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This time 2 years ago, it’s safe to say that I was more than a little giddy about an up and coming trip – my first visit to New York!  I’d always wanted to visit at Thanksgiving and watch Macy’s Parade (I’d watched Miracle on 34th Street far too many times!  🙂 )  My birthday is in November, so we decided to kill two birds with one stone with a four night stay in the Big Apple over the holiday, staying at the Grand Hyatt on 42nd Street.

We flew out on the Tuesday of Thanksgiving week with a ‘Things To Do’ list that had been discussed many, many times over the preceding months, our excitement growing each and every time!

It wasn’t a particularly detailed list, in fact we pretty much expected to not do alot of it,  (our observation of the insane husband and wife in Bellagio’s coffee shop in Las Vegas pretty much makes any list we create set in very dry fine sand rather than stone! If you’re interested in reading an old blog I wrote that contains the anecdote, click here)  Half the fun of any trip is the planning though – Mike’s affectionate nickname for me is “List Lady” so you sorta get the gist re me and lists!

Here are some of the entries on the list:

  • Go see the Rockettes at the Radio City Christmas Spectacular
  • Go to PJ Clarkes and have a Cadillac Burger
  • Go to Macy’s
  • Hop and Hop Off Bus Tour
  • Bryant Park – visit the Christmas Fair
  • Visit Grand Central Christmas Fair
  • Visit the Apple Store on 5th Avenue
  • Visit American Museum of Natural History
  • Try lots and lots of diners!
  • Watch one of the Thanksgiving games in a bar

Our USA Memory Box contains a copy of the list, covered in scribbled notes about our stay.   Here’s a few of them from the first couple of days…


•   First sight of Empire State lit up at night in its Thanksgiving colours (brilliant link –  shows you what colours it’ll be wearing on a specific day!) – oranges, reds, yellows – beautiful… Walked for a couple of hours getting our bearings, hit ‘the wall’ around 8pm – legs truly felt like lead  – and as for the tiredness….wow!

Wednesday Morning

Bryant Park Ice Sculptures and ice rink,  freeeeezing cold.





Gorgeous bright sunny morning.  Couldn’t stop staring at the wide variety of tall buildings surrounding the little oasis that is Bryant Park!

•   Walked our little feet off in the morning, found Blue Smoke (we had an evening reservation).  Ouch my feet!  Heels have mega blisters (new shoes I thought were comfy + thick socks + walking a very circuitous route to find Blue Smoke…! Ow ow ow ow ow!)

•   Radio City Christmas Spectacular & The Rockettes – a truly emotional, magical experience!  Wandered around Rockefeller Centre – amazing buildings, fantastic Art Deco friezes!

•   Booked 2-day Gray Line Tour Hop On / Hop Off bus tickets.  Want to try see as much of the city as we can in such a short visit, but in a chilled kinda way…(very chilled as it turned out….! In fact, definite polar bear weather…!)

•   Dropped into PJ Clarkes at lunchtime – got the Subway – felt just like London!  3 local guys – regulars – very lively…eating oysters.  Barman had to keep telling them to ‘keep it down’ or he’d have to throw them out.  They were just loud bless – extremely enthusiastic in their conversations shall we say! Ended up having a good banter with them about our evening plans at Blue Smoke.

  • Brooklyn Lager (Nectar of the Gods)
  • Cadillac burger (Food of the Gods)

•   Blue Smoke for our Evening meal – treated to taxi there and back – my feet hurt far too much!

  • Chipotle Wings – hot! Calamari & Rib platter.  Great beef ribs – couldn’t eat them all! Pints of beer – PIA & Brooklyn Lager – no dessert – too full (can’t think why….!)

Next post – Thanksgiving Day!