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Blog

Ocean-bred and NYC-based fashion and lifestyle blog.

Filtering by Category: Travel

NYC Bucket List

Tiffany Geiger

Once we decided we were moving to Florida, I had 3 weeks left in NYC and so much I wanted to do! When you live somewhere you always feel like yeah but I could do that later and then you run out of time. I quickly snapped into gear and put together a NYC bucketlist for things I wanted to do before I was no longer a resident. Below, I've rounded up what I think are the NYC must-do's from downtown to uptown.

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1 - Highline: The Highline is an above ground park along the Hudson River. Grab a friend and wander. I prefer to start at Chelsea Market with a taco from Los Tacos No 1 and walk uptown. 

2 - Row boats in Central Park: We were skeptical, thought we'd be bored quickly but we weren't. It was beautiful. It's cash only though so plan accordingly.

3 - Shakespeare in the Park: A community performance of Shakespeare held in the ampitheatre in Central Park on Saturday nights in the summer. Here for how to get tickets. You can bring in food and drinks. We packed cheese and crackers and a s'well bottle of margaritas. I suggest you do the same. Though they do have available for purchase at the theatre as well. 

4 - A drink at The Public Hotel rooftop. It's expensive and not worth more than 1 drink but the view is the best view I've ever seen of NYC. We're talking unobstructed 360degree views.

5 - Dim Sum in Chinatown. TBH I don't have a fave but it's a fun thing to do. Get a foot massage while you wait and the best cocktail you'll ever have from Apotheke

6 - MOMA: Constantly changing exhibits with some great classics - Van Gogh, Monet, etc. Best in the winter or when it's free on Friday nights. 

7 - Yankee Game: touristy but do it. You can find tickets pretty cheap. 

8 - Eat. My two staple must do restaurants when anyone asks for a suggestion are: L'Artusi, the best Italian you'll ever have. Trust me. and Uncle Boon's, it's Thai but when you think of Thai food you think of Pad Thai and overly-sweet drunken noodles. Not here. Best meal of 2018 and reasonable as far as NYC goes.

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Guide to NYC: Dining

Tiffany Geiger

As you all know by now, I'm no longer an NYC-resident. So what a perfect time to finally write a dining guide to NYC. Stay tuned for my NYC bucket list coming in the next few weeks. There are 24,000 restaurants in NYC. That doesn't even make sense to me that's such a big number. I used to get so overwhelmed by the choices and panic and then never be able to actually pick a place to go - Cory refers to this as "falling down the Yelp hole." So, to save you the same stress in case you're a psycho like me. Below, are some of my absolute favorite NYC restaurants/bars.

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1 - Uncle Boon's

When you think Thai food you think Pad Thai and overly-sweet drunken noodles. Think again. Uncle Boon's is authentic and better than anything else you've ever had. They don't take reservations so put your name in and grab a drink around the block. Best part is it's reasonably priced.

What to get: My fave items are the green curry (Khao Soi Kaa Kai) and the raw scallops (Plaa hoi shenn) and you have to try the ice cream dessert. 

2 - L'Artusi

Take your hubby and sit at the bar. The best italian you'll ever have. Portions are fair and perfect for 1 person. Get a few things and share. 

What to get: The mushrooms appetizer & the ricotta gnudi

3 - Gramercy Tavern

New American. Sit at the bar and have a cocktail while you wait for a table in the tavern. Or if you're celebrating and feeling fancy, make a reservation 30 days in advance to try their tasting menu.

4 - Momofuku Noodle

They have the best ramen in the city IMO. They don't take reservations so put your name in and walk around the block for a drink while you wait. They'll text you when your table is ready.

What to get: the frozen alcoholic slushie and the pork ramen.

5 - Tacombi

Ok, these are top 3 best tacos in NYC but the cutest spot for lunch. Go with the girls, grab a pitcher and get into some tacos. 

I'm always looking for new places to try, what's your all-time favorite restaurant in NYC? Let me know in the comments I'd love to check it out. 

What to get: a margarita, the corn appetizer and an al pastor taco

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packing for a summer weekend getaway

Tiffany Geiger

Cory and I are lucky to have been traveling every weekend for the last month and a half! It's crazy. We've been to Philadelphia, Mexico, home to Florida and most recently to the Cape. So I've become quite the pro at packing for a weekend getaway. Only what you can fit in a carry on bag. Below are my essentials and tips for packing for a weekend at the beach. 

one - romper/jumpsuit

A romper or jumpsuit has become my recent go to outfit of choice for travel days because it's comfortable enough for the car or plane and also cute enough to head straight from the airport to lunch/the beach wherever I'm going! 

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two - bikini

I just assume every weekend getaway in the summer is to the beach - or at least it should be. So a bikini or multiple is a no-brainer. Below I've included the two I'm wearing above as well as some of my favorites.

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three - cover up

For a weekend getaway, I prefer a cover up I can wear over my bikini as well as an outfit on it's own. This romper above is my absolute favorite and always a piece I'll have with me on every beach vacation. It also works as an outfit during the day with a crop top or bralette underneath instead of a bikini. Jean shorts are a given for me as they're a summer staple. Easy over a bikini to the beach or on their own around town. 

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four - beach bag

A beach bag for your sunscreen, your book, your beach towel and whatever else you take with you to the beach. I recommend one you can also use as your personal item on the plane - 1 less thing to fit in your suitcase.

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five - jean shorts

Jean shorts are such a staple for summer. One solid pair and you're set for the weekend, wear them with any shirt, over your bikini to the beach, they're all you really need for daytime plans. 

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six - a flowy dress for dinner/evening plans

A dress for dinner out and evening plans. Bonus points if you can wear it day to night. The two above are my favorites right now for summer. 

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seven - jean jacket

A jean jacket is the perfect versatile piece for chilly summer nights in the Northeast. Wear it on the plane with you so you don't have to pack it and take up valuable space in that carry on. 

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eight - the right pair of sandals

Shoes are where it's easy to be tempted to pack 5 pairs just resist. Pack 1 great pair of sandals that go with everything and you can wear day to night. These Sam Edelman's are my go to, they're the perfect nude/brown that I can wear with jean shorts, a cute set, a dress to dinner, everything. 

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I also always pack my sunglasses, a big hat to block my face from the sun and a good book to read on the beach. I'd love to know what some of your essentials are to pack for a beach weekend?

Tulum Travel Guide

Tiffany Geiger

Cory & I went to Tulum for our honeymoon last week and couldn't be more obsessed. We both love Mexican food and the beach (I mean, we got married on the beach - read more about that here) so you can imagine how excited we were to check out Tulum. On the plane we started to second guess that we'd built up our expectations too much but you guys, it somehow exceeded our high expectations! I can't wait to go back and am already planning our trip back. If you're looking for your next beach vacation destination. Tulum is it. Ok, so let's get to the travel guide. 

Where to stay: 

  • Encantada - This hotel is directly on the beach with only 8 rooms. It has such an intimate feel. The hotel employees know you by name and start to remember your breakfast order and where you went for dinner last night. It's adorable. They felt like family by the end of our stay and we will definitely return here. The breakfast is included in the room rate & is DELICIOUS. Ask Carlos to make you a Tulum smoothie, it's the best way to start your day. And pink mints by the beach (rosemary, watermelon & tequila)! Ugh I want both of these now. 
  • Casa Malca - Previously Pablo Escobar's mansion and now a hotel with 35 rooms directly on the beach. This is on the south end of the strip (Boca Paila). The hotel is beautiful and so unique and the service is impeccable. The concierge knew our names from the minute we checked in (Hey Jorge & Daniel!) and were ready to assist however they could to make our stay in Tulum perfect. We split our time between here and Encantada because neither hotel was available for our full stay and we loved getting to experience two hotels. 
  • Be Tulum - Luxurious and a little pricier than other options but gorgeous with a beautiful pool and fun rooms. Def a spot to do lunch if you don't stay here. 
  • Ahau Tulum - Super cute hotel right on the beach with a delicious juice bar. 
  • La Zebra - Lively boutique hotel on the beach with a great restaurant and beach scene. 

Where to Eat & Drink: 

  • Arca - Mexican seafood restaurant outside. The best fish we've ever had. Book your reservation in advance by emailing them. They say they're cash only but we were able to pay with a credit card. And order a mezcal cocktail!
  • Hartwood - Sceney farm to table Mexican seafood restaurant. Another one that you have to book 30 days in advance. Their reservations open the previous month for the following month (i.e.: June 1 reservations open for the month of July). We unfortunately didn't get to go here as none of it is under cover so our reservation got rained out but next time we definitely will! This place is cash only. 
  • Casa Jaguar - A great scene for drinks and dinner. We booked a table late on a Thursday night and then hung around after for their weekly Jungle party (every Thursday night). We had & would recommend the pork belly tacos and the whole fish. I'd also suggest making a reservation by emailing them.
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  • Chamicos - Stop here on your drive from Cancun or when you do the cenotes as it's about 40 minutes north from Boca Paila (the main strip on Tulum Beach). It's all outside on the beach so go on a sunny day and wear your bikini. Order the ceviche & a margarita and hang out in the hammocks afterwards. There's an imposter in town so make sure you go to the right location. It's on an unnamed road and on the beach! Google maps first took us to the imposter.
  • Gitano - Didn't have dinner here but the coolest most instagrammable restaurant for after-dinner drinks. They're known for their mezcal cocktails. You can also make a reservation on OpenTable
  • Antojitos la Chiapaneca - A taco stand in town and they don't speak English so break out your best Spanish. Get anything and everything. The best tacos I've ever had. We had 7 different things and it was $2 at the end. They're open until midnight so it's a good after dinner option too if you just can't peel yourself off the beach. Go crazy! 
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  • Nomade Tulum - Sit outside on the beach for lunch. I recommend the ceviche and a spicy margarita. 
  • Be Tulum - Didn't get to eat here but super cute hotel worth checking out. Stop by for lunch if you have time. 
  • Nu - MUST GO. A new restaurant that opened this year across the street from Encantada. Once the word gets out this will be a place that you'll have to book far in advance like Arca and Hartwood. The chef here also is the chef at Encantada during the day. We had life changing grouper carpaccio here. Also the beans & rice are delicious as an appetizer. And the corn dessert! I don't remember what it's called but it's corn ice cream and a corn cake of some sort. I dream of it every night. 
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What to do: 

  • Ride bikes - Most hotels offer bikes to borrow included in your rate. There is a main strip with all the hotels and restaurants and biking is the best easiest way to get around. It was also super fun to just ride up and down the street throughout the day and pop into shops or bars for drinks and snacks. 
  • Cenotes - Cenotes are natural sinkholes and absolutely gorgeous. It's such a cool thing to check out! Wear your bikini for swimming. We did Cenote Calaveras it's $5 per person. It's small and beautiful and wasn't very crowded when we went. Also heard Sac Actun and Gran Cenote are great! They're bigger and about $35 each. This was a great rainy day activity since you're already planning to swim anyway.
  • Tulum Ruins - Go first thing in the morning (opens at 8a) before it gets busy and you can head to the Cenotes from here. I don't remember how much it cost to enter but it was less than $10. It was beautiful but it started pouring while we were here so we ran through it very quickly. 
  • Yoga - Tulum is known for yoga. Most hotels offer classes daily including: Sanara, Be Tulum and Casa Malca. 
  • Beach - Spend the day(s) at the beach. This is why you're really in Tulum. Beach days! The beach is beautiful. There is a lot of seaweed but the hotels do a good job at clearing it daily. A few of our favorite beach clubs were: Coco Tulum (do it for the insta), Ahau Tulum and La Zebra. We also loved spending the day at the beach at Encantada (super small and not much to attract you here unless you're a guest) and Casa Malca (the service is impeccable - an attendant offered to clean my sunglasses!) but not sure if Casa Malca allows non-hotel guests.

Travel Tips:

  • Get pesos before you go - lots of places are cash only and the ATMs there have had trouble with skimming. Plus the exchange rate will be better from your bank. All the hotels take credit card but lots of restaurants are cash only. 
  • Read everything about your hotel before you book. Tulum is very eco-friendly so some don't have AC or only have AC available at certain times of day. Some don't have showers. Some have shared bathrooms. Just do your research so you get what you want and aren't surprised if you show up and have a shared bathroom. 
  • Rent a car - Tulum is about 2 hours from Cancun. You can book a car for $100ish each way but we were able to rent a car for our whole trip for $55 for 6 days including gas! And it was great to have to drive into town for tacos or drive to the cenotes. The rental car place will try to sell you insurance (that's where they make their money) but you can refuse it. We rented from Hertz and I'd recommend doing the same. Book your car with your credit card that includes insurance (we used our Amex but I know Chase Sapphire and other major travel cards offer it also). 
  • Wear sunscreen - Cory and I are from Florida so we're familiar with some serious sun but Mexico is another level. If you're outside, just wear sunscreen. Gross but real talk - Cory's whole body is currently molting from a sunburn he got in 2 hours on our first beach day. I love SunBum, it's lightweight, not greasy & smells like bananas!
  • Drink the tequila, the mezcal, eat the local fish and produce - The food here is incredible. It's all so fresh and everything we had was amazing. Try new things! If you don't usually drink Mezcal, try it. You're in Mexico!

Tulum is one of our favorite places in the whole world now and my absolute favorite beach town. We will certainly make it an annual trip for years to come and hope to get it in twice this year by returning for our first anniversary this November. Any great Tulum spots I missed!? Let me know in the comments! We definitely want to spend some more time in town next trip. 

Philadelphia Travel Guide

Tiffany Geiger

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Cory and I recently took a day trip to Philadelphia. We're trying to get in a better habit of exploring our immediate surroundings and Philadelphia is surprisingly close to Jersey City. It was only about a 1.5 hour car ride and is about the same by train. 

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Where to stay: 

  • Hotel Monaco - A Kimpton property in an updated historical building in the middle of Center City
  • Loews Philly - I love a Loews property and this one is in the middle of center city and absolutely gorgeous. 
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Where to Eat & Drink: 

  • John's Roast Pork - the ultimate cheesesteak. It's super small so plan to get it to go and it's cash only! 
  • Barcelona Wine Bar - A cute wine bar with lots of offerings
  • Vesper - A cocktail bar with great seafood and a hidden speakeasy
  • Sabrina's Cafe - Delicious for brunch and BYOB!
  • Reading Terminal Market - One of the first public food markets before they were trendy with lots of food options! 
  • Root Restaurant & Bar - The trendiest little spot in Fishtown (reminded me of Williamsburg in Brooklyn) that was delicious. Great for a date night. 
  • Weckerly's - the cutest ice cream spot in Fishtown with home made ice cream sandwiches and artisan flavors.
 Dinner at Root. Clams special, cauliflower & caper zeppole & fried chickpeas 

Dinner at Root. Clams special, cauliflower & caper zeppole & fried chickpeas 

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 How cute is the inside!?

How cute is the inside!?

What to do: 

  • Liberty Bell - Sort of disappointing to be honest, but quick and easy (and free) to do so might as well check it off the list. 
  • Rittenhouse Row - A cute little street with beautiful townhouses.
  • Elfreth's Alley - The oldest residential street in America.
  • Fish Town - The Williamsburg of Philadelphia, a little hipster and young with some solid restaurants and bars.
  • Rocky Steps - Enough said.
  • City Hall - Right near the Liberty Bell
 Adorable Elfreth's Alley

Adorable Elfreth's Alley

Tips & Advice

  • We were surprised by the number of restaurants in Philadelphia that were cash only so be prepared. 
  • Philadelphia is a walking city but honestly it was way more spread out than we expected and ended up driving places more than we planned.
  • So much great food! Beyond the Cheesesteak. 

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