24 Hours in NYC (x2 days): My Big Birthday, a Little Bubbly; and Beautiful on Broadway!

Posted on Tuesday, August 21, 2018


24 Hours in NYC (x2 days):

My Big Birthday, a Little Bubbly; and Beautiful on Broadway!

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With my great BIG birthday quickly approaching, David suggested we go to New York City to celebrate in style. I did some research and came up with two days filled with fun, food, and more food!

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Pictured with Vini Lopez at The Hooters’/Borgata show in 2016

As we got in the car to make our way to NYC, my phone rang…To my delight and surprise, it was Vini “Mad Dog” Lopez, the original drummer from Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band on the other end! David wanted my birthday to start out with a bang and was sweet enough to arrange for Vini to wish me a happy birthday. How cool is that!!!

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As I spoke with Vini on the phone, we headed up to the Big Apple on this gray Friday morning of August 17th and arrived in just 90 minutes.

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We wanted this trip to be over-the-top. So, we chose some very special restaurants. First stop, lunch at Stephen Starr’s Le Coucou. Awarded 3 Stars by New York Times’ restaurant critic, Pete Wells and named Best New Restaurant at the James Beard Awards in 2017.

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Le Coucou offers a two course prixe fix menu for lunch…

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We decided on the Velouté de Pommes de Terre (cream of potato soup); Terrine de légumes provençales (terrine of Provencal vegetables; Retour de Pêche (tilefish cooked with its scales, warm tomato vinaigrette, sea beans); and Bavette à la Bourguignonne (steak, bibb lettuce, escargots and butter, shiitake).

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The food, the service, the ambiance…even the soap in the bathroom was amazing! What a way to kickoff my birthday weekend! Thank you to Stephen Starr for making our lunch so special.

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Every time I walk by The Mercer Hotel in Soho, I tell David how much I would like to stay there. But, it’s hard to justify such an extravagance. So, a special thank you to my mother for this wonderful gift of two nights at The Mercer! And thank you to Sherri and Chris for the nice surprise.

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Upon check-in, we asked if an upgrade was possible. Good timing (a weekend in August, when most people are in The Hamptons) got us a King Deluxe with a soaking tub!

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After a little siesta, we made our way onto the streets of Soho. Just across the street, I found the famous Morrison Hotel Gallery. The walls are lined with the likes of the Rolling Stones, Marlon Brando, David Bowie and musical influencers of our times.


I also found myself eyeing these beauties at the Frye Store. But, made it out of there without making the purchase. Whew!

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After a walk around Soho, we cozied up in the lobby of The Mercer. The hotel is very respectful of their guest’s privacy. So, I waited until the lobby was empty to snap these photos.

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As 8pm approached, we Ubered over to TriBeCa to Locande Verde located in Robert DeNiro’s Greenwich Hotel. Another dining destination that has been on my radar for years.


Definitely an “in spot.” Locanda Verde was busy and bustling! We ordered the Tuna Crudo, Octopus, Squid Ink Linguini Frutti di Mare and Paccheri (Sunday night ragu & provolone piccante).


Pictured: Squid Ink Linguini frutti di mare, soppressata, shishito

Everything was wonderful. Ask Mr. Romance! He ate mine, too. LOL 😉

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A soft sprinkle of rain was falling after dinner as we made our way back to The Mercer. The lobby was buzzing with beautiful 20 somethings. We opted for a dip in the soaking tub before calling it a night.

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Rise and shine…and time for coffee in The Mercer lobby. Then an Uber ride to the West Village for brunch at the Waverly Inn, a staple in the Village since 1920!

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Known for the 1920s vibes. The dim lighting sets the mood for a very cozy and romantic atmosphere. 

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In 2006, Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter bought and refurbished the restaurant. A wonderful, witty mural by Edward Sorel graces its walls. We sat below Andy Warhol.

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We shared the Wedge Salad and the Burger. It was great. I think David was sorry that he didn’t get his own.

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The Waverly Inn was absolutely charming!

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Next stop, Beautiful on Broadway!

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The show was “Beautiful”. We both cried. It’s the music that we grew up with and it really tugs at your heartstrings. I’ve been singing Beautiful every morning when I wake up 🙂

We headed back downtown after the show. David took a nap. I went to look at those Frye boots again. Then, it was time to get ready for the BIG BIRTHDAY DINNER at Carbone in Greenwich Village. This is the one I’ve been waiting for!

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We got all dressed up! I was so excited to wear my new rockin’ skirt…A birthday present from Mr. Romance.

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David looks like he fits right in…he has that mobster/Harvey Keitel vibe. LOL!

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Portions are huge and served family-style. So, we ordered the Caesar Salad, Meatballs, Spicy Rigatoni Vodka and Veal Marsala (next time we are getting the Veal Parm, David!).

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Our captain was fab. We were going to order way too much food. But, he steered us in the right direction.

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We (I mean I) finished the meal with a big fat gorgeous piece of Chocolate Cherry Cake with chocolate ice cream on top. YUM!!!

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We ended this incredible night back at The Mercer, where we took advantage of that great big soaking tub again. This time, I found the bottle of bubbles!

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This much fun should be illegal…But, it’s not! Haha!

We ended the BIG birthday weekend with a walk over to Russ & Daughters on the Lower East Side. Unfortunately, it was a 90 minute wait for a table. So, we had a bite elsewhere.

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We made our way back home, where our little Eli waited patiently for us.

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Bye bye New York City. Thank you for another incredible visit. Special thanks to my beautiful mother, Roz and to my wonderful husband, David for making this the most special and fabulous birthday EVER! My heart is full (and so is my belly).  


Dallyn (and David, too)