A Beginner’s Guide to New York City

As travel to New York continues and we see an influx of travelers from my native homeland of Ireland, I am always asked the same questions: “Where should I stay?”, “Where should I shop?”, and “What should I do?” Here are a few tips to share with everyone:

Where Should I Stay in New York City?Marmara Manhattan, New York City

94th Street Sunset | ©Rodney Campbell/Flickr

It really depends on when you come and what your budget is, but the most important thing to remember is that there is life outside of Times Square. There are some great deals on the East Side and the Upper East Side, like the Marmara Manhattan, a luxury suite property on the East Side with great views (see above image for proof of the hotel’s stunning views!), unbeatable service and true value for the suite that you get. Because the subway is such an easy mode of transport, I encourage people to look outside the center to get better value for money and that way see more of the city- two birds with one stone!

Where Should I Shop in New York City?Macy's Herald Square, New York City

macy’s at herald square | ©Eunice/Flickr

Those in the know go to Macy’s, and it’s not just for the selection. When you go to Macy’s, bring a passport or your hotel key and you get a discount coupon for 11% off everything in the store including electronics! This is, however, only for International Travelers. Most sales have some exclusions, but this coupon does not. Additionally, open a Macy’s account and you can get an additional 15-25% off for the following 48 hours. That’s a lot of savings. For the braver bargain hunter willing to fight for their deal, go to Century21 downtown. It gives you the opportunity to see Wall Street and Ground Zero at the same time.

What Should I Do in New York City?Top of the Rock, New York City

Top of the Rock | ©Nasrullah Taha/Flickr

If you are interested in museums, admission to most are donation-based (a.k.a. free but some with a donation suggested) on Fridays and some Saturday evenings. By now, most know about the discount Broadway tickets available at the TKTS booth, but just be aware that there is a temporary location at the New York Marriott Marquis. Finally, for those beguiled by the long lines for the Empire State Building, my personal opinion and preference is to go for Top of the Rock. The views are spectacular and you have the Empire State Building in your skyline to admire. To show how serious I am- that’s where I got engaged!

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