Tuesday, October 28, 2014

HOTEL HUGO, CRONUTS AND THE BIG APPLE'S BEAUTY

Hello friends! How are you?

Me? I am experiencing a sort of reactionary depression since returning to Sydney after what is now the greatest holiday - nay, experience - ever. I was so glum (or dramatic) yesterday, I found myself googling "Sydney is depressing" to see if anyone else had ever shared my woe. They had, but were quite often met with responses like: "Life in Australia too boring for you? Why don't you move to war-torn Syria if you want more adventure in your life." I texted my parents about my conundrum. Dad told me to go to the library, mum said to move overseas (I think this is motivated by her own desire to travel and seeking a worthy excuse to do so!)

Without solution, I didn't feel like doing much at all, blogging included. Then I figured it might help to relive the great time we had and share with you some of the things we got up to. I took something like 2,500 photos so it's probably best to dish across a number of blog posts. Over the next few days, I'll fill you in on where we stayed, what we ate, what we saw, how long the cronut queue was and so on and so forth. 

We touched down in NYC at dusk, after a very sleep deprived flight. I can't complain about that because, for me, it was a successful journey: minimal anxiety, no real turbulence or nasty surprises. Part of the reason I haven't done a lot of flying in the past three years is because my fear of flying became really crippling. Even though I have been on hundreds of planes in the past, somehow I developed this neurosis and it just snowballed to the point I would be so anxious I'd walk off a flight the minute before it was about to take off. You can imagine how much my fellow passengers liked me for that! I have made a dramatic improvement this past year so I will certainly be making up for lost time. Even though James is at work, from across town I can just make out a loud gulp from him.

As variety is the spice of life, we holed up at three different places on our visit. Actually, I was scared of booking just one place, turning up and being stuck somewhere I didn't like for the rest of the trip. Thankfully for us, everywhere we chose was pretty good. I'm going to tell you about the first place we stayed today: a stylish SoHo newcomer by the name of Hotel Hugo. As with many New York hotels, the rooms are much smaller than what we're used to in the vast land of Oz. Hugo had the smallest space of all the places we stayed but it didn't matter because the room is frankly charming and as long as you clean up after yourself, space won't be an issue for you. The rooms, like the rest of the property, is urban and chic. I particularly loved the fact that the rooms still feel very new, staff are friendly and love sharing their knowledge, and housekeeping does a bloody fantastic job (I love returning to the room and it feels exactly as pristine as the moment I checked in. A huge ask when you're probably filling the room with all your clutter, but awesome when it happens.) Hugo is cool without being intimidating for dags like me, and definitely rivals some of the more established downtown boutique hotels you're always hearing about. There's a fantastic Italian restaurant within the place that exudes some seriously suave and European vibes, and the rooftop bar is everything a Manhattan rooftop bar should be. Silly me only took pictures from the bar on instagram, but the rest of the hotel is here:


The advantage of staying at Hugo was that it was a short walk to a lot of fun places: eat streets, galleries, boutiques... We were waking up at an ungodly hour most days, so we figured we'd use the time wisely and pound the pavements. The benefit in that was seeing the city at its quietest:


You'd normally see a Cronut queue snaking around this corner by 6.30 or 7am. That's how early we were up!


We even joined the queue one day, which is a big deal for me because I have no patience and feel like queuing is something you do only when you really must, like at customs or the bank. Queuing for a pastry item makes me feel like even more of a wilfully gluttonous yuppie with mixed up priorities than I already am. I'll concede that it probably was worth the wait. Only because, like childbirth, we completely forgot about what we'd just been through and fell in love with that perfectly formed, dough-ey little bundle of joy. Seriously though, I think everyone should try a Cronut once in their lives, because it's something novel for the palate and it's delicious to boot. I'm not saying you have to fly over to NYC right this second and queue for it - wait til every other artisanal bakery is making them or buy the Dominique Ansel book (available for pre-order) and DIY.


^^GLEEFUL^^
Bitten into food pics are a bit gross. Sorry. But I thought you should see inside the cronut (that's not my hand by the way). The flavour of the day was "fall" inspired - pumpkin spice chai type of thing.

I wish I could make this post longer but my computer is running extreeeeeeeemely slow. It has taken me approximately 3 hours for these photos to upload to blogger. Madness! I'm going to need to delete some files and then I'll put together my next post tomorrow or the next day. I hope you'll stay tuned, and if you've been to NYC please please please leave a comment so we can reminisce together!

1 comment:

  1. Hey Anna, it is me again. There is a solution to your conundrum. Life is what you make of it. Yes, NYC is a beautiful city but it is not necessarily the place that you miss. As you said it is the "experience", but there is no reason why you cannot have similar experiences right at your doorstep. Do you watch the TV show "The Middle"? Watch Season 5 Episode 23 - They are at Disneyworld in Orando and Mike (husband) wants to go to Epcot, and everyone thinks it's for beer, but it's because he wants to take Frankie (wife) to Paris! But they cannot afford the real Paris. So, they go off to Epcot (fake Paris), leaving the kids to do whatever.

    My point being is you can be anywhere in the world and have similar experiences. You do not need to go to NY. It is usually the mood of being on holidays that makes it. Try new things and new places (restaurants) you have never been to.When you next go to Portland or Mt Gambia for example, stop at the small towns and use that as an experience When I lived overseas I wanted to come back to Oz and now I am back in Oz, I want to go overseas. We as humans are never content.....grass always seems greener on the other side. Look on the bright side.....you will look forward to your next holiday.Good luck

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