This week we are taking you stateside, where you'll start with five nights across the river from Manhattan in hot Brooklyn neighbourhood, Williamsburg. Visit the hustle and bustle of Manhattan for the classic Big Apple experience by day, but escape back to leafy Brooklyn for easy-going evenings away from the skyscrapers and honking horns. Wander through the residential streets past stylish brownstones, relishing in the relaxed feel of Brooklyn's bars, boutiques, galleries and trendy eateries.
Then, hit the road and head out to Montauk for your final two nights, mingling with weekending New Yorkers and glamourous Hampton's elite in this charming seaside village.
Find the full itinerary
What to eat and drink
Your base in Brooklyn is hip hotel The William Vale, spread across 14 floors in an innovative building conceived by local architects Albo Liberis. The futuristic design is translated in the room decor as well, each with modern furnishings and a private balcony from which to admire the spectacular skyline. Hang out on the roof terrace, where there is a vast pool—the largest in NYC—and a rooftop cocktail bar complete with panoramic city views. Whilst you're up there, try The Brooklyn Cocktail, one of five cocktails each named for one of the boroughs for New York City. Similar to a Manhattan, it is set apart with its specific bitters and the addition of Maraschino Liqueur.
Your Hamptons hideaway is The Montauk Beach House. More like home-from-home than a hotel, this small, laidback property offers understated elegance through vintage décor with a contemporary twist. Though only a short walk from the sea, you won’t want to miss an afternoon lounging by the hotel’s pools with the chilled DJ set playing in the background. For an authentic taste of Montauk, dine on ‘The Montauk Starve to Death’ said to originate from Montauk resident Frank Tuma Senior and his mother’s cooking, made from whatever they could find to eat at the time along with the day’s catch.
What to watch
This compelling TV drama stars Dominic West and Ruth Wilson as protagonists Noah and Alison. Playing out over five seasons, the show details their extramarital affair and the subsequent fallout. The gorgeous setting of Montauk is almost as spellbinding as the story itself.
Starring Oscar-winning actor Rami Malek, this gripping psychological thriller showcases various settings across Brooklyn and Manhattan to great effect. Malek stars as Elliot Anderson, a cybersecurity engineer and hacker battling clinical depression and anxiety whilst trying to do good for the world.
Girls is set in and around Brooklyn. Starring and written by Lena Dunham, it focuses on her character Hannah Horvath and her friends, detailing their lives as 20-somethings. Lauded at the time for reinventing the female ensemble piece, it is also a prime example of millennial drama.
Brooklyn by Colm Toibin
This 2009 novel by Irish novelist Colm Toibin is his 6th book and is set between Brooklyn and Ireland in the 1950s. It tells the story of a young woman, Eilis Lacey, who crosses the ocean to make a new life for herself in Brooklyn. Far from home and homesick, Eilish tentatively begins a new life and finds friendship and love. However, she then receives news which sends her back to Ireland, thus forcing a choice between love and duty.
Montauk by Nicola Harrison
This debut novel by Nicola Harrison tells the story of Beatrice Bordeaux, who spends the summer in Montauk sequestered by high society wives on the behest of her husband’s investment. She finds herself increasingly drawn to the natural beauty of the Montauk coastline and inhabitants. There, she encounters a man who forces her to face incidents from her past, eventually questioning her future with her husband.
Last Exit to Brooklyn by Hubert Selby Jr
This 1964 cult novel has become somewhat of a modern classic. It takes a harsh and uncompromising look at the lower class Brooklyn of the 1950s. Causing a stir upon its release in the 60s, the idiosyncratic prose can be challenging as it tells the tale of New Yorkers and their worst excesses. Yet, it is clear that there are moments of tenderness and reflection in these difficult portrayals.
What to listen to
Transformer, Lou Reed
Brooklyn born Lou Reed is responsible for classics both from his time in the Velvet Underground and then as a solo artist. His 1972 album is seen by some as his definitive piece of work featuring classic songs Perfect Day
and Walk on the Wild Side
, the latter gaining widespread acceptance and acclamation despite its gritty subject matter.
Brooklyn Baby, Lana Del Ray
This atmospheric Lana Del Ray tune comes from her album Ultraviolence
and uses samples from Lou Reed, jazz and beat poetry—all mixed in together, this creates a glorious paean to Brooklyn which is both evocative and mysterious.
Playlist inspired by Surf Lodge, Montauk
Have a listen to
compiled by popular Montauk boutique hotel, Surf Lodge. In lieu of actually being there, this is the next best thing and wonderful for sunny daydreaming.
Learn something new
Home to some of the world’s finest cultural institutions, New York has many museums and collections worth exploring. Whilst stuck indoors, you can still experience some of them—enjoy virtual access to their buildings and collections with Google Arts and Culture; stay entertained and inspired until you can experience the real thing in person. The
are all discoverable from the comfort of your sofa.
For more information about this holiday, or to enquire about any future travel bookings, please contact