Located a couple blocks from the New York Public Library on “Library Way” is a one of a kind boutique hotel that any book lover would love to stay in. The Library Hotel as you might have guessed is a hotel with a library theme, which helps to make it a memorable experience for guests. Each floor is dedicated to a specific category within the Dewey Decimal System such as Social Science, Literature and Languages. I stayed in the Technology floor and therefore all the books in my room were related to that topic!
There is also a Reading Room that contains an abundance of books to choose from. Since the hotel offers complimentary snacks all day long, it is a great place to take a break from a busy day of sightseeing and relax with a pick me up and a good read. Every evening between 5pm-8pm they also provide complimentary wine/Prosecco and assorted snacks such as crackers, cheese and pastries. It is the perfect pre-dinner delight!
If you are looking for a place to socialize over delicious cocktails then you don’t even have to leave the hotel (which believe me is a definite plus during one of the Big Apples notoriously chilly winter nights), as Bookmark’s Lounge on the 14th floor has everything you would need for a fun night. There is a poetry room, writers den and a terrace to accommodate whatever you are in the mood for. I went on a very cold New York City day so we decided to stay indoors, however there is a room that has a glass top so even though we were inside, we could still look up at the stars as we sipped on cocktails.
There was a nice long list of speciality drinks to choose from, so I decided to venture away from my usual Jack Daniels and Diet Coke. My friend Melissa and I both decided to try drinks from the seasonal list of cocktails. Melissa got a Pumpkin Spice Latte which reminded me of an alcoholic version of the incredibly popular Fall Starbucks coffee drink. It was served warm as well, so it was an ideal choice after spending a long day outside in the cold. I had a Peach Cobbler which basically tasted like a peach cobbler, but did not have an overwhelming dessert flavor. It was the perfect mix for an evening drink.
The next morning we went down to the Reading Room to eat at the complimentary breakfast buffet which included bagels, cereal, fruit, yogurt, tea , coffee and a variety of pastries. After having a late night at Bookmark’s Lounge, I was happy to be able to stroll downstairs for breakfast instead of hunting around the freezing streets of New York to look for a place to eat. Since checkout time is at the unusually convenient time of 1pm, we ate our breakfast and went back to our room for a little extra sleep before heading out for the day. Now that is an ideal morning!
Thank you to Library Hotel for providing our stay. All opinions are, as always, my own.
A very popular thing to do in New York City is renting a Citi Bike. I think its a good idea depending on what you are doing. If you are riding to work or going to a specific destination, I am all for it. It can help minimize some of New York’s crazy traffic and might even be faster for you since you won’t be part of it! Instead you can wave to the people stuck in bumper to bumper traffic as you fly by on your bike. However, when it comes to sightseeing it can be a hassle.
Why? First, you have to purchase a 24-Hour or 7-Day Pass (depends on how much riding you will be doing). The 24-Hour pass is $9.95+ tax and a 7-Day pass is $25+ tax. You only have 30 minutes from the moment you unlock it before you have to find a dock station and put it back. If you don’t then you will get charged overtime fees. After the first 30 minutes, it’s an additional $4 for the second half hour, $9 for the third half hour, and $12 for every half hour after that. If you decide to spend the day out riding around and sightseeing, you will either have to pay overtime fees or keep having to stop every 30 minutes to dock your bike and rent it again. Personally, I would not want to have to keep checking my watch, when I want to be concentrating on enjoying my day out! When it comes time to find a dock station, the one you find might already be full or if you happen to take a break in between, there might not be any bikes available when you get back (especially in popular areas).
There are plenty of bike rental places in the city, you can even find good deals on Groupon or Living Social. I have seen deals such as $20 for two people for four hours or $15 for one person for a whole day. A lot of them are by the popular sightseeing areas such as the Brooklyn Bridge and Central Park. You can look online and book before you go. Rent it for however long you need without constantly checking the time and having to worry about finding an empty station. Pick up your bike at the rental shop and be done with it! Enjoy your day sightseeing, taking some great pictures and making memories.
Now that you are ready to rent your bike, check out my sightseeing bike ride along the East River with tips on what to do and see by clicking the picture below!
I was born and raised in New York and still haven’t seen everything this incredible city has so I decided to rent a bike and spend the day sightseeing downtown along the East River. Most people don’t realize all you can do and see there. Plus, it is a great option if you don’t want to spend a bunch of money. You can still have a fun day out and get to see so much! You can get a cheap bike rental for the day or just walk around, although it would be a pretty long walk to all of these locations! If you rent a bike, make sure you get a lock as well if you are planning on leaving it to explore on foot. If you don’t, it might not be there when you get back!
East River Park. Where else can you get amazing views of the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridge? There are also playgrounds, sports fields and courts, gardens, children’s water play areas, and walking paths.
Manhattan Bridge and the infamous Domino Sugar Factory logo!
Brooklyn Bridge. You can also go bike riding over the bridges from some great views of the city.
South Street Seaport. Go shopping or grab a bite to eat either inside the mall or outside. Some businesses are still closed because of Hurricane Sandy but theres still enough to do to enjoy yourself! Full directory here –> Seaport NYC along with event information. You can also walk around and check out The Street of Ships. Want to take your sightseeing onto the water? Hop on a cruise with the Circle Line or Water Taxi.
Battery Park (technically here starts to change to the mouth of the Hudson River but still along the path!). You can catch the ferries to Staten Island, the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. If you don’t, you can still see them from afar. This area is part of the financial district. You can venture away from the river and check out the New York Stock Exchange or visit the World Trade Center Memorial.
Grab something to eat from a vendor, go to a restaurant or even hangout at a beer garden. Nearby is Stone Street which has a ton of indoor and outdoor bars and restaurants.
If you do decide to go explore the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, you can buy tickets for $18.
Not planning on going to there? Take a free 25 minute ride on the Staten Island Ferry and get some up close views as you pass them by.