Concrete Jungle Where Dreams are Made...

When we touched down in NY I could barely breathe. We'd had the worst flight of the whole trip, so much turbulence the plane had dropped about a metre and everyone had been flung up in their seats. I was also in the very place I've wanted to go for so, so long.

When we crossed one of the bridges and actually arrived on Manhattan, the tour manager put Empire State of Mind on. Throughout the whole trip she'd be playing songs on the coach that corresponded with each city - and I'd been waiting for this song.

All 24 of us were silent as we stared in awe at the buildings standing so tall and the taxis and people and apartment buildings - all exactly as I'd always imagined it to be. I got shivers when the song came on and tears in my eyes. I could not believe I was finally in New York City.

We stayed at the Beacon Hotel which was on the Upper West Side on 73rd and Broadway.
It was a good location, subway only metres away and an amazing fresh produce grocery store right across the road. We were all dying for some fresh fruit and vegies by this stage.

Bright and early the next morning we went on a full city tour, past the building John Lennon lived in and was also shot at, up alongside the Hudson river and into Harlem, then across and back down 5th Avenue past Tiffany's, Saks, FAO Schwartz, we then stopped at the Rockerfeller centre.
Next stop was Grand Central Terminal and then Ground Zero.

We tried to brave Century 21 but got overwhelmed by the pushiness and awful people shopping in there at the time. We lost one of the girls and decided to cut our losses and run, it was unbelievably stressful in there! Haha. On their shopping bags it says 'fashion worth fighting for'

The coach driver dropped us at the 10 floor Macy's after lunch - thats right - 10 floors!!!
I bought some super cheap MAC make up and a Michael Kors watch. Unfortunately the clothes werent very nice :( And the staff were rude rude rude. (I had yet to find out that this is the norm in NY unfortunately :((( )

That night we went to dinner at a lovely bar, then to Times Square to have a professional group photo taken. People were staring at us and one guy came over and wanted his photo with us!
"I love Aussies!!! Can you all point at me in the photo?" hahaha.

Then... Karaoke. Songs sang by our group included 'Girls Just Wanna Have Fun', 'I Come From the Land Down Under', 'California Girls' (accidentally, the man who was running it called us up and we thought someone had put our names in to do it, but turned out another group of girls were supposed to do it! OOPS.) and 'Khe San'. Hahaha.
The bar staff also get in on the action, jumping up and singing on the bar etc. At one stage they both sang Empire State of Mind in a duet style and the whole bar was singing along at the top of their lungs. The memory gives me chills. It was seriously amazing.

The next day we were hungover and made a very cold trip over to Liberty Island. Unfortunately everywhere in the USA that is a tourist attraction now has airport style security (think x ray machines etc etc) so it takes FOREVER to get somewhere. I think we were in line for about an hour before we made it through.

After that we went to Century 21 again and prepared to seriously throw some elbows. I got a Nine West jacket/anorak/parka thing for $90 down from like $180 so I was pretty happy. Its a bitch to rummage through everything in there and I think if I had more time and patience I would have tried a bit harder.

The next day some of the girls and I went on a 'Shopping' tour lead by some stylist. Who...... was not great. We were the first group to get the opportunity to do this tour through Contiki so we gave honest feedback. Luckily the tour manager came too so she experienced how bad it was.
I hope they find another stylist to do that tour because its a great idea it just needs someone different. VERY different.

That night was the last night of the tour :((( so we went out to dinner at this place where they have HUGE cocktails but SHITE food (half a dry, pink chicken and soggy chips on a plate?). The cocktails kinda made up for it but :) and then onto the Empire State Building... where we waited an hour and a half in line... blahhhhhhhhh. Luckily we were all pretty 'happy' from the cocktails but it was so tedious. Then it was onto Joshua Tree bar for drinking and dancing.

J and I spent another 3 nights in NYC. We stayed at the Chelsea Inn and Hotel Chelsea. I dont recommend the Chelsea Inn unless you enjoy lugging your suitcases up 4 flights of stairs :S.
The Hotel Chelsea was nice, kinda creepy because of its history and just the general 'air' of the place but I would stay there again.

The best thing about the Chelsea Inn was there was this boutique, I think called 'LF'. They have Jeffrey Campbells and YES I did nearly die when I saw some in real life. And of course I had to have some! The rest of their clothes were awesome too and I regret not going back and buying more! Damn.

We walked through Central Park, went to Tiffany's, and walked all the way down 5th Ave back to Macys one day.

The next day we went to Soho. Which was awesome and I wish I'd spent more time there.
I specifically hunted down Bloomingdales so I could get my Marc Jacobs handbag, and then went to find DASH the Kardashians boutique. I was too scared to go in ( ??? :| god knows why hahaha) and J talked me into it. The clothing was nice but not great quality. I wanted to check out Kim's jewellery but the place was so busy I couldnt get near it.

On our last day we ventured back up towards Tiffanys to find the YSL store because I wanted an arty ring. Of course it was Easter Sunday and it wasnt open!!! Boo. Instead we watched all the crazy people in their easter outfits crowd 5th Ave in preparation for the Easter parade. We didnt get to see it because we had to head to the airport :( :( :(


  1. Amazing photos hun! I had major flashbacks when I read your reaction to arriving, that was EXACTLY how I felt when I finally arrived in NY!

    Can't wait to see your purchases! xx

  2. aaw so sad you had bad/ rude people in NY! But glad you still had an awesome time. Your posts are making me want to go back there so bad!
    You are so right about century 21, that place is mental. You need to be physically prepared. The first time I went there I had to go outside for some air and a pepsi lol, couldn't handle it!

  3. Love, love, love these photos!!!

    You must show us your JC's sooooooooooooooon

  4. im going to do a purchases post next :))))))))))
    man i miss being over there. the cheapness of stuff is the bombbbbb!

  5. wow thats great!! :D
    im worried that im not gonna have enough time to do everything in new york! im staying 2 extra nights after the tour, so i have a full friday and then got a 1pm flight on saturday, so prob wont get to do much on the saturday morning. im like so close to changing my flights for just a day later!! but with the way the time zones work, ill be leaving on saturday and getting back on monday so im already losing a day in limbo!

    do you get lots of free time to do whatever you like? and do you have to go on the tours and whatever? cos i read theres a tour of some museum in new york (modern art?) which doesnt interest me at all haha. i just wanna try and fit everything in!

  6. Love your USA posts! Thanks for the reviews etc. Less than two months until I do LA, San Fran & NY!!

  7. Nope Krissy theres no tour of a museum..? thats weird.
    you get tonnnnnes of free time. it depends how many optionals you decide to do. ive mentioned everything we did with the tour in my posts (i think). the la pub crawl, disneyland, shopping tour in ny and V variety show in vegas were optionals.

    go onto the contiki website and search for the best of usa travelogue by rocketgirl. i think even a google search will bring it up. thats where i got most of my info from. hope that helps! i might post this on your blog too incase u dont check back here :)

    Bonsai thats super exciting!!!! :)))) you'll have a ball.

  8. of course you can read my blog! :D i thought i'd already added you but obviously not. i just added you now!

    oh ok thats interesting! maybe theyve changed the tour around a lil bit since they originally wrote the itinery? hmm

    also, do they wake you up really early every morning? and how early are the flights and stuff?

    ps. if you have facebook can i add you? maybe it would be easier to message you with my 12392739273 questions there :P haha ... if you want to add me, search for krissyp89@yahoo.com.au :)

  9. i emailed you krissy :) how do i view your blog if ive been added? (probably a stupid question) haha

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