9. Shopping—It’s unlimited. The stores are huge and the options are amazing. It’s an experience like no other.
8. Decorations—Fifth Avenue is breathtaking at Christmas. My favorite is the big snowflake on Fifth Avenue. The store windows alone can put anyone in the Christmas spirit.
7. 30 Rock—Absolutely the BEST Christmas tree in the world hands down is the tree at Rockefeller Center. Add the skaters circling on the rink in the plaza and you have a festive scene that’s really fun to watch. Also, it’s nice to see tourists and locals alike taking in the wonder of our glorious city.
6. Parties—Every city has holiday parties but none can compare to the parties in New York City. They’re always very posh and upscale. It’s the Oscars every night in December.
5. Shows—Radio City Music Hall boasts the most famous Christmas show with the Rockettes kicking up their heels, but Broadway also has as a special feel as the shoppers take in a show as part of their Christmastime experience.
4. Restaurants—NYC is always one of the greatest places in the world for fine cuisine. The only thing New York has more of than shops are restaurants. What’s the saying about Rome? It takes a lifetime to see and experience it all. The same is true for New York cuisine.
3. Christmas Day Dining Choices—In the Midwest, the only place to find Christmas dinner away from home is some Chinese dive. Remember the final scene in A Christmas Story? That’s not far from what it’s like if your home cooked turkey fails in the Midwest. By contrast, in New York City there are many wonderful upscale restaurants open on Christmas day. I mean, come on, who has time to cook when there are so many gifts to open and enjoy?
2. Central Park & Bryant Park—Seeing the shows in the parks in the big city is truly wonderful. Central Park is awesome anyway but at Christmas with the skyline in the background and all the green and red garb—it just feels like you’re in Whoville or Bedford Falls. Bryant Park, which is located right behind the incredible library on 42nd Street, has a much bigger rink than 30 Rock as well as all kinds of little shops that look like houses with any gift you can imagine.
1. New York City—The city itself is just magical with this wonderful energy that makes the holidays truly the best time of the year. It also makes NYC the best place to go. Anyone who has been to NYC at Christmastime understands. And for those who haven’t yet experienced this phenomenon, you need to put it on your Christmas list for next year. Plan now though because it’s an annual destination for many people.
I wish all of you a Merry Christmas. And unless you’re also in New York, I’m sure of one thing. Mine will be better (particularly compared to all of you in California and Arkansas–it’s tough to enjoy the day with all that coal in your stocking)!