From The New York EDITION to the new Whitney, add these new New York destinations to your summer visit. We’ve got you covered in every category: Stay, Do, Eat, Drink and Shop, plus one bonus—our favorite sailboat-turned-oyster bar is back for its second season on the Hudson River.
Stay – The New York Edition
After the instant success of the novel and luxurious Miami Beach EDITION hotel in November 2014, all eyes were on New York City last week for the opening of the brand’s second North American hotel on Madison Square Park in the Flatiron District. The brainchild of Marriott International and famed hotelier Ian Schrager, the EDITION is a large-scale, luxury boutique lifestyle brand with four unique properties worldwide and more in the works.
One of the throughlines between the New York and Miami Beach properties is the use of minimalist glamour and a largely white color palette that’s so effortlessly elegant, you almost fail to notice what’s so special about it—at first. That is, until you take the time to settle in and realize just how expertly conceived the space is for luxuriant relaxation.
Located inside the landmark clock tower building (formerly the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company Tower) erected in 1909 on the eastside of Madison Square Park, design inspiration was drawn from turn of the century Gilded Age glamour and New York City private homes and clubs of that era, conceived by Ian Schrager Company and Rockwell Group.
A lobby bar and lounge are separated into two rooms at ground level composed of white oak floors and creamy white Venetian plaster walls with oversized picture windows opening up to the park. Design details, like the yellow backlit glass bar running up to the ceiling, dark walnut barstools backed in serpentine-green velvet with tassel accents and a sculptural white spiral staircase leading to Jason Atherton’s Clocktower restaurant on the second floor, hearken back to Schrager originals like Midtown’s Hudson Hotel and South Beach’s Delano. Another architecturally interesting component is the 30-foot long, black steel fireplace lining the lounge with low-slung chairs and tables inspired by French minimalist designer Jean-Michel Frank.
A guest room at The New York EDITION. Photo Credit: Nikolas Koenig
At 42 stories with 273 guestrooms, many offer dazzling 180-degree city views that include both the East and Hudson Rivers from its 23rd St. vantage point. Signature minimalist luxury extends to the spacious rooms with white oak floors, white upholstered furniture and a plush white platform bed adorned with a faux fur throw. A backlit dark walnut headboard and doorframes offset the bright whites. Bathrooms are spacious with long, trough porcelain sinks and infinity showers with rainfall heads. Bonus: the same insanely soft, plush hooded robes from the Miami Beach EDITION are hanging in the closets here, too.
Restaurateur Stephen Starr and Michelin-starred London chef Atherton preside over Clocktower, a decidedly fine dining establishment with expertly executed dishes like crispy chicken thighs with white asparagus and a slow-cooked egg, lobster with shaved fennel, mussels and apple salad, a 40-day dry-aged New York strip steak and a half pound bacon cheddar burger with “Churchill’s” sauce, for good measure. Three separate dining rooms, as well as a billiard room and library bar, are plush in jewel-toned velvet banquettes with modernist chandeliers hanging from above in black iron with ivory plaster rings. The effect is stately and swank with walls in original mahogany wainscotting covered in a collage of framed, vintage black-and-white photographs of everything from celebrities to classic NYC street scenes. It’s reminiscent of The Miami Beach EDITION’s Matador Bar and its collage of matador photographs.
And, downstairs at the lobby bar, instead of the signature Absolut Elyx cocktail served in a copper pineapple (as is done at The Miami Beach EDITION), imbibers sip from copper owl goblets, inspired by a story of a family of owls who once lived in the clock tower that VP of Brand Experiences Ben Pundole is fond of telling.
Rates from about $675 per night. 5 Madison Ave., Manhattan; 212-413-4200.
Do – The new Whitney
With last fall’s Jeff Koons retrospective marking the final exhibition in its longtime Upper East Side home, The Whitney Museum of American Art opened the doors to its brand new location in the Meatpacking District on May 1. Situated on Gansevoort St. at the foot of the High Line, the eight-story, boxy-modern Renzo Piano-designed building is an airy, sun-filled space with four outdoor gallery terraces offering sweeping views of the city and the Hudson River.
The inaugural exhibition America is Hard to See (borrowed from a line of poetry by Robert Frost) consists of 600 works by 400 artists composed entirely of its permanent collection’s holdings of over 22,000 works by 3,000 artists. Spanning the entire building and organized chronologically starting with 1900, patrons wind their way from the eighth floor through 23 chapters (each named for the title of an individual work), until they reach present day on the fifth floor.
With seminal works like Alexander Calder’s Circus, Willem de Kooning’s Door to the River and Jasper Johns’ Three Flags displayed alongside lesser known artists of the same eras, the exhibition aims to shake up our conception of American art history and our view of America, itself. New York Magazine art critic Jerry Saltz said in his comprehensive and hopeful review, “The Whitney knows how to consider new work alongside old, how to throw together pieces produced in entirely different contexts and watch the sparks fly.” It’s a worthy excursion on so many levels, from the art to the building, to the stunning Hudson River location.
America is Hard to See runs now through September 27. Adult admission $22. 99 Gansevoort St., Manhattan; 212-570-3600.
Eat – Marta
The Olive Oil Affogato at Marta. Photo Credit: Ted Donath
Back in the Flatiron District, restaurateur and Shake Shack impresario Danny Meyer has opened a Roman rustic pizzeria in the lobby of the Martha Washington hotel helmed by chef Nick Anderer. Nestled inside sexy, sleek digs with high ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows, Marta is open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and brunch. It’s easy to compose a sumptuous Italian feast centered around chef Anderer’s elevated, crispy-thin-crust pizzas at any hour of the day.
Opt for the Cavaloni pizze bianche with Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, pickled chili and parmigiano. If it’s brunchtime, throw a fried egg on top. Start with the Cavalo Nero, a bright, acidic lacy kale salad with meyer lemon and parmigiano, as well as the ooey-gooey green risotto croquettes filled with fresh, melted mozzarella and mixed herbs. Most importantly, though, don’t skip dessert. The symphony of flavors in the Olive Oil Affogato—a dense ball of vanilla gelato with honeycomb candy crumble encircled in delicate slices of kumquat and slivers of blood orange topped with beautifully verdant olive oil—is not to be missed. Do as my waiter advised and strive for the perfect bite with all elements on one spoonful.
29 E. 29th St., Manhattan; 212-651-3800.
Drink – Nitecap & 151
Nightcaps at Nitecap. Photo courtesy of Nitecap.
From purveyors of New York City craft cocktail cool, Death & Co., a pair of new Lower East Side bars have opened across the street from one another on Rivington. Found down an unassuming flight of stairs and catering to a slightly younger, rowdier crowd, the cocktail menu at subterranean Nitecap is just as extensive as its predecessor’s, featuring sections like Aperitifs, Firewater, Nitecaps and more. The menu also includes a well-edited wine and beer list, as well as bar bites. Across the street at 151, the dimly lit, unpretentious scene is similar and the mixologists are just as capable, but imbibers are as likely to order a Tecate and a shot as they are to peruse the drink list. Here, the party lasts a little later and goes a little stronger.
Nitecap: 120 Rivington St., Manhattan; 212-466-3361. 151: 151 Rivington St., Manhattan; 646-490-4338.
Dahlia’s storefront. Photo courtesy of Dahlia.
Dahlia is a hip Williamsburg boutique just one block off bustling Bedford Ave. and a worthy trek for fashionable Manhattanites, according to fashion blogger Annie Vazquez of The Fashion Poet. Owned by Miami transplant Stefani Rosendo, Dahlia is a destination not only for chic womenswear, but also unique accessories, jewelry, greeting cards and gifts by emerging New York designers and national labels. From breezy rompers to Brixton festival hats, and healing crystals to delicate tribal- and Art Deco-inspired jewelry, swing by Dahlia for what’s trendy right now.
225 Grand St., Brooklyn; 718-387-6278.
It’s Back! – Grand Banks
The Sherman Zwicker. Photo courtesy of Grand Banks.
Our favorite summer hang from last year—Grand Banks—is back for its sophomore season. Step aboard the historic 142’ wooden schooner F/V Sherman Zwicker, rafted up at TriBeCa’s Pier 25 on the Hudson River, for another summer of oysters, lobster rolls, craft cocktails and cold beer while bobbing on the water with killer Statue of Liberty and sunset views.
Now through October. Pier 25 at N. Moore St., Manhattan.
Shayne Benowitz is the hotels & travel editor for Miami.com. Follow her on Twitter @ShayneBenowitz.