Your Autumn/Winter Guide to New York City

There’s a little something for everyone in New York City once the leaves change color — or fall off the trees entirely.

From tucked-away cocktail bars to tea time after an afternoon of scenic ice skating, this city heats up despite the drop in temperature.

Things to do in NYC in the winter

Many of us spend our summers away from New York City (in the Hamptons, if we’re lucky!), so the turn of the seasons and overall year-end is the perfect time to fall (ahem) in love with autumn, winter and the city all over again.

So, before that next polar vortex rolls in, bookmark this list of my must-see spots – or better yet, get out there and taste the local flavor for yourself. Here’s my run-down on…

What to see and do in NYC over the winter:


il buco: This romantic, rustic and delicious dining spot feels like it’s world’s away, despite being located in one of New York’s most popular downtown neighborhoods. Try to request a seat downstairs — the he wine cellar is beautiful. (File under: Dinner, date night)

Egg Shop: No weekend is complete without brunch, and now that beach season is over, ALL BETS ARE OFF. Bloody Mary’s with a bacon salt rim. Need I say more? (File under: Brunch)

The Spotted Pig: When it’s so cold outside that drinking cocktails isn’t enough to warm you up, the comfort food at this cozy spot should do the trick.  Get the burger, don’t skip on the french fries and plan to savor a few sips of mulled wine before desert. Don’t be surprised if you spot a celeb!

The Lobby Bar at the Bowery Hotel: This off-the-radar cocktail bar is worth the indulgent price-tag. You may have to battle the hotel’s guests to score a seat on one of the plush velvet couches, but it’s well worth it if you can secure one of the overstuffed chairs by the furnace.  Cozy up and order the namesake Bowery beverage – it’s a floral concoction that fuses Bulldog gin and a splash of champs. (File under: Cocktails)

Triona’s: Triona’s is a classic Irish pub with good drink specials and lots of TV’s. Really, it’s the only Chicago sports bar in the ‘hood, so it’s a frequent one on this end. Bring on March Madness!

Death + Co.: Here’s a high-end sanctuary for fellow booze enthusiasts – it’s a staple in the NYC cocktail bar scene. Jess and I have endured a few late nights here, if I recall correctly — dot, dot dot… (File under: Late-night, cocktails)

La Maison du Chocolat: Blame it on Paris, but I’ve been a (hot chocolatier) ever since my return to New York. This place is amazing – but slightly expensive. Treat yourself to a cup of cocoa, a box of macarons and a handful of praline-dusted almonds. You deserve it! (File under: Coffee, indulge)

Blue Bottle Coffee: Located with Gotham West Market in Hell’s Kitchen on the west side. I come here whenever I’m on the west side of town to set up shop, use the free wi-fi and sip some cold brew. (File under: Wifi, coffee)



SoulCycle: … Obviously. Soul’s Financial District studio just opened, which means boys on bikes who will later be in suits! Mental note, girls. Mental note. #husbandhunting

& Other Stories: I first fell in love with this store in Paris, and I’m thrilled that they recently opened in New York’s SoHo neighborhood. My wallet, on the other hand, is not.

Paintbox: This place is a must-do if you’re nail lover. It’s a trendy manicure studio in the heart of SoHo offering a variety services from classic manicures to super-cool nail art.

Macy’s Herald Square: There’s a reason they call it Miracle on 34th Street. Wander through the snow-filled wonder known as “Santaland,” then GTF OUT (so many children) and grab a latte. Head up Fifth Avenue to see the best of the city’s holiday window displays — including Barney’s, Bloomingdale’s, Bergdorf and Lord & Taylor. ‘Tis the season!

Fashion Week: If you’re around in February, stop by Lincoln Center to people-watching during New York Fashion Week (Feb. 12-19, 2015). Shows are by-invitation-only, but if you’re interested in learning more about that, you should read my post on how to get into Fashion Week.

Restaurant Week: Mark your calendar for Feb. 16 – March 6, 2015, make a reservation and enjoy a five-course lunch or dinner at more than 300 participating restaurants.

Rockefeller Center: Tourist or not, I come here ever season to (briefly) gawk at the 76-foot-tall Christmas. Grab a coffee from ____ across the street. Skip the ice rink — it’s tiny and expensive compared to…

Ice skating in Central Park: Wollman Rink is Central Park magic at it’s finest. Head to the Lobby Lounge of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel to warm up with wonton soup and afternoon tea service. Plus, it boats the best view of Central Park around.


Click here for my summer guide to NYC


Lastly, for more things to do, click below to check out boohoo’s city guide

boohoo is a global fashion retailer who recently opened up a pop-up in NYC (but you can shop them online, too). Select a few different locations based on your interest and it’ll curate a fun outfit for you to wear based on where you’d like to go. Shopping and city sightseeing — my favorite combination!

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  1. Love this Hallie! So many good ideas here. Bookmarking this for sure :). I need to try Egg Shop ASAP, and La Maison du Chocolat sounds so nice (I’ve been on a major hot chocolate kick ever since the weather turned chilly). Hope you have a great week!

  2. Love this, and although i have only been living here for 363 days (nearly my NY birthday yay!) I am pleased to say i have done about 90% of this list, the remaining 10% going on my forever growing must-do list (Egg is going on there!). Thank you!

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  4. I’m off to NYC tomorrow and I have one BIG question! Where does one go for a toasted bagel… apparently non-toasted vs toasted is quite the issue in NYC…?!

    • Girl, I’ve got to go non-toasted on this one. My favorite spot is Murray’s Bagels — there are a few locations in NYC. Google it and go to whichever is closest! Other good options are Ess-a-Bagel (359 1st Ave) and Black Seed Bagels (170 Elizabeth St)… And holy shit, now I need carbs.

      Have a great trip!

      • Please can I join in the convo!!

        I’ve just started a blog (it’s only three days old – all together now.. ahhhh)

        I have been totally inspired by this city during the year I’ve lived here so have started a place on the web for me to share daily doses of delightfulness.

        My post yesterday was on my top 5 eat spots in NY – Murray’s is smack bang up there!! (today is all about my fav watering holes, if you know, need a whiskey sour to wash back your poppyseed bagel)

        Have the most amazing time in NY! Nicola x

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