Ask The Cheaping Girls: New York City!

Hello Lovelies!

This week’s question comes from our friend and fellow shopper Kelly.

“We're going to New York in July...Have any shopping suggestions?”

Well, first of all we LOVE LOVE LOVE New York. No matter what you do, you will have a fabulous time. And, second of all, the shopping is unbeatable.

So, take your NoDoz because this is going to be a long one!

The Cheaping Girls

P.S. We are going to New York in the fall and we would love to hear about your favorite places too!


Rainbow – A Must!
380 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10018 Phone: (212) 947-0837

Don't expect any fancy racks or name brands at Conway; the store is complete with bins and bins of bargains. And for some reason the shoppers there are SUPER grumpy. Like say hypothetically you accidentally bump into someone as you’re walking by and you say 'Oh! Sorry! Excuse me!' and they turn around and say ‘Bitch!’, don’t be offended. 35th Street & Broadway (212) 967-3460

Canal Street in China Town
This is the place for $5 pashminas, purses, costume jewelry and knock-off designer items. Just pick a spot on Canal street (Canal and Broadway is a good place to start) and wander up and down both sides. I personally (this is Natalie) do not like to buy knock-offs (I know, it’s weird, but I work in marketing so I have this bizarre adoration for companies and designers that have earned their respected brand names and therefore their high prices…), BUT if you are OK with knock off items, this is the ultimate place to buy them. You need to know what you want BEFORE you go and preferably bring pictures with you. Knock-off items are kept tucked away in drawers and secret back rooms because of crackdowns by the copyright police. Also, don’t be surprised if you are taken into a scary back room, scary back alley, or down some scary stairs to see the entire stock.

Random Boutiques
We love a ‘pop-in’. There are lovely little boutiques in every neighborhood in New York. Don’t be afraid to just pop in, take a quick look around and stay if something looks good or pop right back out. We’ve found some of our favorite purchases in really random places. Be sure to spend some time just wandering around, especially in SoHo.

Summer Street Fairs
We REALLY REALLY REALLY recommend finding a street fair. REALLY. Lots of fun things to buy and lots of fun delicacies to try.

Barney's New York
I personally (this is Natalie) love to get a bit dressed up and wander through the high-end shops and department stores on 5th Avenue and Madison Avenue to dream. Barney’s is absolutely my favorite department store. The design of the store itself is fabulous and it feels like everything in there was chosen specifically because it is a thing of beauty. Aaaaahhhh, Barneys...

Apple Store - 5th Avenue
Just walk by to see this beautiful store. And, it's open 24x7 so you can go in any old time you feel like it!

ABC Carpet & Home
This place is pretty expensive, but it’s great for inspiration and maybe a little splurge. Visit all six floors. 888 Broadway (between 18th-19th Streets)

To see over the top interiors visit Charlotte Moss Townhouse
20 East 63rd Street

Go to the H&M at 34th St

So Good Jewelry
Fun, cheap jewelry! Cheap as in $20 is the max for anything!
496 Broadway New York, NY 10012 (212) 625-9552

Henri Bendel
For the most luxe shopping visit Henri Bendel. Oh hey, while you're there could you pick up some Mario Badescu drying lotion for us? Thanks. 712 Fifth Avenue

Tinsel Trading
Martha Stewart's “favorite store in the world.”
47 W 38th St New York, NY 10018(212) 730-1030

Purl Soho
Lots of fun fabrics
137 Sullivan St # B New York, NY 10012(212) 420-8796

Century 21
Not real-estate: BEST DESIGNER DISCOUNT SHOPPING EVER. Right across from Ground Zero, if you're planning to go there. 22 Courtlandt Street 212-227-9092

Pearl River
Amazing Chinese everything store. Check out their website before you go. 477 Broadway, SOHO area between Grand St. and Broom St.


Shake Shack
You must hit the Shake Shack for a burger and shake. Madison Square Park. You'll never regret it.

City Bakery
The baked macaroni is heaven. 3 W. 18th St., New York, NY 10011 between Fifth and Sixth Aves. 212-366-1414

Magnolia Bakery
Hands down – best cupcakes in the world. You are missing out if you don’t go there. Wait in line, it's worth it. Plus, you might meet Kevin Spacey, one of our friends did. (He recommended the banana pudding). 401 Bleeker Street

Cafe Habana
17 Spring Street/Elizabeth St. The grilled corn is SO good, and you can get it from the take-out side next door

The Doughnut Plant
Only found in NYC and Tokyo. Hands down the best doughnuts in the world. Get the tres leche doughnut! 379 Grand - between Essex and Clinton - very near Chinatown!

Gray's Papaya on 72nd and Broadway
Plan to eat like 4 hotdogs instead of just 1.

Ollie’s Noodles
Very tasty and inexpensive Chinese food. We love the cold noodles with sesame sauce and Singapore Mai Fun. 200 W 44th Street 212-921-5988

Pop Burger
THIS IS A MUST!! These burgers are seriously good. Like In-N-Out good. Especially if you’re going out for a night of drinking, which I usually am (yep, Natalie here). Grab a quick burger up front or head upstairs or in the back (depending on which location you're at) for a groovy lounge scene.


When I have dined in New York it’s generally been on an expense account. But recently I discovered (surprise, it's Natalie again) that a great way to check out some of the most fabulous and beautiful restaurants in New York is just to go grab a drink at the bar and maybe order an appetizer. Face it, you're going to end up at Pop Burger or Gray's Papaya anyway. Here is where I went on my last trip:

Buddha Bar
Beautiful lounge, great drinks, even better music.

Bonus – there is a Pop Burger across the street!

Plunge Rooftop bar at the Hotel Gansevoort.
Fantastic views of the entire city and New Jersey.

La Esquina
Last time I was in New York, my fabulous host Constantine got us into La Esquina. I was told to ‘look hip’ (no pressure or anything). It looks like a corner taqueria, but if you’re lucky, you can get a reservation and you are taken downstairs and through the kitchen to a DEE-LICIOUS restaurant and very happenin’ bar.

This is the location of Ashton Kutcher's infamous 30th birthday party. I, however, had a fabulous experience there and am still disease free. The food is delicious, but the specialty cocktails are even better.


Miss T said...

ok, so I'm going next week to NYC for work and this was a nice surprise as I was planning on what to do during the evening hours and weekend. I can't wait to hit all the shops & central park. If you girls haven't checked out food cart dining, NYC has the best! Check out the Halal (Mid-East/Meditteranean cuisine) at the corner of 53rd & 6th, across the street from the Hilton. Swing by anytime between 6p-3am & look for the cart with 20 people waiting in line at anytime(there are 4 other identical carts on each corner). You can get an awesome & delicious meal for under $7. Don't forget the white & red sauce!

Kate said...

Natalie! You are so funny! I love your writing. Janaan also told me funny stories about you, i guess they were all true :-) I can't wait to go to NYC now. I mean i've always wanted to go but now i'm super excited. Thanks for starting my day off with a good laugh!