Style City: New York

January 1, 2010


Style City: New York

This month’s style city feature was written by my stylish sister Noreen (pictured above). She’s lived in NYC, Sydney and Thailand so we hope to convince her to give us an insider’s guide to shopping and style for future Style City features on Previous cities covered are Belfast and Barcelona.

West Village

For eating and drinking in NYC I recommend the West Village. I used to live on Perry Street in the West Village where there are some really cool shops around Bleecker Street.   The fab Marc Jacobs store on the corner of Bleecker and Perry Street tempted me every time I walked home.

If you can’t buy anything chez Marc, comfort yourself with a cup cake in The Magnolia Bakery (as featured in SATC) 401 Bleecker Street .  It’s just a short taxi ride from the West Village to Soho for shopping  and the Meatpacking District for late night entertainment.

Second hand designer stores

I love browsing second hand designer stores like INA. New York Magazine described INA as “The trendiest pickings from American and European runways — mixed in with rather chic no-name clothes”.  INA, 15 Bleecker Street.

You can come across some stellar finds for a snippet like my Karl Lagerfeld riding jacket , which felt like it was hand made for me.  Sadly, it was stolen from me in a  Dublin nightclub by someone who knew a good thing when they saw it!

Shopping in New York

The best district for shopping in New York is SOHO (short for “South of Houston) in downtown Manhattan.  Between the many cobble stoned streets between West Broadway and Broadway you will find a great mix of shops.

This includes the bijoux Bloomingdales if you can’t face the much larger one on 59th Street.  All tourists who show their passport in the visitors centre in Bloomingdales get 11% off all goods (with the exception of some cosmetics) even on sale items. So it is worth queuing up before hitting the clothing rails.

The flagship Apple store is located on 5th Avenue in a coverted post office building where you can spend hours just browsing and looking at the test gadgets.  Apple, Prince Street, New York.

Need a party dress or ball gown?

BCBG Max Azria is my favourite haunt if I am in need of a dress or ball gown.  Their silk cashmere cardigan wraps are the best I have found around. Other recommended shops in Soho are Betsy Johnson, Adidas and other small designers dotted around the place like Catherine Maladrino.

Broadway Shopping

If want to venture to the very busy Broadway district you will find Victorias Secret for underwear, Sephora (which is always great for makeup supplies), Banana Republic, Kenneth Cole, Armani Exchange and some fantastic shoe shops like Steve Madden.  It’s a really busy area but a good option if  you only have an afternoon to hit all the main shops and pick up some bargains.

If however you like browsing and want to avoid the annoying sales assistants (who have become even more persistent since the recession has hit… they really do care ‘how you are today’!)  at the weekend you will find street vendors along Prince Street selling fabulous, genuine jewellery.

Just last week I bought some statement earrings and necklaces with semi precious stones which, in total cost  me €200. They would’ve  cost me triple that in a retail outlet.  Be prepared to bargain though.

Outlet shopping in New York

This would be shopping hell for me but if you insist on outlet  shopping,  go to Woodbury Common which is the most popular outlet and is located an hour away from NYC – the bus leaves from Port Authority and goes on the hour.

If you want to stay put in New York for outlet shopping and have nerves of steel, head to Century 21 down at the World Trade Centre (Cortlandt Street).  My advice is to get in and out early otherwise you’ll need an oxygen mask!

I just tend to head to the sports section of Century 21 on the 1st floor  – I can’t get enough sports socks, hats/gloves  and magnificent scarves.  I bought two Pucci scarves there last week reduced from €300 each to €99 each!  This type of stuff doesn’t require trying on nor standing for hours ‘in line’.

Hotels in New York City

Check for the many deals on hotels in New York City to be had at the moment. I suggest that you stay downtown in Soho and not  have to traipse around in cabs.

60 Thomson, The Mercer Hotel and Soho Grand are three hotel suggestions.  My motto is to stay somewhere that has a great vibe, people and a nice bar, so if you’re too tired to go out (you will be after all that shopping) let the party come to the hotel!

On my last trip I stayed at the Hudson Hotel,  356 West 58th Street, near Columbus Circle subway (near Central park and Theatre district). This Phillipe Starck designed hotel with a great roof garden is well located for shopping.  The hotel had its heyday a few years ago but the once expensive room rates have now become more accessible price-wise.

New York Restaurants

If  you fancy a quick bite while shopping in West Broadway head to Dos Caminos on West Broadway. This is an upscale Mexican restaurant that serves the most unbelievable guacamole which is served in a cauldron style stone bowl .  It’s a great place for lunch between shops or early evening when the legs get tired after shopping, why not pop in for margaritas and guacamole.

Pastis 9 Ninth Avenue, New York

Brunch in the Meatpacking District is the ‘in scene’ thing to do, so if you’re in town for a few days,  treat yourself to brunch at Pastis.  I recommend their great burgers and fries. The bar area is always good for a celeb viewing, lots of hustle and bustle,  surrounded by old French décor.

The Spotted Pig

314 W 11th St # 1.  Tel +1 212-620-0393

Bono is said to be an investor in The Spotted Pig which is New York’s first authentic English style gastro-pub. Also, considering that Sarah Jessica Parker and Liv Tyler live around the corner in the West Village, you are bound to spot a celebrity here on the weekends.  Chef April Bloomfield, formerly of London’s River Café, ensures this cosy wood-floor tavern in the West Village is always packed.


White Horse Tavern  567 Hudson Street

If you feel The Spotted Pig is too crowded there’s always the down-home White Horse Tavern pub nearby on Hudson Street. This is a great spot in the Summer – sit outside on the benches and watch  the world walk by.



Extra Virgin 259 W 4th Street , New York. Tel +1 40.7353 -74.003

If want to feel like at home and mix with some of the locals (SJP lives around the corner) head to Extra Virgin.  Great food and a particular favourite of mine for its decor with its exposed brick walls, it reminds me of my old apartment in NYC.  Make sure to call ahead to reserve as queues of locals can be long.


My favorite bars in New York

Employees Only 510 Hudson St between Christopher and W. 10th Street.  This is a cosy new West Village spot where the staff wear chef smocks with quirky titles like Principal Bartender.

After shopping and before heading back to your hotel head to Felix on 340 West Broadway – this is a mix of Eurobrats and locals who stand on the street and drink Peroni beer to the sound of Latin music.

Head on to Novevcento which is a chaotic, casual, and exhilarating Argentinian restaurant which has a crazy party vibe after 11pm. I had my birthday there a few years ago with blurred memories from too many mojitos, so feel I need to visit each time I go back to jog my memory!

New York City Guidebooks

If in doubt about where to shop or eat, I recommend buying a Zagat’s guide–it  has all the street addresses and phone numbers and can be bought in most good newsagents.

Or just buy the latest Time Out magazine for New York – for the very latest and happening places to go, it will also have the update on designer sales for that week so it’s not to be missed!


Related posts:

  1. Style City: Barcelona
  2. Style City: Paris
  3. Go Buy Now: White Handbag
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32 Responses to “Style City: New York”

  1. Emma Says:

    Les Halles
    Best place to eat in NY (if you like steak and really…. who doesn’t) Order the Cote de Beouf between two…
    The buns in Magnolia are pretty superb too. Its quite hard to find the cafe but there’s some really nice boutiques around there.

  2. Laura Says:

    Fantastic article. I’m an ex-New Yorker, and now I’m homesick!

  3. jennifer Says:

    Great article, its covers everything! Makes me miss NYC too!

  4. Orla Says:

    Must visit restaurant is Babbo, at Waverly Place,( run by the amazingly talented Mario Batali. Beautiful authentic, simple Italian food. A little on the pricier side, but well well worth it.
    Most recently visited there before Christmas when the centre of the dining room is home to the most spectacular tree ever. Beautiful staff too.

  5. Ceire Says:

    Noreen is looking the biz:) thanks for the great tips, now just need to book the trip

  6. Gráinne Says:

    Great article, very enjoyable.

  7. sELl3D Says:

    That is a very nice article about New York. Btw I was there a few month ago, and it is a great city. :)

  8. Susan Says:

    Another good place for outlet shopping is Jersey Gardens. It is indoors as opposed to outdoors (like Woodbury Common) and while the tickets to Woodbury are over $40, all you need is the bus fair to Jersey Gardens, which I think is about $11 return (bus also leaves from the Port Authority). Both places are usually hell for me, but when my sisters come to visit me in NY they want to shop til they drop and they usually want to go to an outlet. I would definitely say Jersey Gardens is the better choice. Get there early and try to be out by mid afternoon!

  9. Annemarie Says:

    Cool, it’s great to know about more outlet shopping in New York. Some folk just can’t get enough! Thanks Susan

  10. Eimear Says:

    Great nyc advice!! thanks!

  11. PCO Dave Says:

    Hi, First of all, what a informative article! i’m in the process of doing a bit of research for my website but i had issues reading this article due to the text protruding on to the menu…. edit… apologies, my fault, its my outdated version of chrome causing the bug. May be worthwhile telling ppl to update?

  12. karen Says:

    My big 40 is in October
    I would like to have everything organised down to a tee, as it Has always been my ambition to there and I figure my 40th is agreat excuse!
    I have had alot of health problems in last 4 years so figure my husband def deserves it,
    Anyone that can work out a planned 5 day trip for us I would be truly grateful.

    kAREN X

  13. Annemarie Says:

    Hi Karen, Firstly congrats on turning 40 (it’s when life begins they say!). You’re dead right to be celebrating in style.
    For you trip I’d take some of the restaurant/bars and shopping tips from the above article, a couple of readers have emailed in to say they’ve used it and enjoyed it. To get in the sights too, I’d suggest buying a good city guide like the Wallpaper city guides €28 by Phaidon or a Lonely Planet guide book which usually suggest itineraries for one day, three days and one week visits. Don’t forget the Zagat’s guide which you can buy from newsagents in New York.
    enjoy your trip!

  14. mis jo-jo Says:

    I have just come back from NYC, from my annual Easter trip (one of the best times to go.. not too cold not too hot).. and the latest in the wining/dining and where to hang out is the EAST VILLAGE – the West Village where i used to live (and where SJP resides) is currently ‘out’…No doubt it will have a revamp once the new SATC movie hits the screens… but the restaurants/bars no longer full.

    We went to a few restaurants/bars in Alphabet ciy (so called as the streets are Avenue A, B C etc).. and it was hopping….

    Meatpacking is still there – still cant beat Pastis for brunch on a Sat to people watch.

    Shopping wise still cant beat Bloomingdales for a one -stop shop if you dont have much time.. and did I get the BEST ever jeggings from J Brand..

    One thing to watch though (and my NYC friends have noted ) is that crime is on the increase…. a change from the last few years after 911.. so just be careful of bags/wallets etc. and late at night subways..

    anyway that my latest .. enjoy.. its such an amazing city :)

  15. Susan Says:

    I have been living in New York the past 3 years and I have not seen any increase in crime as per the last commenter. New York is much safer than Dublin, of course in any city you are not supposed to leave your bag/wallet unattended, that’s just common sense. I would feel more safe on the subway than on the DART any day!


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