A couple months ago, I was surprised with a bonus from work. Now typically, when there is extra money, I like to hoard it like Scrooge McDuck and put it in our savings account. If I could dive into it like a swimming pool and swim around it in, I totally would. But that sounds quite painful in reality. And dirty.
Anyways, at the time the Covid numbers were going down and we were starting to imagine a world where we could travel again. So, when this surprise money came, my husband encouraged me to do something fun just for me. Which honestly after almost 2 years of a pandemic seems quite decadent… something just for ME?! My first thought was that I could really use a girl’s weekend. And my second thought was that I REALLY want to get back out to NYC and see a show on Broadway.
New York City is only a few hours of a train ride from home, so it’s super easy to get up there and back. However, I haven’t made a visit to the “Big City” (as Jack calls it) since a work trip in 2017. I have NO IDEA how 5 years went by so quickly. Even worse, my last Broadway show was back in 2015.
So, I called up my friend Jenni and we booked ourselves a girl’s weekend.
Covid Safety Stuff:
Masks are required on the Amtrak train, unless you are actively eating or drinking. In order to enter any restaurant or the theater in NYC, we had to show our vaccination card and license. Every person who did a check really scrutinized them to make sure they matched. Masks were required indoors everywhere, including restaurants, stores, the museum and the theater. We wore them walking around outside too, because they kept our faces warm.
Hotel: The Row NYC
I wanted a hotel within walking distance to the show, so I opened a map of NYC and just clicked on all the hotel options. You would be surprised how many hotels only offer one bed in a room. However, I finally found The Row NYC with 2 full beds. It’s located at 700 8th Avenue and was less than a block from our theater. The room and bathroom was very small, but it was clean, convenient and not too pricey. The nightly rate was $133 and after taxes and fees and all that, it ended up costing $190 total.
As I mentioned, the Al Hirschfeld Theater was just across the street from our hotel. It couldn’t have been more convenient. The theater was gorgeous and the sets were incredible. The one thing that I really like to splurge on is close seats, so we had seats in Row F in the Orchestra Left section. We were the perfect amount of close to see everything going on, but not so close that there was awkward eye contact and incoming saliva from the actors. The cost for the seats with tax and all the fees was $250 per person.
The show was AMAZING. So, so, so good. Aaron Tveit was absolutely magical in the role of Christian. His voice was flawless and his acting was so fantastic I really believed that he totally fell in love at first sight. The actress playing Satine was… not as great. Her singing voice was amazing, but her acting had room for improvement.
We’re pretty sure that she doesn’t know what consumption actually is – as she seemed to think it involved a pained appendix and a weird cough face that was way too similar to a cat coughing up a hairball. At one point, both Jenni and I sat in our seats shaking with silent laughter. And then after the show, I had tears streaming down my face because we were hysterically laughing and recreating her hack-hack-hack face.
Oh and I also loved Robyn Hurder who played Nini. This woman is literal FIRE with her dance moves and voice. Absolutely amazing. All in all, the show was fantastic and memorable and hilarious and the soundtrack has been playing on my Spotify ever since.
What Else We Did
When we arrived on Saturday, after checking into our hotel we walked around a bit. There was probably 6 inches or so of snow and slush on the ground, but thankfully we both dressed in layers with boots so our feet magically stayed dry. We wandered our way around a bit and I ended up stopping by the M&M’s store in Time Square to get Jack a little souvenir.
That night we wanted to stay pretty close to our hotel and theater, since we didn’t have a ton of time and it was cold and snowy. So, we made some last-minute reservations at Carmine’s and destroyed a gigantic loaf of Eggplant Parm and a mixing bowl full of broccoli.
Then, on Sunday we hit up a nearby diner (The Times Square Diner) for breakfast. The breakfast portions were plentiful and the coffee was strong enough to put hair on your chest – as all good diner coffee tends to be.
After breakfast, we packed up our stuff from our room, checked out and dropped our backpacks off at the hotel’s bag check. We walked through Central Park and I made high pitched noises at every cute dog I saw. There were also lots of families sledding, but I didn’t make any noises at them.
From there, we decided to go to The Met and tickets cost $25 each. We spent hours walking miles around the museum. Some of my favorite exhibits were the sarcophagus exhibit (I can’t find a link online), the In America: A Lexicon of Fashion exhibit where I wanted to go shopping.
The knit look from Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen’s line The Row called to me and I want to wear it from head to toe. I was also obsessed with this beautiful Carolina Herrera shirt and skirt set.
I saw some amazing paintings I remember from art class in college.
We also checked out the Inspiring Walt Disney exhibit, which I really liked but no photos were allowed.
Oh, and we ate again. This time we hit up a nearby pizza place called Serafina Fabulous Pizza where the restaurant was gorgeous, the pizza was delicious, but ohmygoodness the seating was squished. Jenni and I were at a little table for two in the mid corridor section and I swear every time someone walked by, they were centimeters from bumping into us.
From there we made our way back to the hotel to pick up our bags and then took an Uber to the train station. All in all, I think we were in town for about 30 hours or so and it was a cold but super fun girls weekend!