Mallory and I were able to fly to New York, stay 3 nights at the Knickerbocker hotel and attend a party which had a rooftop reception right in Times Square for less than what it cost us to fly to Atlantis last year! We were able to book flights using Hipmunk, and saved about $800 on our hotel room through booking.com. Gilt City also happened to have a deal on the hotel with the party included, but the deal we got through booking ended up saving us more money.
The Knickerbocker Hotel is a historic Time Square building that re-opened as a hotel about a year ago. It is part of the luxury hotel group Leading Hotels of the World.
We arrived at the Knickerbocker at about 11:30 on December 30th. They had kindly upgraded our room, but unfortunately we had a courtyard/alley view, so when we looked out the window we just saw the building next door. The room was nice, spacious by New York standards and very modern. The bathroom was a large room enclosed in frosted glass, and the amenities provided were different than any hotel I have visited. There were cuff links, collar stays, and other items one may forget when attending a New Years gala in addition to the basic toiletries by Ted Gibson.
During the day New Year’s Eve we walked about 10 miles around the city beginning in Times Square ending up down in Battery Park. At 7 PM the gala begun in Charlie Palmer’s eponymous restaurant in the Knickerbocker Hotel. The black tie event had a prohibition era vibe from the jazzy music (they played some Sinatra and even some Bieber) to the characters mingling with guests. One bold young lady named Olive tried to steal Mallory’s drink as I was giving it to her! Olive apologized and gave Mal her tiara for the night. The seating was very limited unless you spent $70,000- $110,000 for you and 12 of your closest friends for one of their skypods. Once we found a table to stand at we made our way around the 3 small buffets getting food, all of which was very good, but I wish it was more convenient to eat more. We danced and drank (too much) and crossed something of both of our bucket lists – seeing the ball drop in Times Square.
The next morning was a little rough for me, but I was optimistic because the party package included a three course brunch on New Year’s day back in Charlie Palmer at the Knick. We found out when we arrived that you needed reservations for brunch even if you attended the party, so we had to sit and wait for 45 minutes. The food looked very good, but by the time we got seated my hangover had kicked in and I was no longer hungry. I order the chicken and waffles and the three bites I had were good, but dry. Mallory had some scrambled eggs with mushrooms that were watery and bland. We left before dessert and walked around the city again ending up in Battery Park and having lunch at Battery Gardens, which was very good.
We were able to see a lot of the city, eat some great food, and cross an item off our bucket list in a quick 3-day trip to the city. The entire trip was planned within 3 weeks of us leaving, which proves it is fun to be spontaneous! Watch my flight deal posts or follow @airfarewatchdog on twitter or visit their site: Airfarewatchdog if they have a deal to somewhere you have always wanted to go, book it!
Have you been to NYC on New Year’s? What were your thoughts? What is the best spontaneous trip you’ve taken?