New York - Lifestyle & Culture
With New Yorkers having extremely busy lives, they love to squeeze in as much leisure time as they can, when they can. New York is a 24 hour city. With multiple bars, restaurants and delis open throughout the day and night, you can live by the New York ethos of work hard and play hard. You just need to know where to look.
If you want the exciting bright lights of a Broadway show, rooftop terrace bars, cabaret and lounge bars with pianos tinkling away until the early hours of the morning, head to the city’s downtown district. Catching a Broadway show shouldn’t be too difficult, as you can check online or in the city’s newspapers, ask the hotel concierge or ask at the venues when visiting Times Square, to find show listings. Or visit a TKTS Booth in Times Square or the Lower Manhattan Theatre Centre, which sell tickets for 20-50% off the normal price.
For a true feel of a New York bar, head to one of the many atmospheric Jazz bars spread throughout lower Manhattan, and tucked away on streets across the borough. Jazz has become the soundtrack to New York City over the years, and places like Arthur’s Tavern, The Blue Note and 55 Bar are definitely worth a look with their excellent drinks, jazz and hospitality.
What’s a trip to the city that never sleeps without a trip to a nightclub? With many New York nightclubs coming in and out of fashion at the blink of an eye, it’s worth checking online for the current hotspots, or the free L Magazine, which highlights the city’s latest, must visit
Alternatively try the Meatpacking District, a buzzing area of converted warehouses. Try Automatic Slims (733 Washington Street), Catch 22 (4, West 22nd Street) and APT (419 W. 13th St., New York) with their trendy clientele, ultra-modern interiors and hip cocktails. For a glittering night out on the tiles, the Bowery Ballrooms (6 Delancy Street) is a must. With gleaming Art Deco tiles, an elegant cocktail lounge and 500-capacity concert hall; it’s now home to eclectic and electrifying alternative and electro club nights. LQ is clubbing HQ. This is a massive cathedral dedicated to dance, at the basement of the Radisson Hotel on Lexington Avenue.
Karaoke One 7, with its 80,000 plus video jukebox (29 West 17th Street) is the place to head for a good old fashioned sing-a-long. While the Lobby Bar (335 Bowery) is a hidden retreat, furnished with antiques, serving fine wines and brandies with a touch of class.
New York’s Irish community is well represented in a number of Guinness and Jameson serving pubs. Try McSorely’s Old Alehouse (15 E 7th Street between 2nd and 3rd Avenues) or the Swift Bar (34, East 4th Street) for a drop of the black stuff, and a relatively authentic experience.
New York has a lively and vibrant gay scene, centred on Brooklyn’s Park Slope neighbourhood, but there are plenty of bars and clubs in Manhattan too. To get an at-a-glance guide to what’s hot, and what’s not, the free gay guide HX should be your first port of call. Or call in at the Lesbian and Gay Community Center, at 208 W. 13th St., between Seventh and Eighth avenues to find out more information.
Comedy is well represented too; check out Comix (353 W. 14th St) in the Meatpacking District, and the Slipper Room (167 Orchard St), for stand-up ‘improv’ and cabaret that’ll have you laughing all night long.