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A few questions before my big trip!

Clinton, Mississippi
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A few questions before my big trip!

My boyfriend and I will be visiting NYC for the first time December 15th-22. Since we have never been I thought I would get some feedback! Side note, we are in our twenties and are very flexible! We aren’t just stay in Time Square type people and want to explore the entire city. I’m open to any suggestions!

1. We are pretty set on seeing the Christmas Spectacular. We have been thinking about The Nutcracker or Annie? Anyone have one they love more than the other?!

2. We figured we would just eat wherever we landed in the city for breakfast and lunch, but I did have some ideas for dinner. I just thought I’d see if anyone loves any of these or if they were stay away places!

Little Owl

Gramercy Tavern

Via della Pace


One night we would like to have a nicer meal (not $400 nice, but around $150). The other nights just average! We both like interesting places with a good vibe. We aren’t so into chain restaurant type places. If anyone has a favorite, feel free to let me know!

3. I would love to visit some locally owned clothing boutiques anywhere in the city (with decent prices).

4. Ok, we are from the south. I’m not used to such cold weather! I don’t want to stick out like a tourist, but I want to make sure I’m comfortable enough to walk around the city! I plan on bringing my wool coat (it hits mid thigh), several pairs of leather boots, a raincoat and rain boots, a variety of sweaters, scarfs, hats, and mittens, and my cuddle duds (long underwear). Would this be sufficient?

5. We are also looking for places to have a drink or glass of wine late at night. Local, small places and then maybe somewhere with a view.

Thank you in advance! I have learned so much from other TripAdvisor posts and I’m so ready to get this vacation started!

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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1. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

I wouldn't bother with a raincoat and rain boots. In December, a wool coat and (one pair of boots) should be fine.

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2. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

The Little Owl - my bf and I ate here for dinner earlier this year. Absolutely loved it and would highly recommend it. The food is fantastic and the restaurant itself is really nice (quite small and intimate and fantastic service). They take bookings 30 days out so make sure you book as soon as your date is available. I ended up making our booking directly with them via email - there were more times and dates available than what was showing on OpenTable.

>> One night we would like to have a nicer meal (not $400 nice, but around $150) << - is this comment in reference to the list of restaurants above it? Depending how many courses you have, eating at The Little Owl with drinks + tax + tip could easily get you to $150.

Along with The Little Owl, our other "nice" pre-booked meals were at dinners at Buddakan and Scarpetta and brunch at Balthazar.

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3. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

Bring your wool coat, gloves or mittens, a warm hat and a good scarf. Long underwear also. You can always buy a nice scarf on the street for $5 or so, so you can add to your attire easily. if you have good boots that will keep your feet warm bring theses too. It could be really cold or you could get lucky and have what us northerners would consider warmer temps in December..the mid 40's. You can always buy stuff….the is a shopping mecca!

Between TA and Yelp, you should be able to find many interesting and good places to eat. We found Yelp helpful this past weekend. As for shows, check out all the Broadway shows. There are many good ones. I saw the Radio City Christmas Spectacular many years ago and it was nice but I wouldn't go back. I would put my money on a good broadway show. Be sure to go to Rockefeller Plaza and see the Christmas tree at night, and perhaps skate on the rink. Also walk along 5th Avenue and see the store fronts all decorated. Have fun with the rest of your planning.

Clinton, Mississippi
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4. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

Thanks for all of the great tips! I'll definitely check out some of those Things-to-do tips! And it's always nice to have some ideas of what to wear when visiting a different climate than usual! Much appreciated!

New York
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5. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

for the nice dinner: OCEANA is a seafood restaurant on 49th and 6th I believe. Truly one of the best seafood meals I have ever had. Another great restaurant with a nice view at Lincoln Center is called THE LINCOLN. It is Italian food.

As for your outdoor clothing, you may not need long underwear in December, but if you're not used to the cold, you might like it.

One of my favorite neighborhoods to walk around is the Lower East Side. Rivington Street has some nice shops, great food choices, and cool localy bars.

The 3 shows you list are very different types of shows.Annie is a Broadway Musical. the others are holiday shows.

Feel free to ask more questions

Sydney, Australia
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for New York City
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6. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

Out of The Nutcracker and Annie I would choose The Nutcracker for a Christmas feel in December.

And check the weather a few days before your trip. That could sway you one way or another with what clothes to take.

Jupiter, Florida
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7. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

As a "local Broadway brat", I recommend that you go to these two websites.

www.broadwaybox.com or www.theatermania.com

Click on Broadway discounts and you'll see which plays have discounted tickets. When you get the coupon you have 3 options:

1) Go to the website on the coupon and pay the additional fee for the tickets

2) Call the number on the coupon and pay the additional fee for the tickets

3) Print out the coupon and as soon as you get the NYC, go to the individual box offices with the coupons. You will only pay the price on the coupon. (Some theaters will accept the coupon on your smart phone.)

Be sure to note the expiration/blackout dates.

Or there’s always the TKTS booth at Times Square (South Street Seaport location closed due to Sandy)

Here's a link to the TKTS location/rules:


Any questions....let me know!

Syracuse, New York
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8. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

Annie & Nutcracker are 2 different shows. Annie is a traditional Broadway show & Nutcracker (assuming you means NY City Ballet) is a classical music/dance show.

Clinton, Mississippi
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9. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

Thank you everyone for being so helpful! I will be sure to check out the Lower East Side, StuQ- that sounds like my kind of place. And thank you Andrefs for that website- very helpful! I know Annie and the Nutcracker are different, I've looked at both of them and think we would love both. So hard to decide! Perhaps we will just see all three! Thanks again for all the help-you guys are great!

Rockville, Maryland
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10. Re: A few questions before my big trip!

Kirstie: I responded to a draft itinerary offered by a couple from Portugal for their NYC week in mid-December. I have completed the first part; the rest will follow. It is located on the next page under "What do you think about this 7 1/2 Days itinerary?" Yours presents some different opportunities, but I hope the response there is helpful.

In case you have not done so already, you should make your lodging arrangements right away. Unless you are staying with friends or family, be prepared for $ticker $hock.. Your flexibility will prove very valuable. However, be careful on where your hotel is located--it may be very much out of the way, which you don't want. Speak to someone who knows New York City hotels.

And: I vote for the Nutcracker. Annie is nice. But: There's the Nutcracker. And then there's everything else.

Let me be so bold as to suggest both--and/or possibly one or two others. I know these tickets are a small fortune. But you will be in NYC now, who knows when again, and the quality of these shows is absolutely first class. This coupon may be helpful. with Annie.


If you wish to consider an "Annie-like" show also about an effective little girl succeeding against all odds, Matilda is VERY cute--and at the end, inspiring. In London, it won 7 Olivier awards (like Tony awards)--more than any other show--EVER. Matilda tickets, however, sell at a premium. broadwaybox.com/shows/matilda_nyc_tickets.as…

There also is the iconic Radio City Christmas Spectacular. Tickets are still available from the box office for the dates of your trip. www.ticketmaster.com/event/1D004A88D9837BE3…

Have a wonderful time.