Bucket list trip via NEC and Acela to NYP tmrw from WAS.

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Ziv

OBS Chief
Joined
Oct 25, 2011
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I have never taken the Acela and want to do so before it gets retired so I have whipped up a quick trip to New York to kill a few birds with one stone. I figure I will ride the NEC up there, take the Staten Island Ferry, see the Statue of Liberty at a reasonably "short" distance of half a mile, have either a pastrami or corned beef sandwich at Katz's Diner, visit the Museum of Natural History and then take the Acela home to DC, all in 48 hours. (Other than the NEC part, these are all things that I have never done.) The hook is that I have to get my dog into a luxury canine condo in Lothian MD no earlier than 8am tomorrow, then drive (what in non-rush traffic is 25 minutes) to Union Station, park and board Amtrak. I don't think I have a chance in heck of getting to the platform in time to ride the 9 am Acela so that part of the bucket list will have to be done when I am coming home Saturday afternoon, but I might be able to catch the 9:20 NEC, maybe. I figure that on Saturday I will take the 3pm Acela home since it is just 60% full right now.
Besides Katz's, I want to try Bleecker Street Pizza, go somewhere in Little Italy, maybe go back to McSorley's for chili and a draft plus a visit to Momosan or Mei Jin for Ramen.

So my main question is, should I book in advance for tomorrows 9:20 even though I may not make it? Or can I arrive and hope for an open seat if I actually make it in time for the 9:20? I may have to take the noon Acela back instead of the 3pm one, so should I wait until Friday to book the Acela? Or do the weekend ones book up too? The Acela is the main bucket list item so I am probably going to book it later today, but will listen to any advice that says it is worth it to wait.

I have only spent a couple days in Manhattan back in the mid-90's so any tips would be appreciated. I am going to book a hotel within a 10 minute walk of Penn Station so arrival and departure will be pretty straightforward.
 

Bob Dylan

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Go ahead and book the Acela, Fares tend to rise rapidly on them. If you have an upgrade Coupon, or an AUer will give you one, it's great to upgrade to FC and hang out in the New Metro Lounge.

While you're riding the Staten Island Ferry, visiting Ground Zero and walking the Brooklyn Bridge are neat things to do also.

Walking the High Line ( close to Penn Station ) ,the old EL turned into an Urban Trail is also fun!

Instead of paying Big $$$ for the Empire State Building, consider visiting the Chrysler Building.

Rockefeller Center/Radio City Music Hall is also worth a visit, as is strolling along 5th Avenue with its High End Stores decorated for Christmas.

The Fairfield Inn and Suites ( Marriott) is across the street from Moynihan Train Hall and is very worth the price if you can get a deal on one of the Travel Sites!
 
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Ziv

OBS Chief
Joined
Oct 25, 2011
Messages
929
Thanks for the advice! I just booked both the NEC ($176) and Business Class on the Acela ($205). First Class on the Acela was $368 and I am splurging a bit already so I went with Business instead.
Ground Zero is a good suggestion. I was on Key Bridge in DC on 9/11 (after the Pentagon was struck) so it would be... I don't know, worthwhile? To see Ground Zero.
I will have to look up the High Line on Google Maps, I have read about it and walking it would be a kick.
I have some Hilton Honors points so I am staying at the Hilton Gardens 37th Street/ TSS. Never been so it will be interesting. When it comes to hotels it doesn't take a lot to satisfy me. LOL!

Go ahead and book the Acela, Fares tend to rise rapidly on them. If you have an upgrade Coupon, or an AUer will give you one, it's great to upgrade to FC and hang out in the New Metro Lounge.

While you're riding the Staten Island Ferry, visiting Ground Zero and walking the Brooklyn Bridge are neat things to do also.

Walking the High Line ( close to Penn Station ) ,the old EL turned into an Urban Trail is also fun!

Instead of paying Big $$$ for the Empire State Building, consider visiting the Chrysler Building.

Rockefeller Center/Radio City Music Hall is also worth a visit, as is strolling along 5th Avenue with its High End Stores decorated for Christmas.

The Fairfield Inn and Suites ( Marriott) is across the street from Moyihan Train Hall and is very worth the price if you can get a deal on one of the Travel Sites!
 

Cal

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Jan 23, 2021
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Socal
Go ahead and book the Acela, Fares tend to rise rapidly on them. If you have an upgrade Coupon, or an AUer will give you one, it's great to upgrade to FC and hang out in the New Metro Lounge.

While you're riding the Staten Island Ferry, visiting Ground Zero and walking the Brooklyn Bridge are neat things to do also.

Walking the High Line ( close to Penn Station ) ,the old EL turned into an Urban Trail is also fun!

Instead of paying Big $$$ for the Empire State Building, consider visiting the Chrysler Building.

Rockefeller Center/Radio City Music Hall is also worth a visit, as is strolling along 5th Avenue with its High End Stores decorated for Christmas.

The Fairfield Inn and Suites ( Marriott) is across the street from Moyihan Train Hall and is very worth the price if you can get a deal on one of the Travel Sites!
Dang, where were you when I was in New York! Probably would've used some of these ideas.
 
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joelkfla

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Thanks for the advice! I just booked both the NEC ($176) and Business Class on the Acela ($205). First Class on the Acela was $368 and I am splurging a bit already so I went with Business instead.
Ground Zero is a good suggestion. I was on Key Bridge in DC on 9/11 (after the Pentagon was struck) so it would be... I don't know, worthwhile? To see Ground Zero.
I will have to look up the High Line on Google Maps, I have read about it and walking it would be a kick.
I have some Hilton Honors points so I am staying at the Hilton Gardens 37th Street/ TSS. Never been so it will be interesting. When it comes to hotels it doesn't take a lot to satisfy me. LOL!
While doing the High Line, you may also want to take a quick look around Little Island. It's another unique park, built over the water on tree-like concrete pods, and donated to the city by Diane von Furstenberg & husband. It's 1 short block from the High Line 14th St. stairs & elevator. Reservations are required in the summer, but not in the winter.

If you get to Rockefeller Center at night, don't miss the light show on the facade of Saks Fifth Avenue, right across the street. It just runs a few minutes, and I think it repeats every 15 minutes, but past years' shows have been spectacular and amazing.
 

Ziv

OBS Chief
Joined
Oct 25, 2011
Messages
929
I visited the High Line yesterday but was too footsore when I got to the south end to visit Little Island. It looked cool from a distance.
I started w the Staten Island Ferry so I could see the Statue of Liberty and that was very cool. I got a hot Pastrami on rye at Katz’s for lunch but couldn’t find my vaccine card so I had to eat in a park w a bunch of teen aged skateboarders. 😆
This afternoon I went to the Intrepid museum and loved it! I am running out of time LONG before I run out of places I want to see!
 

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