Well it is the most wonderful time of the year and the Fairytale, most definitely is, of New York. Post thanksgiving the city transformed into a winter wonderland and went full throttle with Christmas cheer. Every shop assistant reminds me of Rowan Atkinson’s character in Love Actually and people seem happier than usual (which is a little unsettling, albeit festive).
Whether living in or visiting New York at Christmas it is crucial to make a Christmas checklist. My friend Jeremy and I compiled ours in early November whilst watching Elf for the first time in 2012. It went something like this:
– Ice skating at all possible venues: Wollman Rink Central Park (best Christmas playlist, good vibes and best views of the city/park), Citipond at Bryant Park (free admission – just have to pay to rent skates) and Rockefeller Center (fab for the tree, less fab for the large audience watching you on multiple levels surrounding the rink).
– Fifth Avenue: to see the department stores decorated and their Christmas windows. We visited the unveiling of Henri Bendel’s Holiday window which was themed ‘Deco the Halls’ – an art deco, twenties inspired feel which is always a big hit with me.
– Plaza Hotel: to visit Santa. It’s the real one there.
– Rockefeller Christmas Tree (best at night).
– Serendipity for hot (or frozen) chocolate.
– Christmas Markets: Central Park, Bryant Park and Union Square – a great place to buy gifts for the family.
– Washington Square Park: Christmas Tree Lighting and carolling (a lot of fun).
– A Friend-mas get together is essential
– Going to watch the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular at Radio City, followed by a ‘Rockette Red Velvet’ cupcake at Magnolia Bakery of course..
– The allure of Starbucks red cup is unfortunately too hard to fight so that makes the list..