Mother-Daughter Itineraries in Paris & New York

A mother-daughter weekend in one of the greatest cities on earth is one of those once-in-a-lifetime pleasures that should be both commemorated and maximized by the best of each spot. We put together a few memory-making itineraries in New York and Paris for both littles and grown-ups.

Photo by: Doreen Kilfeather Photography

Paris Itineraries

Young Daughter

Paris is a romantic, fairy-tale freakout for any young girl, which is only underlined by the fact that it’s home to some of the world’s best candy and ice cream—round that out with an ages-old zoo and a little magic, and you’ve got an epic Saturday.


  • Eggs and Co.

    11 Rue Bernard Palissy, 6e | +

    Paris is not a brunch place, which means that this cheery, wood-beam lined spot is aggressively slammed on weekends. Go during the week: While they offer every conceivable iteration of egg dish, we like the Coco Meurette best. It features poached eggs submerged in a dreamy red wine and mushroom sauce.

  • Sacha Finkelsztajn la Boutique Jaune

    27 Rue des Rosiers, 4e | +

    Since 1946, the Finkelsztajn family has been holding down this yellow-fronted deli, which is known citywide for its rugelach, challah, strudels, bagels, and cheesecake. We go for the “Yiddish Sandwich,” which involves red pepper spread, babaganoush and sprats on a perfectly delicate “pletzel”—a soft, onion and poppy seed covered roll.


  • Musée de la Magie

    11 Rue Saint-Paul, 4e | +

    Even though it occupies a 16th century cellar beneath the Marquis de Sade’s house, the offerings here are thoroughly child-friendly: The museum showcases antique wands and hats, optical illusions, contraptions, and loads of gorgeously rendered posters and prints. And if you have a little one who loves magic, they do a show (in French) that will totally appeal.

  • Le Jardin des Plantes

    57 Rue Cuvier, 5e | +

    First planted in 1635 as a medicinal herb garden by Guy de la Rousse, Louis XIII’s physician, these days Le Jardin des Plantes offers 69 sprawling acres of botanical gardens, scenic trails and a natural history museum. The highlight, though, is a small zoo, which was founded in 1795, making it the second oldest in the world that’s still in existence (it’s outranked by Tiergarten Schönbrunn in Austria). Once home to animals from Versailles’ royal menagerie, the zoo is now known for its unusual, exotic (and often endangered) species.


  • La Crêperie du Comptoir St-Germain

    9 Carrefour de l’Odéon, 6e | +

    Weather permitting, there’s nothing better than grabbing a crêpe from a street vendor to eat while wandering through the Luxembourg Gardens—and Chef Yves Camdeborde’s takeaway stand is the place to do it. If a more substantial meal is in order, his celebrated brasserie Le Comptoir du Relais St-Germain is right next door.

  • Berthillon

    31 Rue Saint-Louis en l’Île, 4e | +

    Operating out of a little window stand on the Isle St. Louis, the ice creams and sorbets here justify the sometimes long lines. After all, it’s arguably the best in Paris. Enough said.


  • Le Bonbon au Palais

    19 Rue Monge, 5e | +

    Styled to look like a 1950s classroom, Georges Marques’ candy shop offers hundreds of candies sourced from all over France. It’s kind of an amazing way to take a geography lesson, really, particularly because Georges is happy to lead willing students on a tour of the country’s various candy-producing zones. Everything—from the candied fruits to pastilles to calissons to chocolate—is arranged in old-fashioned apothecary jars.

  • Bonton

    5, Boulevard des Filles du Calvaire, 3e | +33.1.4272.3469

    Launched by the son of the founders of Bonpoint, Bonton is styled like a department store for minis: Heart shaped cushions, bedside lamps cast in the shape of geese, knitted rattles, strawberry-printed crib sheets, stationery, tutus and toys mingle with the house line of solid (and adorable) basics. Beyond baby shower gifts and souvenirs for little ones back home, this is an excellent pitstop if you have kids in tow. After all, there’s an in-store hair salon and a retro photo booth.

  • Serendipity

    81 Rue du Cherche-Midi, 6e | +

    If you’re the sort of parent who routinely tears pages out of Milk for nursery inspiration, then Serendipity is your mothership: It’s not twee at all. You’ll find bits of décor that will grow with your child, like woven rattan bucket chairs sized for little butts, poufs cast in the shape of balloons, and Tamar Morgendorff’s hand-sewn swan wall mounts. There are overhead cabin appropriate toys, too, like a two-meter roll of coloring paper that depicts the Paris cityscape and pint-sized binoculars that are virtually indestructible.

  • Bonpoint

    6 Rue De Tournon, 6e | +

    You might cringe when your Bonpoint-clad kid heads to the playground on a muddy day, but no matter: While the pricetags are admittedly steep, the quality is so high, these perfectly-turned out pinafore dresses and sweet little corduroy pants can take a beating. Meanwhile, their embroidered slippers and glittery flats are so sweet they’ll send your ovaries into overdrive.


  • Laduree

    75 Avenue des Champs Elysées, 8e | +

    Thanks to loads of press and a swift global expansion in 2005 (there are now outposts in New York, London, Lebanon, Japan, Sweden, Hong Kong, Brazil, etc.), the Ladurée celadon green is almost as iconic as Tiffany’s Robin’s Egg blue, or Hermes’ orange: It all started in 1862 at 16 rue Royale, when writer Louis Ernest Ladurée opened a pastry shop. Though macaroons had been kicking around France since the 16th century, when Catherine de Medici introduced them from Italy, Ladurée’s grandson revolutionized the concept in 1930 by using a bit of ganache to create a macaron sandwich. That said, their dinner service is great, with a kid-friendly menu that adults can enjoy too.

  • Nanashi

    57 Rue Charlot, 3e | +

    Rose Bakery alum Kaori Endo’s creative spin on the traditional, Japanese bento boxes is a huge hit in Paris—and she has a mini-chainlet of restaurants to prove it. We like the Marais location best, as its bigger than her original spot in the 10th. There’s a grocery and takeaway in the front, with a handful of tables in the back, where you can feast on really beautiful plates of veggies, carefully prepared meat and fish, chirashis, and soup.


  • Hotel Montalembert

    3 Rue de Montalembert, 7e | +

    Over the years, we’ve built a lot of wonderful memories here, in part because this is the sort of unpretentious and unfussy hotel that focuses on comfort rather than flash. While it’s fronted by an old-world, Beaux Art exterior, the rooms are chic and modern.

  • Le Bristol

    112 Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, 8th | +

    This family-run hotel has been around just shy of a century, and while all the old-world hospitality ritual are observed (super-attentive staff, pristine interiors) it’s the modern luxuries, like a La Prairie spa, and three Chef Eric Frechon-helmed restaurants (two of which tout Michelin stars) that make it one of the best in the city. What’s more, the rooms are uncharacteristically spacious for Paris and the suites are downright sprawling. The pool, epic play room, and lush courtyard are almost as popular with the littlest guests as the resident Burmese cats, Fa-Raon and Kléopatre.

Grown Daughter

Incredible food, even better wine, and many of the world’s best museums and stores make Paris a no-brainer. Throw in the fact that it’s wonderfully walkable (and endlessly scenic), and the result is a perfect—and jam-packed—weekend.


  • Café de Flore

    172 Boulevard Saint Germain, 6e | +

    This classic Parisian Art Deco café on the corner of Boulevard Saint-Germain has played host to everyone from Sartre to Picasso. They came for the coffee and the people-watching, as should you: When the weather’s nice, find a spot on the outdoor patio and get a big café au lait and omelette.

  • Du Pain et des Idées

    34 Rue Yves Toudic, 10e | +

    Baker Christophe Vasseur has won innumerable awards for the pastries at his tiny corner boulangerie in the 10th, which makes perfect sense. Don’t be put off by the lines—which extend around the corner—since the effort justifies the wait. Do as the locals do and come here to stock up on daily bread, along with pain aux raisin, and the chausson à la pomme fraîche (puff pastry stuffed with half of a baked apple). Basically, you can’t go wrong.


  • L’École Van Cleef & Arpels

    22 Place Vendôme, 1e | +

    Historically, luxury houses of Van Cleef & Arpels’ caliber are cagey about sharing their methods, so it was especially mind-blowing when in 2012 they opened a school to do just that. L’École is housed in a private mansion at the Place Vendôme (a destination all in itself) and the classes (taught in English as well in French) are open to anyone, be it designers, collectors, or everyday admirers of beautiful things. The classrooms are set up like professional workrooms rather than traditional blackboard-and-desk operations, which makes sense since the professors are either jewelers and watchmakers from the Van Cleef & Arpels Paris team and workshop or expert historians and gemologists. The classes themselves can be booked à la carte and run the gamut from hands-on (setting techniques, watchmaking, reading gemstones) to more history-based. Each class is three hours long.


  • Les Cocottes

    135 Rue Saint-Dominique, 7e | +

    The only thing that outshines Les Cocottes’s brilliant use of glass jars and Staub cast iron cocottes, is the menu itself. Chef Christian Constant has developed a robust offering of salads (a non-traditional Ceasar salad), soups (pumpkin, seafood bisque), and mains (ratatouille, langoustine ravioli) that satisfy without breaking the bank. And then of course there’s Constant’s famous chocolate tart. Those who fly by the seat of their pants will appreciate the no-reservations policy: Even though there’s always a wait. That’s ok, because it’s conveniently located near the Jardin du Luxembourg and Eiffel Tower.

  • Le Voltaire

    27 Quai Voltaire, 7e | +

    Situated right on the river, you can opt to take a seat in the front café for lighter fare (coffees, drinks, and classic sandwiches), or in the back, where they serve full meals. We love the grapefruit and avocado salad, but we particularly love the excellent people watching at lunch.

  • Septime

    80 Rue de Charonne, 11e | +

    The chefs behind Septime seem to understand that you can’t fail when you start with the best fresh ingredients. This isn’t to say that the cool, pared-back space isn’t innovative—it just isn’t flashy. The lunch menu is a steal at 28 euros, though if you’re willing to splurge, opt for the “surprise” menu: You won’t regret it.

  • Buvette

    28 Rue Henry Monnier, 9e | +

    It takes nerve (and talent) for an American to take a French concept and recreate it for a famously hard-to-please Parisian audience. In chef Jody William’s case, her French-inspired wine bar, Buvette, has been adopted with open arms. She tested the concept in New York first—the original branch there is a much-loved West Village haunt—and exported her “gastrotheque” back to Paris in 2013, to rave reception. In this romantic, perfectly Parisian little wine bar, you can expect a wonderful cocktail and wine list, and a petite menu of small, versions of dishes like Coq Au Vin and Moules and Tartines. They also serve several local, seasonal salads—good ones are still a rare find in its traditional French counterparts.


  • l’Eclaireur

    10 Rue Hérold, 1e | +; plus other locations

    There are very few boutiques that fully embody an aesthetic, but L’Eclaireur does this perfectly—no small feat, considering there are seven very distinct shops scattered around the city, as well as a bar/restaurant that doubles as a shrine to Piero Fornasetti. Armand and Martine Hadida’s original outpost in 1980 was incredibly important for a number of reasons, most notably because L’Eclaireur was the first to break brands like Prada, Helmut Lang, Dries van Noten, and Martin Margiela in France. While the Hadidas have had every opportunity to rest on their laurels, the pace has been relentless ever since as they’ve continued to ferret out the world’s best new talent, in fashion, in jewelry, and in home goods. While the mix at every spot varies, we like the moodily gothic Place des Victoires location best. Under the light cast by a strange and fantastic bird chandelier, you’ll find Fornasetti umbrella stands, chunky chain link bracelets from Mawi, cashmere travel wraps by Denis Colombe, and coated Saint Laurent skinny jeans. If time allows, their most recent project shouldn’t be missed, either: They’ve taken a space in Habitat 1964’s vintage village at Les Puces, where they’re selling a smattering of archival fashion pieces along with furniture.

  • Montaigne Market

    57 Avenue Montaigne, 8e | +

    Slick white gallery-like walls happily play second fiddle to the muted-hued picks on the racks at this 2005 mainstay: While you’ll find a handful of the runway’s more progressive labels—Balmain, Rick Owens, Alexander McQueen—everything here manages to straddle that line of being Fashion with a capitol F, without ever trying too hard. In short: There’s plenty here you can wear to a low-key brunch with friends, like pastel pink silk blouses from Tocca, Carven short-sleeve white dresses, and coated suede leggings by L’Agence.

  • French Trotters

    128 Rue Vieille du Temple, 3e, + | 30 Rue de Charonne, 11e, +

    Now two locations strong, French Trotters pretty much epitomizes what a great boutique should be: Beyond a host of exclusive collaborations, their buyers manage to zero in on the best and most relevant items from the lines they stock. Everything, from the perfectly turned out Michel Vivien suede booties, to the slouchy Jerome Dreyfuss totes, to the asymmetrical jackets from Humanoid, seems like an important wardrobe building block. Meanwhile, don’t miss the very well-priced house label.


  • Ban Sabai

    12 Rue de Lesdiguières, 4e, + | 14 Rue Piccini, 16e, +

    Offered in a traditional hammam setting that will lull you to sleep, the Thai-style massages here are the best in the city. The private rooms come complete with showers, and a candle-lit Jacuzzi. There’s an additional location in the 16th.


  • La Closerie des Lilas

    171 Boulevard du Montparnasse, 6e | +

    La Closerie is in the same league of historic cafes as Les Deux Magots and La Palette. And while some might say this Montparnasse standby is past its prime, many insist it’s still very much happening—after all, Hemingway (there’s a handy sign indicating his preferred spot at the bar), Picasso, and Beckett used to hang out here on the regular. We recommend springing for a full dinner in the formal main hall, that said, the brasserie-slash-piano-bar is great for a drink and to get a feel of the place without spending a fortune.

  • Bones

    43 Rue Godefroy Cavaignac, 11e | +

    The Australian-born James Henry finally has his own restaurant (after turns at Spring and Au Passage). Occupying a space that used to be an Irish pub, Bones is appropriately stripped down to its brass tacks, which is a fitting backdrop for the ingredient-focused fare here. You don’t need a reservation to sit at the bar, where you an snack on in-house charcuterie and grilled fish.

  • Restaurant Petrelle

    34 Rue Petrelle, 9e | +

    The bric-à-brac décor here is pretty irresistible (a random antler shed here, some antique Chinese hats there), and it’s also the perfect backdrop for one of our favorite, out-of-the-way date night spots in Paris. The homestyle French cooking is as exuberant as the surroundings—and it’s topped off with excellent meringues.

  • Clamato

    80 Rue de Charonne, 11e | +

    While it’s nearly-impossible to get a reservation at Septime—and a bar stool at their wine bar is hard to come by, too, you’ll probably have better luck at their newest venture, Clamato, a seafood-centric joint that refuses reservations. Also, it’s open all day on Saturday and Sunday, which is a rarity in Paris.


  • Hotel Particulier Montmartre

    23 Avenue Junot, 8e | +

    Housed in a former mansion, this five-suite hotel, which boasts gardens designed by Tuileries renovator Louis Benech, is tucked away down a path in the middle of Montmartre. The themed suites (one is called “Curtains Of Hair,” another “Poems and Hats”) were each designed at the hands of a different artist. The drawing room bar should not be missed: It’s reservation-only, but still accessible to non-guests.

  • La Maison Champs-Elysees

    8 Rue Jean Goujon, 8e | +

    Smack in the middle of Paris’ Golden Triangle (Avenue Montaigne, the Champs-Élysées and the Grand Palais), Martin Margiela—known and loved for his very specific and very conceptual spin on fashion—doesn’t immediately come to mind as a likely candidate for a second career as a hotel interior decorator. After all, his namesake boutiques tend to be impossible to find and packed with thrilling—though stark—design flourishes. But there’s nothing cold about Le Maison Champs-Elyseée: It’s cool and other-worldly, but its architectural moments (neon signs, chairs draped to resemble ghosts, a rhomboid concierge desk) never compromise the comfort.

New York Itineraries

Young Daughter

In the interest of traffic and minimal subway time, this itinerary revolves around supremely walkable Downtown, where you can swing through a handful of the city’s most dynamic, kid-pleasing neighborhoods. (For more recs for little ones in NYC, download our free City Guide app.)


  • Black Seed Bagels

    170 Elizabeth St., Nolita | 212.730.1950

    This newcomer is drawing big crowds, which we totally get: The hand-rolled, wood-fired bagel sandwiches are actually easy to eat (they’re much smaller than their brethren), and for the most part, they’re great—particularly for those times when the only thing that will satisfy is a bagel sandwich. Favorites include: beet-cured gravlax, a basic tuna salad, Tobiko spread, and the egg salad (though it’s heavy on the dill).

  • Alice’s Teacup

    102 W. 73rd St., UWS | 212.799.3006

    These Alice in Wonderland-themed spots are pretty cute (there are now three outposts), making them a great option for a mid-afternoon snack or a birthday party destination. Pioneered by Lauren and Haley Fox, these teashops offer perfectly brewed teas, healthy snacks, and prettily arranged sweets—from cupcakes to cookies.


  • Chelsea Piers

    62 Chelsea Piers, Chelsea | 212.336.6666

    Situated on a pier along the Hudson River, this gigantic sporting complex operates out of the “if you build it, they will come” mindset. And it’s true: Here, you’ll find year-round ice skating, a rock climbing wall, gymnastics, soccer, a driving range, and more, all situated under one sprawling roof.

  • The Highline

    Meatpacking District

    The ideal spot to hit up after the galleries, this elevated public park that runs from the Meatpacking District all the way to Midtown is perhaps the best thing to happen to the city’s landscape in decades.

  • Matilda the Musical

    225 W. 44th St., Times Square | 212.239.6200

    Kids love Broadway, and when it involves one of Roald Dahl’s more beloved novels and characters, they love it even more. This Tony Award winning show, which tells the story of a girl with big dreams and a vivid imagination, is funny and lovely, and something the entire family will enjoy. In lieu of paying full price, or standing in line at TKTS, we like the app TodayTix: You can get day-of tickets at a reduced rate, and they’ll meet you in front of the theater to hand them off.


  • Russ & Daughter’s Cafe

    127 Orchard St., LES | 212.475.4881

    While take-out from the 1914 original on East Houston is one of our favorite New York City experiences, the new, wonderfully turned-out, old-world café is about a ten minute walk from the mothership, with waits that are two or three times that long. We heartily recommend the classic open face sandwich, the super heebster nosh with wasabi roe, and matzo ball soup. We’re dying to try their chocolate babka french toast, along with their potato pancakes, which are topped with Gaspe Nova smoked salmon and a sunny side up egg.

  • Babycakes

    248 Broome St., LES | 212.677.5047

    You wouldn’t know it from the cute, unassuming exterior, but Erin McKenna revolutionized healthy baking (sounds like an oxymoron, but it’s true). Inside the bubble gum pink, ‘50s-inspired interior, you’ll find punk rock girls serving delicious cupcakes, cookies, and pastries, many of which are gluten and sugar free

  • Mimi Cheng’s

    179 2nd Ave., East Village

    For years, the Lower East Side has played host to the New York dumpling craze, of which we were avid participants from the start. However, every time we picked up those steaming pockets of goodness from a hole in the wall that started it all (which shall remain unnamed), in the back of our heads we worried about the provenance of the ingredients. They were so good, but at what cost? Then, Mimi Cheng’s came along and began serving up delectable Taiwanese-style dumplings made with antibiotic-free, local meat and fresh veggies. And, their hole in the wall is anything but: It’s beautiful, whitewashed, and dotted with bright yellow stools.


  • Yoya

    605 Hudson St., West Village | 646.336.6844

    This West Village staple—in business since 2002—offers an artful-meets-streamlined aesthetic, meaning that there’s enough exuberance in the clothing picks to appeal to most kids, while the shapes and silhouettes make parents happy. Whether it’s an Imps & Elfs onesie or a Tutu du Monde swan queen tutu, there’s plenty of cuteness to go around, as well as bedding, toys, and furniture. In fact, owner Cristina Villegas offers design services for kids rooms, opening up her rolodex of unique suppliers from around the world.

  • Kinokinuya

    1073 Avenue of the Americas, Midtown | 212.869.1700

    If you have a stationery or sticker addict on your hands, they’re going to freak. This Japanese mega-store facing Bryant Park is one of our favorite midtown oases, and a solid option for a quick sushi cafeteria-style lunch. There’s an entire floor dedicated to Japanese manga comic books, a solid selection of design books and international fashion magazines, but the basement is the main draw. There, aisle after aisle is stuffed with an incredible array of Japanese stationery goods—adorable pens, pencils, notebooks, and erasers to last a lifetime.

  • Sweet William

    85 Kenmare St., Nolita | 212.343.7301

    While its name might suggest that this shop traffics in frothy pastel pink and blue onesies, the colorful shelves suggest otherwise. Sweet William focuses on small, lesser known labels—Molo, Bobo Choses, boy + girl—that are, in their words, environmentally and ethically responsible. It’s all equal parts chic and adorable, from mohair cardigans and fox-emblazoned backpacks, to metallic lace-ups and psychedelic rabbit sweatshirts. In addition to clothing, they offer plenty of wooden toys from archival brands like Persephere & Trylon, as well as colorful Rouxrou blankets.

  • Kisan

    125 Greene St., Soho | 212.475.2470

    It’s not that the clothes stocked at this subtly other-worldly (and easy to overlook) boutique are necessarily Parisian, but many of the brands—Demylee, Vanessa Bruno, Megan Park, Golden Goose—have that seasonless quality that the French pull off so well. This is not to say that the array isn’t without its wonderful eccentricities, whether it’s a doll-shaped Servane Gaxotte necklace, or a cat-bedecked Tsumori Chisato tunic. But we digress, because the real siren song is the kid’s selection, packed with Bonton pullovers, Anais & I party dresses, and Finger in the Nose jeans. There’s also a handful of toys from iconic brands like Villac.


  • Bar Pitti

    268 6th Ave., West Village | 212.982.3300

    Bustling, no-frills, and speedy, the chalkboard of reliable specials (and menu classics) pleases all palettes: For one, they do a really good and simple Rigatoni Pitti. There’s seating inside and out, though in warmer months, you’ll want to grab a chair on the sidewalk patio.

  • Narcissa

    25 Cooper Square, East Village | 212.228.3344

    Some of the city’s best food for adults is right here, as well as plenty of pasta dishes for kids. Order a Penicillin (not officially on the menu, but delicious nonetheless), and ask for a booth: The veggies are particularly strong here (they’re sourced from André Balazs’ Hudson Valley farm), including creamed horseradish dressed beets, Brussels sprouts leaf salad, and carrot fries. The outdoor patio is a great option, too, as you don’t feel like you’re sitting right on the street.

  • Joe’s Shanghai

    9 Pell St., Chinatown | 212.233.8888

    This beloved soup dumpling spot started out in Queens twenty years ago. Now, there are two more locations (including one in Midtown), though we like the Chinatown outpost best. The service is furiously speedy (particularly at brunch-time on the weekends) but that’s sort of the point—you’ll definitely want to wander the streets after.

  • Charlie Bird

    5 King St., Soho | 212.235.7133

    Apart from the tasty Italo-American dishes—a now famous uni pasta, homemade spaghetti (kids go nuts for it), perfect roast chicken—the music is what really sets this restaurant apart. Colorful old-school boombox prints decorate the walls, and Snoop Dogg, Jay Z, and Dre boom from the speakers, making the meal a good one for a big group, rather than an intimate gathering.


  • Crosby Street Hotel

    79 Crosby St., Soho | 212.226.6400

    This exuberant Firmdale Hotels offering is sort of the perfect mix of over-the-top design flourishes and straight-up excellent hospitality, which makes it an instant hit for kids. Dotted with dog statues and bright colors, the rooms are fun, rather than stuffy, and there are lots of considerations for little ones: Adjoining rooms, cots, pint-sized bathrobes, a kid’s menu (and 24-hour room service), plus babysitting service. There’s also an on-site screening room.

  • Gramercy Park Hotel

    2 Lexington Ave., Gramercy Park | 212.920.3300

    Not only is this opulent and over-the-top hotel decked out with pieces from Basquiat, Warhol, and Botero, but it’s also adjacent to the magical Gramercy Park, which is only accessible—via key—to residents of the neighborhood (and, as luck would have it, guests of the hotel). The Baroque vibe goes over really well with little ones—it’s theater, after all—and the on-site, Danny Meyer Italian restaurant appeals to young palettes, too. They also offer babysitting.

  • The Bowery

    335 Bowery, East Village | 212.505.9100

    Ideally located where NoHo, the East Village, and Nolita meet, this hotel’s bright bedrooms and contrastingly cavernous bar attracts the rockstar set—for scene, but also for comfort. The rooms feature classic New York apartment touches like marble bathtubs and hardwood floors—combined with high-end linens and plush velvety touches, this makes for an ideal stay. Downstairs, Gemma is a good spot for a drink (it’s also a good dinner option for bigger groups), though the hotel is so well-situated to some of the city’s best restaurants, consider taking your meals out.

Grown Daughter

Wonderfully old-school and iconic, uptown Manhattan plays host to many of the city’s long-celebrated restaurants, museums, and department stores, making for a luxe, very grown-up few days. (For more NYC recs, download our free City Guide app.)

  • Breakfast

    Barney Greengrass

    541 Amsterdam Ave., UWS | 212.724.4707

    This old-school delicatessen has been around for over 100 years and carries every conceivable kind of smoked fish. It’s a fun stop even just to see the hand-painted 1950s sign outside, and the vintage Americana interiors it has carefully stewarded through the decades. Greengrass is also a restaurant that’s particularly great for breakfast—there are plenty of egg and bagel options to accompany your choice of smoked fish. And, in keeping with tradition, portions are huge, so go hungry.

  • Spa

    La Prairie Day Spa at the Ritz

    50 Central Park South, Midtown | 212.521.6135

    This spa is not as packed with amenities as other high-end options, but it does not lack in service or treatments. The staff here is world class, as is the extensive treatment menu. It’s a truly special place, and if you’re feeling flush, book a few treatments and spend the day. The facials here are said to be the best.


  • Fred’s at Barneys

    660 Madison Ave., UES | 212.833.2200

    Located on the top floor of Barneys’ Madison Avenue flagship, Fred’s is convenient for any mid-shopping pit-stop, but it’s also a good restaurant in and of itself. The menu is full of classic American comfort foods, from chicken soup, to turkey clubs, and large chopped salads.

  • The Modern

    9 W. 53rd St., Midtown | 212.333.1220

    It won’t come as a surprise that this restaurant—housed in the Museum of Modern Art—comes with a view of the museum’s sculpture garden. But if you move your gaze down to your plate, you’ll find a molecular gastronomy-style food offering in three, four, or five course menus. Aside from the Michelin starred dining experience, we love coming here just for a drink at the bar, which is one of the city’s most elegant, as a long white marble slab punctuates the spectacular space.


  • Fivestory

    18 E. 69th St., UES | 212.288.1338

    Young proprietor Claire Distenfeld (she’s in her twenties) opened up this exquisitely outfitted deco townhouse in 2012. While space is tight, she brings together an impeccable edit of men’s, women’s, and kid’s clothing plus gorgeous jewelry, shoes, bags, and home goods. The mix of names we already love in ready-to-wear (Carven, Acne, Preen) plus the stream of unknowns she continually introduces make this a pretty great new addition to the neighborhood’s shopping scene.

  • Creel & Gow

    131 E. 70th St., UES | 212.327.4281

    Jamie Creel and Christopher Gow are serious collectors who spend much of their time traveling the world sourcing far-flung objects for their townhouse shop. We go just to see the wacky and elegant displays that mix coral and taxidermy, Suzani textiles and kitschy South African ceramics. It’s a real mix with prices to match, and if you’re looking for a truly offbeat gift—like say, a hand-blown glass hammer and nails—chances are you’ll find it here.

  • Bergdorf Goodman

    754 5th Ave., Midtown | 212.753.7300

    The beautiful art deco interiors come with top-notch service here, where you’ll find a classic buy of all the designer lines. We especially love the seventh floor for its inspired home goods section, which includes designers like Kelly Wearstler and John Derian. At holiday time, their ornament selection definitely stands out.

  • Barneys New York

    660 Madison Ave., UES | 212.826.8900

    Barneys buyers are famous for having the best eye for trends. The flagship store always has incredible displays, and a fun mix of wearable pieces from well-known to unknown designers. Their accessories section is the best.


  • Elio’s

    1621 2nd Ave., UES | 212.772.2242

    This is a New York institution, hands down, as the food is sort of classic Italian by way of New York. It’s got a great uptown, old-school vibe where you rub shoulders with the likes of Joan Didion, Charles Gwathmey, and Jerry Seinfeld.

  • Polo Bar

    1 E. 55th St., Midtown | 212.207.8562

    The Polo Bar is Ralph’s ode to classic American cuisine (and equine-inspired decor), with a few special touches, like a beef burger sourced from the Double RL ranch in Colorado and ice cream churned with Ralph’s custom blend coffee. It definitely requires reservations.

  • La Grenouille

    3 E. 52nd St., Midtown | 212.752.1495

    Serving haute cuisine since 1962, this place is wonderfully old school (with the buttoned-up crowd to match). The food is decadent and indulgent as are the floral arrangements, for which they’re known. For a bargain, try their $38 prix fixe lunch.

  • Le Bernardin

    155 W. 51st St., Midtown | 212.554.1515

    Chef Eric Ripert continues to deliver some of the finest, freshest fish in the city, served with delicate yet complicated sauces that make you realize how exciting fish can really be. Menu is prix fixe only and organized by preparation (almost raw, barely touched, lightly cooked…).


  • L’École Van Cleef & Arpels New York (June 4-18)

    Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum: 2 E. 91st St., UES | 844.693.2653

    For two weeks in June, L’École Van Cleef & Arpels will take up residence at the Cooper Hewitt to offer a 12-course curriculum designed to mirror the immersive nature of the Paris school. For maximum personal attention from the visiting professors, classes will be kept intimate—no more than 12 students at a time. For the overachievers, a tightly curated L’École library (readily available to all students) will be a priceless resource. What’s more, their Evening Conversation program will be free of charge and open to both students and the general public.

  • Lincoln Center

    10 Lincoln Center Plaza, UWS | 212.875.5456

    Whether for an opera, a musical, or a ballet, an evening out at the gem-like Lincoln Center always makes for a wonderful, dressed-up night out.

  • Museum of Modern Art

    11 W. 53rd St., Midtown | 212.708.9400

    Despite its popularity, which translates into lines around the block on any given day, MoMA is still one of our favorite places in the city. Whenever we come to visit, whether to walk the permanent collection or to check out a new, contemporary exhibition, we always spend some time in the white marble-clad sculpture garden, a rare respite in the middle of bustling midtown. MoMA has plans to expand into what was previously the Folk Art Museum next door: Headed up by architectural practice Diller Scofidio + Renfro, it will certainly be as artfully conceived as the famous 2002-2004 revamp.


  • The Lowell

    28 E. 63rd St., UES | 212.838.1400

    This luxurious Upper East Side hotel is rare for the city, with rooms so plush and inviting that you’ll be tempted to stay indoors rather than explore the city outside. The rooms have been redesigned by Michael Smith in his classically elegant style, and most boast real wood-burning fireplaces and terraces overlooking a quiet stretch of the Upper East Side. It’s more of a home away from home than most of its buzzy counterparts.

  • The Mark

    25 E. 77th St., UES | 212.744.4300

    Here, you get the New York fantasy life, including 24/7 exclusive access to Bergdorf Goodman, Ladurée macarons at the bedside, custom bikes for touring the city, and Jean-Georges Vongerichten-crafted picnics to go (he runs the The Mark’s restaurant). The rooms themselves are gorgeous; recently revamped by Jacques Grange, the interiors are sleek, and just a little splashy.

  • The Carlyle

    35 E. 76th St., UES | 212.744.1600

    Open for business since 1930, The Carlyle is just a few blocks from Central Park and Museum Mile. And you can’t check out without stopping for a drink in the Bemelmans Bar, which has murals painted by Ludwig Bemelmans, the author of the Madeline series. This is one of the best hotels in the world in terms of service, décor, comfort, and amenities