The School of American Ballet

I often post pictures and post Instastories of our youngest daughter, Shelby, at Lincoln Center before her ballet class which often leads to a lot of people wanting to know more about what she does and why she’s there. 

Shelby is a student at the School of American Ballet which was started by George Balanchine and Lincoln Kirstein in 1934 and is now a training ground for the New York City Ballet. SAB shares the Rose Building in Lincoln Center with NYCB and the Julliard School. There is never a shortage of creative students and professionals in the Rose Building!

At the age of 5, Shelby auditioned for the School of American Ballet. We didn’t tell her it was an audition, only a ballet class I thought she would enjoy taking. I feel like there will be other times in her life that she will have to deal with the pressures of an audition, at 5 year old she can still just have fun. There are several auditions in different locations across the 5 boroughs but the one that fit...

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Domino Park

On the banks of the East River, in the shadow of the Williamsburg Bridge, lies a section of Brooklyn that was largely unused for years. That is, until June 2018. Once the home to the Domino Sugar Factory (where 98% of the US’s sugar was produced in the early 1900s), this 6 acre green space is revitalizing this area where industry used to dominate. 

My favorite way to get to Domino Park is by ferry. Catch the East River Ferry from the 34th St Landing and hop off at the North Williamsburg stop. For only $2.75, it’s a fun and unique way to travel to your destination.

If you have kids, the playground and splash pad will be a big hit. The play area was designed to replicate the sugar making process so its layout is unique and fun for kids to play on. At night the splash pad doubles as a light show which makes it a great option any time of the day.

Even if you don’t have kids, Domino Park still has plenty to do. Lounge by the river, walk the elevated catwalk and...

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Carl Schurz Park

One of our favorite parks in Manhattan is Carl Schurz Park. This gem on the Upper East Side, Yorkville to be exact, is generally unknown to tourists, making it a quiet respite from the busy city. With over 14 acres of land along the East River, Carl Schurz Park gives you plenty of space to relax and play. 

Carl Schurz is home to Gracie Mansion. The house was built in 1799 and eventually became the home of the mayor of New York City in 1942 when Fiorello H. LaGuardia was mayor. The NYC mayor still resides there today and, because of this, the grounds of the surrounding park are immaculately kept and security is tight. If you’re interested in taking a tour of the home, they are offered on Mondays only and require a ticket (https://www1.nyc.gov/site/gracie/visit/visit.page). If you'll be in NYC for Easter or Halloween, be sure to get tickets to the Easter Egg Hunt and the Haunted House both hosted by Gracie Mansion.

My kids are big fans of riding their scooters along the...

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Manhattan's Koreatown

You may have heard of Little Italy. You may have even visited Chinatown. But have you heard of Manhattan’s Koreatown? Located close to Macy’s in Herald Square and the Empire State Building, it’s a fun and convenient destination to add to your next trip.

The heart of Koreatown is nicknamed Korea Way and it’s located on West 32nd Street between 5th and 6th Avenues. Korea Way is home to over 100 small businesses including restaurants, bakeries, grocery stores, spas, Korean beauty retailers and karaoke bars. This area has been growing since the 1980s and now gives you a real sense of Seoul as you walk down streets.

While there are many amazing restaurants in Koreatown, one of our favorite things to do on a nice evening is find interesting desserts in the area. One of our favorites is Spot Dessert Bar. Located on the 3rd floor of the K-Town Food Court on 32nd street, Spot will give you those Instagram-worthy dessert pictures that will make all of your friends...

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The NYC Ferry

Traveling around New York City can be an adventure in and of itself. You’ve got the subway, taxis, busses and car shares to choose from but did you know that the NYC Ferry is also a great way to get around? Let’s talk about the ferry!

It’s cheap! At only $2.75 (the same as a subway ride), it’s an inexpensive way to get from point A to point B. They usually cover larger areas so if you’re looking to go from uptown to downtown or from Manhattan to Brooklyn, this is a great choice. Guided boat tours can cost $60+ but you can do your own cruise-on-a-budget with the ferry.

It’s easy! Download the NYC Ferry app on your phone to see ferry schedules, get directions and buy tickets. On the “directions” tab, simply put in your starting point and your destination to see if there’s a convenient ferry for you to take.

It’s beautiful! Taking the ferry is a great way to see NYC from another vantage point. For example, if you take the...

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NYC Food Halls

Do you ever feel like it’s impossible to pick a restaurant that your entire family or group agrees on? Me too! That’s why I love the amazing food halls popping up all over NYC. Here are 5 of my favorites:

Chelsea Market - This is a food hall on steroids in the heart of the Chelsea neighborhood. Home to the Food Network, this old warehouse (formerly the Nabisco factory) has been transformed into a foodie paradise. With over 45 unique places to eat, you’re sure to find something to please everyone in your group. My recommendation is to scout out the whole market first, making note of what you might want to try and then go back and create the ultimate tasting menu for yourself. I’ve seen the Food Network taping segments in some of the restaurants so always be looking out for the cameras and your favorite celebrity chefs roaming around.

My recommendation: An apples and brie crepe from Bar Suzette and mini-doughnuts from Doughnuttery are my go-to. My dad and...

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Best Way to Get Around New York City? Subway? Uber? Taxi?

Everyone has a different opinion when it comes to the best way to get around New York City and the real answer to this question is: it depends. It depends on where you are trying to go, when you are trying to go there and what is most convenient and affordable in this situation.

The four factors that come into play when it comes to choosing the right transportation are: cost, comfort, speed and experience. Experience is often forgotten, but when visiting New York City, transportation doesn’t have to just be a means of getting to one place or another, but can provide a unique experience in the process.

That said, our preference in getting around the city is none of the above. Our 3 preferred modes of transportation are Ferries (boat), Via and Lyft. Of the three options above, Subway mass transit is our preferred and you can also include the MTA bus as an additional mass transit option.

Let’s start with Ferries. When moving from one part of the city to another, close to...

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Our Top 5 New York City Parks

While New York City can be an expensive place to visit, one of the best parts of the city is completely FREE: the parks! Here are our top 6 favorite parks in the city:

1. Central Park

Central Park is not just the best park in New York City, but in our opinion, this is the best park in the world! This 843 acre park includes a zoo, many playgrounds, a lake with row boats, a castle and seemingly endless fields and rocks to climb. You could spend days exploring and not experience all of it! Beyond just the beauty of the park and the experiences within, it's a great place to people watch!

 2. Prospect Park

Prospect Park is Central Park’s little sister, but not that much smaller. At over 500 acres, this park has lot to experience with an ice skating rink, lake, trails, fields, playgrounds and so much more! When it’s snowing, there’s not a much better place to go sledding in New York City than Prospect Park.

 3. Carl Schurz Park

We might be a bit biased as this...

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Our Top 5 Favorite Museums in New York City

One of our favorite things about New York City are the endless museums! You will find a skyscraper museum, art museums, a photography museum, kids museums, science museums, history museums and the list can go on and on. Having spent time at many of these museums, here is our list of the top 5 museums we have visited in NYC:

Tenement Museum 

By far, the Tenement Museum is our favorite! It is also probably the least known museum in the city. This is not a typical museum that you walk through, but rather a collection of experiences around the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Each of these experiences tell the story or stories of immigrants that moved to New York City between the 19th and 21st centuries and lived in the tenement apartments in the Lower East Side. Choose an experience or two during your visit and you will be glad you added this museum to your agenda!

 

Transit Museum

The Transit Museum is a favorite of our kids, but it's really a great experience for the whole...

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