For design lovers, there’s always something going on in the city that never sleeps. With inspiration around pretty much every corner, we turned to some of our favorite NYC locals, who also happen to be top interior designers, to help curate our Design Insider’s Guide to New York City. This chic group shared their favorite places to stay, eat, shop, and get inspired, plus the one thing you shouldn’t leave town without doing! Planning the perfect Big Apple getaway just got that much easier.

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Colorful bedroom with Large Gold and Red Headboard and Red and Blue Floral Wallpaper.
The Crosby Street Hotel. Photo by Simon Brown.

Where to Stay

The Surrey is very chic and it’s in a fantastic location. It’s a real Upper East Side experience.” —Alyssa Kapito

The Nomad Hotel – great restaurant, interiors, and location. You are in the center of Manhattan and are so close to the great shopping in Flatiron and Chelsea.” —Neal Beckstedt

The Bowery Hotel.” —Sasha Bikoff

The Mark Hotel. I love Jacques Grange’s decor and the food is amazing.” —Lilly Bunn

The Crosby Street Hotel in SoHo. Kit Kemp designed the space impeccably. It feels like a friends amazing home – cozy and spectacular at the same time. The bar and restaurant are both fantastic too.” —Sara Gilbane

“I love the new Whitby Hotel and also an old favorite, The Greenwich Hotel. They’re both beautifully designed in an understated glam way. A lot of thought went into the hospitality as well, ensuring an indulgent and comfortable stay. I adore The Greenwich Hotel bathrooms which are all Urban Archaeology, and the upholstered walls and beautiful color schemes at the Whitby are sure to charm anyone visiting.” —Young Huh

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Plates of kale salad and flat bread on the menu at Barbuto
Barbuto via @barbutonyc

Where to Eat & Drink

The Polo Bar – the french fries.” —Alyssa Kapito

Via Carota in the West Village. I love their Olive All’ascolana or Tonnarelli Cacio Pepe.” —Neal Beckstedt

“The fish pasta at Kappo Masa.” —Lilly Bunn

Barbuto is around the corner from my apartment and the kale salad and JW chicken (as well as the JW margarita) are my go-tos.” —Sara Gilbane

“My office is right next door to Marta, so I go there all the time. Chicken meatballs, the Marta Mista salad, and the Macellaio pizza. Yum!!” —Young Huh

Sculpted figure and red, beige, and black painting on display at The Whitney Museum of American Art
The Whitney Museum of American Art via @whitneymuseum

Where to Get Your Culture Fix

“I’ve loved The Guggenheim since I was a child.” —Alyssa Kapito

The New York Historical Society on the Upper West Side – they have this great 18 minute video on the history of New York that is a must see. They also have a great restaurant that is perfect for brunch before seeing the exhibits.” —Neal Beckstedt

The Whitney. I love to get lunch (or dinner) at Santina, too. It’s just downstairs.” —Lilly Bunn

“There are so many hubs of culture in NYC. I love going to The Frick for a double dose of art in a spectacular NYC mansion from days gone by. It is such a special museum. I find it fascinating to see how a family lived in the space and it is amazing to see how it has developed over time.” —Sara Gilbane

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Upholstered armchair, throw pillows, textiles, and antique paintings for sale at John Derian
John Derian Company via @johnderiancompany

Where to Go For Vintage Goodies

“I’d say Chairish is pretty local since I can shop it from my desk! But if i had to pick an actual NY location it would probably be the Design District in the 60’s on the East Side. There’s a wonderful group of antiques stores in that area.” —Alyssa Kapito

“Not really local but not too far from the city – Laurin Copen Antiques in Bridgehampton.” —Neal Beckstedt

Antique Row on 60th between 2 and 3rd.” —Sasha Bikoff

The Flea Market on 25th street is always fun on a Sunday. I love vintage hunting at John Derian in the East Village.” —Sara Gilbane

Hayloft Auction. It’s in the Bronx and you can find the most extraordinary things at excellent prices.  I bought a 20 piece set of Baccarat crystal for $500- the cost of 3 glasses!” —Young Huh

People walk between buildings on the high line with lush greenery in New York
The High Line via @highlinenyc

Where to People Watch

Christie’s and Sotheby’s during sale season.” —Alyssa Kapito

The High Line – great spot to sit and watch both NYC residents and tourists mix.” —Neal Beckstedt

Central Park.” —Lilly Bunn

The High Line in the early evening. Have a glass of wine at Terroir at the end and you can people watch and look over the East River at the same time.” —Young Huh

Museum goers move about the great, marble hall of The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art via @metmuseum

Where to Get Inspired

The Metropolitan Museum of Art—love the sense of history and tradition you experience when visiting The Met. The collection housed there is so vast that I am able to see something new every time I go.” —Neal Beckstedt

“The West Side Highway because of the water.” —Sasha Bikoff

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. I love to casually walk through on a rainy day. I always get ideas.” —Lilly Bunn

“I love going to the antique shops all over the city for inspiration. 59th-61st between 2nd and 3rd and the fine arts building satisfy all the urges.” —Sara Gilbane

“I still love shopping at all the small shops around the city! Creel & Gow, John Derian, Maison Gerard.” —Young Huh

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View of Manhattan island from the Empire State Building in New York
The view from the Empire State Building via @sophiaphiasophia

Don’t Leave Town Without…

“A little shopping at Barneys on Madison, followed by a late lunch at Fred’s.” —Alyssa Kapito

“Visiting New York City’s iconic buildings – Chrysler Building, Empire State Building, and the World Trade Center. The spectacular views you get to see from these buildings that make you realize how so much city is crammed onto such a small island is unbelievable. Plus it is so cool to see the contrast between old New York and new New York skyscrapers.” —Neal Beckstedt

“Walking through Central Park.” —Sasha Bikoff

“Visiting The Jewish Museum is such a unique and charming experience.” —Lilly Bunn

“Going to The High Line and a walking through the West Village!” —Sara Gilbane


Huge thanks to our NYC experts and be sure to check out their amazing work!

Alyssa Kapito
Neal Beckstedt
Sasha Bikoff
Lilly Bunn
Sara Gilbane
Young Huh

November 28, 2017

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