A Fashionista’s Bite of the Big Apple

Resort 2021 buying starts this week and in an ideal world, pre COVID-19, I would have been off to New York for Fashion Week.

Many of the brands I deal with have decided to skip Resort and focus on Spring to be presented in September and over the past few weeks I have had some interesting conversations with suppliers and designers alike who are using this opportunity for change to completely rethink the retail calendar which in the long run makes complete sense.

As a buyer, the Fall collections I see in February hit the stores in July, the Spring collections I see in September arrive in-store in January and pre-Fall which I buy in December are available for customers in May. This means that summer dresses can be found in-store when it is freezing outside, and knitwear arrives when the sun is shining brightly! Madness really!!

Most customers have a ‘buy-now-wear-now’ approach to shopping which is nothing short of sensible. However, the vicious cycle of the show calendar has prevented designers from providing the right collection at the right time which has subsequently led to a culture of heavy discounting to shift stock.

It seems that the pandemic has forced the industry to take stock of the situation, pause and restrategise which can only have a positive impact for designers, consumers and ultimately the environment. It is just a shame that it has taken something as serious as COVID-19 to make this shift.

Anyway, apologies for the deep intro to this post!!!! I ultimately wanted to share with you my favorite places to visit and see in New York as I will be spending the entire week reminiscing and dreaming ‘what if….’.

New York is one of the most vibrant, diverse, and bustling cities I have ever visited and if you have never been, I highly recommend you add it to your bucket list. There is so much to do and see that at first it can seem a little overwhelming which is why I advise you plan your stay; it may be the Virgo in me but I always plan an itinerary for our trips to ensure we cram as much as possible into our visits (no joke I have been known to print off physical itineraries, much to the Hubby’s annoyance!!).

Over the years I have stayed at numerous hotels, but my favorites remain The Bowery, Soho Grand and Sixty Soho, mainly because they all do an amazing breakfasts and have fabulous bars plus I like to be near the shops and restaurants Downtown.

If you are a first timer then the typical tourist spots include:

  • The Statue of Liberty: you can get the Staten Island Ferry from Battery Park. The box office opens daily from 7:45am-4:30pm; boats depart every 30-45mins, first boat departs at 8:30am; I recommend getting there early to avoid the mass crowds!!
  • Pay your respects at Ground Zero
  • The Rock
  • Times Square: get your photo taken in front of all the TV screen and pose with the Naked Cowboy or someone equally cringe!!
  • Empire State Building: get there for opening at 8am as whilst the sight of the city from the top is amazing you do not want to spend half the day queuing!
  • Take a horse and cart ride through Central Park and play like Carrie and Mr Big, Sex and the City style
  • Even if you are not an avid Art fanatic, I still recommend taking an hour out to visit the MOMA Gallery

For all the shopaholics out there a trip to New York would not be considered a trip without a visit to the legendary Bergdorf Goodman. I love walking through the opulent departments and drooling over the shoes, Jewellery and handbags. Linda’s at BG is always worth a pop in to see what the fashion pack are lusting over for the season. For a quick pit stop grab a Rainbow Salad at Palette on the Beauty floor.

Handy Tip: The Bergdorf Goodman men’s store is across the road from the women’s as is the original Apple store so you can always send your other half for a mooch there to give you some peace and quiet.

On your way down from 5th Avenue you have to stop by Hudson Yard’s, which is New York’s first shopping mall housing more than 100 stores and restaurants (for all you BC Fashionistas be sure to check out Forty Five Ten). It’s central staircase The Vessel is an architectural feat in itself and something to behold whilst The Shed is perfect for all you art lovers out there as it brings together established and emerging artists in fields ranging from hip hop to classical music, painting to digital media, theater to literature, and sculpture to dance.

I stopped by last September as my former Harrods mentor Marigay McKee was one of the key consultants on the project and I had to see the fruits of her labor.

From there take a walk on the High Line all the way to the Meatpacking District, which is another favorite of mine.

Diane von Furstenberg’s flagship store dominates the corner and I have fond memories of buying appointments and events with her in this location.

Jeffrey across the road must be my favorite multi-brand boutique in New York. Their edit, curation and display just screams luxury but with a cool girl vibe and Zimmerman is close by for the ultimate edit in boho chic.

Once you have explored the shops you have to refuel at Pastis, which is legendary! Afterwards grab a cocktail on the rooftop at The Standard.

For a more contemporary and relaxed vibe I love weaving in and out the back streets of Soho as there are some fabulous boutiques to entice you! The Webster is super cool and is worth a visit just for the interiors if nothing else! Kirna Zabete remains a firm favorite; Opening Ceremony for unique curated pieces, Totokaelo for the more avant guarde and Intermix for a great assortment of accessible and high-end brands.

I also love exploring the boutiques of US born brands such as Ulla Johnson, Marissa Webb and J Crew.

For all you vintage and secondhand fans, The Real Real is worth a visit as is Michael’s and Ina; and if you do not mind a good old rummage, Century 21 is the US’s version of TK Maxx and if you happen to be lucky you can find an amazing designer piece at a bargain basement price!!

Once you are fully shopped out you will be spoilt for choice by the number of fabulous restaurants and bars New York has to offer.

You HAVE to treat yourself to breakfast at Balthazar one morning, it may be a little on the expensive side, but it is soooo worth it!!

For lunch I love stopping at the Mercer Kitchen which has an unbelievable menu.

The Italian food at Nello is to die for and is conveniently uptown so a great place to relax and take stock after your Bergdorf trip.

A firm favorite of mine for lunch or dinner remains Cipriani Downtown and for a Carrie moment book a table downstairs at Buddahkan which is where the rehearsal dinner was filmed. Indochine and Dirty French are also worth noting!

Lastly if you are a sushi fan like me, I recommend Bond St where I spent my birthday two years ago followed by cocktails at the Nomad Hotel and then The Rose Bar at The Gramercy Hotel where a jazz band serenaded us into the early hours!

So, there you have it….72 hours in the concrete jungle where dreams are made of, according to me!! Would love to hear your recommendations of what you love in NYC!! xx

2 thoughts on “A Fashionista’s Bite of the Big Apple

Leave a Reply