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nikita sheth

Nix’s Guide to NYC…

I just spent the last 10 days in New York City.

I had the intention of embracing the persona of a  ‘New York struggling writer’ and using the wi-fi at a local café, wearing thick-rimmed glasses and writing blog posts…

But between the hip hop dance class, the sickening consumption of cream cheese bagels and my adventures to Harlem’s Apollo Theatre….my writing fantasy did not come into fruition.

It was honestly the trip of a life time. Everything just seemed to fall into place. I met some amazing (and random) people ;  an archaeologist who collects artifacts from underground fill sites in NYC, a professional afro-funk dancer in central park and I even spent an hour and half having coffee with a lady who I lent a $1 to in Starbucks…

Although admittedly, en route I did have some battler moments:

  • I somehow lost my shoes between getting into the cab & reaching JFK airport. Sooo… I had to purchase compression socks and wear them instead of shoes.
  • I got pulled aside by security so they could ‘pat down’ my high bun…awkward/embarrassing.
  •  I heard my name (or a version of it) over the PA upon reaching Sydney… “Can a Nakada Sheeth please come to the Baggage Service desk” – YES, both my bags never made it. They were still hanging out in NYC…
In retrospect my trip to NYC can be accurately summed up as a “Pilgrimage  to Hip Hop”. I embraced my ‘Brown Suga” persona and definitely ‘got ghetto’ at the Jay-Z & Justin Timberlake concert (Shout out to my friend Maz who scored the hottest tics in town)



If you are planning to visit The Big Apple…here are my MUST DO’s.


  • Buddakan (book ahead) – honestly amazing food. Featured in Sex & the City movie.
  • The Spotted Pig – great hamburger (Jay-Z owns it) – cute pub. Put your name down and then go to Frankie’s 507 for a pre-drink.
  • The Fat Radish – organic, fresh produce – from farm to plate. Delicious.
  • Mercer Kitchen – need to book (Jay-Z’s & Beyonce’s fav restaurant)
  • Pastis – book for brunch & order the bread/pastry basket….carb-coma alert!
  • La Esquina – i actually didn’t get to go…but its on my list for next time!
  • Jeffrey’s Kitchen
  • Izakaya Ten – a really cute Japanese restaurant – perfect to go to dinner after the ‘Sleep No More’ show.
  • Apotheke – ok seriously amazing – set up like a Chinese Apothecary. Best cocktails ever. Hidden in backstreets of Chinatown. If there is only one bar you can make it to – this is the one.
  • The Raines Law Room – cute hidden bar, very cozy & good cocktails – Go to Rye Bar across the road, if you have to wait.
  • Roof Top Bar – Wythe Hotel in Williamsburg – amazing view of Manhattan skyline
  • Backroom – speak easy
  • Employees Only – speak easy


  • Jacks – best bagel (in West Village) – a cute local place.
  • WhyNot – cute café
  • Ground Support
  • Joes’s Cafe


  • Sleep No more – YOU MUST DO THIS. Won’t tell you what it is. JUST BOOK IT.
  • Harlem – Apollo Theatre – Wednesday Night for Amateur night. Seriously, so ghetto. A definite highlight
  • After the show, go to Dinosaur BBQ – any boys dream…meat, meat and more meat. Typical ghetto style.
  • ‘The Box’ – I didn’t actually get in (too big a queue)…but get there around 12am (show starts at 1am) -its like burlesque. R rated.

Hip Hop Dance class

  •  Broadway dance class…it was a definite highlight of my trip! I just felt so ghetto.
  • Also…just for an extra ‘ghetto’ experience – get out on West 4 subway station & check out the local basketball courts – Hoop Dreams baby.

Design Nerd Activities:

  • Bookmarc – cute little bookstore specialising in Design & Art books
  •  ABC Carpet & Home – My dream shop. I could live in here.
  •  Fish Eddy’s – across the road from ABC. Honestly the most beautiful.
  • Also, the usual suspects – the MOMA (had an amazing Le Corbusier exhibition), private art galleries in Chelsea & actually a  really cool museum called ‘The NEW Museum’.
  • MOMA Design Store – go to the Soho one…it is amazing.
  • I can’t remember all the names, but wander around Soho & West Village for cute vintage & design stores.


  • B&H – seriously the WIERDEST electronic store ever.
  • Anthropologie – my favourite store ever.
  • Madewell – gorgeously styled store with basic, nicely design products.
  • Century 21 – well worth the visit…great discounts!

Ok, don’t judge (Yes, I am a massive nerd)…but here is my MAP OF NYC (with things to do!):


There was a heat wave for 8 out of the 10 days I was there. It was very HOT. The concrete seemed to trap in the heat. Here are some of my unedited photos which sum up my trip to NYC.

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Hope you enjoyed my pics…just a little taste of NYC…through my eyes.

Looking through these photos is definitely not helping my PTB (Post Travel Blues)!

N x

nyc pop up

New York Bound.

Jay- Z. Salt-N-Pepa. De La Soul. Busta Rhymes.

Girls. Sex and the City. Gossip Girl.

MOMA. Guggenheim. The Met.

A significant number of my favourite things in life are from New York City.

When I was studying in Boston, I used to catch the $10 ‘Lucky Star’ bus to NYC (it picked you up from Boston Chinatown & dropped you off at NYC Chinatown – with a very dodgy stop off at some chinese restaurant along the way) I did this many times and  loved how each visit to the Big Apple was so different.  One of my favourite visits was just before christmas when my whole family including my grandparents (Aaji & Papaji).

My Aaji (grandmother) suffered from severe leg pains, however I will NEVER forget how she RAN up a flight of stairs (wearing her sneakers & hitching up her sari) in the back streets of  NYC Chinatown to check out the illegal fake leather handbags. It was like someone had given her a shot of adrenalin. It is one of my favourite (and last) memories of her.

NYC pulsates. Inescapable vibrations.Sensory overload.

New York city is just one big conversation. Pauses. Interjections. Banter. Once immersed you have no other choice than to become a part of it.

I love the way people walk in NYC.  The swagger, the confidence, the strut, the hurried shuffle. It is all about the walk.

The BEST part is that…I am going back there….in a couple of weeks. YEEWWW.

With all this energy, chaos and noise it is no wonder that NYC is a global design hub. Here are some inspirational design ideas that have emerged on the city streets of NYC…


Rap Songs into Street Signs…

 rap nyc

in the site-specific street art project ‘rap quotes’, new york-based artist Jay Shells installed over thirty street signs with lyrical references to hip-hop songs and their appropriate NYC location. Eg, the intersection of broadway and myrtle avenue in brooklyn receives a mos def sign featuring the line: ‘I’m blacker than midnight at broadway and myrtle.’ ‘new york city is the birthplace of hip-hop and if any place deserve this historical map of sorts, it’s new york’.

( Images via Designboom)
NYC Free Libraries!
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How cute is this little ‘free library’?!

Founded by venezuelan architects marcelo ertorteguy and sara valente, designed the installation at st. patrick’s old cathedral school in nolita. The concept creates an ‘inhabitable’ environment, where users can immerse themselves into the space, taking the time to browse through  books and borrow or exchange them. the structure is built out of an inversed plastic tank and a wooden frame.

(Images via Designboom)
Windows of New York…
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This one is one of my favourites.The Windows of New York project is a weekly illustrated fix to graphic designer José Guízar’s obsession with the windows and fire escapes of NYC. He says; “This project is part an ode to architecture and part a self-challenge to never stop looking up”
Buildings of New York…
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building nyc
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In a similari mindset & also obsessed with the recording of places & spaces – All The Buildings In New York is a personal project of James Gulliver Hancock. An illustrator from Australia now based between Sydney, and New York. This project stems from an interest in obsession and recording of places
NYC turns payphones into time machines!
nyc payp

The project is called Recalling 1993 and it’s part of an exhibit at New York’s New Museum called “NYC 1993: Experimental Jet Set, Trash and No Star.” Starting this month, the public can access any one of 5,000 public phones in Manhattan and call a special toll-free number (855-FOR-1993) to hear stories about life in 1993, specific to the area in which the phone is located.

(Image via Dvice)
Ok, so I whilst I write this I am playing Jay-Z’s ‘Empire State of New York’ & getting really, really excited!! Also craving a warm Bagel…with cream cheese. A trip to Woolies may be in order on this rainy Sunday afternoon…..
N x