We sat down with Tom Marchant, co-founder of cutting-edge travel company , who gave us his take on what to eat, drink and do during a visit to NYC. A travel innovator who splits his time between ’s offices in London and New York, Tom spent five years living in the city, making these recommendations the perfect balance between local favorites and new-to-the-city spots.
1. What are your top three neighbourhoods in New York and why?
West Village – Offering a slightly calmer vibe in the city that never sleeps, the West Village, to me, is a peaceful oasis in central Manhattan that’s unrivalled. With chilled restaurants, cozy bars and some of the best boutiques in the city, I never tire of the West Village’s charming cobbled streets. Lower East Side – I lived here for three years during my time in New York and its energy still excites me. The Lower East Side is a true melting pot, where every street corner buzzes with a rich slice of New York’s multi-cultural history. But, be warned, this is more of a weekday spot, so if you’re visiting for the weekends, I would explore elsewhere. Nolita – This neighborhood offers the perfect blend of character, calm and chaos. The area itself is just a few small few blocks wedged between Soho and Little Italy, but it has some of the best restaurants and art galleries in the city, plus there’s always a unique bar that has its own palpable energy to discover.
2. What’s always your first port of call after touching down at JFK?
This all depends on timing. If it’s late afternoon and I’ve got some time to get across to the West Side, it would be a cold beer at the Ear Inn while the sun is setting over the Hudson outside. If the sun’s down, I’d head over to Spring Street and grab dinner at Rintintin. Or, when I land in the morning, I always grab breakfast and sit in Madison Square Park – nowhere offers the same sense of place.
3. Everyone that lives in New York has their own hidden gems, what are yours?
Tough one – there are so many. Argosi Books on East 59th Street has an unrivalled collection of first editions - at a time where purchasing literature is semi-retired to the internet, a visit here will reignite your faith in the bookstore. Another favourite is Alife Rivington Club, it’s one of the best sneaker boutiques in the city and is conveniently located just a few blocks from Excuse My French - one of the best little bars in the Lower East Side.
Co-founder of cutting-edge travel company Black Tomato