24 Hours in NYC: Raoul’s, Rubirosa and a Really Nice Stay at the Soho Grand!
Back in February, I received a promotional email from the Soho Grand announcing their Winter Flash Sale. If we booked a room by the end of March, we could get a room that usually goes for approximately $450 for under $200. Who could say no to that? We loved our visits in 2014 and 2015, and were definitely up for another.
So, we loaded up the car and made our way to the big city! We were hoping for a beautiful spring weekend. But unfortunately, we got the sub-freezing temps of winter. Thank goodness it was sunny!
We arrived at the Soho Grand in just over an hour and a half, door to door. The doorman greeted us with a great big smile and a welcoming hello. When we checked in, we asked if it was possible for an upgrade (as we always do), and were given a corner room on the 14th floor!
One window looked out toward the Hudson River.
And the other window looked toward the Empire State Building! You can see it off to the left in the distance.
After settling into our room, it was time for lunch. I did a little research on where to find the best burger and it was unanimous that Raoul’s was THE PLACE to go.
The 42 year old restaurant was hopping on a Sunday afternoon.
We were seated at a cozy booth in the back. We told them we came for the burgers and our waiter said that they only make 20 a day. So, we were hoping that they had a couple left.
Luckily for us, they hadn’t sold out! The Pat LaFrieda 7.5 oz brisket-blend patty is seared in butter and topped with triple cream Saint-André cheese, watercress and cornichons on a challah bun. It comes with a side of cream cognac au poivre sauce and duck fat fries, which (we are told) are some of the best in the city.
Photo below courtesy of Eater.com.
Our waiter informed us that the authentic way to eat the burger, is to cut it in half and dunk each each bite into the mouth-watering side of au poivre sauce.
As if the burger wasn’t enough goodness, the art on the wall was funky, fun, racy, rock-n-roll…just great!
These two photos are courtesy of Raoul’s website.
And the music was a blend of 60s retro, disco and R&B. We were told to come back for the Steak Au Poivre next time. It’s what they are really famous for!
After lunch, we walked through the streets of Soho. We came upon a window filled with chocolate chip cookies. David was inside within a blink of an eye.
It’s called Birdbath Neighborhood Green Bakery. It used to be a landmark bakery called Vesuvio, that was there since 1920. I believe the Soho location is the newest of this local bakery’s seven shops.
David was kind enough to let me taste a morsel of his cookie 😉
We continued on our walk through Soho and headed back towards the Soho Grand.
Did a little window shopping at the Frye store along the way.
Dubbed “SoHo’s Living Room,” the Salon at the Soho Grand was the perfect spot to enjoy afternoon tea and a glass of bubbly. We lingered there until the sun set.
With our bellies still full from Raoul’s burger, we headed out for dinner at Rubirosa in the heart of Nolita.
The restaurant books up about a week in advance. So, we were lucky to get a reservation at a hi-top table in the bar, which we both preferred.
We shared a Caesar Salad. David had the Spinach Pappardelle with gorgonzola crema, wild mushroom ragu, pecorino and black kale. I went old-school Chicken Parm with homemade spaghetti alla chitarra. The sauce was crazy good!
We told the manager that we were from Philly and the last time we came, we liked it so much that we came back the next day for pizza! We told him that we were thinking about doing the same thing again!
When they sent out the home made ricotta cannoli, that sealed the deal! We would be back the next day.
After dinner, we bundled up for the walk back to the hotel. It was frigid cold! We were warmly welcomed as we arrived. The view from our room was even more beautiful at night. You could really see the Empire State building lit up in all its glory.
Good night, New York!
In the morning, we decided to have coffee in the “Living Room” before we checked out. It’s such a warm and inviting space. It was hard to leave.
Just off the main room, is the Club Room. A beautiful space for hotel guests only, where they offer cocktails and serve dinner. DJs and live performances are scheduled throughout the week. The Club Room’s art collection features photographs by renowned fashion photographer Terry O’Neill, best recognized for his documentation of the celebrities and fashion styles of the 1960s.
Pizza time at Rubiosa rolled around before we knew it! We packed up, checked out and found our way back to the Nolita favorite.
These photos courtesy of Rubirosa
We were seated at a cozy table by the window and ordered 1/2 Classic and 1/2 Pepperoni. The pizza at Rubirosa is enormous and is absolutely to-die-for!
In fact, it’s so good that I am sharing two pictures of it!
We demolished it. Ate the whole thing. Yep, we did! Although, I must confess, David had a few slices more than I did 🙂
With our full bellies and smiles on our faces, we waddled back to the car and made our way back to Philadelphia.
Dallyn & David