STAYCATION Ideas in the Metro Area

You don’t have to leave the New York metro area to enjoy the summer.   There’s so much going on for families, couples, and groups. Check out some of the places we recommend for foodies, city dwellers, and area visitors.  Whether it’s an outdoor concert, bus tour, sailing excursion, museum trip, or an evening at one of the city’s rooftop bars, a “Staycation” offers new ways to explore and enjoy.  (Click on a name for more information.)

Manhattan by Sail (Sailing from Lower Manhattan) You’ll love sailing when you board one of the company’s impressive ships that allow you to enjoy the beauty of NYC from the water.  Their grand sailboats, Clipper City and Shearwater, sail daily and there are even special excursions that include “Happy Hour,” “Sunset Sail,” “Lobster and Beer Lovers Sail,” “Burlesque Sail,” and “City Lights with a DJ.”

Surf City (Jersey City, NJ) Just across the river is a seasonal venue that brings beach life to Jersey City complete with music, dining spaces, and outdoor bars. The venue features delicious cuisine by Chef Franco Robazetti, a recent Chopped Winner. Enjoy casual and elegant fare including lobster specials while you take in sweeping views of the Hudson River and NYC.  Surf City is easily accessed by mass transit.

Lincoln Center Out of Doors (Multiple locations in the boroughs)  Free and open to the public, there are performances to suit every taste and style.  In the coming weeks, There’s “Soul at the Center” on 7/24 in Damrosch Park; La Casita on 7/27 at Hearst Plaza; and Blood Orange Kelsey Lu on August 1 in Damrosch Park.  Check out the full schedule and plan to enjoy.

NYC Restaurant Week (Throughout the five boroughs) This summer’s restaurant week actually lasts for four weeks from Monday, July 22 to Friday, August 16. There are 380 restaurant participating that offer a 2-course lunch for $26 and a 3-course dinner for $42.  Beverages, taxes and tips are additional. There may be restrictions, so be sure to get the details from each of the eateries. Favorites include Tavern on the Green (Upper West Side), The Capital Grille (Multiple locations), MIFUNE NYC (Midtown East), Antica Pesa (Williamsburg, Brooklyn), Dos Caminos (Multiple locations), Bar Boulud (Upper West Side), Scarpetta (Nomad), Victor’s Café (Times Square), and Blue Fin (Times Square) and Red Rooster (Harlem).

SPYSCAPE (Midtown West) This is a destination for locals and tourists of all ages. In addition to exploring a series of challenges and discovering their “spy profile” promotions include “Spy School” where students can enjoy the museum’s program that is available Monday through Thursday after 4 p.m. When purchasing a general admission ticket with a valid student ID, they are eligible to receive one free general admission ticket to bring a fellow student to test their spy skills. “Missions and Martinis”are for those +21, Friday night’s call for a cocktail! From 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., join SPYSCAPE for a night of music, mystery and a complimentary drink. Consider it the perfect date night occasion, or hotspot for a night out on the town with friends. “007 x SPYSCAPE: DRIVEN”is where guests can step behind the scenes world of James Bond. This multi-sensory experience explores the creative process behind the 007 movies and reveals the secrets of James Bond’s iconic Aston Martin DB5. While there, guests can also investigate gadgets in Q’s lab, examine original concept art in Oscar®-winning Production Designer Sir Ken Adam’s studio and get a peek behind the scenes of Skyfall’s explosive finale.

On Location Tours (Multiple locations) Even if you think you know the city, there’s so much to discover on these themed tours.  On Location Tours feature comfortable, air conditioned buses that take you to sites that are fascinating.  Some of the tours include TCM Classic Film Tour, Gossip Girls Site Tour, Central Park Sites TV & Movie Tour, and many more. 

Rooftops Rule (Manhattan) There are many venues where you can enjoy refreshing cocktails, spectacular views and the relaxing feel of summer.  Some of our favorites include Refinery Rooftop, Gallow Green, Monarch Rooftop, 230 Fifth, CATCH Roof, and Loopy Doopy.        

The Whitney (Downtown) Now open to the public is The Whitney’s Collection: Selections from 1900 to 1965 that features a new installation of Calder’s Circus, a gallery of Edward Hoppers, and new acquisitions of important artists from the period. Don’t forget—the Whitney is open seven days a week in July and August, including special evening hours on Fridays and Saturdays until 10 p.m.

Photo Credit: Marina Kennedy

About Marina P. Kennedy (23 Articles)
Marina Kennedy currently writes for, and the Hemlock News in Pennsylvania. She likes to do articles and blog about the culinary scene, theatre, and travel. Marina and her husband Chuck enjoy the rich cultural experiences of the metropolitan area. She is absolutely delighted to contribute to Woman About Town.