As the chilly season rolls on, don’t let the short days and sub-zero temperatures get you down. Embrace the frosty weather and enjoy everything the Big Apple has to offer. Here is our bucket list for a winter to remember in New York City.
Rockefeller Center Ice Skating
No winter visit to New York would be complete without a spin around The Rink at Rockefeller Center. Open through April 15, the historic rink offers you ample opportunity to cross “work out” and “have more fun” from your list of resolutions.
If you believe you’ve gone around the rink enough on past trips, try something new by strapping on your skates and booking a private lesson to learn how to glide across the ice like a pro.
Or, if you’re looking to take things slow, simply grab a mug of steaming hot cocoa (we love Jacques Torres Chocolate’s Wicked variety) and watch everyone else.
When you’re finished, walk two blocks east to warm up at Forbes Travel Guide Recommended Lotte New York Palace. The historic hotel boasts three unique bars serving up a blend of classic cocktails and modern methodologies.
Bryant Park Winter Village
A year-round destination for foodies, Bryant Park is also home to a 17,000-square-foot ice-skating rink come wintertime that serves as the perfect place for you to burn off all those holiday calories. At the end of January, the park transforms into the popular Winter Carnival (January 26 to 27 and February 2 to 3), an outdoor festival complete with a brew house and a silent disco.
When you’ve had enough of the crowds, head to The Knickerbocker Hotel, conveniently located nearby. The property’s seasonal après-ski-themed rooftop lounge provides a warm respite. Sip on a chartreuse hot chocolate or cowboy coffee for a pick-me-up.
A Walk in the Park
When the snowflakes arrive, a picturesque stroll through snow-covered Central Park is almost a requisite. For something a little more high-energy, skate across the glass-like surfaces of Lasker Rink and Wollman Rink, both located within the city’s massive green space. You could also grab a sled and slide down Pilgrim Hill (72nd and Fifth Avenue), a popular spot after a good snowfall.
When you can’t feel your toes anymore, seek refuge at nearby The Plaza, a Fairmont Managed Hotel or Viceroy Central Park. The former is a Four-Star beaux-arts standout that entices right now with the Home Alone 2 Anniversary Room Package, which rewards you with overnight accommodations, a five-disc Home Alone movie set, a one-of-a-kind backpack and an over-the-top sundae just like the one Kevin devoured in the film.
Anglophiles will want to book Viceroy Central Park’s Downton Abbey Exhibition Stay Package (available through April 1). The offer includes complimentary breakfast and tickets to the “Downton Abbey: The Exhibition” at 218 West 57th Street. Just one block from the hotel, the immersive experience allows you to wander through the rooms of the Crawley mansion and check out original costumes worn by the show’s stars.
Even though Ryan Seacrest has long left Times Square, you can still toast to the new year with creative cocktails from an elegant spot high above the throngs of tourists. Head to The Aviary NYC, perched atop Five-Star Mandarin Oriental, New York, for inventive sips with a side of wizardry, such as exploding ice cubes, wafting aromas or even a smoking glass.
Before you turn in, pop into the hotel’s intimate new speakeasy, The Office, for a nightcap. This gem can be discovered only once you’ve found its secret entrance.