Little questions for NYC

Apr 4th, 2010, 07:48 AM
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Little questions for NYC

Have been following this forum for NYC and still have a few questions.

We are staying in the UWS near 76th St. and West End Avenue.

How much of a jaunt is it to walk to the Whitney across Central Park? How long would it take as a meander (opportunities to stop and smell the roses!). We are in our early 60's and still average walkers despite a bad knee. Thinking of eating that evening at Candle 79 - any opinions?

Does anyone know of a bike rental shop near our place?

What time should we make a reservation for dinner before an 8pm play?

Any pros or cons to "Wicked" vs "South Pacific". Want to purchase tickets this week.

Planning on seeing "Come Fly with Me" and "Next to Normal" and perhaps "A Behanding in Spokane". The Broadway Box discounts do not coincide with our trip time, May 10-21. Should I purchase tickets now or take a chance on a discount a few weeks from now?

Brooklyn Botanical Garden, New York Botanical Garden, Wave Hill - probably only time for one. Any opinions on favorites? Thinking we could ride bikes to NY Botanical Garden using the greenway.

Have tix for The Daily Show. Any suggestions for restaurants near their studio on 11th avenue between 51st and 53nd? Any other suggestions for sightseeing in that area before the show?

We have tickets for NY Philharmonic open rehearsal. It begins at 9:45am. Does anyone know what time it will end? I am assuming it will be casual dress being a rehearsal. Am I right.

Sorry for all the detailed questions. Knowing this forum, there will be some good opinions. Thank you.

cindyjo is offline  
Apr 4th, 2010, 09:11 AM
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We just walked across the park Friday. For the most part the paths ramble, so I would allow an hour to enjoy some of the sights.

Try the Greek Kitchen
10th Ave and 58 Street

Casual dress at the Philharmonic rehearsal is fine. I have been wearing jeans to the regular concerts for years. And before people gasp and their teeth fall out, it is OK. We have a friend who has been in the Newark Symphony for many years. They cannot see the audience and they are happy you are there.

Biking from the UWS to either Botanical Garden is not recommended. I think you can bike across the WIllis Avenue Bridge for the Bronx. But both are schleps and you must negotiate a great deal of car and vehicle traffic. I am not sure what greenway you are referring to.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Apr 4th, 2010, 09:54 AM
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Do NOT attempt to bike to the Botanical Garden - you will meet VERY heavy traffic as well as neighborhoods you definitely don;t want to be biking in. Have never been to Wave Hill - it's a trek - but the Botanical Garden in the Bronx is IMHO better than that in Brooklyn. (Alsoo don;t now what "greenway" you mean.

You can walk across the Park briskly in about 20 minutes - but if you wander and explore give yourselves an hour. In bas weather ora hurry take the 79th St crosstown bus.
nytraveler is offline  
Apr 4th, 2010, 12:37 PM
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The greenway does not go to the bronx. But it's a beautiful place to visit and really great in the spring and early summer.
doug_stallings is online now  
Apr 4th, 2010, 01:29 PM
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You can walk across the park to the Whitney (BTW - the Met is closer right on 5th ave. at the 79St. exit of the park). The Philharmonic rehearsals end at about 12 noon or a little after. For biking (of course - you have Central Park) you might try a little discovery we just made (living on the upper east side) - pedal east across town and get on the East River pedestrian walk(and bike)way (enter at 81 St.) lovely ride north along the river to the Ward's Island pedestrian bridge and take the bridge onto Wards Island - it'a a park with path along the river - take a picnic (as we did) and enjoy the river views.
jroth is offline  
Apr 4th, 2010, 04:22 PM
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It is possible to bike to the NY Botanical garden mainly using the west side highway bike path and riverside bike path (probably the "greenway" the OP is referring to). Both paths are nice with great views and no vehicle traffic. You will likely have to deal with some traffic in the Bronx.

Directions for the bike route to the Garden are on the website:

The preferred bike route to The New York Botanical Garden is from Manhattan's West Side:

* West Side Highway Bike Path North
* To Riverside Drive
* To Broadway
* Over Broadway Bridge
* To Van Cortlandt Parkway South
* To Mosholu Parkway
* To Kazimiroff Boulevard
* To Garden Entrance

You can map your route on this site:
K_brklyn is offline  
Apr 4th, 2010, 04:52 PM
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If you want to walk leisurely and meander across CP (no paths are straight), allow an hour. Not many roses, but right now, daffodils, forsythia, magnolias, tulips, etc are beautiful.

I love the NYBG. I would NOT bike there. Check their website to see what's in bloom when you're visiting. The orchid show is on now (not sure when you're arriving) and it's gorgeous.

To me, South Pacific is not to miss. Even with the new cast, it's fabulous - a classic musical, beautifully done.

I live near Candle Cafe - never eaten there, but it's very popular with good reviews.

As far as when to eat before a show, are you planning to eat near the theater? Most people eat at 6, but if you're pressed for time, you can do a little later. Always tell your server up front, that you have tix and the time of the performance. They usually ask anyway if you're eating near the theater.
Centralparkgirl is offline  
Apr 4th, 2010, 05:45 PM
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Wow, all those little questions answered! Thank you. Seems to be the consensus not to bike to the NY botanical garden but am appreciative of the tips for other biking routes.
Stumbled onto and they referred to Manhattan Waterfront Greenway, guess it is not known by that in real life. It does look like Wave Hill is a trek. Is there anything we could combine with it?
Hope these questions will be useful to others. I know I'm happy!
cindyjo is offline  
Apr 4th, 2010, 06:29 PM
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Next to Normal will more than likely extend their discount at the beginning of May. It's doing pretty well, but not selling out. I would definitely wait. Same goes with A Behanding in Spokane.

Come Fly Away has a discount right now on broadwaybox.

Enjoy your trip!
bethke14 is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 04:31 AM
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You're in your 60s and going to The Daily Show? You'll ruin the age curve! I'm totally kidding and I hope you have fun!
Traveler_A is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 07:33 AM
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"We are staying in the UWS near 76th St. and West End Avenue. How much of a jaunt is it to walk to the Whitney across Central Park? "

I didn't notice if anyone told you about but it will answer this and many other questions about distances, directions, length of time to walk vs ride and even provide public transport options. Just type at the top 76th st. & West End Ave. NYC to Whitney Museum NYC.

Another great feature of google maps is using the "search nearby" link for anything you need. For example, map your b & b and then use search nearby for bike rental places.

"Thinking of eating that evening at Candle 79 - any opinions?"

Candle 79 is a vegan vegetarian place and very good and very popular. You should make a reservation if you want to go. You can do it on

"What time should we make a reservation for dinner before an 8pm play?"

Assuming you dine somewhere NEAR the theater (which you should do), 6 pm should be fine but tell your server when you sit down you're going to the theater.

"Any pros or cons to "Wicked" vs "South Pacific". Want to purchase tickets this week."

South Pacific is playing at Lincoln Center (closer to where you're staying), despite being considered a Broadway show. It's scheduled to close in August and this production has gotten rave reviews. You can generally find discounts either at Broadwaybox, or maybe even at same day discount booths at Lincoln Center or TKTS. Wicked has been playing for years with no end in sight. It's never discounted but there are touring productions all over. I'd go for South Pacific.

"Have tix for The Daily Show. Any suggestions for restaurants near their studio on 11th avenue between 51st and 53nd? Any other suggestions for sightseeing in that area before the show?"

There's nothing much along 11th ave. except for car dealerships and warehouses. Some restaurants are starting to pop up in the area and even a new hotel but it's been a commercial area for a long time. You could take a cruise from one of the midtown piers before the show (although I don't know what time you have to be at the studio). Both Circle Line and do cruises from the Hudson river & ~ either 39th or 42 st. will give you a map for places in a given area. I've never been but Ardesia sounds like a good option nearby.
mclaurie is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 09:44 AM
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The Intrepid is at 12th Ave/46th St--not too far from The Daily Show.

In addition to, I also like for finding walking distances (and transportation options) between places in NYC.
abram is offline  
Apr 5th, 2010, 10:10 AM
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If you want to make sure that you get in to see the Daily Show, make sure you're in line no later than about 3:30. We ate at Hanci Turkish restaurant - 854 10th Ave, after going to a taping. It was good, but not exceptional.
telechick is offline  
Apr 18th, 2010, 06:28 PM
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well - a few more little questions.....

We arrive (hopefully) at Newark at 11:15 pm. We are reserving a car with Carmel for pick-up because we don't feel comfortable negotiating trains, cabs, etc so late at night.
We leave Newark at 6:15pm on a Friday night. Should we take public transportation or reserve with Carmel again. Seems like it may be quicker to take public transportation rather than cope with Friday night traffic? Am I wrong on this?

Also, we would like to have one blowout meal and have made reservations for Eleven Madison Park and am lurking on Open Table to make one for Gramercy Park Tavern. We enjoy good food but prefer a more casual atmosphere. Any suggestions on which we should choose. I have made reservations for lunch at The Little Owl, dinner at Falai, Aldea, and Dovetail for vegetarian Monday. Thinking of dinner at Quartino before seeing the Moth Slam Liar's Show in the East Village. Wondering about a nice brunch in the UWS where we will be staying.

Thanks you for any answers. Will pay it forward!

Narrowing down our play choices to Next to Normal, Promises, Promises and Come Fly Away. Interesting read in conflicting reviews of Come Fly Away in NYT. Has anyone seen it and if so, what did you think?......

Again, thank you for any answers.
cindyjo is offline  
Apr 18th, 2010, 06:58 PM
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I dined at Eleven Madison twice recently (birthday and anniversary). The experiences were exquisite. Great food, warm and very professional service. Engage the staff; they take joy in helping you make selections. It is not very formal. Jacket and tie not required, but one should dress nicely - no jeans, athletic wear, etc. It was far better than my last experience at Gramercy Tavern. It is very pricey, but worth it. The wine people are great. You can actually have a half glass with a course if you like. They will guide you. The amuse bouche was fantastic.

Telepan on the UWS is known for outstanding brunches, but I haven't eaten there.

I would take Carmel back to Newark, but allow a lot of time because it will be rush hour. I'm not a big fan of public transportation with luggage. Many would disagree with me.

Your three choices for theater are quite diverse and I'm not sure what types of plays you like. Next to Normal is quite good, but with loud, nondescript (imo) rock music. I am seeing Come Fly Away soon; some of the reviews were quite good - you would need to love Sinatra and dance.

Hope this helps.
Centralparkgirl is offline  
Apr 18th, 2010, 08:21 PM
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I would substitute Gotham for Gramercy and Supper before your East Village show.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Apr 18th, 2010, 09:38 PM
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To enjoy Come Fy Away you would need to be Sinatra fans (IMHO my mother's generation) or love Tharp. I have heard no grea things abou Promises Promises - but haven't seen.
nytraveler is offline  
Apr 19th, 2010, 06:07 AM
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Public transportation to the airport is a very personal thing. I'm with CPG, I don't enjoy it with luggage, and from the UWS, you'll have to take subway, bus or taxi to get to either Penn station or Port Authority. I think whatever you decide, you'll have to leave yourselves plenty of time. I don't know/remember where you're from but if it's an international flight, you'd need to be there 2-3 hrs. in advance anyway. 6pm on a Fri. night (yuck).

I've only had lunch at 11 Madison Park and I was very underwhelmed. Le Bernardin would be my choice for a blowout meal. It's no more formal than either of the ones you're considering.

Agree Telepan does a nice brunch food-wise on the UWS, but it's not a particularly attractive space imo nor do they have any outdoor tables. For a great view, you might consider brunch at Asiate at the Mandarin Oriental hotel on the 35th floor of the Time Warner building OR the Boat House in Central Park which sits on a lake and has very nice food. Otherwise, I'd head to another neighborhood for something more interesting like a jazz brunch or some place with a pretty garden.

None of the shows you're considering are considered must sees so it's really a question of personal preference.
mclaurie is offline  
Apr 19th, 2010, 11:59 AM
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I would agree that the shows mentioned are not exactly "must sees" -- with one exception: South Pacific - one of the great musicals of all time.
jroth is offline  
Apr 19th, 2010, 01:57 PM
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All I will say is: I have seen Wicked and enjoyed it, but can't recall any lyrics, can't hum any tunes.

On the other hand: I could probably sing the South Pacific score right now with 80% accuracy. How I wish it was in the cards for us to see this show now!
rncheryl is offline  

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