Ok so my wife and I just got back from our trip and had a blast. Easily could have spent another day or two if we had more cash and if wasn't so muggy. Anyway here are some highlights / notes of what we did and likes/dislikes:
- We ended up staying at a Hampton Inn on 35th street near Korea Town. Location was perfect as it was steps from the Herald Square subway station and we were always on the go. Rooms were small but paid for it all with Hilton Points and like I said, location for our needs was great and we spent hardly any time there.
- For Breakfast,Snacks and Drinks, we enjoyed the relative close locations of Madison Square Park (especially with Madison Square Eats going on), Eatlay and the Ace Hotel (stump town plus great lobby). We enjoyed all of these locales multiple times.
- Katz's Pastrami was everything it was hyped to be (the brisket was a little bland though). The aggregation of the place was a little off putting dealing with the lines at the counter, finding a table, etc. Would go back for the Pastrami though.
- The East Village may have been my favorite spot especially for people watching and overall Eats. Crif Dog, Porchetta, Big Gay Ice Cream and Noodle Bar were all great and would make a point to do them all again on our next trip.
- Biggest disappointment was Babbo without a doubt due primarily to our waiter who had an attitude of basically wishing he was somewhere else. Really ruined the evening for us given they hype, month long reservation process and overall cost for the whole experience.
- For shopping, most of the time (and my money) was spent at Epaulet (both locations). That said, we did walk down a large chunk of 5th Avenue and stopped into Uniqlo, Gant and a few other shops. Also ran into Century 21 real quick for a few pairs of socks.
- In terms of touristy stuff, I am glad to say we did nearly nothing with the exception of taking the Statin Island Ferry. We also went to the W Hotel Downtown for a few drinks over looking Ground Zero (highly recommended). That said that was it. We never saw Time Square, Central Park or anything of the like. Our families will think we are crazy.
Thanks for everyone's input. Cannot wait until the next trip!