Tag Archives: Family

Dziupla, Our Special Polish Restaurant In Williamsburg

Dining Dziupla Restaurant Counter Table

If you read the full story about our Founder’s journey to NYC, you will remember about the huge role and historic moment she had at this traditional Polish restaurant in Williamsburg, called Dziupla.

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Making a long story short and putting into perspective for those who haven’t yet read our Founder,’s Fê Paronetto, story, this Polish restaurant in Williamsburg has a fundamental significance in her life. It was the place she was having lunch on April 20th, 2014 and actually had the 1st strong insight saying to her sister that she’d be living in NYC in 1 year.

(The last two pictures in the gallery above were taken on this exact day, back in 2014!)

So…exactly 365 days after this lunch, on April 20th, 2015 she arrived in NYC! It wasn’t till 2016, through Facebook memories that she say the entire date “coincidences”.

Anyway,  this Polish restaurant in Williamsburg, called Dziupla (pronounced jou-pla), opened mid March of 2014. It was just a few weeks before Fê discovered it and decided to sit down for a lunch that would change the course of her life.

That day, Fê ordered Duck Crepe with caramelized apples, smoked polish cheese, cranberry chipotle relish, made out of gluten-free flour and a side salad. OBS: She had still not gone Vegetarian!

Her sister had the the Grass Fed Beef Burger with tomatoes, grilled onion, lettuce, spicy mayo, fries and salsa, served with hand cut french fries and greens.

For dessert they did not spare calories! Hahaha! They ordered the classic Polish Pychotka with chocolate ice cream! Yum!

A few of the dishes you should also try are:

  • Potato pancake with goulash stuffed with grass feed beef goulash and sauerkraut
  • Stuffed cabbage lunch with tomato sauce, mashed potatoes and beets salad
  • Hunter stew and mashed potatoes
  • Any of the Pierogies – a super typical Polish dish

Yup, as we said, they really are a traditional Polish restaurant in Williamsburg!

The interesting part their menu is that the hanger steak is grass fed, the boar is wild and the chicken is “Amish farm raised.”

They have a great outdoor seating area right on the famous Bedford Street, so try and sit outside and experience a bit of “people-watching”. Certainly interesting in this neighborhood!

They serve breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner, so you’ll surely find the right occasion to go there!

We’ve organized extraordinary tours and experiences around the Williamsburg, so if you want to experience the hood in style, be sure to take a look at our Concierge Services.

On the other hand, we’ve hosted huge groups of executives organizing fantastic weekend itineraries and interesting study tours. See our different Corporate Services and how we can enhance your team’s experience in New York City.

Hours:
Monday – Wednesday: 7:30am – 11pm
Thursday – Friday: 7:30am – 12am
Saturday: 9am – 12am
Sunday: 9am – 11pm

Location: 194 Bedford Avenue

www.dziuplabrooklyn.com


Photo Credit: ©Behind the Scenes NYC and Courtesy of Dziupla 
*Last Update on Feb/2020.*

Bear Mountain: For the Adventure Seekers in New York

Day Trips and Travels Bear Mountain by Virtual Tourist

If you’re part of the adventure seekers in New York that loves outdoor sports, Bear Mountain is the place to go! Plan a day trip up there, or enjoy weekend hideout.

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Bear Mountain State Park. Photo Credit: Virtual Tourist

Located only 1.5 hours from Manhattan, Bear Mountain State Park is located on the west side of the Hudson River. It’s actually divided into two different New York counties: Orange and Rockland county.

The park has over 5,200 acres and countless things to do!

You’ll find outdoor adventure activities from biking and swimming, to hiking, boating and even snowmobiling in the winter!

The park also features a zoo, trailside museums and the Perkins Memorial Tower with an amazing view of the park. You will also find picnic areas, playgrounds, nature trails and several other amazing amenities and activities.

We know that golf is a national passion and if you’re a pro, or an enthusiast, you can book a game at the Bear Mountain Golf Course. It’s located right at the base of the mountain.

You can get season passes, sign up for leagues & tournaments, book classes and play in their driving range. They also have a shop, in case you forgot any equipment or accessory.

Are you the radical sports person? Well, they also offer cross country skiing during the winter season!

Plus, if you decide to stay for the whole weekend, a good option is the Bear Mountain Inn built in 1915. It passed through a massive renovation and is now up and running!

It’s surely a perfect place for the adventure seekers in New York!

For other experience upstate, you might want to check out Storm King and Dia:Beacon for an artsy day trip! Or, explore the abandoned Bannerman Castle for an exciting exploration!

Lastly, for those that look for adventure with out leaving New York City, you might want to try the Brooklyn Boulders and their new technology.

If you’re coming to New York and need a hand booking a trip to Bear Mountain, our experts can find you the best options that suites your budget. For corporate groups in search of annual retreat locations, team building experiences and other activities, let our team assist you.

Location: Palisades Parkway or Route 9W, North Bear Mountain, NY

https://parks.ny.gov/bearmountain

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Bear Mountain Inn, after reconstruction. Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Photo Credits: Courtesy of Wikipedia and Virtual Tourist
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Brooklyn Boulders: Mixing Adventure With Technology

Fitness Health Brooklyn Boulders Illustration

Have you heard of Brooklyn Boulders? If you haven’t, it’s time to learn more about them! If you are hungry and restless to try some adventure with technology, this is a great place to go!

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Brooklyn Boulders is one of the greatest workouts to have a bit of downtime from the city. They offer a great 22,000 sqft space for rock climbing since 2009.

Located in the neighborhood of Gowanus, in Brooklyn, every year their team bring novelties to the experience they create.

“It’s not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves.” ~ Edmund Hillary

This time, they’ve added Augmented Reality to their menu of classes!

How it works? There are projections on the walls that create a video game experience for the climbers. The objective is to touch each projection – or target – as fast as possible. At every touch,  a sound is ignited to confirm the target was reached. Pretty cool, right? Fantastic mix of adventure with technology.

Being fit definitely became more entertaining at Brooklyn Boulders!

Oh! They also offer yoga, acroyoga, capoeira classes, and a variety of fitness workshops. Plus, these guys love to party making everything fun.

If you are a bit lazy and need and extra push to exercise, they have fantastic personal trainers that can help you out and keep you disciplined.

Also, their free wifi will let you document your experience to share with your friends!

You might want to see a short YouTube video where our Founder, Fê Paronetto, does some bouldering!

Lastly, after a fantastic class at Brooklyn Boulders, you might want to walk a few blocks to a neighborhood we love called Fort Greene. For lunch or dinner, go to Colonia Verde, one of our favorite spots!

If you want our expert’s help to organize a private party or gathering, let us know. This is also the perfect spot for a company outing or a team building day. Our team is also able to assist you in organizing it all.

Contact us for further information!

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 7am – Midnight
Saturday & Sunday: 8am – 10pm
Holiday hours may vary.

Location: 575 Degraw Street, Brooklyn

https://brooklynboulders.com


Photo Credits: Courtesy of Brooklyn Boulders
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Lavender By The Bay: A Unique Long Island Spot To Visit

Day Trips and Travels Lavender by the Bay

This week, our Contributor Laura Peruchi talks about a great getaway called Lavender by the Bay in Long Island. Not many people know about and it’s a great place to visit over the weekends at this time of year!

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New York State hides several of places that are great getaways from the City. Long Island is a good choice if you want to spend a day away from New York City’s craziness.

The region is famous for its vineyards and also for the beaches. But, did you know there is a lavender farm in Long Island too? Yup! You don’t need to catch a flight to Provence to see some gorgeous lavender fields.

Lavender by the Bay is a lavender farm which is located in Long Island, specifically in East Marion. It’s a premier lavender farm and one of the largest in the Country. The farm is owned and run by a family that have been growing the highest quality lavender in Long Island for over 15 years.

The fields have twenty varieties of lavender, growing across seventeen acres, which offers in over 50,000 plants. The best part? Lavender by the Bay is opened to the public and you can visit the fields during the blooming seasons. The aroma of the place, we guarantee, is irresistible!

Before to plan your visit, you need to keep in mind that there are just three blooming periods during the year. Lavender by the Bay has lavenders from France and from England, and that’s why the blooming happens in different times.

The first English Bloom typically takes place mid to late June and sometimes into early July.

The main French Bloom usually begins in early July and lasts about 2 weeks. According to the farm, this is the best time to visit the place, because this bloom is the most impressive.

Do you still want a chance to see the lavenders?

Well, you can check out the second English Bloom, that typically starts late Summer/early Fall. But, it’s good to remember that we are dealing with mother nature. So, you can’t predict the exact time – these are approximations. See their website to check the updates about the blooming.

There is a $5 per person (ages 12 and up) field entry Fee. Once you visit the place, don’t forget to check out their store – it sells lavender cosmetics, lavender honey and, of course, lavender.

Lavender by the Bay in Long Island is definitely a great experience!

If you enjoy the region, you might enjoy visiting Sag Harbor on another weekend!

In addition, for assistance to organize a family trip or an experience with friends, contact our experts. For company gatherings and tours, contact us to learn more.

Hours:
May: Friday -Sunday, from 9am – 5pm
June to September: 7 days a week, from 9am – 5pm
October: Friday – Sunday, from 9am – 5pm

Location: 7540 Main Road, East Marion, Long Island

https://lavenderbythebay.com


Text Credit: Written by our contributor Laura Peruchi
Photo Credits: Courtesy of Laura Peruchi
*Last Update on March/2020.*

Burrow: French And Japanese Inspired Pastry Shop In DUMBO

Dining Burrow Bakery Pastry with Nuts

DUMBO is a great neighborhood to explore after you’ve walked over the Brooklyn Bridge! Burrow, a French pastry shop in DUMBO with Japanese influences owned by Ayako Kurokawa, is a delicious place to recharge.

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Our Contributor, Helenita Salom, shared with us a delightful place to visit in DUMBO, that we love! We’ve written about it in the past and this is a fresh update!

DUMBO, which stands for Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass, is a wonderful, constantly evolving neighborhood in Brooklyn. Very easily accessible by the “F” train if you are coming from Manhattan, it is one of my favorite neighborhood for its charm, unique stores, beautiful views of Lower Manhattan, and extremely friendly walkable streets.

It has also been, for a number of years now, a growing tech start-up scene — but more about this, as well as the other charms of DUMBO, in another post perhaps!

What drew me to DUMBO for this visit was none other than Burrow, a French pastry shop with Japanese influences owned by Ayako Kurokawa.

“Ayako Kurokawa is a patissier, a pastry sculptor, and a food stylist in NYC. She picks her inspirations from her restaurant experiences, Brooklyn life, and day dreaming in the subway.

Her pastry recipes are based on classic French recipes, but are developed with the Japanese and American influences she had growing up. She developed the portrait and sculpture cakes from her love for stone carving and clay sculpting.”

I first came across Burrow on Instagram about one year ago. I saw a picture Burrow had posted of a Mer-man. That’s right, a fully iced sugar cookie shaped and decorated like a male mermaid. Immediately I knew I had to make a trip out to DUMBO and visit this bakery for myself and check out this superbly made portrait cookie of a mer-man.

Located on Jay Street inside the lobby of an old standard industrial looking building, is Burrow. I almost completely missed it on my first visit down there.

Once inside Burrow though, you immediately feast your eyes on beautiful seasonal cakes, cookies and many more treats. It all spans far beyond just the portrait cookies which, from what I understand, you order in bulk in advance and aren’t sold in the store. I must say the charm of Burrow did not disappoint.

I have been numerous times since my first visit last year, and among my favorite is the strawberry short cake. Light, creamy and just enough sugar to leave you satisfied, yet not in a food coma, this is a must have if it’s available.

If you are a fan of different textures in your dessert you will enjoy this too, as it has a few different layers to it which all complement each other perfectly.

I will most definitely be returning soon.

DUMBO is a fantastic and super cool neighborhood to explore and even stay, if you’re in NYC for a few days.

The 1Hotel opened its first location in Manhattan and is surely one of the best additions to Brooklyn! This hotel is one of our top picks if you’re more a Brooklyn-style traveller.

If you’re looking for a off-the-beaten track spot to go at night, St. Ann’s Warehouse is the place to go! They not only showcase the most unique concerts and theater performances, but the place is breathtaking. It’s located right by the East River and was a former Church in the 1980’s.

Be sure to save some time to just talk around the place and be sure to take that perfect picture of the Manhattan Skyline.

Oh! And even though quite touristy, be sure to see Jane’s Carrousel, just a few steps from the warehouse.

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 9am – 6pm
Saturday 1pm – 5pm

Location: 68 Jay Street, #119

http://burrow.nyc


Photo and Text Credit: Courtesy of Helenita Salom and Burrow NYC
*Last Update on Feb/2020.*

Windham Mountain Ski Resort: Skiing Getaways Upstate New York

Day Trips and Travel Windham Mountain Odyssée Montagne - Only Illlustration

Windham Mountain Ski Resort is located just a bit over 2.5 hours from New York City. Be prepared to witness some of the most amazing sceneries at one of the best skiing getaways upstate New York.

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The Windham Mountain Ski Resort has more than “50 ski trails, 12 lifts, an Inn, three restaurants, a golf course, spa, an adventure park and a lift -served mountain bike park”. Amazing right?

They offer a BootLab where you can buy and customize your boots with the renowned bootfitter, Mark Stewart.

Not everyone enjoys spending an entire day going up and down the mountains, so Windham Country Club offers a Mountain Yoga studio with several Yoga variations. You can try their Vinyasa and Hatha Yoga, Sunrise Flow, TGIF Yoga, Yoga Fundamentals and the Restorative Yoga.

The resort has a few dining options. You can try Rock’n Mexicana and Mulligan’s Pub. But, you can also choose from one of their many on-mountain dining spots!

So, for a lunch break or to finish the day, you can choose from burgers, to waffles, barbecue, and even sushi! They offer a great variety for all tastes.

Plus, they have great options for coffees, pastries, soups and sandwiches too!

If you’re not the skier-type, the resort is also a really great option to go during the hotter months.

They have countless outdoor activities from radical sports to golfing.

People have no idea how beautiful and green the state of New York is, so have fun exploring this fantastic place just a few hours from Manhattan. It’s definitely one of the best skiing getaways upstate New York.

If you need assistance to book this trip, let our experts give you a hand. For corporate groups and activities, learn what services we offer.

Location: 33 Clarence D Lane Road, Windham

www.windhammountain.com


Shop the Look:

Noize


Photo Credit: Courtesy of OdysséeMontagne (only an illustrative image) and courtesy of Windham Mountain Resort
*Last Update on March/2020.*

15 Great Places To Visit In Astoria by Untapped New York

Culture Music Museum of the Moving Image by Peter Aaron:Esto Sidewalk

Our friends at Untapped New York shared a list of 15 great places to visit in Astoria, Queens! What are you waiting for!?

Culture Music Museum of the Moving Image by Peter Aaron:Esto Sidewalk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just a few decades ago, the two major ethnic groups in Astoria were Greeks and Italians but today, it’s one of the most diverse neighborhoods in Queens. Certainly, the most diverse of the 5 New York City’s boroughs.

According to recent Census data people from nearly 100 countries live in Astoria. Nationalities range from Greeks, Italians and Mexicans to Ecuadorians, Moroccans and Egyptians–plus, everything in between.

Here are the 15 must-go-to spots in the neighborhood:

1. Architecture: Steinway Mansion
2. Architecture: Modern Art Foundry
3. Coffee Shop: Omonia Cafe
4. Endless Hookah Places: Hookah lounges along Steinway Street
5. Museum: Museum of the Moving Image
6. Museum: Noguchi Museum
7. Restaurant: Queens Comfort
8. Restaurant: El Basuero
9. Parks: Socrates Sculpture Park
10. Parks: Athens Park
11. Parks: Astoria Park
12. Historical Sites: Steinway & Sons Factory
13. Shopping: Ukulele at the Uke Hut
14. Cool Street: Steinway Street
15. Quirky Spot: Ingraham’s Mountain

Read more about each of spot on the full post by Untapped Cities!

Astoria can be a bit overwhelming if you’ve never been there, but it’s an amazing neighborhood. We have readers and clients that have been with us to private day tours and loved it all.

See how our Concierge Services and Corporate Services (for corporate groups) works!

Oh! Not sure where Astoria is located? We’ll help you out!

15 Must See Places in Astoria by Untapped Cities


Photo Credit: Courtesy of Peter Aaron/Esto and the Museum of Moving Image
Last Update on Feb/2020.*

Gastronauts Scavenger Hunt: Not an Ordinary NYC Scavender Hunt

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A Gastronauts Scavenger Hunt! Don’t get this wrong, guys…this is NOT an ordinary NYC Scavenger Hunt as all the others you’re heard about! We simply loved this!

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We all know how scavenger hunts can be boring and the same as every other one around. Usually, the tips are very simple and not very unique.

Well, the team at Gastronauts have used every neuron in their brains to put together this super unique scavenger hunt around Queens!

Yes! We love exploring other boroughs like Astoria and getting you guys outside of Manhattan too!


Take a look at how they explain it:

…Folks, this isn’t an ordinary game of Clue. This ain’t no clumsy corporate team building exercise. No way. We’ve spent weeks coming up with our own Delicious Da Vinci Code, designing our own secret dinner decoder ring, and building a back alley brainteaser that will send you crisscrossing Jackson Heights and eating up the puzzle.

How much fun will this be? Well, we have Joe diStefano of Chopsticks and Marrow and his insane knowledge of everything there is to eat and see in Queens helping us.

We have our professional game designer friends at Interactive Escapes helping us come up with the perfect Game of Gastronauts, that involves eating, drinking, and thinking.

We can’t tell you where we’ll be meeting – you’ll find out when you need to know. And the rest, well, you’ll have to figure it out.

So come hungry. Come smart. Come ready to explore Jackson Heights inside and out. Because, by the end of this you’ll have explored its nooks and crannies.


This is pretty cool, right? So, go to their website to sign up for the Gastronauts Scavenger Hunt, and see you all there!

When: October 15th
Time: 1pm – 5pm
Location: Starts at a secret location in Queens

www.gastronauts.net


Photo Credit: Courtesy of Gastronauts

NYC Cooking Class With Banchan Story: Whispers From Every Little Dish

Our Experts Recaps Banchan Story Sea Veggie Cooking Class Group

We love to explore everything the city has to offer when the topics are: unique courses and classes. Our NYC Cooking Class with Banchan Story was fantastic and we want to share it with you!

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We wrote a post a few days ago about the Korean NYC Cooking Class we were invited to go, do you remember? This time, we went to another NYC Cooking Class!

On February 20th, we participated in this super unique and delicious Delectable Sea Vegetable cooking class.

Chef Shin, Founder of Banchan Story, taught us how to cook countless types of delicious, healthy sea vegetables that are very rich with minerals. We learned how to prepare them as a part of a daily meal through easy and quite simple steps.

Now, we would like to briefly tell you about our NYC Cooking Class experience. It all took place in her kitchen, located in Hell’s Kitchen.

We completely adored the class and Chef Shin Kim couldn’t be a more pleasant and kind human being! Not to mention, her obvious extraordinary cooking skills.

As soon as we arrived at the address given to us, we encountered a small little staircase leading us down to a black metal door. We started loving the experience from that point already, for there is nothing more exciting than going down a little staircase, not knowing what to expect. Then, after passing through the doorway, you find a beautifully built kitchen, very organized, with a quite tall ceiling, giving the space more amplitude and comfort.

Chef Shin has great teaching skills and definitely knows how to keep it simple and easy to learn.

I’m a vegetarian, so she was super prepared to have dishes that I was able to cook and eat during this NYC cooking class.

These are the amazing dishes that we learned how to cook:

  • Calamari & Miyeok (wakame) Salad with Ginger Gochujang Sauce
  • Sautéed Sea Vegetables Mélange with Spicy Sesame Seasoning
  • Savory Dulse and Garlic Chives Pancakes with Lemon-Sory Dipping Sauce
  • Soy-Pickled Spicy Peppers
  • Udon Noodle Soup with Kelp and Shitake Broth
  • Sweet Brown Rice Balls with Hijiki Rolled in Nori
  • Yuzu-Cannellini Jelly made with Agar Agar
  • Sweetened White Bean Paste

Plus, she gave us a great list of a few grocery stores with Korean ingredients in Manhattan. This way we would be able to find everything we used for cooking that day!

Chef Shin hosts cooking classes every month, with different topics and menus. Take a look at her website to find out when are the upcoming classes and what she will be teaching!

Have fun!

For the ones interested in organizing a unique experience with friends & family, contact us so we can help you out with all the details!

If you are interested in hiring Chef Shin for catering or for a unique corporate experiences, let our experts assist you throughout this project.

www.banchanstory.com


Photo Credits: ©Behind the Scenes NYC
*Last Update on March/2020.*

New York City Ballet: A NYC Dance Experience For Everyone

Culture Music JR New York City Ballet Art Series

We know that New York City Ballet is not a behind the scenes secret, but it’s surely one of the cultural spots that just have to be on your list. Plus, it’s surely a NYC dance experience.

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Culture Music Cameron Dieck Emilie Gerrity The Four Temperaments
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Look closely into this first picture (above)! Yes, it’s a ballet piece by the New York City Ballet!

As they beautifully describe themselves:

“We are one of the foremost dance companies in the world, with a roster of spectacular dancers and an unparalleled repertory. We believe that choreographic exploration is what sustains the Company and the art form itself.”

It all started in 1920 in Boston, at the age of 12, when Lincoln Kirstein’s love for classical dance emerged after watching Anna Pavlova perform.

As an adult, he was very fond of the contemporary choreographer, George Balanchine. While in London, in the year of 1933, they had a chance to meet and in no time Kirstein invited Balanchine to join him in concretizing a lifetime dream.

Following Balanchine’s suggestion, in 1934, they first opened the School of American Ballet. They ventured through the creation of four enterprises: the American Ballet Company, Ballet Caravan, American Ballet Caravan and lastly, Ballet Society.

Finally, the Ballet was founded in 1948 as a resident company.

It quickly became world-renowned for its athletic and contemporary style. But, it was only in April of 1964 that the theatre’s door opened to the public.

Today, the company is hosted inside the now called David H. Koch Theater. A beautiful $30 million space, designed by Philip Johnson.

They are the biggest dance organization in America, with over 90 extraordinary dancers and running performances during 23 weeks throughout the year.

“George Balanchine and Lincoln Kirstein shaped the history of 20th-century dance. Under the direction of Peter Martins, New York City Ballet remains dedicated to the preservation of Balanchine’s ideals.”

Check their website for the full schedule. It’s an amazing one, by the way!

Also, take a look at their annual Special Events. They are focused on benefit events to not only raise money for the Company, but to offer everyone involved, priceless experiences.

Let us know if you need help organizing any group requests for you and your family, or your company.

Location: 20 Lincoln Center

www.nycballet.com


Photo Credit: Courtesy of Paul Kolnik for the New York City Ballet 
*Last Update on Feb/2020.*

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