We love wandering around a city with breezy spontaneity. While New York City is prime for doing just this, having a plan is essential to making every minute count.
With every inch of NYC packed with incredible art, restaurants, bars, shops and museums, soaking up the diverse flavours of the city is possible in just a few hours. Our Times Square location, bang in the middle of Manhattan, is a perfect launching point – whether you’re heading uptown for an arts fix and designer shopping, downtown for the city’s gritty heartbeat, or jumping the river to sample Brooklyn’s dynamic energy.
Follow our favourite itineraries to tick off some of the city’s must-see landmarks along with a few hidden gems off the beaten track.
if you have 2 hours...
New York is a daunting prospect when you only have a couple of hours free. But just like watching a movie, you can embrace the city’s magic in even less time.
You’re staying at citizenM Times Square, so it would be rude not to see the place itself. Yes, it’s loud, brash, in your face and packed with crowds, but the neon lights and Naked Cowboy are part of NYC’s crazy charm. Snap a photo then walk the eight minutes down West 49th Street to the Top of the Rock to sample its epic views of Central park and the Chrysler Building (be sure to book ahead first). Plus you can stop in at Bar Sixty Five in the legendary Rainbow Room for a truly breathtaking cocktail.
For a super quick bite, hyped ramen chain Ippudo has a location just four minutes from citizenM. Grab a hearty bowl of their slow-cooked broth and noodles to fuel your mad dash. If food is your biggest priority, spend a little longer at Toloache – a high end Mexican bistro just across the street from us that really hits the mark.
if you have 4 hours...
Hop on the subway at 50 Street station and catch the C train up to 81 Street Natural History Museum, landing you right on the edge of Central Park. Take a very pleasant 15 minute walk across the park’s Great Lawn over to Fifth Avenue and discover the city’s best museums: the Met, Guggenheim, Cooper Hewitt, Neue Galerie and more recent Met Breuer are all within a few blocks.
After filling up on culture, sate your appetite with a New York burger. Arguments over the best bun in town will probably never settle, but JG Melon, four blocks west from the park, is a no-frills NYC staple.
Craving some uptown retail therapy? Head down Fifth and Madison Avenues, just ten minutes from the hotel. Drool at the sparkling windows of Tiffany & Co. and Harry Winston and head into Bergdorf Goodman or Saks Fifth Avenue to worship at the shrine of the ultimate American department store.
if you have 8 hours...
Take a 30-minute stroll along the beautiful High Line, an elevated former railway track that winds down the west border of the island with stunning views of the Hudson River, plus cool street art, musicians and wildflowers. Start your stroll at the entrance by Hudson Yards subway station (a half hour walk from citizenM) and make your way down, finishing up at the Whitney Museum. This recently-opened, exceptional gallery celebrates 20th century American art. Book tickets in advance to avoid the queues, especially as you’re short on time.
Post-Whitney, walk west down Gansevoort Street and turn left on 9th Ave, heading towards Chelsea Market – a converted factory now favored by NYC food lovers. Snack on everything from gourmet hot dogs to doughnuts, or opt for delicious tacos at Los Mariscos. For dinner, a lively time can be had just a few blocks away at Tortilla Flats, a kitschy neighborhood choice for tex-mex fare, margaritas and trivia nights. Alternatively, the chic Barbuto can be found across the street, offering unbeatable roast chicken.
For a nightcap, take a taxi back up the Skylark, a stylish city bar with expansive rooftop views, next to your home at citizenM.
And if you'd rather avoid any politically awkward moments, here are 10 places you won't find Donald Trump in New York.