The best “staycations” for New Yorkers
Ask any New Yorker, and they’ll tell you: each neighborhood in NYC can feel like it’s own tiny metropolis. Each borough and block has endless (and diverse) options for eating, sightseeing, and shopping, and the communities within them have cultures of their own. Just taking a staycation in another part of the city can make New York feel brand new, even to New York native.Keep reading to discover our favorite picks across NYC for a fun-filled, relaxing staycation.
The Freehand Hotel
Located north of Madison Square Park, the Freehand Hotel is the perfect place for a staycation and to fall in love with New York City all over again. Enjoy this niche neighborhood for all its glory — Michelin-star restaurants, elegant brownstones, historic sights. Freehand Hotel, once home to many storied writers, musicians, and creatives, aims to revitalize the artistic community of New York and even features custom-commissioned artwork by Bard College alumni.
What to do:
- Wander through the city’s colorful Flower District (28th Street between 6th and 7th Avenue)
- People-watch in Madison Square Park, right beside the spectacular Flatiron building
- Check out one the city’s most beloved and most beautiful bookstore, Rizzoli, filled with brass chandeliers, palatial columns and dark mahogany shelves
- Enjoy a game of ping pong at SPiN, a trendy lounge with tons of tables and a full bar
Where to eat:
- Madison Square Park houses the original Shake Shack; grab a delicious burger, and don’t forget the milkshake
- Feeling tired? Perk up with an espresso at Eataly and walk through this high-end emporium of quality Italian foodstuffs (maybe pick up some gelato or wine!)
- If you want to keep the night going, then head to The NoMad Bar and experience the warmth of a classic New York City tavern
The William Vale
The William Vale is one of the most renowned independent boutique hotels in Williamsburg, just minutes away from Lower Manhattan. The hotel boasts tons of multi-use spaces — a public park, a sprawling plaza, a 22nd-floor rooftop bar, and the longest pool in New York City (Vale Pool) — designed to connect locals and visitors alike. You’ll, no doubt, have an all-around quality weekend exploring one of the hippest neighborhoods in Brooklyn.
What to do:
- Have a picnic in McCarren or Domino Park, a relatively new six-acre public park with a lawn, volleyball court, and dog run
- Go vintage shopping at one or all of the vintage stores in Williamsburg, like Awoke Vintage, Antoinette, or 10 ft Single by Stella Dallas
- Drink on a boat; The Brooklyn Barge is a vibrant waterfront community emphasizing New York City’s rich maritime history with a full restaurant and bar on a floating barge
- Hit those triple digits at Brooklyn Bowl or The Gutter
- Visit the Brooklyn Brewery & Tasting Room to taste local beer, or check out one of their events!
Where to eat:
- Find hearty, American comfort food (and drinks) served on the classic red-checkered tablecloths at Bernie’s
- Dokebi on Grand features tableside grills (and veggie options) for a Korean-style BBQ in a cozy ambiance
- If you’re looking to enjoy a fancy cocktail while reminiscing old New York, check out Hotel Delmano
The Marlton Hotel
The Marlton has a distinctive “Old-World charm” with its limestone flooring, dark woodwork, and antique rugs. You’ll be a stone’s throw from Washington Square Park, so expect to be surrounded by a wide array of the city’s finest restaurants and shopping choices. Spend your time soaking up the local culture, tour the Village on foot or by bicycle. Conveniently enough, several CitiBike stations are available nearby.
What to do:
- Explore the West Village. You’ll find signature destinations including the Friends apartment building and Carrie Bradshaw’s house from Sex and the City.
- See a play at the Cherry Lane Theatre, the city’s oldest continuously running off-Broadway theater.
- Go to the world-famous Union Square Greenmarket. The farmers market — featuring 140 regional farmers, fishers, and bakers (in peak season)— is open Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.
- See (and experience) jazz live at Small’s Jazz Club, a hole-in-the-wall space with live jazz bands and jam sessions established in 1994.
- Not enough jazz for you? Then hang out at Fat Cat where they offer live music, pool, Ping-Pong, board games, art exhibits, and classes late into the night.
Where to eat:
- Snag a table at Joseph Leonards, a rustic space serving up seasonal American dishes all-day.
- Enjoy a strong cup of coffee at Caffe Reggio, an Italian cafe that has been part of the Greenwich Village scene since 1927.
- Sant Ambroeus is an elegant traditional trattoria, known for its Milanese dishes, complete with cappuccinos, gelato, and wine.
- Inside The Marlton Hotel, you can find Margaux, reminiscent of a Parisian bistro with beautifully plated dishes, inspired by flavors of the Mediterranean, France, and California and chosen seasonally.