My Trip to the Big Apple
Hello Friends! Welcome back to my blog and Happy July!! I recently visited the big apple a.k.a New York. I spent four days there and although I could have done so much more, I had an amazing time and couldn't be more grateful to GOD for my experience. Today I will be giving you guys all the details of my trip and telling you about my experience. So, grab a cup of tea, wine, or water and let's begin. Here are all the details of my trip:
My mode of transportation: TRAIN
The first thing I booked for my trip was my transportation. I had three options from Boston; by air, train, or bus. I was going to try using the bus at first because it is the cheapest but I had seen so many bad reviews on it. There were so many complains regarding delays; one person said that their four hour ride turned to eight hours because of delays and traffic and I just couldn't deal with that honestly. I decided to go for the train because I knew that no matter the delays, it would still be faster and more comfortable.
Price: It was not that affordable but it was definitely cheaper than flying. I would say that at the time I booked it, It was roughly $50 less expensive than the plane.
Comfort: The train ride was nice. It looks exactly like the inside of a plane. There was an overheard compartment above the seats for your luggage and there was a tray attached to the seat in front of you for putting your food. I bought coach tickets and it was comfortable. The air conditioner was working. The only thing I didn't like about it was that like the plane, it's so uncomfortable to sleep. You can put your seats back but it still is very uncomfortable. And they also do not serve food on board so, I guess you have to bring your own food. I didn't bother asking the attendants if they were selling food because I just was not interested regardless.
Time: It took us approximately four hours to get to New York. With plane, it would take you an hour and thirty minutes to get to New York from Boston. But keep in mind that we stopped at eight stations prior to getting to the New York Penn Station. It was such a nice experience because I got to see many "rural" and interesting houses. Houses that were situated outside the city and really near to the sea or the tracks. I saw some people camping out in the woods, I saw weird looking houses and I saw a beautiful, gorgeous, magnificent house literally next to the track and surrounded by bushes. That person must really be hiding their success from the world 🤣. Overall, It was such a fun experience and I'd definitely use the train again.
Accommodation: Grand Hyatt
The next thing that I booked for my trip was accommodation. I stayed in Manhattan at the Grand Hyatt Hotel located at 109 East 42nd Street, New York, NY 10017.
Price: That place was not cheap at all. It was one of the cheapest hotels as at the time I booked it but it is still relatively expensive compared to other cities. I mean! it's New York, everything is expensive. It was roughly $170 per night.
Location: I loved the location of the hotel. It was one of the main reasons I was attracted to it before I booked it. It is right next to grand central terminal train station. It was also close to places such as; times square, the Empire State building, the statue of liberty, the museum of modern art and many more. It was a walkable distance from the hotel to these places but it was really hot so, sometimes, I would take Lyft.
Comfort: I was really upset at the hotel room because it was not what I expected it to be. For that price, I was expecting something grand but I walked in and it just looked like a mediocre hotel. The lightning was poor (this is important to me as a blogger), the air conditioner was not working properly (we were sweating every night), there was only one switch that controlled every light in the room and that was really annoying especially at night. I don't like sleeping in total darkness and I don't like sleeping with bright lights as well. I like a little lamp on usually and since it was one switch for all lights, I had to sleep with bright lights and that was really uncomfortable. For me, it was just a place for me to rest my head at night and I do not think the room was worth that price.
Food: My room did not come with any complementary food but there was a restaurant in the hotel called New York Central and they also had a 24/7 market in the lobby. The 24/7 market was pretty cool. Our room came with a $15 credit so we could buy items as much as $15 for free from the market every day. The restaurant was pretty nice as well. I enjoyed having dinner there but I would say that their breakfast was just overpriced. I had breakfast with them one day and I spent $35 on unsalted and soggy eggs, dry bread (their toaster was not working), fruits, soggy sausage and orange juice. Granted, it was a buffet but for the options given, I would not spend $35 on it. There was also No Room Service.
Hospitality: As for hospitality, I would say that everyone was really hospitable. There was a hospitality desk and a concierge for your use which was really nice. My reservation also came with touristy things such as a skyline roof tour and a grand central audio tour but I was not able to do that because of time.
1) Grand Banks
I visited Grand Banks on the 4th of July and I couldn't not eat there because It was fully booked. I was really bummed out by that but It was fun to visit, see the restaurant on the sea, take pictures, and tick that off my bucket list.
2) Empire State Building
I also visited the Empire State Building on the 4th of July and It was really fun. I went to the 86th and 126th floor of the building and the view was amazing. I could see the whole of New York from the 126th floor. The ticket cost $62.
I took this picture from the 86th floor
On the 5th of July, I visited SoHo. It is a neighborhood in Manhattan with designer stores, fancy chain stores and art galleries. It is a top shopping spot in New York and I had fun visiting. I visited Off white, Nike, Guess, Topshop, Zara, and many more.
I took pictures at some fun spots. The picture below was taken in front of a cute dog store called max bone. It was really beautiful.
4) Times Square
I also visited Times Square on the 5th of July. It was so crowded and there were some street performances happening. I enjoyed watching some performances and seeing the digital screens and billboards.
5) Madame Tussauds
On my last day in New York, I visited Madame Tussauds. I got to see many wax figures and I took many pictures. In the pictures above - P Diddy, Morgan Freeman, Anne Hathaway, and Frankenstein
In the pictures above - Judy Garland, Whoppi Goldberg, and Katniss Everdeen.
In the pictures above - The Queen of England, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, Lucille Ball and Martin Luther King.
In the pictures above - Helen Keller, Nelson Mandela, and Barack and Michelle Obama.
In the pictures above - The Iron Man, Thor, Hulk Buster (Veronica), and Hulk. I also got to see a marvel 4D short film. It comes with the platinum ticket which is what I purchased. It costs $53
In the pictures above - Lionel Messi, and Serena Williams
In the pictures above - Rihanna, Micheal Jackson, Pharrell Williams, and Ed Sheeran. Btw: Rihanna's wax figure is truly the worst. It looks nothing like her.
To end my already awesome trip to New York, I went to see the Hamilton Show. Guys!! My life truly changed in New York. I didn't think I'd be going to see a game changing musical in the theater any time soon but GOD was like "It's your time girl!! Have fun" 😂. It was truly a life changing experience for me. The story of Alexander Hamilton was told beautifully and the person who played Hamilton - Micheal Luwoye is Nigerian. I was so gassed and inspired by all the cast members. The person who played King George - Euan Morton was so funny. I laughed hysterically at all his scenes. And the person was played Marquis de Lafayette - James Monroe Iglehart was also so talented. He nailed it. In fact, everyone was so talented. I was inspired by all of them. This guy named Zelig Williams stood out to me. He was one of the dancers and It was so inspiring seeing him on stage. He is currently a junior studying commercial dance at Pace University. I loved his face and his dancing and when I read about him in the cast list I was even more impressed. It must have been such an awesome experience for him. I wish I could be in a game changing musical 😂.
Overall, my trip was amazing. I could have seen and done so much more but my time there was short and I am so grateful for the things I got to do in that short period. They were fantastic and I know that I will be going back to New York again especially to see another musical. That was truly my favorite part of the trip. Other things you should know about New York:
Environment: So many places are dirty and smelly. There's garbage on some roads and most places smells like pee. Immediately I got the station, I was greeted by hot air and the stench of pee all over the train station.
Traffic: The place is truly crowded and there is literally ALWAYS traffic. You should walk to as much places as you can and you should always research traffic levels if you want to use uber/lyft/taxi. I actually did not try using the subway because I was not going to anywhere that far from my hotel. The only place that I went that was far was the Grand Banks restaurant and I just used Lyft because it was hot and I was looking cute 😂.
People: The people were nice. I met some really nice Nigerians. Fun story - The attendant selling the Empire State building picture was Nigerian. My brother and I were not going to buy it but the minute she found out we were Nigerian she made us buy it 😂. She was really fun though and thank GOD the picture was not as expensive as I and my brother had expected. Lastly, I did not experience any rude people, racism, or catcalling actually. I guess I was just lucky.
That's all for this post guys. I vlogged some parts of this trip but I am not sure if I should put it up. Please leave a comment below letting me know if you would like to see the vlog on my youtube channel. Thank you guys for reading this post. Please do not forget to like, comment, share and Subscribe to my mailing list so that you always get first dibs on anything I post. See you guys in my next post.