Staff Picks: Best Rooftop Bars in NYC

There’s virtually a rooftop bar in New York City for each taste: do you prefer classic or trendy? Sophisticated or edgy? Manhattan or Brooklyn? Here are our favorite rooftop bars that you can find throughout the city. So get out there, and get your drink on!

1- 230 Fifth (230 5th Ave, corner of 27th street New York, NY, 10001)

230 Fifth(Photo via 230 Fifth) Read more

Staff Picks: 5 Favorite NYC Female Jazz Artists

Staff Picks: 5 Favorite NYC Female Jazz Artists

We at Harlem Spirituals/New York Visions are huge fans of Jazz! Decades ago, we pioneered the development of tourism to Harlem with the creation of our famous Soul Food and Jazz tours, allowing us to share with you our passion for Jazz and for its birthplace: Harlem! Our guided tours showcase the neighborhoods’ most iconic jazz venues such as the Apollo Theater and the Cotton Club, as well as its most famous landmarks. And if you are interested in the history of Harlem, the Soul Food and Jazz tour is definitely a must-do: our guide will share with you everything there is to know about the neighborhood’s storied past and its ongoing renaissance, as well as some good tips if you ever want to come back on your own. Because there are always new things to do and see in the exciting neighborhood of Harlem!

This month, in appreciation of Women’s History Month, we are re-visiting the music of famous NYC female jazz artists whose compositions are still topping the charts as classics in this genre. These are our favorite NYC female jazz artists who not only strive for greatness, but also made and continue to produce music that inspires us in many ways. Here are our top 5:

1- Adelaide Hall
This native of Brooklyn started her career on Broadway in 1921 before working with Jazz heavy weights like Duke Ellington. Hall was also a major figure during the Harlem Renaissance before moving to Britain, where she had a well-known career. One of her biggest moment in Harlem was her performance in a 1934 show named Chocolate Soldiers, which opened at the Apollo Theater. The show received so much attention and praise that it helped brand the newly opened Apollo Theater get recognized as Harlem’s premier theater! In 1934 (again), her opening at the Cotton Club during the Cotton Club Parade was the largest grossing show there up to that moment. This was also the night when nitrogen smoke was used for the very first time to cover the floor of the stage. Needless to say that this was quite sensational at the time.

Songs to hear: “Ill Wind” – “Primitive Prima Donna” – “Creole Love Call” with Duke Ellington

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Staff Picks: 10 Holiday Gift Ideas for Anyone Who Loves NY

Staff Picks: 10 Holiday Gift Ideas for Anyone Who Loves NY

Christmas in New York City can feel like pure magic; the lights, the decorations and the holiday cheers. The city can be the ultimate representation of a dreamy city holiday. If you’ve been in the Big Apple during the holiday season before, there is no doubt that you will miss it around this time of the year regardless of your present situation. For New York lovers who can’t make it here this year as well as those who are in the Big Apple for the holiday, we’ve gathered some of the gifts that will warm up the heart of anyone who is in love this incredible city.

1- The “Humans of New York” book
This is especially great for people who are interested in real stories and photos of everyday New Yorkers. – $19 from Barnes & Noble

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Staff Picks: Biking in New York City

Staff Picks: Biking in New York City

Carine and the Duke in New York City
Carine and the Duke in New York City

At Harlem Spirituals, we are passionate about travel and leisure. In an effort to always bring you an insider’s perspective on New York City, we are handing the keyboard to our staff in a new monthly series called Staff’s Picks. Our experienced staff will share with you their tips, tricks and twists to get around the city like a New Yorker!

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By Carine

I’ve been living in New York for the past five years, and I’ve been biking here for the past three. This year we had a very long winter, and my reunion with the Duke – that’s my bike’s name* – felt like heaven.

Many people see New York as a chaotic and dirty city, but it’s actually one of the most bike friendly cities in the country with over 700 miles of bike lanes across the five boroughs, several bike share programs and our very own cross-borough bike race.

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Staff Picks: New York City Cruises

Staff Picks: New York City Cruises

 At Harlem Spirituals, we are passionate about travel and leisure. In an effort to always bring you an insider’s perspective on New York City, we are handing the keyboard to our staff in a new monthly series called Staff’s Picks. Our experienced staff will share with you their tips, tricks and twists to get around the city like a New Yorker!

Smoggy New York Skyline, Brooklyn Bridge
Smoggy New York Skyline / by Mathilde

By Mathilde Read more