:

A Hotel for Your Parents:

As previously stated, finding a hotel for your parents needs to be a priority. Unless you are looking forward to spending 24/7 with them, a separate living quarters is essential. The perfect location is somewhere close enough to be walking distance for you during the day, but far enough to keep them away from you at night. We suggest recommending a nice hotel to your parents such as 70 Pine’s Q&A Hotel if you want to keep them occupied away from you longer.

Q&A hotel at 70 Pine Street in downtown nyc


Day Activities/Restaurants

Showing your parents your favorite places around campus is what the weekend is all about. Many students miss their parents and want to spend quality time with them, so it’s important to plan a fun day. Do you have a favorite restaurant? Make a reservation. Do you have a favorite show or event that you like going to? Buy tickets in advance. If you aren’t looking forward to quality time with your parents, make plans with your friends and their parents. At dinner the graduates can sit on one side of the table and the parents at the other, and everyone will be happy. For places to go, you can’t go wrong with the Piers. Pier 25 is a perfect for a sunny day, offering mini golf and beach volleyball. Pier A is great during sunset for a drink and bite to eat.

pier A entrance downtown NYC

For Brooklyn enthusiasts, Smorgasburg, the Brooklyn Museum, and Brooklyn Heights Promenade are all good options.

Smorgasburg Brooklyn


Brooklyn Museum NYC

Brooklyn Heights Promenade in NYC - great views


Moving Preparation

Parents are great for helping you with your responsibilities. Assuming you aren’t going to remain at the same location after graduating, you need to plan your move. Friends will tell you that you can figure out all that stuff later, which is why your parents will come in handy here. Parents are great for aiding you in boxing your stuff, moving your stuff, and finding a post-graduation apartment for your stuff. A lot of planning for your stuff! For apartments available now click here. For some help deciphering real estate jargon click here for a guide to common terminology.


Make Sure You Are Graduating!

Being able to walk across the stage and receive your graduation diploma is the purpose of the weekend. Make sure you see your advisor and confirm that there isn’t anything from stopping you from doing so. The last thing you want is to receive the look from your parents after you tell them you won’t be graduating because of so and so reason. Also remember to pick up your cap and gown!

Congratulations to all graduates!

Congrats to All NYC Grads





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Best Indoor/Outdoor Bars in Downtown Manhattan

There are many important factors when it comes to what makes a great bar. Having both indoor and outdoor space is at the top of our list when selecting a bar to hang out at. As the weather gets warmer, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about the best indoor/outdoor bars.  Places where you can stand outside and enjoy the breeze with a drink in your hand, and then heading inside to the dance floor to warm up when it gets a little chilly. You know the theory that you can only find happiness if you’ve known sadness? Well the better theory is you can only enjoy the indoor section of a bar once you’ve been to the outdoor section. That’s why we are sharing with you some of our favorite indoor/outdoor bars.

Pier A

PierA Downtown NYC Indoor Outdoor Bar


The outdoor promenade at Pier A Harbor House is one of the most beautiful spots in Manhattan, and the perfect place to enjoy a drink while watching the sun set over the Hudson River. No denying the promenade is the highlight, but Pier A is a 28,000-square foot complex made up of multiple outdoor and indoor sections. On a cloudy day you are going to have to settle for the gigantic and elegant indoor dining area or the intricate cocktail bar.

Brookfield Place (PJ Clarke’s and Beaubourg)

Brookfield Place Downtown NYC Indoor Outdoor Bars & Restaurants


Yes, technically PJ Clarke’s and Beaubourg are restaurants, but one can enjoy a drink on their outdoor terraces without ordering food. That’s good enough for us to add it to our list. Another factor that makes a great bar is great food. There is no contesting the grub at PJ Clarke’s and Beaubourg (try the whiskey bread pudding at PJ Clarke’s, it’s our favorite). Both spots, similar to Pier A, are exceptionally beautiful at sunset as they overlook the Hudson River.

Watermark Bar

Watermark Downtown NYC Indoor Outdoor Bar


Perched on the double level Pier 15 overlooking the East River, Watermark Bar is a fantastic modern cocktail bar with prime views of the Brooklyn Bridge and the lower Manhattan skyline. The 10,000 square foot venue also hosts live music, serves great food, and is a great spot to host a corporate event.

Conrad Hotel (Atrio & Loopy Doopy)

Conrad Hotel Downtown NYC

The Conrad Hotel has two bars inside of it; one indoor and one outdoor, which when visited together make the perfect combination. Atrio Wine Bar & Restaurant, the indoor bar, is located in the lobby, and Loopy Doopy, the outdoor bar, is located on the rooftop. Start your night at Atrio with a Mediterranean dish and glass of wine, and end it at Loopy Doopy Bar as you gaze out over the Hudson River.

Stone Street

stone street

Not only is Stone Street one of the oldest and most historic places in Manhattan, it’s also one of the most fun places in Manhattan. Stone Street is made up of a handful of old-school bars and restaurants that line a cobblestone street that contains rows of tables for the public. Grab a beer at the Stone Street Tavern or Mad Dog. If the weather is nice, find a table and enjoy some of the friendliest New Yorkers you’ll ever meet.

The Delancey


The Delancey is a three level club that has everything party-goers could ever want. Looking for great music and a place to let loose and dance?  Head to the first floor which features a DJ and a bumping dance floor. More in the mood for lounging?  The second floor contains an intimate main level bar with comfy seating.  Ready for some fresh air and great views?  The third floor featuring a  rooftop garden area is the place for you! There’s no denying The Delancey has something for everyone.

El Vez

el vez downtown NYC indoor outdoor eating

Another restaurant bar with an outdoor patio, El Vez has an awesome atmosphere and drink selection (and don’t leave without ordering the Rayo De Jalisco Guacamole that has pomegranates, blood orange, a queso fresco). Serving up margaritas, sangrias, and tequila drinks, El Vez is the go to place for a Mexican style cocktail. Don’t expect a party, but then again you never know when the tequila gets flowing!

City Winery at Pier 26

City Winery Downtown NYC

City Winery has a location on Varick Street, but its City Vineyard location has the indoor/outdoor combination. On a beautiful night, enjoy the stunning waterfront and rooftop deck sections, and on a gloomy day enjoy the rustic indoor setting as you sip a top notch glass of wine.

Hotel Rivington


Hotel Rivington is a modern masterpiece. The S’Zen Lounge on the second floor features a first class cocktail bar, but the Penthouse is the main feature. Penthouse on Rivington was voted Best Event Space in 2016 by and for good reason. The stunning 3,500 square foot penthouse provides picturesque panoramic views of Manhattan from indoors and outdoors, and even though it’s technically a private event space, this space is one of the must-try spots in Manhattan.

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11 Seamless Restaurants for Downtown Manhattan

Cooking is an important skill to learn, but not too far behind it is the skill of ordering in. Let’s face it, New Yorkers are busy and we don’t have as much time as we would like to prepare a delicious and wholesome meal. Read more

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Date Ideas in Downtown NYC

Date night can bring a lot of pressure because the expectations are high and the demand for a romantic spot is even higher. The worst thing you can do is to not plan ahead, which is why we are here to help. There are a ton of fantastic options in downtown Manhattan ranging from romantic upscale restaurants to the ultimate date night movie theater. We have selected a few of our favorite destinations.

* Pricing is for 2 People

Ipic Movie Theater – $32-$64 – 11 Fulton Street, FiDi

iPic Movie Theater Date Night in FiDi

For the ultimate movie date night head to Ipic and relax on their leather chairs with a glass of wine or a cocktail while snacking on gourmet dishes or sweets served at your seat. Book well in advance on holidays or for opening nights.

Barbalu – $35 – $60 – 225 Front Street, FiDi

Barbalu Restaurant Date Night in FiDi

Barbalu is the marriage of husband and wife team Stefano Barbagallo and Adriana Luque. Their authentic Italian restaurant by the South Street Seaport is a quaint spot perfect for a tasty romantic date. This little gem was rebuilt after Barbarini closed following superstorm Sandy. Thankfully, all the charm was preserved. Make sure to order their delicious home made fettucini with Beef Ragu or their Spaghetti allo Scoglio and to finish with the tiramisu.

Amelie Wine Bar – $50 – $90 – 22 West 8th Street, West Village

Amelie Wine Bar Date Night West Village

Considered one of the best wine bars in the world, Amelie Wine Bar is located in the West Village, 15 minutes away from the FiDi. The ambiance is cozy and lively at the same time. This is a great late night spot for a special date or wine tasting with or without dinner. For brunch goers, this wine bar additionally serves as a cute brunch date.

Augustine – $100 – $250 – 5 Beekman Street, FiDi

Augustine Restaurant Date Night in FiDi

An elegant and classically designed restaurant started by Keith McNally, Augustine is a French Brasserie located in the Beekman Hotel that serves fantastic food for all times of the day as well as a large assortment of creative cocktails. The ambiance is buzzy and fun. A new favorite for New Yorkers, conveniently located in the FiDi. Take advantage of the proximity and try to sit at the bar.

One if by Land, Two if by Sea – $250 – $500, Greenwich Village

OneifByLand Date Night in Greenwich Village

Voted the 5th most romantic restaurant in the world by Architectural Digest, One if by Land, Two if by Sea is the go to place to celebrate a special occasion. The food is fantastic and the ambiance is one of a kind.

Amada – $40 – $120 – 250 Vesey Street, Battery Park

Amada Restaurant Date Night in Battery Park

Chef Jose Garces, an appraised chef from Philadelphia, opened a branch of his very popular Andalusian tapas bar in Battery Park City. The atmosphere is lively and contemporary and the separate menus for brunch, lunch, dinner, and happy hour gives us an excuse to return frequently! The tapas are delicious, the half pig and wagyu beef are favorites for the common regulars. Regardless, you can’t go wrong with whatever you choose.

Blacktail – $70 – $145 – 22 Battery Place, Battery Park

Blacktail Restaurant Date Night in Battery Park

Blacktail is located on Pier A in Battery Park. The ambitious goal of Blacktail was to create the best cocktail bar in the world and it shows. Besides the first class cocktails you can also enjoy a nice steak if you’re looking for more than just drinks.

Chinese Tuxedo $50 – $120 – 5 Doyers Street, Chinatown

Tuxedo Restaurant Date Night in Chinatown

Once home to an opera house, 5 Doyers Street in Chinatown is now home to Chinese Tuxedo a contemporary Chinese restaurant with beautiful décor and delicious food. If you love authentic Chinese food and are looking for a romantic dinner date, look no further.

Fowler & Wells – $150 – $250, FiDi

Fowler & Wells Restaurant Date Night in FiDi

Located in the Beekman Hotel (next door to the lively Augustine), Fowler & Wells is the quieter, more cozy and upscale alternative. Fowler & Wells boasts a quintessential New York City ambiance and makes for a great breakfast, lunch, dinner, or late night drinks and dessert date.

The Rink at Brookfield Place (Ice Skating) – $30, Battery Park

The Rink At Brookfield Place Date Night in Battery Park

Ice skating right off the Hudson River at Brookfield Place makes for a very romantic date. On a sunny day, after a short walk to battery park, go and try the best-located ice rink in the city, a few steps away from the Battery Park marina.

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New Years Resolutions at 70 Pine

Make 2017 your best year yet. Start feeling fulfilled by each and every day so you can stop only looking forward to the weekends. Re-commit to yourself by making a list of your (attainable) resolutions. Here are a few ideas if you’re still stumped: Read more

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Downtown Holiday Shopping Guide

What better excuse to shop than the Holidays! Here’s a complete guide to downtown’s best shops to find your friends and family the perfect gift. Read more

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