A leading light in the world of finance and the media, the hotel industry and gastronomy, art and culture, shopping, fashion and entertainment, New York City combines everything a capital could hope for. Often referred to as the “Capital of the world”, brimming with energy and creativity, the city boasts the reputation of being the place where everything is possible, between a perfect home for show-offs, and a cradle for alternative movements like hipsters or yuccies.
New York City has a thousand and one different captivating faces, and almost as many descriptions: the Big Apple, the City that Never Sleeps, the most visited city in the States… Electric, fascinating, intoxicating even, the city cries out for superlatives. This cosmopolitan hub was summed up perfectly by the illustrious radio presenter of Letter from America, Alistair Cooke: “New York is the biggest collection of villages in the world”. SoHo, Chinatown, TriBeCa, NoLiTa… Its different neighbourhoods feed off all the influences of its multitude of ethnicities, creating a fantastic cultural melting pot.
The gastronomic capital of the United States is home to a plethora of Michelin-starred restaurants, attracting the best chefs from around the globe, including from France: Daniel Boulud, Eric Ripert and Jean-George Vongerichten have all come here seeking glory and the chance to bring their American Dream to life. But cuisines from every corner of the globe have found a home here, a mirror image of the city itself and its countless communities.
From Madison Square Garden to the Radio City Music Hall via the theatres of Broadway and the Barclays Center, Brooklyn’s multi-sport venue that hosts concerts as well as basketball and hockey matches; from Central Park, Manhattan’s green heart, to Coney Island; from Times Square to the Empire State Building; from the prestigious Fifth Avenue to the fantastically renovated industrial Meatpacking District that is now one of the city’s trendiest neighbourhoods… New York buzzes at any time of the day or night.
Speaking of which, it is at night that the heart of the city really comes to life. Some of New York’s open-air bars occupy the dizzying heights of skyscrapers, quite literally, living the high life. Come along to have a drink, boogie on down to tunes chosen by the best DJs, try some tapas, and rub shoulders with real New Yorkers, as well as celebrities from all walks of life.
Depending on how much time you have, you can put together a cultural itinerary to suit you, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim and the MoMA, some of the most famous and jam-packed museums in the world. And if you can squeeze it in, treat yourself to a visit to the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
It’s impossible to talk about New York without mentioning the event that changed its horizon forever: the destruction of the World Trade Center, the Twin Towers, followed by their replacement with the Ground Zero Memorial and its September 11 Memorial Museum, which opened in 2014. A new attraction is the One World Observatory, which opened on 29 May 2015 and attracted 100,000 visitors in its first two weeks. So you may have to be patient… and make sure you don’t suffer from vertigo, as it’s located on the 100th, 101st and 102nd floor of the One World Trade Center, now the tallest building in the country. With guaranteed panoramic views from this new attraction that almost outdoes the famous Statue of Liberty. Standing tall for 130 years, this flamboyant sculpture by Frenchman Bartholdi, with the help of Gustave Eiffel, is still a must-see attraction, first and foremost for its breath-taking view of the famous Manhattan skyline from its recently reopened crown.