BEACH AT DREAM DOWNTOWN: Have you ever heard about New York City’s most unique hotel pool — The Beach at Dream Downtown? The famed 4,800-square-foot beach boasts private cabanas, fresh sand imported from the Hamptons, flat-screen TVs, lounge chairs and a glass-bottom swimming pool looking into the hotel lobby. One side of this upscale 300 room hotel closely resembles that of a cruise ship.
Channeling the glamour of the Côte d’Azur in the heart of New York City’s Chelsea neighborhood, my family and I were most fortunate to be invited to spend the day there. We have been to New York in the summer a number of times in recent years and frankly always sought a day at a pool on a hot and steamy day. Well we hit the jackpot for our chosen date. Community and Social Media Manager Lauren Saxe gave me a tour of the gorgeous facility and then set my family up with some chairs in a perfectly shaded area. Tabitha, a lifeguard who was busy managing the steady stream of sunbathers, was kind enough to get us an umbrella. There is a restaurant right next to the pool and servers will bring food and drinks right to your chair. The water was warm and exceptionally comfortable. Any of our troubles seemed a million miles away for that afternoon. There was complimentary Wi-Fi with a good signal as well.
Pool passes are available to the public Monday to Friday from 11 am to 8 pm. They cost $65 a day per person, and guests can purchase them on site from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Hotel guests can access the facility from 8 am to 8 pm daily.
There is another Dream Hotel in Midtown Manhattan as well as locations in Miami, Hollywood, Nashville, Thailand and many more to come. Dream Hotel Group is a hotel brand and management company with a rich, 30-year history of managing properties in some of the world’s most highly competitive hotel environments. Home to its Dream Hotels, Time Hotels, The Chatwal and Unscripted Hotels brands, Dream Hotel Group encompasses three business lines: proprietary brands, hotel management and dining & nightlife.
This downtown location opened in June 2011 with a celebrity VIP party which included the likes of actor Leonardo Di Caprio on hand.
RIPLEY’S BELIEVE IT OR NOT: I have previously visited Ripley’s Believe It or Not! In Niagara Falls and London, England. Despite walking by the place every time I was in the Big Apple, I never ventured inside what is recognized as a historic Times Square museum. This one-of-a-kind attraction welcomes visitors to immerse themselves in the unusual, the unexpected and the unbelievable. It features a collection of over 500 unusual artifacts from all over the world, as well as amazing interactive exhibits that are sure to make you say “WOW!”
Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Times Square (https://ripleysnewyork.com) showcases some of the most incredible exhibits found in New York City, many of them discovered and owned by Robert Ripley himself! This family friendly attraction is the largest Ripley’s in North America!
Robert L. Ripley was a cartoonist, explorer, reporter, adventurer, and collector who traveled to 201 countries in 35 years seeking the odd, the unusual, and the unexplained. He led a life of adventure and excitement, and he will forever be remembered for coining the phrase “believe It or not.”
In his search for incredible stories to draw in his popular newspaper cartoons, he acquired hundreds of exotic artifacts from around the world. Collections of his newspaper cartoon drawings were released in book form. The success of his first book led to a live radio show, and then to a weekly television program. He shared his unique artifacts at World Fairs in exhibits called odditoriums, which were the precursor to the museums that bear his name and famous phrase. but none are more unique or more interesting than Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Times Square!
Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Times Square is the largest Ripley’s attraction in the world. From shrunken heads, Megaldon jaws, a Tibeton skull, the world’s tallest man and a real meteor the amazement never ceases in this place.
All children must be accompanied by an adult. Most guests spend between an hour and a half to two hours exploring the strange and unique artifacts, exhibits and interactive experiences at Ripley’s Times Square. As with any attraction or museum, your personal tastes will determine how long it takes. If you plan to dive into every item and read each caption, you’ll be here a bit longer. If you plan to focus on featured galleries, you will find that two hours is sufficient. I found the visit both educational and entertaining,
Ripley’s personal treasures can be seen in Believe It or Not! attractions around the world. Each museum is unique in its collection of oddities and in their presentation. No Ripley’s Believe It or Not! museum would be complete without the “old favorites” however – the incredible people whose stories Ripley gathered on his journeys around the globe. These strange people are brought back to life in detailed wax figures.
Ripley’s Times Square is handicapped accessible.
NATIONAL SEPTEMBER 11 MEMORIAL: Through commemoration, exhibitions and educational programs, The National September 11 Memorial & Museum, a nonprofit in New York City, remembers and honors the 2,983 people killed in the horrific attacks of September 11, 2001, and February 26, 1993, as well as those who risked their lives to save others and all who demonstrated extraordinary compassion in the aftermath of the attacks. I visited Ground Zero on my most recent trip and it is absolutely chilling to stand in that very spot where terrorists committed a most unspeakable atrocity. Info: https://www.911memorial.org/national-september-11-memorial-museum
RUPERT JEE: For 22 years Rupert Jee was a regular on Late Night with David Letterman on CBS – all
NEW YORK YANKEES: I checked off a major item on my Bucket List with an afternoon in the Yankee Stadium press box as New York hosted the Toronto Blue Jays.
Only a year after they changed Baseball forever with the purchase of Babe Ruth from the Boston Red Sox, the Yankees made another buy that would forever change the way the game was watched. On February 6, 1921, the Yankees issued a press release to announce the purchase of 10 acres of property in the west Bronx. Yankee Stadium was built from 1922 to 1923 for $2.4 million ($33.9 million in 2016 dollars).
The stadium went through many alterations and playing surface configurations over the years. The condition of the facility worsened in the 1960s and 1970s, prompting its closing for renovation from 1974 to 1975. In 2006, the Yankees began building a new $2.3 billion stadium. It opened in 2009.
Yankee Stadium is located at One East 161st Street in the Bronx. The No. 4 train (East Side) and the B and D trains (West Side) make stops at 161st Street/Yankee Stadium. A trip from Midtown Manhattan takes approximately 25 minutes. I would strongly recommend it.