Thiis is the downtown version of uptown Madison Avenue, with designer shops dotted along Gansevoort St., Washington St., W. 13th St. and W. 14th St.
Don’t miss the Diane von Furstenberg flagship store, topped by her studio and penthouse. She was an early MePa arrival who helped flip the neighborhood from frumpy to fashionable. The store showcases her iconic wrap dress along with handbags, shoes, skirts and such seasonal items as swimwear for summer and coats for winter.
Outfit yourself at the NYC flagship of this Parisian rock ‘n’ roll–inspired label Zadig & Voltaire, where you’ll find delicate cashmere pieces, customized studded knitwear, washed-silk camisoles and hip-hugging denim.
Get set for the outdoors at the Patagonia, North Face and Columbia Sportswear stores.
It’s easy to lose yourself in Printed Matter, a nonprofit organization’s bookstore, full of thousands of art publications (with more available online). Printed Matter stocks all kinds of hard-to-find old and new books and materials, including art and photo titles.
Test drive the latest gear at the Apple Store and the Samsung Store, where you can also don a space suit and take a virtual reality walk on the moon
Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s sprawling Asian restaurant, which first opened its doors in 2004, focuses on the street food the owner enjoyed during his travels in the Far East. The menu offers everything from charred chili-rubbed beef skewers with Thai basil dipping sauce to caramelized banana with spiced milk chocolate sauce.
Catch is another cavernous, Asian inflected seafood scene, while Scarpetta is a casually sophisticated Italian restaurant with a tempered vibe, and Buddakan, Carrie’s favorite downtown hangout in Sex and the City is still a great place to sit at the bar and have a dinner of dim sum and drinks.
When the weather is nice, head for the rooftop terrace at Brass Monkey or the pretzels, beer and ping-pong at The Standard Biergarten, both of which attract a younger Gen X crowd. For late-night, be dressed to impress the guys guarding the velvet ropes to get into the Standard’s rooftop Le Bain, one of MePa’s most exclusive nightclubs.
Or, head for the quieter and less exclusive bar The Tippler, below Chelsea Market.
There’s another great bar at Intersect by Lexus. While there’s usually one racecar or “regular” car on display, this is really a showcase for food and drink, with rotating international and celebrity chefs.
Evelyn Kanter also is the author of several NYC and Hudson Valley guidebooks, including my latest, 100 Things to Do in NYC Before You Die.
Purchase autographed copies by emailing [email protected]