Friday, September 30, 2011

EZ Studios Hosts NY Fashion Week

As the leaves on the trees began to change color and the fall season started, New York Fashion Week came to midtown Manhattan at EZ Studios.  At 7pm on September 9, media and guests took delight in the privilege of viewing the arrival of celebrities at the AKOO Clothing fashion show which was thereafter described as the “most alluring event of the evening.”

There were tons of people waiting to catch a glimpse of AKOO Clothing’s debut.  Nuttin’ But Stringz was the surprise guest, opening the show with “a spectacular performance to set the mood for the rest of the night.”  Livestream streamed the event and Hosea Chanchez hosted it.  Other celebrity attendees included: Ramses Barden and Victor Cruz (of New York Giant’s); Matt Nordgren (Bravo’s Most Elegible Dallas); Meeka Claxton (VH1’s Basketball Wives), and more.

A great time was truly had by all.  As AKOO Clothing Marketing Director Jeff Belizaire said, “this show was a labor of love for everyone involved. We’re overwhelmed with pride to have organized such a major production during New York Fashion Week. We also feel honored by the crowd’s responses and outpouring of support. We have definitely achieved all of our brand objectives while setting the bar extremely high for the next New York Fashion Week.”

Friday, September 23, 2011

Greenacre Park for Paradise

For those seeking out a little pad of paradise in a crazy afternoon in midtown Manhattan, go look for the Greenacre Park, located at 217 E 51st Street.  You need to look for it, because one reviewer who had been living right across the road, took six months to locate it.  And therein lies its charm.  No photographs or high noise levels are permitted; it is just meant for the serene spot it is.  One cannot imagine that such a spot of tranquil paradise could be found smack bang in the middle of mad Manhattan.  But lo and behold, it can.

If you’re looking for some fresh, healthy, organic fare, check out the green hornet drink at Jack’s Coffee.  Awesome sandwiches and wholesome food, this fits in with the gentle sensation you’ll get while reading a book by one of the park’s incredible waterfalls.  Don’t worry about getting interrupted – noise is not permitted and dogs, Frisbees and sunbathers are all shunned.  This is meant to be Zen and you’ll be quickly informed if you’re not following the rules.

Clearly this park gets back to basics in so many ways.  This is what parks were intended for although these days so many of them are so far away from such tranquility.  But here, you’ll get exactly what you came for.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Stone Rose for Big Time Entertainment and Great Food

If you want to mix it up a little over the weekend, you might think about checking out the Yabu Pushelberg-designed Tapas restaurant in midtown New York, Stone Rose.  Located at 10 Columbus Circle at 60th Street, you will be privy to almost unmatched views of Central Park, while lounging in style in either an intimate spot, or a place specifically designed for group dining.

If you’re not so into the whole live music thing (which starts on an early weekend from Wednesdays ‘til Saturdays), go from Sunday to Tuesday and use Stone Rose to just sit and people watch.  Even if you’re there alone, you can take advantage of Happy Hour and the bar scene.  And for a fun birthday celebration, why not book a private party at Stone Rose?  Although on a review it was rated as having an “energetic” noise level, sometimes this can provide the company you are looking for, without the pressure of having to engage with someone at the end of a long working week.

It’s all in a Name

So from where did the name Stone Rose originate?  On its own admission, “for its masculine elegance and design finishes in stone and rosewood.”  In terms of its food, order one of the plates and share with your beau.  Check out the wild mushroom crostini with chèvre and white truffle oil; Kobe beef skewers; daikon sprouts and fresh mint; or shrimp summer rolls with shredded snow peas.

Choosing is Critical in Midtown Manhattan

When you finally get to take a fun-filled vacation in New York’s midtown neighborhood, you may feel overwhelmed with the choices of restaurants, accommodations and things to do in general.   Quite simply, the city is jut buzzing with possibilites at a high quality level. 

Ultimately your choices will depend upon what you are looking for.  For those seeking out a chic, contemporary style, they may want to look at one of the Triumph Brand hotels owned by Shimmie Horn, such as the Hotel Belleclaire, located on Broadway and West 77th Street, which was once described as a “skyscraper on Broadway.”  For special spa amenities, check out the Four Seasons Hotel New York, on East 57th Street, which also is known for its luxurious settings and helpful staff.

And while you’re in the city that never sleeps, you might want to take in some sites, like the Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site, or the General Grant National Memorial.  And for those who prefer the nightlife, then the AZYA Wine & Chocolate Bar will provide you a bar with a difference, and is unlikely to disappoint.

So before booking your vacation, make a decision on what you’re looking for – you’re bound to find out in midtown, New York…along with so much more.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Jazz Close By

If you’re after a bit of jazz around the Upper West Side, a great hangout is the Avery Fischer Hall Lincoln Center located on West 64th Street.  For jazz lovers it’s the place to be and knows no bounds, making no discriminations. Good jazz, is simply good jazz and the jazz you’ll get here is great for all ages and walks of lives.  The only requirement?  To love jazz.  Check out the different concerts available, as well as classes, workshops, lectures, tours, recordings, TV broadcasts and more.  Artistic Director Wynton Marsalis leads the club and does a great job of it.

Marsalis himself has an impressive resume.  He plays the trumpet, has been a bandleader, music teacher and a composer.  He knows what he’s talking about when it comes to jazz as he works hard to promote an appreciation of classical and jazz music and does this for the younger crowd in particular.  He has earned nine Grammys and one of his very own jazz recordings won a Pulitzer Prize for Music, which was an unprecedented move.

So for really top jazz, this is where it’s at.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Is It “Good Enough to Eat”?

When you’re looking for a great place to fill the vacuum in your stomach, go down Amsterdam Av at 83rd Street and check out Carrie Levin’s eatery.  Aptly called ‘Good Enough to Eat,’ in the 1980s, Levin took her desire and talents to create “good, old-fashioned American food,” to the next level.  The result was – and still is – “Good Enough to Eat.”  It began with serving wholesome breakfasts all day long, but later on moved on to soups, sandwiches, Meatloaf dinners and more.  This ultimately led to her reputation as “one of the first Chef's in NYC to create and celebrate ‘traditional’ American cuisine.”

Global Recognition

These days ‘Good Enough to Eat’ is so much more than a restaurant for Upper West Siders.  Indeed, it has earned a reputation around the world and is flooded with tourists looking for a taste of good old-fashioned American cuisine.  Sitting alongside the Upper West Side ‘regulars,’ customers consume mac and cheese, sweet potato fries, vanilla ice-cream and more, ensuring they leave the United States of America having really sampled its cuisine.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Thatcher Gets Stamped on in Manhattan

During her days of ruling the government of Britain, Margaret Thatcher probably would never have imagined a few decades later she would be stamped on the streets of Manhattan.  But that is exactly what has happened.  Sidewalk portraits have been commission by Upper West Sider, Michael Schrage, MIT business innovation lecturer and Harvard Business Review blogger.  He commissioned artist Hani Shihada for the job as he wanted to spotlight philosophers “who represent values and ideas I care about.”  Other figures on the streets include Friedrich Hayek (Austrian economist) near West 112th Street and Thomas Sowell (American economist) on West 115th Street.

Shihada has been painting on sidewalks for over two-and-a-half decades and has developed a reputation for being the sidewalk portrait person, having done one of Ted Kennedy, Sonia Sotomayor and President Barack Obama.  According to Schrage, he doesn’t see his move as political, but more fun.  He said, "I thought it would be great fun and a wonderful way to reinforce the Upper West Side 'brand' as a place where real intellectuals with real ideas can be debated and discussed.”

So next time you’re in Manhattan, take a stroll down Broadway close to West 106th Street and see if you can walk atop of Margaret Thatcher’s face.