Looking for romance in Manhattan...

Jan 11th, 2010, 08:11 AM
  #1  
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Looking for romance in Manhattan...

Well, unfortunately, not for me, but for my nephew! He wants to take his lovely girlfriend to Manhattan for a romantic weekend to celebrate their 2 year anniversary.

They are early to mid 20's, well educated, international travelers, living in the DC area. This is a surprise for her. He has no itinerary planned, and wishes for HOTEL and RESTAURANT recommendations.

HOTEL - He wants something up to $250/night, perhaps near the park or village, but is open to any recommendations.

RESTAURANTS - He's looking for real romance ("I want something really romantic, like super mushy..." his words, not mine!) but definately has limited budget. Perhaps $150/couple. Looking for good food, but real ambiance.

So, Fodorites, can you help?
Thanks.
Iregeo is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 08:49 AM
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When will they be in New York? Hotel prices vary tremendously by season - and while $250 can get you something pleasant now - in the fall it would be something basic. Also, what type of foods do they like/dislike?
nytraveler is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 09:39 AM
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Thanks for your reply. He is planning for April 23 - 25. For food, he mentioned perhaps French or Italian, however, I get the impression that the type of food wil be secondary to the ambiance.

Looking forward to your suggestions.
Iregeo is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 10:09 AM
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Restaurants:
One if by Land-Two if By Sea
http://www.oneifbyland.com/

The River Cafe under the BK Bridge
http://www.rivercafe.com/

Daniel
http://www.danielnyc.com/daniel.html

La Grenouille
http://www.la-grenouille.com/

The House
http://www.thehousenyc.com/
K_brklyn is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 11:08 AM
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Hi Irego, you should also post this on the New York City forum on www.tripadvisor.com.

I always get great suggestions on that website.
janiekins is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 11:11 AM
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$150 per couple for dinner. Is that including wine, tax and tip? I have never been to One if By Land-Two if By Sea or the River Cafe but I know they are very expensive.
janiekins is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 12:35 PM
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I'd suggest looking into The Ace Hotel which is in his budget and a VERY hip hotel. It is close to Herald Square and walkable to lots of sites and several subway lines are within a block or so.

For restaurants, a favorite of mine in Pomodoro which is on Columbus Ave around 71st St. Very cute, good food and nice atmosphere.

If they are going to be touring around the city I'd suggest he pick up a Zagat guide, so wherever they are in the city he can pick out some of the best and it will list price, quality and atmosphere.

Hope they have a great time.
travelbuff is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 12:38 PM
  #8  
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Thanks for the suggestions so far. Will look at all of them. He has clarified his food budget. For his "splurge" dinner, he is willing to spend up to $250, inclusive. I know he won't want to do that both nights, though.

Thanks. Keep those recommendtions coming!
Iregeo is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 12:57 PM
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May I suggest Scalini Fedeli NYC at Duane and Hudson Streets in TriBeCa? (Disclaimer: I know the chef/owner, Michael Cetrulo.) Since 2000, it has occupied the space of the original Restaurant Bouley and has a very romantic atmosphere. The food, "Frenchified" Northern Italian, is top notch as is the attentive service. http://tr.im/K6s1
bspielman is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 01:08 PM
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Our favorite restaurant in NYC is Il Buco. Nothing special from the outside but step into a wonderful small restaurant that has ambiance coming out its kazoo.

8-10 trips to NYC & 8-10 visits to Il Buco. Never disappointed.
NevadaJane is offline  
Jan 11th, 2010, 04:37 PM
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K/brklyn - None of those restaurants will be under $150 for a couple - with even modest wine tax and tip.

Some might fit into a $250 budget. I would reco River Cafe as very romantic - very good food, pretty restaurants and incrdible view of Manhattan across the river - but the prix fixe dinner is $100 per person - so $250 will be hard to do. Danile is another good choice - but again $250 will be hard even with modest wine.

One if by land IMHO is very tired. Grenouille is very traditional but much more ladies who lunch than romantic.

For a hotel the LUcerne is pretty, only a couple of blocks from the Park and has internet specials from about $220 per night.
nytraveler is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 06:53 AM
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nytraveler, my nephew loved what he saw of the River Cafe and booked a table for one night. Thank you.

Does anyone have experience with or an opinion of this hotel?

http://www.elyseehotel.com/

Thanks.
Iregeo is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 09:18 AM
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I strongly suggest he look into Scalini Fedeli as bspielman has suggested. Absolutely fantastic place with great food and fantastic ambiance.
michelleNYC is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 09:52 AM
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Thanks. I gave my nephew the options provided here. I will tell him specifically to look again at your recommendation.

Thanks again.
Iregeo is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 11:19 AM
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The Elysee is a lovely hotel that offers nice amenities. The same co. also owns the Giraffe which I think is a bit nicer and in a younger area. That said, the Elysee now houses a VERY trendy restaurant (the Monkey bar) which he might like to try the other night.
mclaurie is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 11:20 AM
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Other ideas, since they're in their 20's, they should "walk the High Line" and stop by the Standard Hotel for drinks/snacks (especially if they're lucky with weather). There are many restaurants in lower Manhatten that are very good and reasonable.

For the romantic night, great to see he's booked the River Cafe, the views of Manhattan are great from there.
owlwoman is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 11:23 AM
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Elysee is in a great midtown location, boutique hotel in a european style and friends who stayed there liked it a lot. Wouldn;t have thought in this price range - but perhaps in Jan. Giraffe, similar in a lot of ways, is in a trendier neighborhood.
nytraveler is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 11:51 AM
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Elysee has streetside superior rooms in their price range. Giraffe seems to be above their range.

Any experience with the Hotel Mela? There seems to be an excellent Travelzoo deal.
Iregeo is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 11:59 AM
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Hi! This may not be as mushy as he's looking for, but I'm in my mid 20s and one of my favorites is Lucienne. It's a little French bistro with a lot of character. www.luciennyc.com

It's super cute, the food is great but not pretentious, really reasonably priced (will definitely come in around or under budget), and it's right in the village. If the weather's good, they'll open the door/windows to the street and it's a cute colorful neighborhood...it's a different NY experience than midtown, but might be worth it for the flavor.

Also, I know you didn't mention this, but Fuerza Bruta is a really really fun high energy audience participatory off-broadway show that runs near Union Square. It's like a cross between going to a club and seeing Circe du Soleil (caution, you may get wet). It's an experience, and really sexy for a young couple.

Good luck!
bknow is offline  
Jan 12th, 2010, 01:15 PM
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bknow, I copied and sent your message verbatim to my nephew. Many thanks for the suggestions.

Still looking for input regarding the Hotel Mela.

Thanks.
Iregeo is offline  

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