Cool fall days in Midtown Manhattan are best spent strolling through Central Park, or slipping in and out of the high-end boutiques and galleries lining 57th Street. Even if you don’t plan to leave New York City with a new investment piece of artwork, you can still enjoy the bustling thoroughfare just a stone’s throw from your hotel room.
You may have stumbled upon this high-end kitchen-wares store in other cities—or even other New York neighborhoods. But this shop, at the base of Hearst Tower, features a dedicated Nespresso Boutique. You can even learn how to make ravioli or prepare tricky French sauces by scheduling a cooking class. 306 W 57th St.
As you head East toward 7th Avenue, don’t overlook this fine arts school, which can boast Jackson Pollock, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Ai Weiwei as alumni. The League has a rotating calendar of student galleries, lectures, and opening receptions. 215 W 57th St.
Since the 1970s, Marian Goodman has been exhibiting contemporary works by European artists—and it’s become an extremely influential gallery in New York’s art scene. An upcoming show will feature the colorful, expressive works of Edi Rama, an artist who doubles as the Prime Minister of Albania. 24 W 57th St.
Still glittering from a refresh at the end of 2014, Van Cleef & Arpels’ Manhattan flagship—on the corner of 57th and 5th avenue—is a dazzling, three-story temple to the luxury French jewelry company. Perhaps the only thing more beautiful than the gold-and-diamond timepieces, personalized wedding bands, and maison collections is the boutique’s embroidered, silk wall coverings and central staircase. 744 5th Ave.
The iconic British fashion house has its New York flagship boutique on 57th Street. The six-story shop’s exterior resembles Burberry’s famous plaid, and features an oak-and-steel grand staircase. It’s the brand’s largest store in the world, selling Burberry’s legendary trenchcoat, along with women’s, men’s and children’s clothing and beauty products. 9 E 57th St.
This gallery displays works by contemporary artists in various mediums. Art enthusiasts who are interested in more than just window shopping can come here to purchase 20th-century art from masters like Pollock and Warhol. 41 E 57th St.
Until November 5, visitors checking out Pace Primitive gallery can see an exhibition of traditional sculptures from Mali. Past showcases have highlighted masks from the Himalayas and beadwork from Nigeria. Director Carlo Bella, an expert in tribal art, is dedicated to presenting works from Africa and Oceania. 32 E 57th St.
In addition to a multiple floors of ready-to-wear, the English menswear brand (which has a Royal Warrant from His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales) offers a floor dedicated to bespoke, made-to-measure shirts. No appointment is necessary to receive a custom-made button down, which will require some 18 measurements—even posture is taken into consideration—and can be cut from more than 1,000 fabrics. 50 E 57th St.
On your way back to your hotel room, refuel at Aquavit, a Michelin-starred Nordic restaurant on 55th. Choose from a chef’s tasting menu, seasonal tasting menu, or a prix fixe selection for dinner. If you arrive in time for lunch, you’ll see more affordable a la carte or prix fixe options. Menu highlights include the herring sampler with lingonberry and horseradish, the Icelandic cod, and the impressive selection of aquavit cocktails at the bar (herbaceous anise, caraway, and fennel, or a more floral blend of blueberry and elderflower). 65 E 55th St.