- New York
“I want to wake up in that city that never sleep,” sang Frank Sinatra, and since I first heard that song at age 5, I had dreamed of the same thing.
New York City is legendary, made even more famous by movies, books and music, and here I was, one flight away from feeling its heartbeat. Needless to say I was excited, and the icing on the cake is that I was about to explore the city while it played host to Super Bowl week celebrations. Natives, tourists and sports fans all enjoying one electric city; I couldn’t have asked for more!
The 48th Annual Super Bowl
When one of the biggest sporting events in the world comes to town, you can be sure of an unforgettable experience. The streets were buzzing with sports fans, all emblazoned with their teams’ jerseys and colours, and Times Square became Super Bowl Boulevard.
To encourage team spirit and celebrate such a momentous occasion, Macy’s projected NFL footage against the façade of their flagship Herald Square store. Inside, I found a shopper’s paradise and a whole floor dedicated to NFL fans.
Across the city, tailgate parties brought current and former NFL players and other celebrity guests together with locals and visitors alike to eat, drink and mingle.
Meet-and-greets with players, a fun part of the Super Bowl experience
Explore with a Bus Tour
New York City features some of the most magnificent architecture in the world, and I found one of the best ways to see it all is from the top of an open-air, hop-on and hop-off bus tour. My guide was a witty and knowledgeable local who really brought the city’s landscape to life. From the Empire State Building to the Flatiron to Wall Street, there is an abundance of sights to see. I even spotted a pair of ballet dancers practicing a piece live on Columbus Circle. I mean, where else in the world can you stumble on ballet amidst rush hour traffic?
Discovering NYC Landmarks
After discovering the city by bus, I was raring to explore by foot, and my first stop was Central Park. Taking a break on a park bench, I felt the hustle and bustle of the NYC streets melt away, but when I got restless, I donned a pair of ice skates and hit the famous ice rink. Beyond the myriad of nature and people enjoying the park, you will find cafes, shops and even a zoo.
You can also take a tour at Madison Square Garden, “The World’s Most Famous Arena.” Located in midtown Manhattan, Madison Square Garden hosts professional basketball and hockey games, boxing matches, and numerous performances and concerts. I highly recommend making time for the All Access Tour. Our knowledgeable guide took us behind the scenes for an in-depth look at the venue’s history and secrets, from the VIP suites to the locker rooms and even the keg room!
Along with the Statue of Liberty and the newly built Freedom Tower, the Empire State Building is a must-see. I would highly recommend the audio tour they offer, which is rich in history and interesting facts. Next, ride the elevator up to the 86th floor for a 360-degree view of the city. You can absorb more than just New York City from up here. On a clear day, I was told you can see up to four states away!
Bird’s-eye view of New York City, host of the Super Bowl
Staying in style at the Courtyard Central Park
Standing majestically a hop, skip and a jump from Times Square, The Courtyard by Marriott Central Park is the place to rest your head after a jam-packed day. This brand new, uber-modern hotel holds the title as the tallest in North America, commanding 68 floors and towering 229 meters high. It was the perfect place to dream about what amazing adventures Super Bowl Sunday would bring.
Taking a break from the football frenzy to enjoy creative cocktails