48 Hours in New York City [Exclusive story for American Express Card Members]

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48 Hours in New York City

The Big Apple. The city that never sleeps. The centre of the entire world. No matter which moniker you pick, New York City definitely lives up to its name. From historical landmarks dwarfed by towering skyscrapers to an electrifying art and culinary scene, New York City is undoubtedly one of the most fascinating cities to visit.

While a single weekend may not be enough to see every nook and cranny of the city - after all, it’s enormous - it might just be enough to peel back the veil on what makes this city the dream destination of many.

If you’re looking for the best way to spend your precious 48 hours in New York City, keep on reading.

JUMPSTART: Explore hotels within New York here.


Sightseeing

#1 Brooklyn Bridge

Up till the early 1800s, the borough of Brooklyn was no more than a cluster of autonomous towns and villages. This all changed with the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge in 1883, which paved the way for the city to be assimilated into the newly incorporated New York City as Manhattan exploded with industry. While spotting a magnificent view of the East River in the day, dusk offers the most spectacular views as the tired sun slips beneath the horizon and New York City flickers to life. Even older than the Empire State Building, the Brooklyn Bridge remains one of the United States’ most recognized architectural feats.

Address
Brooklyn Bridge, New York, NY 10038, United States


#2 Central Park



Right in the middle of Uptown Manhattan, Central Park plays an integral role in the life of the city. Home to scenic hills and sapphire lakes, the giant park is replete with activities and major attractions not to be missed. More than just a green space where urban dwellers go for family picnics, the park is an economic generator with an immense social, environmental, and cultural impact on the residents of the city. For nature lovers looking to escape the city bustle, take a stroll through the resplendent Conservatory Garden known for its impressive floral display of tulips, lilacs, crabapple trees and more. For families travelling with young children, swing by the Central Park Zoo for a wild afternoon as you get up close and personal with animals ranging from playful lemurs and powerful grizzly bears.

Address
North 110th Street to Central Park South (59th Street), and from Central Park West (8th Avenue) to 5th Ave


#3 Empire State Building

Opened in 1931, the Empire State Building is the architectural pride of the City of Dreams. The Statue of Liberty aside, the towering skyscraper is the most profound and globally recognized cultural icon in the United States. Alongside the Chrysler Building and One World Trade Center, it dominates the New York skyline with absolute certainty. For visitors looking to experience an unbroken view of the centre of the world, head over to the two observation decks (86th & 102nd floor) that offer panoramic views of the Brooklyn Bridge, Central Park, and the Statue of Liberty, and more. Of course, the world’s most famous skyscraper is not all looks, it also houses exhibits featuring artworks such as the famous Stephen Wiltshire’s drawing - a detailed landscape drawing of New York City completed from memory.

Address
20 W 34th St, New York, NY 10001, United States


Arts & Culture

#1 Metropolitan Museum of Art





The Met is the museum for art lovers and culture vultures. Since 1870, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has been a Central Park fixture that drew travellers from all over the world. Home to more than 2 million pieces of artwork, the massive museum houses an ever growing collection that spans centuries. Behind its doors are more than 5000 years of culture, which include the works of master painters such as Johannes Vermeer, Rembrandt, Caravaggio, and Raphael, as well as artifacts dating back to the dawn of civilizations. The museum also hosts an array of programs and events, which includes classes, lectures, and concerts. For an immersive experience, be sure to check out their daily guided tours as well as Gallery Talk, which is led by curators who will be touching on specific areas of knowledge.

Address
1000 5th Ave, New York, NY 10028, United States

#2 The National Jazz Museum in Harlem

Fancy yourself a music lover with impeccable taste? Then be sure to swing by the National Jazz Museum. Housing hundreds of hours of live radio broadcasts that feature Ella Fitzgerald and various jazz legends in their prime, the museum offers a glimpse into the heart and soul of Harlem. The museum also hosts weekly programs such as Harlem Speaks and Jazz for Curious Learners, which seek to nurture a deeper appreciation for jazz among curious listeners and jazz enthusiasts alike.

Address
58 W 129th St Ground Floor, 2203, New York, NY 10027, United States


#3 Ground Zero Museum Workshop

Step into Ground Zero Museum and see 9/11 through the lens of Gary Marlon Suson, the official Ground Zero photographer for the NYC Fire Unions and founder of the museum. After spending 7 months inside the World Trade Centre site, Gary Marlon constructed the museum with the goal of bringing the firsthand experience of firefights and recovery crew to the general public. Within the museum are images, artifacts, and recordings that bring the “Recovery Period” to life. Beyond awareness, the museum also raised and donated tens of thousands of dollars to the families who’ve lost loved ones to the attack.

Address
420 W 14th St fl 2, New York, NY 10014, United States


Food & Drinks

#1 Yellow Rose

No matter which list you pick, you bet Yellow Rose is on it. Nestled in the food mecca of the country where residents with sophisticated palates can’t be easily deceived, Krystiana and Dave Rizo’s Yellow Rose is a no brainer when you’re craving some San Antonio-style tacos on a lazy Sunday morning. Whimsical and affordably-priced, each taco is formed from freshly handmade flour tortillas that make perfect homes for those gravy-soaked fatty beef cheeks.

#2 Liebman's Deli

Safe from the usual challenges posed by NYC real estate and gentrification, partly thanks to its obscure locations, Liebman’s Deli continues to serve up classic pastrami and corned beef sandwiches that transport you back to simpler times. At least, for a few peaceful moments till the spell breaks with the last bite. Founded in 1958 by the Dekel family, the decor remains quintessentially 1950s. For a sensory experience of this New York institution, be sure to slide into one of the blue Naugahyde booths with an empty stomach and go to town on one of Liebman’s signature round knishes.

#3 Hudson Smokehouse

Safe from the usual challenges posed by NYC real estate and gentrification, partly thanks to its obscure locations, Liebman’s Deli continues to serve up classic pastrami and corned beef sandwiches that transport you back to simpler times. At least, for a few peaceful moments till the spell breaks with the last bite. Founded in 1958 by the Dekel family, the decor remains quintessentially 1950s. For a sensory experience of this New York institution, be sure to slide into one of the blue Naugahyde booths with an empty stomach and go to town on one of Liebman’s signature round knishes.



This feature article is written exclusively for our American Express BlackBook Travels offer. American Express Card Members can enjoy up to 30% off hotels worldwide for bookings made by 7 September 2022. Travel must be completed by 31 December 2022. Click here to learn more.








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Josiah Tan

Bumbling through university on spindly legs, it’s in the world of Travel that Josiah Tan finds a home. When away from his workstation, Josiah can often be found bartering leftover bacon for morsels of affection from his disinterested Maltese.