Long Island City is the new New York. Once being the epicenter of manufacturing, it has now transformed into a cultural haven of museums, galleries, bars and restaurants. And being only one stop from Grand Central station (midtown) you can be in this new subwaypolis in a matter of minutes. Oh – and sitting gracefully across the East River it’s the best place to witness the sky line of Manhattan. So dip in and out of galleries, reserve a table at a local hot spot before watching the city lights twinkle, while you discover LIC.
Escaping the hustle and bustle of Manhattan you’ll find Long Island City’s trendy art scene – a little known district that certainly delivers. Starting your art escapade take a wander through Fisher Landau Center for Art. Formerly a parachute harness factory, but since 1960 it has become a 25,000 square foot homage of art. Playing host to the likes of John Baldessari, Jenny Holzer and Sherrie Levine, it’s a spacious exhibition and is a must for the budding art enthusiast.
If a more modern twist is your thing, take a stroll around Museum of the Moving Image. It’s for the public who appreciate the art, history, technique and technology of film, television and digital media. Or for a contemporary vibe make a visit to Dorsky Gallery, which is centrally located, free and open to the public. Since 1997 it has been promoting modern visual arts which have all been independently curated. This year it has exhibited the likes of Stacey Koon and Laurence Hegarty.
Socrates Sculpture Park was once a waste land, but thanks to artists and community members it’s now an internationally known park hosting large-scale exhibitions and sculptures. It’s the only site in New York especially dedicated to providing artists with opportunities to create and exhibit their work in a grand way. So grab a picnic and a blanket and park up next to your favorite piece and admire the park with the locals.
There are endless places to choose from in New York when it comes to satisfying your culinary cravings, and Long Island City is an emerging spot for gourmet discoveries. For a morning treat head to Communitea, the perfect place to grab a NYC bagel. They are all freshly made and whether you are on the go or have time to kill it’s a quaint little place to swing by.
For a real hearty Italian meal there’s only one place – Manducatis. It a family run establishment and prides itself on serving up traditional Italian cuisine. So whether you taste the Ricotta Gnocchi or the Veal Milanese we guarantee it to be one of the best Italians on the West Coast of America.
For a slice of old Hollywood America then reserve a table at Astor Room. Originally built as the commissary to Paramount Pictures, it has seen its fair share of famous faces. Gloria Swanson, Rudolph Valentino and the Marx Brothers all dined. The Astor Room is now a contemporary interpretation of the American Supper Club. Classic dishes, with master-crafted cocktails and the finest service and hospitality, it’s a dining in a much admired bygone era.
Watch the sun set over another busy day in NYC from Penthouses 808. Located next to Queensboro Bridge, it’s the perfect place to start off your night. Located at the top of Ravel Hotel, you can relax inside in a booth, or move outside and take in the sight of Manhattan. Serving up a mixture of cocktails and spirits it’s the place to be – and be seen.
Want to witness a high calibre of cocktail making? Dutch Kills is the perfect spot. They take great pride in using the finest ingredients, the best spirits around, and ice. Now we know what you are thinking, who knew ice could be important? But Dutch Kills bar team carve the ice in front of you, depending on your cocktail choice and style – very cool. And with the intimate lighting, hardwood walls and distressed leather, it just oozes a slick, effortless style. And it’s this atmosphere that gets the people piling in.
Domaine Bar a Vins is a homely French inspired wine bar. Only one stop from Grand Central it’s a popular spot for most commuters, as well as gallery go-ers alike. Domaine has an extensive wine list, with bottles from all over the world. They are only served by the glass, so it gives you the best chance to taste a few, and home in on those sommelier skills.