Category Archives: Insider Interviews

7 Secret NYC Spots by Kelley Louise, A Travel Entrepreneur

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise

Kelley Louise is a travel entrepreneur, Founder of Impact Travel Alliance and passionate about storytelling and social good! Come explore her favorite 7 secret NYC spots!

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Streets

I’ve known Kelley Louise probably for as long as I’ve been in New York City. I was introduced to her through a friend in common somewhere back in 2015.

Throughout these past years, I’ve been following her work and how she’s also changing the travel industry across the globe!

A travel entrepreneur passionate about storytelling and social good, Kelley specializes in creative marketing and social media management for clients in the travel and impact space. She is also the Founder and Executive Director of Impact Travel Alliance – the world’s largest community for socially conscious travelers.

Kelley has built her career through carefully selected opportunities in the United States and abroad, including leadership roles in entrepreneurial endeavors, social good projects, marketing and media strategy.

A content creator herself, Kelley is an avid photographer and writer, and runs a travel and lifestyle blog, The Culture Collective – focused on travel & lifestyle, she showcases local gems and off-the-beaten-path adventures, and covers social good, empowerment and entrepreneurship.

A passionate connector, Kelley has an innate ability to build loyal and diverse communities.

Kelley has a bachelor’s degree in Media & Culture from The New School. She lives in Brooklyn, and you can follow her adventures on social media Kelley Travels.

Now, take a look below and see her favorite 7 secret NYC spots!


League of Kitchens

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise League of Kitchens Sweets
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise League of Kitchens Rosbeef
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise League of Kitchens Rice
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise League of Kitchens Appetizers
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise League of Kitchens
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“Hands down, my favorite experience to recommend to New Yorkers and newcomers alike. League of Kitchens is an Airbnb-style format that offers you the opportunity to take a cooking class in an immigrant’s home. Nothing beats breaking bread and learning about someone’s culture through food.”

Pretty awesome, right? These amazing cooks host you + 5 people at their home and teach everything about their traditional cuisine from back home. Plus, you are able to go home with a detailed shopping list of what to buy and the recipes, so you can also cook at your own home.

Oh, it’s also a great opportunity to meet like-minded people!

https://www.leagueofkitchens.com


Nowadays

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Nowadays

“I’ve been a part of the Mister Sunday crowd since it’s early days in Gowanus Park, and it’s been amazing watching how Eamon and Justin have grown this community. Nowadays is their permanent outpost, which opened in 2017. Go for the music, stay for the good vibes and crowd.”

And I love it too! I’ve been there a few times and it just gets better and better!

The music is fantastic, there are a few food trucks so you won’t get hungry, drinks have super reasonable prices, you can be sure you’ll have a fantastic time and even get to meet a few new friends!

They’re located in Ridgewood, Queens, but it’s an easy commute through the L train to Halsey station.

Hours:
Monday – Wednesday: 4pm – 12am
Thursday – 4pm – 2am
Friday – 4pm – Late
Saturday – 12pm – Late
Sunday – 3pm – 12am

Location: 56-06 Cooper Avenue

Other Infos:

  • Nowadays is always free except for indoors on Friday and Saturday nights, and indoors and outdoors every Sunday until 9pm.
  • The kitchen closes at 11pm Sunday through Thursday, and 1am on Friday and Saturday.
  • 2-for-1 happy hour runs from 4pm to 8pm Monday to Friday.

https://nowadays.nyc


LIC Landing

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise LIC Landing Queens

“The magic of the NYC skyline never gets old, and LIC Landing is one of my favorite places to soak in the view. Bring friends and grab a drink – take some time to enjoy the slow(er) life in NYC.”

This beautiful, brand-new waterfront park at Hunters Point South, offers a 2000 sq-ft outdoor event space and a high-quality outdoor café.

It definitely has a priceless view of the city!

Try going before sunset and you’ll be able to witness Manhattan’s lights lighting up.

After all, we all know how beautiful this experience can be! While you’re around the neighborhood, be sure to explore close by spots like The Standing Room, a great bar and comedy bar!

Hours: Every day – 7am – 10pm (Summer Hours)!

Location: Center Blvd. between 50 Avenue and 54 Avenue

http://www.liclanding.com


Beer Street

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Beer Street

Beer Street is the bar that ruined all other beer bars for me — other bars just don’t compare. Somehow, all other menus just don’t compete with Cory (the owner’s) exceptional taste and attention to detail. Pro-tip: If you’re indecisive on what you want to order, follow Beer Street’s golden rule — Trust your bartender.”

Well, to start, they were chosen as “America’s 100 Best Beer Bars by Draft Mag” for the years of 2014 and 2015.

Located in Williamsburg, they have 10 taps with amazing draft beer, plus great wine, cider and other drinks.

Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 5pm – 1am
Friday: 5pm – 2am
Saturday & Sunday: 12pm – 2am

Location: 413 Graham Avenue

https://www.beerstreetny.com


Furnish Green

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Furnish Green Beach Chair
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Furnish Green Vintage Phone
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Furnish Green
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Furnish Green Orange Chair
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“From the conventional to the quirky, Furnish Green has it all. My favorite vintage furniture store in the city, Furnish Green is great for finding anything from a well-designed dresser for your bedroom to a vintage carousel house (the latter of which I have).”

These guys are vintage experts! Every week you can expect 5-15 new items in the store. As they say, their philosophy is:

“To provide creative local consumers with unique, well-made, long-lasting and reasonably priced pieces of furniture.”

Pretty cool right!? Plus, in a city where most people buy at the same stores, you’ll be sure to have different items decorating your beautiful home!

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 10am – 8pm
Saturday: 10am – 6pm

Location: 1261 Broadway, Suite 309

http://furnishgreen.com


Bistro Petit

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Oysters
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Eggs
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Brussels
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Pasta
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Risotto
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Pan
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Fries
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Dish
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Petit Bistro Chicken
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“This is a big statement, but I stand by it: Bistro Petit is the best restaurant I’ve ever been to. It’s a charming little spot – only fitting about a dozen or so people into the entire space – and you can’t help but to fall in love. The cuisine is French/Korean fusion, and BYOB. For the perfect date night, bring a bottle of red, and sit on the bar stools for a view of the kitchen and sit side by side with your date.”

The owner and chef, Sung Park, is truly an artist, in the kitchen. His bold and innovative cooking style is surely what makes the difference for his guests, and obviously, what makes them come back.

Located in South Williamsburg, they explain that they only use only use the freshest seasonal ingredients, local produce, natural organics, grass fed beef, local fish, and free-range chicken.

Plus, for vegetarians, they have great options, so don’t worry about it! You can go and be sure to have a great time!

Hours:
Wednesday – Saturday: 6pm – 12am
Sunday: 6pm – 11pm

Location: 774 Driggs Avenue

http://www.bistropetit.com


Erie Basin

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kelley Louise Erie Basin Jewelry Antiques

“An exceptionally well-curated collection of jewelry (both vintage and new pieces that were crafted using antique stones), pretty much everything you see at Erie Basin is one of a kind. Even if you’re not ready to invest in your next piece of fine jewelry, they’re worth the follow on Instagram for some daydreaming.”

Launched in 2006, the store is located in the far end of Brooklyn in a neighborhood we adore called Red Hook! They are “specialized in antique and vintage jewelry, but also have a selection of furniture, art, and objects dating from the 18th to mid 20th century.”

The brand is, up to date, basically a one-man show, and was founded by Russell Whitmore. An avid collector and antique lover, Whitmore launched in 2014 a fantastic collection around antique gemstones he has collected and many are exclusive, one-of-a-kind pieces.

Hours: Wednesday – Saturday: 12pm – 6pm

Location: 388 Van Brunt Street

http://eriebasin.com


Thank you to my dearest friend, Kelley Louise, for these truly amazing 7 secret NYC spots! I loved them all and will surely visit the ones I haven’t been to yet!

You should too, after all, exploring New York, through the eyes of true New Yorkers, is definitely the best way to do it!


Photo Credits: Courtesy of Tutti del Monte, Clay Williams for The James Beard Foundation and all the venues.

Fê is our Founder & CEO! She’s Brazilian (Yup! Not a New Yorker!), but her indescribable passion and curiosity for NY makes her a New Yorker by heart. Fê worked in companies like Kimberly Clark, Quintessentially, Vogue Brazil and Iguatemi Group, and after 12 years of working for these fantastic companies, she decided to go solo and move to NYC!
She lives in Brooklyn since April of ’15 and has been tirelessly working on BTSNYC, working with huge companies on corporate projects, practicing her Arhatic Yoga meditations, finding time for gym and friends! Phiuf!

Top 8 Spots In NYC By Andrew Chen, An Experience Curator

Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project TriBeCa

This week we talked to the handsome Andrew Chen from My Inspire Project. He told us a little about his fantastic career, his adventures across the globe and, of course, his top 8 spots in NYC!

Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Williamsburg
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project East Hamptons
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Arlo Hotel
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project TriBeCa
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Riverside
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Andrew Y. Chen was born in Taipei, Taiwan. He has lived and studied in major international cities between Taipei, Shanghai, Paris, London, before moving to New York.

He has built a solid background in luxury and fashion throughout his career in LVMH, Bergdorf Goodman, Gilt Groupe and Issey Miyake before he founded “My Inspire Project”, a platform specialized in Experiential Marketing, Digital Strategy and Content Generation, in February 2017.

Known as the trendsetter, living expert and unique character among his circles, Andrew started sharing his discovery across fashion, art, entertainment, design, travel, hospitality and real estate categories on his platform and has established a network and community of global elites, celebrities, press/editors, travel enthusiast and creative minds across North America, Asia and Western Europe.

He also partners with renowned organizations and businesses to curate special events and create one-of-a-kind experience throughout exclusive venues in the world. He believes Authenticity, Exclusivity and Individuality are the core values of the new luxurious experience.

This summer, Andrew and his team are preparing to launch their online lifestyle channel and take their story and journey into the next level.

That said, take a look below and see his Top 8 Spots in NYC:


Favorite Restaurants: La Mercerie and Agern

Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Le Mercerie Bakery
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Le Mercerie
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Le Mercerie Details
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Le Mercerie Appetizer
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Le Mercerie Salad
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Le Mercerie Flowers
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La Mercerie is my favorite new hotspot by Chef Marie-Aude Rose, the wife of renown chef and my dear friend, Daniel Rose from Spring & Le Coucou. It is a perfect place with incredible and curated decor – inside the beautiful new Roman & Williams Guild, also my favorite furniture store – that brings French cuisine into an everyday experience. I love the buckwheat crepe and the amazing dessert selections there.”

Yes, this place is the talk of the town! All foodies, influencers, food connoisseurs, travel experts and curious folks are stopping by to check the place out!

Besides the restaurant, if you’re passing by for a quick bit or you’re in a rush, they have a grab-and-go counter with delicious pastries and coffee!

Hours:
Open every day!
Breakfast Menu: 9am – 12pm
All Day Menu: 12pm – 10pm

Location: 53 Howard Street

www.lamerceriecafe.com


Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern Beet
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern Appetizer
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern Salad
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern Prepping
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project AgernPotato Dip
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern Entree
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern Pork
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern Dessert
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Agern Small Room
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Agern is a Michelin starred delight hidden in the business Grand Central Terminal. It is quite an experience just to discover this beautiful place for the first time visitor. It is by far my favorite Nordic cuisine in town and I loved their focus on pairing the season driven menu with local American wine.”

We love it too! Our experience there has been certainly priceless. Service is fantastic, food is to-die-for and ambiance is very comforting and dim lighting.

The price is a bit high, but worth every dollar, especially if you’re looking for a special night out with your loved one or with friends & family.

Hours:
Lunch: Monday – Friday: 11:30am – 2:30pm
Dinner: Monday – Saturday: 5:30pm – 10pm
Closed Sundays

Location: 89 East 42nd Street

http://agernrestaurant.com


Favorite Bars: The UES and The Office

Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project The UES

The UES is a new speakeasy bar behind the ice cream shop storage, you would need the right dress code and people in order to enter and enjoy the swanky cocktails. The concept is unique for the uptight neighborhood. Since we live in the area, this is our new go-to spot for a chic but casual night.”

Yes, we are lovers of all speakeasies around the city and this is a place you should certainly visit! Oh yes, and the dress code! They ask to:

“Kindly refrain from wearing t-shirts, collarless shirts, torn or baggy jeans, flip flops, sandals, tennis shoes or athletic wear of any kind.”

Hours: Storage open Monday – Saturday: 5pm

Location: 1707 2nd Avenue

www.theuesnyc.com


Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project The Office Mandarine Oriental NYC Bar
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project The Office Mandarine Oriental NYC Drinks
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project The Office Mandarine Oriental NYC
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The Office is probably the most fabulous and luxurious speakeasy bar in NYC, and possibly around the world. Inside the Mandarin Oriental at Time Warner Center, this reservation only bar is only accessible through a hidden passageway. It is my favorite place to take my special guests, celebs and visitors for meetings and drinks. Their truffle cocktail and truffle pairing menu is surely a different level.”

New York is certainly the home of some of the most luxurious spots on Earth. If you’re into art, they feature some amazing collectors’ art and artefacts.

In addition, if you enjoy learning and tasting spirits, they have an “extinction” collection of some of the rarest spirits in the world! So, it’ would be obvious to say that their signature cocktail list is fantastic, right!?

Hours:
Sunday – Wednesday: 5:30pm – 11:30pm
Thursday – Saturday: 5:30pm – 12:30am

Location: 80 Columbus Circle at 60th Street

www.mandarinoriental.com


Favorite Club: Jia Lounge

Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Jia Lounge

“I would go to LES, not for the vibrant bar scene, but the beautiful 1930’s Shanghai-themed lounge club, Jia Lounge. Hidden in the back of Rivington Hotel, Jia Lounge is a new nightlife experience in New York City with curate cocktail, music and selective crowd. It has the best deep house night in town and caters to the many tastemakers and international jetsetters in the city.”

This place is really something! Besides what Andrew mentioned about cocktails, music and a great crowd…the décor is certainly a highlight.

Everything was meticulously cared for and details are everywhere to be noticed! Plus, if you love being part of the super late-night New York Scene, this is the place for you! It’s open until 4am!

Hours: Tuesday – Saturday: 11pm – 4pm

Location: 105 Rivington Street

www.hotelonrivington.com


Favorite Gallery: David Lewis Gallery

Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project David Lewis Gallery

David Lewis Gallery, located in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, is one of my favorite contemporary art galleries in NYC that presents most promising upcoming artists and their works. Their unique vision and direction has drawn attention from major international art collectors, art fairs and museums including Whitney Museum in New York and Tate Modern in London.”

If you love art, but don’t really enjoy going alone, since your not necessarily a super savvy about it, let our fantastic art expert lead the way!

After all, there is nothing like having a specialist with you!

Hours: Wednesday – Sunday: 11am – 6pm

Location: 88 Eldridge Street

http://davidlewisgallery.com


Favorite Store: The Apartment by The Line

Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project The Apartment by The Line
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project The Apartment by The Line Home
Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project The Apartment by The Line Fashion
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When the retail industry is upside down, the well-curated boutique The Apartment by The Line, offers a new way of shopping. Hiding in the loft space in SoHo, The Apartment offers a full lifestyle selection that you could enjoy and shop from. It constantly brings in different designers and objects for the customers to learn and explore.”

They offer everything from fashion and home, to beauty. So, expect to find some of the most amazing brands like Kiki de Montparnasse, Lemaire, Eres, Marni, Le Labo, The Nue, Rodin Olio Lusso, Esker, and even Taschen Books, Atelier De Troupe lamps, Harlow Henry throws and Skagerak furnishing.

Hours:
Monday – Saturday: 11am – 7pm
Sunday: 12pm – 5pm

Location: 76 Greene Street, 3rd Floor

https://theline.com


Favorite Park: Fort Tyron Park

Curiosities Insider Interviews Andrew Chen My Inspire Project Fort Tyron Park

Fort Tyron Park is indeed quite a ride from the heart of Manhattan, but it would never disappoint you. Once you arrive at the Remnants of Billings Estate and the massively arched structure known as the Billings Arcade, you feel like you are in Europe already. This park is surely one of the city’s most beautiful outdoor pieces of art.”

We love it too! Previously owned by no one less than John D. Rockefeller, Jr., in the year of 1931, he gifted the property to the City of New York. What a gift, right?

Construction started and 4 years later, in 1935, Rockefeller and Robert Moses – the “master builder” of mid-20th century, officialized the park as a public space for everyone to be able to visit! Lucky us!

Location: Riverside Drive to Broadway, W 192 Street to Dyckman Street

https://www.nycgovparks.org


Thank you,  Andrew, for this fantastic interview and sharing all these true NY gems!

If you are coming to New York, be sure to explore the other amazing Insider Interviews. For any type of corporate assistance, contact our experts!


Photo Credits: Courtesy of Andrew Chen, @thirdness, @a_gaut, @robertwright, @evansungnyc and the venues.

Jason Naylor: 7 Best NYC Secret Spots By A Multitalented Artist

Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Live Life Colorfully

We interviewed the multitalented artist, Jason Naylor, and learned about his journey, his upcoming projects and also his 7 best NYC secret spots! Check it all out below!

Today we bring you a fantastic interview with Jason Naylor! We’re sure many of you are already huge fans – as we are – and, have seen his work throughout New York City.

But, did you know that Jason is a multitalented artist? He is not only the Creative Director at his design company, but also a brand consultant, an artist, a designer and also, an illustrator. Phiuf!

He told us a bit about his journey:

“Well, I was born in Salt Lake City, Utah. My mother is an artist, and so I spent my youth making art and entering art contests.

Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Ice Cream

I always did well in art class and that evolved into going to Design School and studying Communication & Graphic Design. This sort of led to the designs I now use in my art, which are very typographic and design heavy.

My work ranges from graphic designs and paintings as well as illustration, to video and digital graphics. I currently am in a very colorful kick and love holographic colors and rich blacks.

I just finished a collaboration with COACH, where I used their logo to create a massive, colorful LOVE mural. The bright colors and blacks came together nicely to shape that piece, and the colors really fortify the message of love.

What better to explain love in a piece of art than bright colors, right?

In addition, I have a pretty cool series of projects coming up this spring, where I’ll work with schools to develop messages of empowerment and then paint the messages as murals on the walls of the playgrounds.

This will start to come together hopefully in the next few weeks, so I’m pretty stoked on that!”

Check out his breathtaking work on his website: http://jasonnaylorcreative.com

Now, take a look at his 7 best NYC secret spots:


Best unexpected date spot – LGA Airport

“Watching the planes land at LGA. Ok, if you don’t know about this, its SPECTACULAR.

Across the street from the Enterprise car rental at LGA, there’s a small park that overlooks both the freeway and the runway… and it’s the closest place you can get to the planes landing.

It’s literally like 100ft from where they land, and you can sit on the bench and watch / listen to the planes come in. It’s riveting. Great date spot too!”


Best hotdog – Anchored Inn

Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Anchored Inn

The Anchored Inn is in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Little divey metal bar with a great kitchen. Amazing hotdog – a must try. Get the cheese fries too, you won’t be bummed.”

Their menu serves Mexican-American food, the décor is pretty cool, they have a few pool tables (FYI, we LOVE playing pool) and pinball machines.

As they say, it’s “a place to get fed and drunk”.

Who’s in!?

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 12pm – 4am
Saturday & Sunday: 11 am – 4 am

Location: 54 Waterbury Street

www.theanchoredinn.com


Best inspiring lunch – Carthage Must Be Destroyed

Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Carthage Must Be Destroyed Communal Steading by HeyDavina
Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Carthage Must Be Destroyed Inside
Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Carthage Must Be Destroyed Full Table by SheraStClair
Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Carthage Must Be Destroyed Fruits
Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Carthage Must Be Destroyed Details
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“I am not even going to say anything about Carthage Must Be Destroyed. You just have to go with at most one other person, or maybe just by yourself, and have lunch. It will change your perspective on the word beautiful.

This place doesn’t have a street sign, so pay attention when you’re looking for it. It’s really something! From the outside you’d never expect to see what’s inside.

As Jason said, we’ll let you go and experience it yourself!

Hours: Open 7 days a week and holidays: 9am – 4pm

Location: 222 Bogart Street

http://carthagemustbedestroyed.com


Best place to people watch – SoHo Park

“This is an obvious one, but this a place I like to go to sit and get fashion inspiration. Good place to sit and hang and soak in the beautiful people of SoHo.”

We have to agree! SoHo is one of the best neighborhood in New York City to people watch. You’ll be able to experience every style in only one place.

So, grab your coffee, sit back and enjoy!

Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 12pm – 10:30pm
Friday & Saturday: 12pm – 11pm
Sunday: 12pm – 9:30pm

Location: 62 Prince Street


Best dinner – Beco Bar

Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Beco Bar

“I always order the Brazilian Steak at Beco, in Greenpoint. Bring cash, for it’s cash-only. Put plenty of salt on your meat and be sure to order their famous Pão de Queijo too!”

We’ve written about them and posted about Beco countless times, and our Founder, , is also literally always there.

They have been chosen by locals as one of the neighborhood’s favorite to-go spots and it can get quite busy! Besides the fantastic food and specialty Brazilian cocktail drinks – like the Caipirinha and the Batida de Coco, they still have awesome live music performances.

One of our favorites bands is Regional de Nova York that plays the traditional Brazilian “Chorinho” music. This happens every other Sunday afternoon!

Hours:
Monday – Friday 8am – 12am
Saturday 10am – 12am
Sunday 10am – 11pm

Location: 45 Richardson Street

www.becobar.com


Best secret place to watch NYC fireworks – Parking lot at Western Beef

“At the edge of Ridgewood there’s a grocery wholesaler called Western Beef. The parking lot sits on a hill and has a view of the entire city.

You can see ALL the fireworks that happen just by parking in the parking lot and hanging by the fence. It’s not the closest view, but you can see them all, as well as the NYC skyline, and it’s pretty quiet.”

Location: 47-05 Metropolitan Avenue


Best Bar – Boobie Trap

Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Boobie Trap Nicole Dissier Bedford Bowery
Photo Credit: Nicole Dissier for Bedford + Bowery

“My friend owns this bar called Boobie Trap, and I designed a lot of the stuff in the place including the logo, which has boobs!!! You can also sit in my chair which is covered in art!!!”

Yes, this place is quite something!

Be sure to observe the details around the bar…you’ll certainly have a great time uncovering each one of them!

Have fun!

Hours:
Monday – Saturday: 12pm – 4am
Sunday: 12pm – 12am

Location: 308 Bleecker Street

www.boobietrapbrooklyn.com


We also uncovered a few other curiosities about Jason:

Read below to get deeper into Jason’s journey. He shared more about his murals, his inspirations, what he enjoys working on the most, where we can find his murals around New York, which are his favorite artists and still, his passion with tattoos!

***

How did you start working with painting murals and what was the first one you did?

“The first mural I did was in 2013 – a producer friend called me in panic with an event for Microsoft at SXSW and their graphics for the event fell through.

She asked if I could get graphics up on the wall for the space as I had done that a lot before for brands – you know, design graphics to be printed on vinyl and wrapped on to walls.

But there was no time to have them printed so I offered to paint a mural on the wall during the event. I assumed it couldn’t be that hard? Get the right supplies and get to work?

So, I did, and it was a huge success, and they brought be back the next year to do it again! Meanwhile, I was hooked on large scale. Never looked back.”

Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Studio

What are your inspirations to create these fantastic art works? Does your hometown of Salt Lake City have a part in it?

“Well, I’m inspired by anything uplifting. I like a ‘feel good’ vibe, and I like to brighten things with color and positivity. So quotes, motivational speaking, self help… these things inspire me, as well as anything colorful.

My upbringing I’m sure plays a big part, but that is a very long story, LOL. Suffice it say that I am happy about where I came from and happy about where I am now, and I feel inspired by anything that is optimistic or positive.”

You are gifted with so many expertise, from doodles, logos, typography, design, etc…what do you most enjoy doing?

“First of all, thank you! I honestly enjoy the range of things I do. The variety enables me to put all my love into each project, as it keeps things fresh and never feeling tiresome or old.

I think diversity in mediums and tools and projects keeps me on my toes, as well.”

Where can people find your murals around New York?

“On 16th Street with 6th Avenue, 60th Street with 2nd Avenye, Houston with 1st – 2nd  Avenues (in the park), Orchard & Houston (the ice cream shop gate), Bowery & Hester, Suffolk & Delancey,  (collaboration with HekTad).

Also, in Queens, on Queens Blvd with 46th Street and in Brooklyn, across from Kings Plaza.”

Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Live Life Colorfully
Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor All You Need Is Love
Curiosities Insider Interviews Jason Naylor Love Comes In Every Color
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This is tough, but what are some of your favorites works?

“Ohhh. Well. I love Tristan Eaton murals. Insanely cool and well planned. I love the photography of Nick Knight. I love Kaws, so smart and James Jean, his magical illustrations make me swoon.”

How about your tattoos? Are they all your drawings? If not, how do you choose the tattoo artist to be part how these drawing come to life?

“The only tattoo that I drew is the first one. I drew and re drew it 100 times before getting it tattooed.

Now, I’ve learned that you have to enable the tattoo artist some creative liberty, if you want a good tattoo. So, I try to selects artists based on their portfolio, style etc…and talk it through with them.

They know how your ideas will come out on the 3D surface of your body. Sometimes flat art doesn’t translate, and its best to let the artist do his/her thing!”


Jason, we had a great time interviewing you and learning more about your journey, your work, your 7 best NYC secret spots and all the upcoming exciting news!

Keep up this fantastic work and continue leaving your mark throughout our beloved New York City!

If you want to know who else is talking about Jason Naylor, read this interview with the Foodie Influencer, Cheryl Wat. And still, if you’re into street art, check out this tour around Bushwick and last, for the curious ones out there, take a look at a few more city secrets.

 

Video Credits: FreshNewYorkers and Test Truck by NotBeAfraid2Fail
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Nicole Dissier for Bedford + Bowery, HeyDavina, SheraStClair and all venues

The NYC Rock’n’Roll World Of The Wanderlust Girls

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Pop Art

Come explore the NYC rock’n’roll world of Emily and Abigail, creators of Wanderlust Girls! Enjoy their 9 best behind the scenes spots in New York City!

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Manhattan Bridge

Emily and Abigail met in middle school many eons ago (18 years to be exact), in a small town just outside of Boston.

They grew up sharing a love for fashion, rock’n’roll and adventure. These shared interested morphed into a blog, WanderLust Girls back in 2010, which has since grown into the fashion, lifestyle, travel brand they run today.

The girls recently expanded their business down in Nashville, which you will be seeing more of on their social media soon.

If they are not in Nashville hanging with rock stars or repping their black clad closets on the New York City streets, they are likely in the air jetting to a new location for their next travel piece.

Take a look below to see their 9 best behind the scenes spots in New York City:


I NEED MORE

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls I Need More Jimmy Webb
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls I Need More Storefront
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls I Need More Inside
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I NEED MORE is a clothing store with all the spikes and studs you can dream of. (Yes, we dream about spikes and studs.) The owner, Jimmy Webb is a rock’n’roll legend in the city who we are lucky enough to call a friend. Every piece in the shop is unique, bold, and badass.”

As they say, this is literally a “A Rock’N’Roll clothing store for everybody”! The store is true a labor of love and dedication. You’ll certainly love it all: from the goo goo muck chandelier to the hand pained zebra stripe dressing rooms and painting on the walls!

They are a multi-label store in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, and always have big names coming by! A few famous friends in their list are: the one and only Ewan McGregor, Slash, Alice Cooper and Duff McKagan!

Pass by to see what they are up to!

Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 12pm – 8pm
Friday & Saturday: 12pm – 9pm
Sunday: 1pm – 7pm

Location: 75A Orchard Street

http://ixneedxmore.com


Duff’s Brooklyn

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Duffs Brooklyn

“If you ever wanted to sit in an electric chair, look no further! Duff’s Brooklyn has it’s very own, as well as some of the creepiest, yet amazing decor we’ve ever seen. Enjoy some metal music and don’t forget to spin the wheel to win various prizes. Keep spinning until you get the Jesus juice.”

Founded in 1999 back in the neighborhood of Hell’s Kitchen, in Manhattan, this metal mecca finally moved into Brooklyn in 2004 and is the place to go if you a heavy metal lover. If you’re not part of this lifestyle, it’s still a fantastic place to go explore and broaden your horizons.

The spot, now located in South Williamsburg, is certainly a true metal place. Names like Pantera, Iron Maiden, Kerry King of Slayer, Exodus, Machine Head, The Sword, and many others have visited it.

Let’s rock!

Hours: Monday – Sunday: 6pm – 4am

Location: 168 Marcy Avenue

www.duffsbrooklyn.com/home.shtml


Jane Motorcycles

Jane Motorcycles is our favorite place to go scope for beautiful bearded motorcycle riding men… I mean they have great coffee, that’s why we go. This beautifully curated moto gear shop surrounds the actually really great coffee shop. It’s amazing in the nice weather when they open the garage style door and you can enjoy your latté will gazing at all the motorcycles lined up outside.”

This is the ultimate NYC’s custom motorcycles, apparel, gear, art, books, and espresso shop, and we love it too! Alexander DiMattio and Adam Kallen started Jane with the objective of putting a new take on a motorcycle shop. And…they did it flawlessly!

These guys are from Brooklyn and everything in their store translates the vibe of the neighborhood and the lifestyle they personally enjoy.

They literally created this store out of scratch – actually it’s not their original location, since they were forced to move out of their other place. But, a blessing in disguise, for sure. At this spot, they were able to transform into reality all their dreams of what their store should looks like, such as the huge coffee counter and the garage door roll-up.

We are also huge coffee lovers, and their coffee partner is delicious, with ethically source coffee from all over the world – totally up our alley, since we work with and support sustainable traveling!

Definitely a must-go spot!

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 7am – 7pm
Saturday: 8am – 7pm
Sunday: 9am – 7pm

Location: 396 Wythe Avenue

https://janemotorcycles.com


Pinks

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Pinks Guests Bar
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Pinks Bar
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Pinks Private Room
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Pinks Band
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Pinks Nachos
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Pinks Tacos
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Pinks a fun hot rod style bar with motorcycle chain chandeliers and random car parts throughout the watering hole. Make sure you stop by for rock n’ roll bingo. Lots of fun prizes and great tunes!”

This is also a place we enjoy a lot!

Pink, in the Lower East Side, is a great spot to go for drinks, good music, a great crowd and even to celebrate your birthday.

They have a pretty cool private room in the back, if you prefer having your guests all together and more comfortable.

As they explain: “Pinks is what happens when a musician & a motorcycle enthusiast come together & build a bar around their love of Kustom Kulture.”

Hours:
Monday – Wednesday: 5pm – 2am
Thursday – Friday: 5pm – 4am
Saturday: 12pm – 4am
Sunday: 12pm – 2am

Location: 242 East 10th Street

http://pinks.nyc


Grit N Glory

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Grit N Glory

Grit N Glory is a rock’n’roll one-stop-shop, located in the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Whether you are looking for a shirt with a satanic cat on it, some new ink (they have their own tattoo shop) or a tea cup for your vodka, they have it!”

The store offers a full collection for men, women and even a collection for the cool kids, besides accessories and housewares!

You’ll also be able to see some pretty crazy shots signed by Mark Weiss where he featured Alice Cooper, Boy George, Metallica, Guns’N’Roses, Mick Jagger and Ozzy in the 1980’s.

Hours: Daily from 12pm – 8pm

Location: 186 Orchard Street

www.gritnglory.com


Three of Cups

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Three of Cups Live Performance
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Three of Cups Kiss
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Three of Cups Neon
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Three of Cups, if you’re are in the mood for a delicious Italian meal and some light death metal you are in the right spot. On street level Three of Cups is a beautiful restaurant with drool-worthy pizzas and pasta dishes. Meanwhile, the basement has pretty heavy metal music playing, leopard print poles, and a badass crowd.”

Who doesn’t love Italian food made from these old family recipes and pizzas, right?

Located in the East Village, Three of Cups was founded back in 1992 and they really know the essence in making good pizza.

If you’re not that into pizza – if this even exists, lol – their food menu comes from recipes from the Southern Italian regions like Sicily, Naples and Bari.

And still, if you’re into pizza and pasta but keep track of all the calories you eat, don’t worry…they have delicious gluten-free options on the menu.

Hours:
Happy Hour EVERYDAY!!
Restaurant Bar: 5pm – 8pm
Lounge: 7pm – 9pm
Saturday & Sunday Brunch w/ 2 hour Bottomless – 11am – 5pm

Location: 83 1st Avenue

www.threeofcupsnyc.com


Gutter Bar

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls The Gutter
Our Founder, Fê, with her friends at The Gutter, in Williamsburg.

Gutter Bar Brooklyn, has great cheap whiskey and a retro style bowling alley in the back. Equipped with 8 lanes to show off your skills. They also have a pool table. It’s a really great place to go with a group of friends on a cold winter day.”

We were soooo excited to see the Gutter Bar as part of Emily’s and Abigail’s list! This is a spot that we go a lot to and always have a great time!

Now, don’t expect a super fancy bowling alley because, as the girls mentioned, it’s a retro style one. But, then again, who need fancy to have fun, right?

They have a full bar, a pool table (be sure to place your Quarter on the table to get in line) and the bowling alley. Oh! And after passing by the restrooms, you’ll see another room! Walk in! They have a stage with live music and a dance floor!

It can be a while – a few hours – until you play, so you can arrive early, or just get your number and enjoy the bar until your time comes.

Hours Williamsburg:
Monday – Thursday: 5pm – 4am
Friday: 2pm – 4am
Saturday & Sunday: 12pm – 4am

Hours Long Island City:
Monday – Thursday: 5pm – 2am
Friday: 2pm – 2am
Saturday & Sunday: 12pm – 2am

Locations:
200 North 14th Street, Williamsburg
10-22 46th Avenue, Long Island City

www.thegutterbrooklyn.com/williamsburg


Enchantments

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Enchantment Store

Enchantments is the oldest occult store in NYC. This space is filled with wonderfully witchy items from candles to bring love into your life, herbs and oils to rid yourself of ex boyfriends, books like ‘The Witches Bible’ and of course, tarot cards. Literally all you could ever need.”

The store is located in the East Village and opened back in 1982! Their mission is: Our mission is to help people empower themselves, heal and grow through spiritual practice. We believe in the principle “harm none,” and do not endorse items that hurt others.

Their Apothecary has over 100 recipes and can be mixed and matched according to what you are looking for.

Their incenses, oils, baths and other products are hand-made. They still have numerous other products like hand-carved candles, holders, statues, books, jewelry, talismans, cards and so many other super cool magical tools!

Be sure to go with time, since you’ll certainly be drawn to many different products!

Hours:
Wednesday – Monday: 1pm – 8:45pm
Closed Tuesday

Location: 424 East 9th Street

www.enchantmentsincnyc.com


Obscura Antiques

Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Obscura Antiques Doll
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Obscura Antiques Animal Skulls
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Obscura Antiques Decoration
Curiosities Insider Interviews Wanderlust Girls Obscura Antiques Skull
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Obscura Antiques, a small antique and oddities shop located in the East Village. We once got a bat skeleton there! So, if you’re in the market for bones, taxidermy, or even a Romanian AK-47 Bayonet, you hit the jackpot! Give yourself at least an hour to look through everything. You’ll find some gems for sure.”

Looking through these old antiques and oddities is certainly a journey into the past and can be quite amusing if you let your mind fly.

They are the oldest shop in this category in NYC and they ‘carry medical, scientific, natural history, fraternal, circus/sideshow, and all things unusual’.

Plus, as they mentioned, we also believe it’s a great place to find a unique gift. Well, it will certainly be a gift your loved one will remember forever!

Enjoy your exploration!

Hours:
Monday – Saturday: 12pm – 8pm
Sunday: 12pm – 7pm

Location: 207 Avenue A

http://www.obscuraantiques.com


Thank you Emily and Abigail, for sharing with us your 9 best behind the scenes spots in New York City!

If you enjoy rock’n’roll, you will also enjoy Saint Vitus Bar in Greenpoint. They’ve already hosted small, unexpected gigs with Nirvana!

Also, take a look at this interview with Andre Vasconcellos, one of the most amazing NY-based guitarists we know!

 

Photo Credits: Courtesy of all the venues

New York Through The Eyes of the Tech Entrepreneur: Graham Mann

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann by P_Nali

New York-based Tech Entrepreneur, Graham Mann, shared with us his 7 top tips in New York! Check out where the cool tech crowd hangs out!

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann by P_Nali

Graham Mann is cofounder of Lean Systems, a logistics startup with offices in New York and Montreal, a graduate of Techstars NYC, and recipient of the 2017 Startup Canada Young Entrepreneur award. He grew up in Nova Scotia, Canada, and did his undergrad degree in engineering at McGill University in Montreal.

He still leads the non-profit organization he founded, called Sail All, which provides sailing opportunities for youth in his home province of Nova Scotia, and mentors new entrepreneurs whenever he can, particularly for Founder Institute Montreal and Startup Weekend.

In his spare time you can usually find him on or near the water, sailing, windsurfing, or attempting surfing and kiteboarding, or out taking photos.

He writes regularly on his blog, and just launched a podcast called Starting Stories, where he interviews entrepreneurs, creatives, and more to talk about how they got started, and the habits and tools that led to their success.

Take a look at his 7 top tips in New York:


For Pizza: Lucali

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Lucali Pizza
Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Lucali Close Up
Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Lucali Margherita
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“I discovered Lucali through a cousin living nearby, and it’s known to locals for good reason: their pizza is delicious. They only serve pizza and calzones, and have different ingredients every day. It’s also BYOB – go to Henry Street Wine and Liquors down the street for some super-friendly advice on which wines to get. Go early as there’s no reservations, and it’s cash only.”

Their first and only location in New York is Carroll Gardens, in Brooklyn. The restaurant is specialized in pizzas and calzones, but also offers appetizer salads and fresh sides. Their thin-crusted pizzas and home-made sauces are loved not only by their neighbors, but by guests that come from all over NYC. Hence, the house is always full, as Graham mentioned above.

If you’re into craft draft and bottled beers, they have a good selection, as well as a wine menu with low production Italian wines.

Who’s the mind behind this all? The pizzaiolo Mark Iacono and he also has a location in Miami.

Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 5pm – 12am
Friday – Sunday: 1pm – 12am

Location: 575 Henry Street

www.lucali.com


For Cocktails: Brooklyn Social Bar

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Brooklyn Social Club

“After pizza and wine at Lucali, you can stop by Brooklyn Social Bar on your way back to the subway. The atmosphere is great, cocktails are delicious, and the bartenders are super friendly. Go on an off-night and get to know the bartenders.”

Located in Carroll Gardens, this spot was the former Society Riposto, a private member’s Sicilian Club. This group started back in the early 1900’s, and only in 1967 they actually rented out this spot.

They had private gatherings and parties led by Isidoro Parisi and his group of Italian friends.

After the memberships slowly dissolving throughout the years, 3 30-year old Brooklyn residents decided to purchase and renovate the place.

Many of the decorations are still the original ones with amazing, vintage pictures and ornaments, allowing it to keep its original vibe.

It’s surely a place that will take you back to the past, as in you entered another place on Earth.

Hours:
Sunday – Thursday: 5pm – 2am
Friday – Saturday: 5pm – 4am

Location: 335 Smith Street

http://brooklynsocialbar.com


For Those Interested In Travel: Voyager HQ

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Voyager HQ

“For anyone interested in, working in, or looking for a job in travel, you should be hanging out at Voyager HQ. It’s where we work in New York, the staff are super friendly, and they hold lots of great events. If you’re interested in travel, you should be there.”

We have to agree! We love everything that VoyagerHQ does and we are there quite often!

The place is great and the crowd is perfect for networking. They say they are “A Club for Travel Innovators”, so if this at all calls your attention, you should pass by.

In addition, they host some pretty cool events from breakfasts with industry professionals, to pitch nights with fantastic start-ups urging to change the world!

Location: 137 West 25th Street

www.voyagerhq.com


To Escape the City (sort of): Roosevelt Island

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Roosevelt Island Mc Gutty
Photo Credit: Mc_Gutty

“One of my college roommates grew up here, and I’ve spent quite a bit of time in Roosevelt Island. It’s right next to Manhattan, yet you’d never know it when you’re there, given how peaceful and quiet it is. Take the tram or subway there, go for a run, grab a coffee, or check out the beautiful new Cornell Tech campus.”

Yup, Roosevelt Island is a “life apart”, even though it’s nestled in the middle of the East River.

It’s a great place to go explore during the weekends!

If you have to pick a way to get there, we do recommend the tram. The journey will start with a spectacular view of Manhattan Island, Queens and the East River.

You’ll most certainly capture breathtaking Instagrammable shots!

The island has only one main street, called Main Street, ha, and a few additional side roads! But you can always walk towards the water through the path – that’s there the best views are.

If you’re the adventurous type, be sure to explore the Smallpox Hospital, also known as the Renwick Smallpox Hospital, in the Southern tip of the island.


Place to Take a Canadian: New York Islanders game

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann New York Islanders Hockey

“For Canadians, there’s no better way to spend an evening than at a hockey game, but given how popular it is in Canada, you’re lucky to get seats for a reasonable price. Take them to an Islanders game and they’ll love it, and for bonus points take them when they’re playing their favorite team.”

Canadians do love Hockey, but his is literally an activity for anyone that enjoys sports.

Moreover, if you or your friends have never been to a hockey game, we have to agreed you HAVE TO go to one.

Live hockey is definitely a thrilling experience and it’ll be a night of fun!

https://www.nhl.com/islanders 


For Whisky: Caledonia Bar

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Caledonia Bar
Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Caledonia Bar Menu
Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Caledonia Bar Area
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“I got more of a taste for scotch after spending two weeks traveling Scotland last spring, and Caledonia Bar has the best selection I’ve found in New York. The atmosphere is as good as the whisky selection, and it’s a great place to take a date.”

Caledonia Bar has two locations in Manhattan. One is at the Upper East Side and the other at the Upper West Side, of Manhattan.

They have a great drink list, a few food options that vary a bit in each location and, a fantastic list of House Rules!

Wanna know some of them?

  • Five percent off for Tinder dates, you need to prove it by showing us your initial awkward messages
  • No credit card minimum, but if you keep swiping your card all night you are wasting paper, killing trees and in the long run killing all of humanity you selfish bastard. Start a Tab!
  • Gentlemen, this is a lady friendly bar, if it’s clear that they are not interested in you then stop talking to them. Obviously this rule does not apply to me.

Ha! So fun! Anyway, enjoy your scotch night out!

Hours:
Upper West Side: Monday – Sunday: 4pm – 4am
Upper East Side: Monday – Thursday: 5pm – 4am and Friday – Sunday: 4pm – 4am

Locations:
424 Amsterdam Avenue, Upper West Side
1609 2nd Avenue, Upper East Side

www.caledoniabar.com


For Shopping: Everlane

Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Everlane NYC Store Interior
Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Everlane NYC Store Shoes
Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Everlane NYC Store Denim
Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Everlane NYC Store Clothes
Curiosities Insider Interviews Graham Mann Everlane Human
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“I generally try to avoid shopping in person as much as possible, but Everlane makes the experience enjoyable. I love that their simple, classic lines don’t overwhelm you with choice, and their commitment to ethical factories and transparent pricing make them a brand you can get behind. They currently only have two brick-and-mortar locations, and one is in New York.”

Located in the super cool neighborhood of Nolita, in Manhattan, Everlane believes in “Exceptional quality.
Ethical factories. Radical Transparency.” Totally up our alley!

Plus, their collections and products are timeless pieces that will be part of your wardrobe for a long time. How? Well, they source the finest materials and aren’t too focused on trends.

Oh! And still, they let the customer know exactly the true cost of materials, labor, transportation, taxes, etc…for the item they are purchasing. We love it!

They offer a complete line of products for men and women that believe, like them, that “we can all make a difference”.

Hours:
Monday – Saturday: 11am – 7pm
Sunday: 10am – 5pm

Location: 28 Prince Street

www.everlane.com


Thank you, Graham, for sharing these 7 top tips in New York! We are sure you will enjoy them all!

Finally, if you enjoyed this interview, we are positive you loved all the places that David Yarus, the Founder of the app JSwipe, shared with us! He listed 5 NYC spots that you’ve probably never been to! They are all surely worth the visit, so check them out!

 

Photo Credits: Courtesy of The Associated Press for the Washington’s Top News, Mc_Gutty, P_Nali and the venues

Cheryl Wat: From Marketing & Finance To A NYC Food Influencer

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat

Cheryl Wat went from Marketing & Finance to becoming a NYC Food Influencer! Take a look at her 7 secret New York City tips and be sure to add them to your To-Go spots!

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat

Cheryl Wat was born and raised on Long Island, but now lives in Queens. She graduated from Northeastern University with a degree in Marketing and Finance and has 10 years of marketing experience working in the Finance industry as an Analyst in Marketing Research and Product Management.

During this time, Cheryl’s boyfriend wanted to open a restaurant. She became interested in learning about influencer marketing and using social media as a means to build his restaurant’s brand awareness and anticipation of its opening. To do this, she realized that she had to open up her own Instagram food account.

In July 2016, Cheryl established Book of Eats on Instagram and as a site, with the initial focus being restaurants, food, and beverages primarily in NYC area.

As she shared her dining experiences, she realized a community of people was being built who share the same interests. Since then, Book of Eats has expanded to travel, food around the world, and interesting food/travel related news.

See below her 7 secret New York City tips:


Trademark Taste & Grind

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Entrance
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Inside
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Sween N Salty Granola
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Pistachio Ice Cream
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Coffee
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Cookies
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Chocolate Popcorn
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Burrata Knots
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Avocado Toast
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Squash Ricotta
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Fried Chicken Sandwich
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Trademark Taste Grind Office Hero
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“I love how this Midtown restaurant, called Trademark Taste & Grind is hidden behind a coffee shop. It’s one of the few places near Penn Station that I can think of with good food, isn’t touristy, and that I would want to bring someone.”

Yup! They are known for their delicious food, coffee and cocktails. The front area of the restaurant – Trademark Grind – is a coffee shop with a great selection of pastries and coffees. Walking towards the back area, you’ll find Trademark Taste serving new American comfort food.

It’s located in the Hotel Le Soleil.

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 7am – 11pm
Saturday & Sunday: 8am – 11pm

Location: 38 West 36th Street

www.trademarktaste.com


Fry Guys

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat FryGuys Façade
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat FryGuys Pulled Pork
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Fry Guys is a super cool retro looking French fry spot in the East Village with vinyl records all around the floors, walls, and ceiling. There’s even disco balls hanging from the ceilings. If you come here get the Drunk Guy, its fries are loaded with guacamole, bacon and cheese.”

These guys are really experts when the subject is “fries”. Their food is gluten-free fries and made from delicious Idaho Russet potatoes. How do they make it? They hand-cut everything, season it and perfectly fry it to get that crunchy texture.

The décor of the place is also fantastic and it’s vintagy look will take you back decades. It’s most certainly a nostalgic feeling.

This is the place to splurge and forget your diet! Forget about calories and just be happy! Ha! After all, as they say ‘Every day is FryDay!’.

Hours:
Sunday – Thursday: 12pm – 2am
Friday & Saturday: 12pm – 4am

Location: 150 East 2nd Street

http://fryguysnyc.com


Gaijin

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Bar
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Bar
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Outdoor Patio
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin 6 Pieces Omakase
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Uni Ikura Donburi
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Kamasu Japanese Baracuda
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Tuna
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Toro Uni Caviar
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Mixed
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Robata Binchotan Grill
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Gaijin Bone Marrow
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Gaijin is the only place in Astoria that I know of with a legit omakase sushi menu. I love the whole experience of sitting at the counter, interacting with the Chef, and being told the preferred way of eating the sushi is with my hands like in Japan. I can’t think of any other restaurants like this in Astoria, but in the city I definitely can.”

Chef Mark, a Chicago-native, is the artist behind it all. His outstanding culinary career gave him enough experience to open Gaijin – the result of his take on modern Japanese food.

Moreover, he blends his traditional Japanese cooking technique with a personal touch and inspiration. It’s known that his signature nigrizushi toppings are outstanding!

Nigirizushi (“hand-pressed sushi”) consists of an oblong mound of sushi rice that the chef presses between the palms of the hands to form an oval-shaped ball, and a topping (the neta) draped over the ball.” ~ Wikipedia

Hours:
Monday – Thursday: 5pm – 10pm
Friday – Saturday: 5pm – 11pm

Location: 37-12 31st Avenue

www.gaijinny.com


Vaccaro’s Bakery & Café

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Vaccaro's Bakery Cake Pops
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Vaccaro's Bakery Nutella Donnoli
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Vaccaro's Bakery Cake
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Vaccaro's Bakery Sawdust Pies
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Vaccaro's Bakery Minnie Mouse Cupcakes
Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Vaccaro's Bakery Apple Pie
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Vaccaro’s Bakery & Café is a bakery in Astoria, Queens, that has the most delicious donnolis. It’s basically a cannoli wrapped in a donut. It’s the best thing ever.”

This authentic Italian bakery was founded in 1981 and has been one of Astoria’s to-go spots. Loved by locals, they sell everything from delicious cakes, desserts and pastries, to breads and breakfast specials!

It will be hard to pick only a few things to try. But, remember you call always buy more and take home!

Hours: 6am – 9pm, daily

Location: 28-05 Steinway Street

https://vaccarosbakerycafe.com


The Last Word

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat The Last Word The Fat Monk
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Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat The Last Word Posada Punch
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“A speakeasy in Astoria, called The Last Word, serves really good cocktails and is hidden behind a hardware store. I know in Astoria it’s well known, but I’m not sure about the general public.”

So, if you enjoy oysters paired with a good cocktail, this is the place for you! They still have a great menu with beer, wine and a few bites to nibble on.

They explain that:

“Our name comes from the gin-based prohibition-era cocktail called, The Last Word.”

And still, if you enjoy Soul, Rhythm and Blues, they have it live, every Thursday night. It’s definitely a place to got more than once! You’ll love it!

Hours:
Tuesday – Thursday: 5pm – 2am
Friday – Saturday: 5pm – 3am
Sunday – Monday: 5pm – 1am

Location: 31-30 Ditmars Blvd

https://tlwastoria.com


Shuraku

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Shuraku NYC Fried Lotus Root

“Of course I have to mention my boyfriend’s restaurant on here. I’d be a terrible girlfriend if I didn’t, I’m also a bit biased, but read his Yelp reviews if you don’t believe me! Shuraku is a hidden Japanese Grilling restaurant without a sign on the building. You would only know it exists if you walk up close to the building and see a menu hanging from the window. This is the only place that I know of in NY that serves gyu-katsu (deep fried breaded steak).”

We love Shuraku too and we’ve recently visited and written about them.

They are certainly a new place to have in your To-Go places in New York, especially if you’re into high-end Japanese spots with unique tasting menus!

Hours:
Wednesday: 5:30pm – 10pm
Thursday – Saturday: 5:30pm – 11pm
Sunday: 5:30pm – 10pm 

Location: 47 8th Avenue

www.shurakunyc.com


Jason Naylor’s murals

Curiosities Insider Interviews Cheryl Wat Jason Naylor Murals
Jason Naylor, in action!

“The murals all around the city by Jason Naylor. Offhand, I can only think of the one on 60th and 2nd Ave and the one on 16th and 6th Ave. I’m amazed by his graffiti work. The colors he uses are so vibrant. It’s so distinct that you don’t even need to see that it’s his work, you’ll just know.”

Jason is not only an artist, but he’s also a designer, writer and creative director. In addition, his colorful art works certainly make the city look even more beautiful and the quotes are very inspiring!

He was born in Salt Lake City, but fell in love the NY at an early age. His works can be seen in the fashion industry, as well as magazine, footwear and even in tattoos. We personally love the Statue of Liberty in his left arm!

http://jasonnaylorcreative.com


Thank you, Cheryl, for participating in our Insider Interviews and sharing with us these 7 amazing secret New York City tips!

Stay tuned for more upcoming interviews!

 

Photo Credits: Courtesy of the venues

A Filmmaker, Digital Storyteller And Travel Expert Named Kristen Kellogg

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg Camping Ithaca New York

Kristen Kellogg, a filmmaker, digital storyteller, and travel expert shares with us her 7 best NYC tips for exploring New York City. There is nothing better than learning with travel experts, right?

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg Camping Ithaca New York
Kristen Kellogg glamping in Ithaca, New York!

We love all different types of interviews and the ones with travel experts are always quite amusing. We not only love all the tips, but we also end up finding out more secrets about our own beautiful concrete jungle.

Read about Kristen’s explorations and see her 7 best NYC tips for exploring New York City.


Exploring rugged to refined, filmmaker, digital storyteller, and travel expert Kristen Kellogg has designed her life for life on the road. Her Wanderlust Website + Content Creation Agency, Border Free Travels, produces and shares highly engaging lifestyle stories and brand campaigns through film, photography, and innovative media tied to travel.

Kristen’s work and words have been featured in AFAR, MSN, Refinery 29, Daily Mail, Yahoo, and Travel Channel, and Islands Magazine, among others. Some of her recent clients include Skype, Thailand Tourism, The Outer Banks, Visit California, and Rosetta Stone for whom she produced a new travel video series.

On this adventure, Kristen journeys through Mérida, Mexico getting “Lost With Locals” while touring markets with a local chef, practicing Spanish phrases with strangers, and even picks up some local dance moves.

Kristen lives on Nantucket, has an obsession with cheese, loves talking to strangers – in person and on Instagram, and feels most at home when she’s not.

A Nantucket Island resident, when she’s not on the road, she finds inspiration by literally running around exploring her own backyard. She frequently visits NYC between travels in and out of the country.

So, take a look at her 7 best NYC tips for exploring New York City:


Helicopter Tours

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg NYC Helicopter Tour East River

“The best views of Manhattan I’ve ever seen were in a helicopter – doors off! Everyone should do this once in their life – I’d go again in a NYC beat.

And we have to agree with Kristen! As we’ve said before, we know we are obsessed with New York City and one of the best views of the city is from high up in the air!

It’s incredible to see our concrete jungle and all the boroughs from this perspective.

Take a look at this Helicopter Tour and book now!


The William Vale

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg William Vale Hotel Photo MarkyMarc13
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg William Vale Hotel Westlight
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg William Vale Hotel Balcony
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg William Vale Hotel King Bed
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg William Vale Hotel Bathroom
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“Sunset drinks and apps at the Westlight atop The William Vale hotel. This is the best view looking back on the city!”

Brooklyn is certainly the most up and coming area in New York and so much is going on, on that side of the bridge. New restaurants, stores, nightclubs, coffee shops, events, etc!

The William Vale is one of the newest additions to the neighborhood and has become an immediate hotspot.

Its rooftop offers a priceless 360º view where you can see the 5 boroughs.

If you want to stay in one of the trendiest hotels, in a super cool location and mix with an energetic and stylish crowd…then this is the place for you!

Location: 111 North 12th Street

www.thewilliamvale.com


Matcha Bar

Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg Matcha Bar Counter
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg Matcha Bar
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg Matcha Bar Lunch
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg Matcha Bar Toast And Tea
Curiosities Insider Interviews Kristen Kellogg Matcha Bar Kombucha