For the past few years, the Hubs and I have made a point of taking a fun overnight trip in the heart of the bitter cold Northeast winter. Nothing that involves getting on a plane or too much preparation or advanced planning…just a brief escape to help beat the winter doldrums. Previous destinations have included the fabulous Ocean House, the Mayflower Inn & Spa in Litchfield County and -this year- you guessed it…
we took a page from the Beastie Boys and hit up Brooklyn! In case you’ve missed it, several nabes in this burgeoning borough are considered to be the epicenter of culinary, fashion, design and product movements. The ultimate hipster haven. I had to see what all the cool kids are up to. The Wythe Hotel in Williamsburg became our home base for exploring.
A former factory on the Brooklyn waterfront,
the Wythe has been converted into a 70 room hotel with killer views of the Manhattan skyline such as this one you can catch from the hotel’s bar, the Ides.
The in-house restaurant, Reynard’s, is also a must do with its lofty ceilings, French tiled floor (everywhere in Brooklyn and completely gorgeous)
and amazing menu.
Yum! We enjoyed both breakfast and lunch there and I’m pretty sure we tried it all. Don’t miss the fried chicken sandwich, the Dutch pancake or the coffee! I could go on a bit about the rooms…
They have a spacious, airy feel with interesting touches like reclaimed wood on the ceiling, statement chandeliers and expansive views of the cityscape.
We have to talk for a minute about this wallpaper…which is used as an accent throughout.
Dubbed “Wythe Toile” and designed specifically for the hotel, it’s made by “Flavor Paper” and printed in Brooklyn, natch. The scenes on the paper are all derived from neighborhood landmarks. Y’all know how I love a detail!
…So I couldn’t help taking home the coordinating notepad that is also locally printed and produced
and left alongside various other locally sourced goodies at the minibar. Of course any of these nifty gifties can be charged to the room. Merci!
Hyper local products in the shower…
Tito’s in the freezer…
Nuff said. Check it out. Let’s get to the neighborhood exploring. First stop, the Matcha Tea Bar just up the block from the Wythe.
Matcha is a potent, fine powered green tea that’s loaded with antioxidants. It’s so good. Why is there not a Matcha Tea Bar in Greenwich? Put it on the list. Grab a matcha tea or latte there before hitting the shops.
My faves? Concrete + Water Lifestyle emporium:
For colorful pillows, a well edited book selection
great stationery and lots of little treasures for the home. We found a fun urban “mall” in one corner of the neighborhood with an adorable toy store
and a kitschy sweet shop filled with retro candy.
Even if you’re not a surfer (or a wannabe surfer like me), you have to check out Pilgrim Surf + Supply’s flagship, which is a visual feast with yards of colorful surfboards
and surfer street style.
I have to say my favorite Brooklyn pastime is just soaking in the urban scene. If you’re into taking pics, definitely bring along your camera so you can make like Annie Liebovitz and capture some of the cool street art (like this little mural I snapped in front of American Apparel)
and the neighborhood landscape. Loved this bright firehouse door with the pop of saturated color.
Let’s get back to the food and drink, shall we? There is much wood to be chopped in this culinary haven. If you’re a serious beer drinker, be sure to hit Torst
where there’s a laundry list of craft varieties and out-of-this-world bar snacks thanks to the Michelin star restaurant that it shares space with. We also stopped at Hotel Delmano for drinks…
A moody, mercurial speakeasy with a fabulous cocktail list and great people watching. You have to go!
Finally, we loved Meadowsweet for dinner. (There’s another divine French tiled floor!)
with its tempting cocktails
and simple, well edited menu featuring fresh, locally sourced selections.
And that’s a wrap on my twenty four hours in Brooklyn. I left a huge fan. It is a little tricky to get there, so if you’re coming from the suburbs why not make an overnight of it so you can really soak in the flavor.
And when you leave, be sure to spread the love!
Photos: CT, The Wythe Hotel, Torst, Hotel Delmano, Meadowsweet, Phillip Klinger, Beastie Boys.
|HUGS & KISSES & NEW YEAR’S WISHES!||SPRING FORWARD!|
|HUGS & KISSES & NEW YEAR’S WISHES!|