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Hostelling International - NY

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A Gateway to the City

Hostelling International - NY

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Oct 9, 2013 —  Planning a trip to the Big Apple is no easy task, especially on a budget. Evaluating the seemingly endless list of pocket-conscious accommodations and narrowing down the infinite options of things to do in New York City may seem daunting, if not impossible. Lucky for you, our friends at Hostelling International are here to make the whole process a lot easier. With its budget-friendly prices, cool amenities (like an in-house theater and pool table), and fun activities (like free bar crawls and nightly happy hours), HI–New York City leaves all other hostels in New York City in the dust. And the icing on the cake? HI-New York City is located in the heart of the Upper West Side, placing all of this great city at your fingertips.

Let loose
Located only two blocks from Central Park, HI-New York City is only a short subway ride away from a variety of bars in New York City that represent the island’s vibrant and diverse social scene. Before venturing too far from your home base, however, start by checking out local Upper West Side haunts like The Sunburnt Calf. This favorite among college students in the area boasts a selection of creative cocktails, “Calf Classics,” and a 2-for-1 happy hour every day. But it’s The Sunburnt Calf’s boozy brunches that has the rowdy regulars hooked: every weekend for just $20, guests can over-indulge in mimosas, Bloody Marys, Fosters, screwdrivers, and greyhounds to their heart’s content.

Speak easy
While traditional speakeasies are all but extinct in the majority of the United States, for a few classic establishments in New York like The Back Room on the Lower East Side, the spirit of quiet rebellion is alive and well. Prohibition is long gone, but there’s still something special about the hush-hush, undercover atmosphere recreated in today’s speakeasies that makes guests feel like they’re taking a walk on the wild side. Venturing down an alley past signs for The Back Room’s toy store front, arriving at a Victorian-style venue straight out of a scene from Boardwalk Empire, and drinking beer disguised in brown paper bags and wine served in a coffee mug—are all part of an authentic experience that can only be had in a city like New York.

Share a laugh
At HI-New York City you’re bound to meet a variety of new and interesting people. What better way to bond with your fellow travelers than to share a laugh together at the Comedy Cellar in Greenwich Village? This iconic comedy club has hosted stand-up superstars like Dave Chappelle, Jerry Seinfeld, and Jon Stewart, so non-stop hilarity is guaranteed. But if you’re more on the sensitive side, we would suggest sitting towards the back. The artists have been known to crack jokes at the expense of the bolder audience members seated in the front rows.

Grab a slice
Leaving New York City without sampling its legendary pizza would be nothing short of a travesty. So pull your new buddies away from the hostel’s Nintendo Wii, and take the easy subway ride from HI-New York City to Artichoke Basille’s Pizza in the East Village. Even picky and proud New Yorkers swear by creative toppings like crab, and of course, artichoke. Open until five in the morning every day, this pizza joint is a hub for the city’s (primarily student) population that never sleeps.

Go on, be a tourist
We know you’re way too cool to be sucked into the mainstream–and rest assured we’d much rather preach authenticity than popularity–but in New York City, tourist attractions are, in fact, part of an authentic experience. Don’t let a fear of crowds keep you from exploring the brilliant lights and electric atmosphere of Times Square, which is located only a ten-minute subway ride away from HI-New York City. And for an experience that’s a little out of the box, visit Bowlmor Lanes, a bowling alley in the heart of the iconic square. The 1950s décor may be a bit kitschy, but sometimes it’s fun to play the tourist card. So go check it out – we promise your secret’s safe with us.

Now that we’ve given you the rundown, planning your trip to New York City will be a piece of cake. Stay in HI-New York City, and go to any (well, preferably all) of the great locations mentioned above. It’s just that easy! So, don’t delay. The Big Apple is waiting; come take a bite.
 

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