After a packed day on Thursday, December 29 with Trix & Jack visiting New York for New Year's from Virginia—where we ventured on foot from Brooklyn Heights to DUMBO, across the Brooklyn Bridge, along Canal Street, up Broadway to St. Mark's Place—Friday's outing comprised one of those citywide step-on step-off bus tours, customized with our own fab & festive stops along the way.
The journey began in Times Square—Jack's first glimpse of "the center of the world." After a walk around the hood, including ABC's Good Morning America studios, we trumped the tourists with a clandestine excursion into the Marriott Marquis for some stunning (free) views of the madness & mayhem below... because, you know, "The answer is yes until someone says no."
We three teemed around the eighth floor lobby, up to floors in the 30s and 40s and discovered some amazing vistas below, as ABC and CNN set up their massive stages for New Year's coverage, even pausing for a relaxing sit-down along the massive windows, providing some of the best possible views of Times Square.
Once on the bus, we passed Macy's and heard some coolio history of North America's largest department store from our guide Vernell: A dozen dogs are let loose at night to sniff out opportunists who think they might spend the night in the store; as well as strategically placed cameras capable of following would-be shoplifters up to two blocks from the store. So now you know better...
We then ventured east to the Empire State Building, where we discovered our City Sights NY tour had more or less duped us: While our passes included tix to the observation deck, no one let on that the wait could entail a three-and-a-half hour wait. Boo!
We continued on our way, stopping through the mind blowing Eataly emporium, visited the Flatiron Building—which had a festive public arts display where a woman sat within view and hand-painted white cups, which were hung all along the corner of the iconic building—and Madison Square Park... and then stopped for lunch at the trusty Hollywood Diner in Chelsea (I learned from Jack this trip that 16 year olds are famished every 3 hours and need full refueling).
Back on the bus headed downtown—when Trix & I lost Jack for a good 30 minutes to a post-lunch coma—as we motored through the West Village and onward to our next major destination: Wall Street and the Statue of Liberty! Below, more scenes from the city on Friday... *