New York City during the holidays is truly magical. I got to go with Johnny last winter (our full New York City travel guide here) and it was such fun getting to experience it with him. This year, I went back with two of my girlfriends, Amanda from Pardon Muah and Amanda from Strawberry Chic. Of course, many of you know by now Johnny joined at the tail end of our trip (that was planned) and then proposed (that was a surprise to me!)!
A mix of work and play, I showed them some of the quintessential spots in Manhattan and we explored some new ones. If you’re thinking of taking a girls’ trip to New York City, use this as your packing guide of what to wear! New York can be so fun but also overwhelming because most people aren’t prepared. I recommend using the subway when you can and only Uber, Lyft and taxi for emergencies.
For reference, we were in New York for six days. We arrived early Sunday morning and left on a Friday night flight. It’s the perfect amount of time because we could enjoy the sights and sounds without rushing from place to place. Also, we got very lucky with the weather. It seems like we got a mix of everything: warm winter, snow, rain and typical cloudy days!
PINK AT THE PLAZA
As a reward for all of our hard work this year, we decided to stay at the famous Plaza Hotel! Definitely a splurge and treat, this was something on all of our bucket lists and we were very excited about. Plus, is it a New York City Girls’ Trip if you don’t stay at The Plaza? Just a heads up, holiday nights sell out quickly, so make sure you book in advance! Plus – the best deal will come directly from the hotel itself.
The day we arrived felt like a few dozen guests were also needing to check in early. Due to the overwhelming number, I think we got a special treat: an unexpected upgrade to a beautiful suite! We had a full living room, a massive bathroom with a shower that can fit five families, a tub and more! This was a total dream and so were all the sparkly chandeliers.
However, I don’t think I would stay at the Plaza Hotel again. The service wasn’t that great, especially for what we were paying. It felt as if staff knew they were The Plaza and therefore didn’t feel the need to attend to guests the way other hotels normally would. High Tea was also a fun experience, but I wouldn’t do it again.
CENTRAL PARK COZY
I can’t believe we got some snow in New York City! The weather can change quite quick so make sure you pack properly for your New York City Girls’ Trip in winter. Warm coats are a must! I’ve had my parka since 2014 and it still looks fantastic. It keeps me warm no matter how low temperatures drop. Plus, it packs very easily! If you might get inclement weather, don’t forget to bring along snow boots. I love this cream pair because of the higher shaft, easy slip on and off and how warm they are! While some shoes are just cute and not functional, these are the dream combo! If it’s extra cold pack foot warmers and put them in your snow boots!
BETTER WITH A BOW
Most of my New York City trips involve work, so I always bring one or two workwear looks. Plus, I feel like there are some badass women living in the city and because of them, I feel inspired to wear chic work outfits. I love the idea of a monochromatic work look and adding feminine touches to it. My crepe dress has a bow at the neckline and I finished off the look with a chic wrap coat. You will do a ton of walking, so comfortable shoes are a must! I love the suede over-the-knee boots, which are currently on sale for 40% off! They are super warm and comfy!
SIP & SHOP
During the holidays, Christmas markets pop up all over New York City! Not to mention, shopping, in general, is incredible. Grab something to sip on and shop during your New York City Girls’ Trip! Don’t forget your comfy shoes, too! Bryant Park is easily one of my favorite Christmas markets. Plus, the ice rink offers free admission, so if you have your own skates, it’s free! We grabbed some hot apple cider, explored the vendors and finished up with some yummy waffles from wafels & dingus, which was right by the rink. While you eat, you can watch people skating or come back in the evening when they have tree lighting ceremonies with competitive or professional figure skaters.
“ICE” SKATING AT WOLLMAN RINK
Wollman Rink has been a dream of mine since I was a little girl. Skating at this iconic rink is something almost every figure skater wants to do. Last year, Johnny and I got to skate here on what was basically private ice. I won’t go into details on our proposal story because that’s coming up soon! But let’s just say Amanda and Amanda knew there would be more to this “ice” skating session that I thought! If you’ve been following me for a while you know how much I adore Outdoor Voices. They generously sent us some sets to wear and I adore how we match. Plus, these outfits were perfect for going figure skating in!
MONOCHROMATIC AT THE TOP OF THE ROCK
Whether you’ve never been to New York or visit all the time, the Top of the Rock is always a good idea! It’s a gorgeous way to take in the city and the views always take my breath away. I would recommend buying your tickets in advance so you can have them ready to go on your phone! The line can get long because tourists will make last-minute decisions to go! If you want to go through the exhibits, you can, but we always skip to the top! Also, book tickets for early in the morning because that’s when it’s the least crowded. Another gorgeous time is during golden hour when the sun is about to set or setting.
I talk about these Retrofete sequin dresses in great detail on this blog post. Us gals got super lucky the day we shot this look because it was 60 degrees! It was warm, we weren’t freezing and everything worked out perfectly. These dresses are perfect for New Year’s Eve, weddings, special occasions and more. Plus, the quality is absolutely incredible and I have not lost a single sequin! Sequin clothing can be itchy but because this is fully lined, it’s very comfortable and doesn’t scrtch your skin. Worth every penny.
PLAID AT THE PALACE
Raise your hand if you’re a Gossip Girl fan! The home of Serena Van der Woodsen in the first season, the Lotte New York Palace has a classic Christmas tree out front and because of this, it’s a common tourist destination. While there are crowds here, you definitely can get an iconic tree photo if you are patient and willing to take a few dozen or more shots. Another option is to take the photo from the other side so you block all the people! Close to a lot of designer boutiques, make sure you’re ready to shop!