Are you tired of paying attention to developing news stories? Are you sick of respecting other people’s personal space during a global pandemic? Are you tired of paying sales tax?
Here at You Must Miami PR, we believe our winters should be humid and muggy, and our city should be at the mercy of an entire state whose values might be contrary to our own—not the other way around! New York City has been living the high life for far too long.
Lucky for you, Fantastical Florida doesn’t deal with pesky progressive legislation, mask mandates, or securing funding for government projects to better serve the public. And what better place in Florida to capture the diversity and talent incubator you’re leaving behind than magical Miami? You’ll be able to ignore interactions with anyone you may disagree with because we only have two subway lines that go to the exact same places. You’ll meet the same people over and over again, or you’ll buy a car.* The circle of life!
After all, Miami brought you Flo Rida, Pitbull, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Any time you ask yourself, “What’s cooking?” you should immediately pair it with gratitude for mesmerizing Miami. Does ‘what’s cooking’ need spice? We got you—Shakira holds the key to our city. We have our priorities straight and although we know we shouldn’t call Latinas “spicy,” here at You Must Miami PR, we aren’t bound by PC culture or basic human respect.
If our home crop doesn’t entice you, our transplants include Iggy Pop, Gloria Estefan, and Phil Collins. Do you think you’re better than Phil Collins?** Writer of “In the Air Tonight”? Patrick Bateman of American Psycho’s favorite musician?
Miami also has its tech population. Blake Aaron Ross, co-founder of Mozilla FireFox, was born and bred here. Everyone loves FireFox, right? Right?! And he made the browser for his mother who was frustrated with Internet Explorer—WHAT A GREAT SON. Miamians are wholesome people, even if the state around us is falling apart.
See, we’re not like Fanning Springs, FL where 50 manatees have died in 2021 from contaminated canals. In miraculous Miami, we’ve only had 15 manatees die for the exact same reason. But dirty canals, dying mammals, and daily “Florida-man” stories should make you ex-New Yorkers feel right at home. Especially since dolphins have started creeping into Brooklyn?! Ugh. Stay in your lane, dolphins.
Shed your masks, shed your legal protections (unless you’re a cop, of course), and shed your New York blues for red-hot Miami!***
* Don’t use your blinker, though—no one else does.
**Full-disclosure, Phil Collins did move to Féchy, Switzerland in 2008, but that’s a reflection of him—not Miami. Don’t put that evil on us.
***We don’t necessarily believe in climate change, but we’re legally obligated to tell you a mass exodus from the Florida coast is happening as sea levels rise for some arbitrary reason definitely not related to the ice caps melting.
Image: Gian Cescon / Unsplash
When most people say they’re outdoorsy, they mean that they enjoy going on hikes. When I say I’m outdoorsy, I mean that I like drinking on rooftops. Maybe that’s why I don’t get many Hinge messages? Oops. Participating in my favorite pastime is obviously easiest in the summer where I can knock back rosé outside and tan, but doing it in the winter is obviously more difficult. Thank god for indoor rooftop bars, where you can get all the same NYC views without freezing to death. Here are some of our favorite indoor rooftop bars to hit when it’s f*cking cold outside.
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Just add you, your girlfriends and some jean jackets. We’ve got drinks & views on deck 😉 Open late, til 4am! #CrownNYC at @50Bowery // pic: @hypebae . . . . #CrownNYC #infatuationnyc #thirstynyc #LESismore #lowereast #50bowery #elizabethstreet #bucketlistnyc #nycbucketlist #cocktail #rooftop #nycviews #todoinny #rooftopvibes
Gerber Group’s The Crown is located on the roof of one of the few gems Chinatown has to offer, Hotel 50 Bowery, and it’s one of the only places in the city where you can get unobstructed views of both the Manhattan and Brooklyn skylines. That means double the Instagrams that you can queue up to post later on—what more could you ask for? Inside, there are plush couches (and a neon sign, because who doesn’t love a good neon sign?) and floor-to-ceiling windows so you can still capture your candids. The menu changes seasonally, but when I went over the summer, their fruity drinks and lobster roll were really f*cking good.
Fun fact: Hotel Chantelle, the Lower East Side classic, is not, in fact, a hotel! Makes sense. Like my Bat Mitzvah, the rooftop is Paris-themed, but unlike the social event of 2007, Hotel Chantelle doesn’t look like a 13-year-old-girl’s wet dream. But unless you’re going there specifically for French feels, the decor doesn’t really matter. It just looks like a cute, small rooftop bar, which is more than fine by me.
If you and your work “friends” are into happy hour, Hotel Chantelle is definitely the move because there’s rarely a line before 1am and the deals are legit. For instance, $8 for a cocktail and $42 for a pitcher. There are also $8 food specials like chicken meatballs and white truffle flatbread. (Also, fun fact, they also have a good brunch with even better drink deals.)
Broken Shaker is my favorite bar in New York. I know no one goes to a bar for the interior design, but this place has noticeably cool interior design. It was giving me Tahiti vibes in the best way possible, and the drinks were amazing. I actually went here on my birthday, and because
I wouldn’t shut the f*ck about it being my birthday we were so sweet to the other bar-goers, we managed to snag a cocktail table with two wicker peacock chairs and drink all damn night. The views were sick, the drinks were delicious, and the bartenders were really hot. What else could you want in a bar?
The Water Tower
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We love both views; when the city lights illuminate the dark sky and river at night 🌃, and when the Sun ☀️ shows us in the light how beautiful city we live in. The Water Tower is open from 2 pm on weekends. • • • • #thewatertower #williamsburg #hotspot #hotelrooftop #thewilliamsburghotel #cocktailbar #nycnightlife #nycnights #brooklyn #rooftopbar #nycviews #newyorklike
Williamsburg is usually not on my list of places I want to go, because hipsters with micro-tattoos and ironic top hats aren’t really my cup of tea, but The Williamsburg Hotel is my exception. It’s hands down the coolest hotel I’ve ever been to, and I will gladly stay here when I make more money and can afford it. The Water Tower is, you guessed it, on the roof and it definitely fits with the funky aesthetic of the hotel. Even though most rooftops have pretty decent views, The Water Tower’s view is truly unreal because you’re looking across the East River at all of the Manhattan apartments you can’t afford. I’ll drink to that.
Also, unlike other misleading names, The Water Tower is kind of a water tower. No, it never held water, but it’s a giant glass structure shaped like one. So the views are too legit to quit because they’re panoramic. It’s kind of mesmerizing being in there because it feels like you’re in a bubble floating above the street.
JIMMY at The James
Unlike a lot of rooftop bars, this place looks like it was designed for the winter. By that, I mean it’s really cozy and decorated kind of like a super chic ski chalet. I’m definitely into that and will probably be holed up there all weekend. No, you can’t go in the pool this time of year, but that’s why they designed the inside to make it so appealing. And the drinks all have cute/weird names like Grapes of Wrath, Catch Your Pikachu, and Legal in Vermont. I don’t know what those last two drink names mean, but whatever. The drinks are tasty and the atmosphere is really cozy, so if you don’t feel like drinking a cocktail with a lame name at your apartment, go here.
Images: The Crown at 50 Bowery; jimmyatthejames, thewatertowerbar, brokenshaker, hotelchantelle, thecrownnyc / Instagram
If you live in New York, Los Angeles, or any other eccentric coastal city, you’re probably familiar with Soho House, the members-only club for people in creative industries. Founded in 1995 as a private club for artistic Londoners, Soho House has blossomed into a worldwide brand, with members-only clubs located in Berlin, Malibu, and several other chic locales where creativity thrives and cocktails cost $24 a piece. Here is the club’s mission statement, per their website:
“Unlike other members’ clubs, which often focus on wealth and status, we aim to assemble communities of members that have something in common: namely, a creative soul”
Uh-huh. Well, from an outsider’s perspective, all Soho House DOES is focus on wealth and status. First of all, everyone in there is sexy as hell. Just thinking of the swarm of hot mean gay guys lounging by the pool in June makes me feel the need to throw away every pastry in my house and sell my soul to the nearest Equinox. Second of all, it’s expensive—not just the membership dues, but everything. I once paid $8 for a tiny can of diet coke at Ludlow House. That experience alone turned me into a socialist.
Although technically located in the Meatpacking district, the Manhattan Soho House has a lot more in common with, well, Soho—everyone has flawless hair and I haven’t seen a single badly dressed person there in…ever. These are the people whose social calendar is split between finding themselves in Latin America, finding themselves at Coachella, and finding the nearest Le Labo. Not to mention those who capitalize on the whole thing.
“Oh no, you’re crazy, you are full on crazy!”
“That’s the nicest thing you’ve ever said to me.”
-Overheard at Soho House
— Cher Horowitz (@thefakerothko) January 29, 2020
As one might imagine, the Soho House clientele is an eccentric bunch. Here are some of the types of characters you’ll encounter at Soho House, in no particular order:
The Unemployed Elite
Contrary to what the membership committee would have you believe, not everyone in Soho House is an artistic iconoclast. Let us explain what we are getting at: the main point of this entire social club is that everyone who joins is supposed to work in a creative industry. Unfortunately, the other point is that Soho House is expensive as hell, and most real “creative souls” in New York cannot afford to spend thousands on a status symbol membership. You think Penelope the art gallery assistant is about to cough up her rent money? For what? So she can put that damn rooftop pool on her Instagram story once a month? I don’t think so.
Because most young creatives are broke, many Soho House members are just rich kids who sound artistic on paper but don’t actually have a real job. For example, Forty Quinn from You is definitely a Soho House member. If this is your situation, here are some approved professions:
☆ Interior designer (redesigning your own bedroom counts)
☆ Film producer waiting to come into your family’s hedge fund fortune
☆ Consultant. As in, a brand consultant making $15k/year. Not like, a consultant at Deloitte, THE HORROR!
☆ “Influencer” with 5k followers
And so on and so forth. This is truly the club that is going up on a Tuesday. At noon. Because no one has to be at the office.
International Rich People
Remember those international students at your school who would smoke outside the library and make you feel bad for not owning a $1,500 winter jacket? They’re here, too. You see, in the rich European culture, no one “lives” anywhere full-time, but rather, rotates between two or three tax havens residences—in such turbulent times, Soho House is a comforting constant. Catch them splitting a bottle of wine at one in the afternoon…it’s a cultural thing.
Unlike their American counterparts, many Europeans don’t have an obsessive attitude towards work. For example, it is completely socially acceptable for an unemployed twentysomething heir in London to proclaim that he is “just vibing right now”. Meanwhile, Jackie Kennedy’s great-granddaughter is probably off in the trenches somewhere doing her third unpaid Vogue internship that year. VALUES!
Real Successful Creatives
Yes, there are those select few who are fortunate enough to be in a creative industry and also know how to sell a banana taped to a wall. You simply have to respect the hustle.
The Moochers Guests of Members
You can distinguish between members and guests because guests are the ones taking photos of everything, risking life and limb to take stealth pics from the terrace before the staff get wind. Yes, get that geotag in, girl. Ask guests what they do for a living, and they turn their heads down and softly mutter, I’m a lawyer. The shame. I would def join, but like, three of my best friends are members so it’s basically the best of both worlds. That application is doomed.
Freelancers Doing ‘Work’
Ah, so refreshing to see a creative getting some work done! The grind truly never ends. But wait, what is he actually doing over there? Why did he just take an Instagram of his laptop with his glass of wine cropped out? And why, when you look closer, do you see that he’s actually looking at rates for hotels in Tulum for February? Why did he just order another drink?
A Family of Three
Me at Saturday brunch: Ahh. It’s so nice to see all these gorgeous, creative, slightly older couples having brunch together. Wow. You know, seeing these beautiful diverse (as in, ranging from upper-middle class to full-on-rich) families breaking bread together really gives me hope for—wait. What the hell is that sound? Is that—no, it couldn’t be… the laughter of a child?! Whitney Houston said the children are our future, but I didn’t realize that future entailed ruining the painstakingly crafted ambiance of my bohemian champagne brunch. Please, for the love of this $22 macaroni & cheese, find a way to put keep little Gingham down.
Yes, there are some members who are actually famous, and yes you have to pretend not to notice them, and YES I have extended fantasies of seducing Drake at Soho Beach House and making him fall in love with me. He whisks me away on a whirlwind summer trip through South America. Our love is hot, cold, bitter, desperate. His next album is about me. It flops.
Above all, the club’s very specific one-percent-hipster vibe is kind of hilarious in its hypocrisy: bohemian… but make it rich. Starving artist, but like, starving because it’s fashion week and I’m on a diet. Even still, we obviously kind of shadily love Soho House—unfortunately, exclusivity is chic. Sorry, we don’t make the rules. Blame the spectre of capitalism…or…something. We also love the people who work there—they are kind, polite, and attractive (that’s in order from least to most important.) And no artisanal sage tea no shade to all the actual talented, working creative members… wherever you are.
Anyway, good luck applying! And by that we mean, good luck texting a “let’s catch up next weekend!” to your friend who’s a member and hoping they suggest Soho House…because that sh*t’s expensive.
Remember that scene in the Sex and the City movie when Carrie asks Jennifer Hudson why she moved to New York and she dead-ass said, “to fall in love”? Yeah…lol. Look, I moved here two years ago (for a job) and I’ve learned that in order to fall in love, you have to go on a first date. I miss college, a place where I could meet my boyfriend at a fraternity party while fully blacked out and not have to worry about it. Needless to say, we met, made out, ate leftover Chipotle in my dorm room and then dated for two years. Those were the f*cking days. Post-grad dating in New York is nothing like that, for a number of reasons (like the epidemic of guys who will ghost you after meeting your family but then watch all your Insta stories), but also because you will have to slog through lots of first dates.
So all of this made me think about why I hate first dates so much and I landed on the following: meeting up with a person, whether you have previously met or not, at a loud bar at 8pm on a Tuesday sucks. It just does. Unless you work until 8pm, in which case, I’m so sorry, no sound-minded person wants to put on makeup and a cute outfit and sip cocktails at the time you’re usually clicking “watch next episode” on Netflix. So then I thought: why don’t we just not do the whole “let’s get drinks” thing for a first date, and let me just say, I’ve never been happier. So if you’re interested in something other than screaming over each other over $14 cocktails, read on for NYC date options that are not at a bar.
1. Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain
Ok, I know this sounds aggressive, but maybe not! I’m a messy, disgusting eater, so I figure the guy who may end up dating me would probably like to find out if he can stand the sight of me deep-throating a cheeseburger sooner rather than later. I’m just looking out. Anyway, this Cobble Hill spot is too f*cking cute to pass up. Seriously, I am made of ice and even I loved it, but more importantly, Blake Lively loves it. Okay, so if you are unclear as to what this place actually is, allow me to enlighten you. Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain is an old-school diner in an authentic pharmacy circa the 1920s. According to the website, the exterior was ugly af, so the current owners redid it so that it matched the adorable interiors, which haven’t been touched (except for necessary changes, like electric and plumbing) since the pharmacy opened. This place serves classics like banana splits, corndogs, etc.
Since no one reading this was on the dating scene back in the days when the youths actually went on dates to places like this, you won’t be able to appreciate it from a nostalgic perspective, but you will be able to obsess over it from an aesthetic perspective. If you’re going to go here, don’t pretend you’re too cool to be there and order something stupid. Live it the f*ck up and get a root beer float with two straws and chase it with a big-ass order of fries. If there is no second date after going here, he ain’t worth sh*t. Next!
2. Kick Axe
I don’t know about y’all, but I love a good pun. You know what else I love? Winding up and hurling a three-pound axe across a room. Just fun girly things! Full disclosure, if you don’t have a sense of humor, this place isn’t for you. Unlike bowling (ew) or shooting (gag), no one is actually good at throwing an axe. But that’s why it’s so fun. This place is also really cool because, unlike your childhood bowling alley, there is an aesthetic here. If you’ve ever been to one of those wineries in Redhook, it kind of looks like that, except there’s a giant area blocked off for guests to catapult axes through the air with the greatest of ease. Book a reservation and eat/drink first and throw axes after. And if the date goes poorly, you already have a weapon in hand! (Kidding. Am I? …Yeah okay.)
3. Comedy Cellar
This is my favorite place in the world, which is saying a lot considering I’ve been to the Amsterdam Cheese Museum twice. Seriously, if I could get married at Comedy Cellar, I would. *Googles if Comedy Cellar does weddings* Look, this is truly a perfect place to go on a first date because you’ll know immediately if he/she has a sense of humor or is the type of asshole who heckles comedians. These are the only qualities you need to know about a person! You’ll also find out if he/she can hang pretty quickly because if you’re going to Comedy Cellar in a group of two, you will most likely be seated in the front row, which is essentially on the stage and there’s nothing better than Amy Schumer asking how you and your date met. You will get called out and if your date can roll with it, he/she’s a keeper! Comedy Cellar, or any comedy club for that matter, is also amazing because you don’t really have to talk. In fact, don’t talk! The comedians will yell at you and that’s embarrassing. I know what you’re thinking: but if we don’t talk, how will we get to know one another? Look, you don’t learn anything of substance on a first date, okay? You learn what kind of food they don’t like, how many siblings they have and, if you’re lucky, how over their ex they are. So Comedy Cellar is a good and realistic alternative to the classic, “what’s your favorite color?” kind of questions on a “let’s get drinks” first date. There’s also a bar next door where you can get drinks after, so chill.
4. The Belfry
Most bars have a trivia night and, in my opinion, you will find out everything you need to know about a person based on how they perform at trivia.The Belfry is a cool of-the-moment bar, but on Tuesdays, they have a flamin’ hot game of trivia! Of course, they have delicious discounted specials that change every week, so if you like cheap bar food that’s usually expensive while you realize you know absolutely nothing about World War I, the Belfry is for you. If you’re wondering why this place is different/better than other bars who do trivia, I’ll tell you. Those other places are horrifying sports bars that have inexplicably sticky floors and toilet paper everywhere. Like your college bar, only worse because you’re not in college anymore. The Belfry is actually a really cool bar and somewhere you wouldn’t be embarrassed to be if you ran into someone you know there any other night of the week. It’s chic, it’s delicious, and it’s actually pretty expensive, but 100% worth it.
5. Escape The Room
I’d have to say that I lost my innocence after seeing Brie Larson slay in Room. This movie freaked me out so much that I am truly shocked people are willing to pay money to get locked in a room with other people, relying on clues to get themselves out. However, I did an escape room once and it was f*cking fun. There were moments when I thought, “Yep, this is how I’m going to die,” but there were also moments when I realized that maybe I wouldn’t be the first to go if the Hunger Games were real! Escape rooms are a great first date because if you’re smart (hello), you get to show off how clever you are, which is such a turn-on, right? If you are both dumb and can’t figure out how to escape, they will let you out, and you can laugh about it after. After that, you can celebrate not dying with a drink or seven! And if your date sucks, you can take the escape room literally and run away after.
Images: Toa Heftiba / Unsplash; escapetheroomusa, belfrynyc, comedycellarusa, kickaxethrowing, brooklynfarmacy / Instagram
Planning sucks, and bachelorette parties are a ton of work. So we’re taking all the guesswork out of planning a bachelorette party by breaking down top bachelorette destinations. Our guides will tell you where to stay, eat, party, how to get around, and give you a sample itinerary that you can follow. You’re welcome.
In light of the super sweet (just kidding) comments in our recent The Top 5 Overdone Bachelorette Party Destinations, we decided to offer a bachelorette guide in a city that is both home to most (don’t @ me if you don’t live here) and cooler than, say, Las f*cking Vegas. Am I building this up too much? Probably. It’s Brooklyn, specifically the Williamsburg area, where all the former Murray Hill bros who are now taking over Brooklyn live. Hurry, before it’s too late! Book your bach weekend in Brooklyn for a good time in a place as full of ironic mustaches as it is under-the-radar bars.
Now, Brooklyn is def on its way to dethrone Manhattan as the borough in which New Yorkers actually want to live, which is saying a lot considering there was once a time that taxis wouldn’t even go to Brooklyn if they were already in Manhattan. Rude. BK is f*cking huge, so there’s a lot of ground to cover, but not to worry, we have a guide for that!
How To Get There
If you live in the Tri-State area, congrats, you’re already there! You can take just about any subway from any borough into most parts of Brooklyn. Since we’re mainly focusing on Williamsburg, Greenpoint, and Bushwick, you’ll be going off the L, G, and M trains, mostly. You may have to walk a little more to get to where you’re going than you would in Manhattan, but that’s what ya do in New York, so deal with it. If you live in another state, there are two airports in New York (LaGuardia and JFK) and one in New Jersey (Newark Liberty—but like, Jersey). Flying into LaGuardia is the best bet because it’s closest to Brooklyn and traffic is literally always the stuff of nightmares. If you don’t want to spend all of your rent money on an Uber from the airport and have a ton of time to kill, take the E train. You’ll be waiting for the train in an oven (the station) and will have to transfer at least once, and it will take anywhere from 2 to 17 hours, but the amount of money you’ll save will (maybe) make it all worth it. Honestly, I’d just take a cab.
Where To Stay
New York is home to killer hotels, so def splurge on nice digs for the weekend. Our Betches-approved recommendation? The Williamsburg Hotel, which is walkable from the Bedford Ave L stop. We f*cking love it, it’s the perfect mix of yuppie and what BK used to be. It’s also right next to, like, everywhere, so you don’t have to spend a lot of money or time getting from place to place. The most amazing thing about this hotel, though, is its rooftop/pool situation. If you live in New York, you know that there is a shortage of pools here, so the fact that there’s one here is huge. And, even better, hotel guests get priority access.
We Stan a New York hotel with a pool. And because it’s right across the
street water from Manhattan, Williamsburg happens to have a few different subway lines running through it, so you can at least subway to your destinations and save money (because you’ll be wasted on the way back, so it’s better just to Uber). Also, if being #convenient and #efficient (hi) really excites you, you’ll be happy to know that you can walk to most restaurants and bars in the immediate area. More on this later on, y’all.
How To Get Around
New York is a walking city, so you really don’t have to spend a ton on transportation. Of course, there will be times when you’ll want to Uber (see: 3am), but for the most part, you can walk or take the subway.
Where To Eat
You literally have to book one of your dinners at Antica Pesa—specifically, your classy dinner when your group has gotten all dressed up. Like most amazing restos, Antica Pesa has two locations: one in Williamsburg and one (the OG) in Trastevere, a neighborhood in Rome. I mean, you know this place is legit if there are only two locations and one of them is in f*cking ITALY. If you’re a pasta fiend (welcome, sister), order the ragú d’antra. (But really, you can’t go wrong with any of the pasta dishes.) On keto or something? That’s fine—they have plenty of protein options, like grilled branzino and hand-cut beef tartare. Food won’t taste the same after this, and it will def be a meal to remember.
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Reservations have officially opened for NYC Summer Restaurant Week! We will be offering a $42 three course dinner menu from July 22 until August 16, Sunday through Friday evenings with selections like our Penne Pomodoro e Mozzarella, Insalata Vignarola, and Tiramisù! Click our story for more information #anticapesa
Obv, we have to include some killer brunch spots on this list, so I’m starting off strong and throwing out Sauvage. If you have Instagram/know a single human who lives in Greenpoint, you know what Sauvage is. If neither of these things apply to you, allow me to open your eyes to le best seasonal French food. This place is so bougie that this sentence exists on their website: “We are inspired by outsiders and the outdoors; by naturalists and botanists, farmers and wine-producers, and anyone who works to craft their own dreams, hewn from boundless creativity and restless energy.” Alrighty, then. The best thing on the menu is hands down the almond french toast. Everyone who eats it, eats it like Meg Ryan in Katz’s Deli in When Harry Met Sally.
Dceptive name aside, Extra Fancy is f*cking good and has serious ~vibes,~ especially if the weather is good. This Williamsburg locale is def not fancy—like, at all—but it has a huge patio with picnic tables/benches/bar out back and a separate patio for dining. This place kind of feels like if pubs were a thing in the U.S. The burger is fantastic, so if you’re a firm believer in calories not counting when you’re on vacation (which we all should be), order up.
Gemelli is another good dinner or lunch spot (that you’ll have to take the L to, but it’s worth it) that literally just opened, so you can tell everybody you discovered it (we won’t tell). With a green tropical-looking bar (appropriately dubbed “the green room”) and an outdoor patio, you’ll get the perfect Instas of your Mediterranean-inspired fare. Gemelli has enough on the menu that even the pickiest eater in your group will find something to enjoy, whether it’s a meatball sub smothered in cheese (that, dw, you can also get vegetarian), seared provolone served in a cast-iron skillet (think Italian queso), or pesto penne with homemade pesto. Oh, they also have a killer brunch menu.
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Other must-dine places include: Sunday in Brooklyn, Shelter Pizza, Xixa, Gran Eléctrica, Seawolf, or (yes) Smorgasburg.
Where To Party
AKA the most important part of the trip. Let’s start on a slightly off-beat note, shall we? House of Yes in Bushwick is a movie any day of the week, but on Thursdays they throw Dirty Thursday nights, which have themes like 90s night, Rihanna night, etc. On the weekends, their themes are a lot more out-there (in a fun way) and intense—as in, if you try to show up not fully decked out to theme, you can’t come in. This place is so f*cking fun and is a strict no-judgment zone, so you can get weird. Also, the bathrooms are incredible. You’ll see what I mean when you go there. Just, if you’re gonna go? Be cool. Don’t be that shrieking bachelorette party.
Schimanski is perf if the bridal party are still not over their rave days. This club/bar/event space has multiple rooms and hosts acts like Space Jesus, Keys N Krates, and Zhu.
Want to do something really out-of-the-box, yet still memorable (and a little bougie)? Go see a show by Company XIV, which puts on burlesque adaptations of classics like Alice In Wonderland and The Nutcracker. Everyone in the company is so hot and talented, and the shows are incredible. Think tons of skin, tons of glitter and rhinestones, and choreography you couldn’t replicate if you took a muscle relaxer.
Last and equally as great is Kinfolk94, which is the happy medium between a bar and a club. Like, you don’t have to dress up super fancy (but you can if you want), but there are awesome DJs who spin killer mixes of current hits and throwback jams. I’m not going to tell you how to spend your money, but if you’re bringing a big group, it’s probably better to coordinate ahead of time with Kinfolk and reserve a table so you can skip the line. The drinks are a tad expensive (as in, like, $12 for a cocktail), but not guess-I’ll-just-be-sober expensive.
Other fun af places to go out are Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club (if you want to cab way out to Gowanus), Freehold, Lot45 (which can be a little hit or miss, so go when they have an event like Drake vs. Kanye night), Baby’s All Right, and Elsewhere.
Thursday, Day 1
- Arrive in BK (even though you were prob only, like 20 mins away at work before this)! Drop your stuff off at the Williamsburg Hotel and get acquainted with your five-star home for the weekend.
- Walk ~15 minutes to Extra Fancy for dinner and sit on the back patio (the dining one, not the bar one). After dinner, either head to the bar part of the patio or back inside the restaurant for a few drinks before venturing to the next spot. You’ll want to be slightly buzzed before arriving, so knock ‘em back… responsibly, of course.
- Uber to House of Yes! Ok, so if you want a full HOY experience, you will have to be ok with wearing something fun to dinner because there will be no time to go back to the hotel and change before making the journey to Bushwick.
- The night will be similar to that episode of Sex and the City where they went to Trade, except HOY isn’t specifically a gay club. They are incredibly LGBTQ-friendly/supportive, though. Again, like I said, don’t be that bachelorette party.
- Get Artichoke Pizza (right next to HOY) after your night so you don’t die tomorrow.
- Goodnight world.
Friday, Day 2
- Late and leisurely brunch at Sauvage to recollect yourself after the latest night of your life.
- Once you are feeling like a slightly more functional member of society, head to The Brooklyn Barge, which is exactly what you think it is: a bar on a floating barge. The drinks are a tad on the absurd side price-wise, so if you want another reason to recover after last night, only get one or two drinks here and spend the rest of your time admiring the view, which is amaze.
- Head back to the hotel to lay by/go in the pool and get a little tan before the night begins in a few hours. Maybe get a facial in the spa while you’re at it. Or just take a nap.
- Get ready for dinner.
- Walk exactly two seconds to Antica Pesa and enjoy an amaze dinner/bottle(s) of wine. This is the place you’ll want to make emotional toasts and have actual conversations because while it’s def a vibe, it’s quiet. Like, your parents would like it.
- Take a quick cab to Théâtre XIV, where they have 10pm shows on Fridays and Saturdays. Or, if you’re too glittered out from House of Yes, head to Lot45 or any of the other aforementioned places before it gets too late to get in. Orrr, if you’re really feeling
friskyenergetic, you can go to the show at Theatre XIV and then walk to Lot45.
Saturday, Day 3
- Wake up and hydrate for Y7 yoga! It’s bikram and kind of feels like you’re doing yoga on the sun, but feeling the
poisonalcohol drain from your body is def worth it. Y7 plays amazing hip-hop music the entire time, so if you want to flow to something that isn’t the breeze rustling leaves, Y7’s got you.
- You will be drenched after Y7 and, if you’re like me, will be rocking a concerning shade of pink. Maybe rinse your face off at the studio before walking to Sauvage and if a 20-minute walk is too much for you after sweating out all of the calories you’ve ever ingested, maybe go to Sunday in Brooklyn instead. This is just as charming and delicious and a lot closer to walk to.
- Head back to the hotel to save the public from your stench and spend the afternoon by the pool.
- Dinner at Gemelli, where, if you’ve been saving an Instagrammable outfit (aside from your HOY one), this is the place to pull it out.
- Uber to Kinfolk94, get situated at your table and drink the night away! This isn’t the kind of place you’d like, run into Beyoncé, but it’s def a scene. So if you want a quiet night of cocktails and friends, this isn’t the place for you. It’s a good f*cking time, though.
Sunday, Day 4
- Blessed day! Uber to brunch at Randolph Beer in Williamsburg, which is a slightly industrial restaurant close to the hotel but not near any subways (you could take the bus, but like… no). As its name implies, they have a lot of beer, so if you want a pint to go with your pancakes, we feel you. But they also have amazing cocktails that you can get by the pitcher, so RIP in advance. This place also has graffiti all over the walls, so cheers to all your brunch Boomerangs.
- Head back to the hotel to gather your things and subway/Uber back to your life. Or continue day drinking in Brooklyn if you’re a local! Yolo.
Images: Thought Catalog / Unsplash; companyxiv, houseofyesnyc, gemellibk, sauvage_nyc, anticapesa, wburghotel / Instagram
To the surprise of literally everyone I know, I got my first tattoo last weekend! Here’s the story: I have always thought tattoos are cool, but I never bought into the idea of memorializing something important to me with one. Like, I don’t need to get a tattoo of my favorite city to remind myself that I lived there—you know? So I got a tattoo simply because I wanted one, knowing full well that it wasn’t going to mean jack sh*t beyond “this is pretty.” And I am totally happy with that.
My tat is a tiny outline of a heart on the underside of my wrist. I knew I wanted something little because a huge tattoo just doesn’t really go with my general nice Jewish girl vibe, and because if it really hurt, I wanted it to only last like, two minutes. Am I an adult with the pain tolerance of a newborn? You betcha! So if you’re thinking of getting a tattoo, please take the advice of someone with zero regrets and quite a few f*cks to give. These are the mistakes to not make when getting your first tattoo, but could apply for any tattoo.
1. Don’t Get A Cheap Tattoo
My tattoo is literally the size of a pencil eraser and I still spent $100 on it, which I initially thought was absurd. Yes, I live in Manhattan where prices are more inflated than Kylie Jenner’s ass, but a crisp Benjamin for a centimeter of ink? Surely that’s got to be robbery, yes?
No. After doing as much research on this as I did on my thesis in college, I discovered that any good tattoo parlor should have a start price of around $100 (in New York, at least), no matter how small the tattoo. I Yelped all of the cheaper places ($50 and below start price) and they got horrendous reviews. It’s almost as if… you get what you pay for? Of course, there are always exceptions, but when it comes to getting something permanently placed on your body, just pay a little more to ensure it’s exactly what you want. Generally cheaper places use less skilled artists and cheaper ink, which is just a bad combo and leaves a lot of room for mistakes. The lower grade ink, which your body breaks down faster than really good ink, will fade pretty quickly, and on top of that, bad quality ink can bleed over the original lines and smear. Gross. All in all, the last time you want to cut corners or get a Groupon is when you’re getting something stabbed into your body forever. (More on the stabbing shortly.)
2. Don’t Listen To Your Friends
Go with your gut and do everything in your power to not ask for or listen to other people’s opinions. The one benefit to telling people you’re getting your first tattoo is that they’ll hold you accountable and make sure you actually go through with it, but the downsides outweigh the one upside. That’s because everybody has an opinion. Do your best to get what you wanted where you wanted it when you first decided you wanted to get a tattoo. I knew I wanted it on my wrist, but as I was standing there waiting for the stencil to be done, I started having doubts and tried to convince myself that I wanted it on the crook of my arm or behind my ear, so I asked my roommate what she thought and then my brain exploded and it was not pretty. Anyway, guess where it is? It’s on my wrist because that’s where I originally wanted it. Going with your gut is generally life’s main rule, but in the case of getting your first tattoo, it’s especially true.
3. Don’t Ignore Aftercare
Getting a tattoo is essentially a cute collection of tiny stab wounds that are marked with ink so that you can never forget about that time you paid a lot of money to get stabbed by a professional stabber. Thus, a fresh tattoo is an open injury that needs to heal properly or it will look ratchet as hell down the line. For my little tat, I was instructed to keep it covered with a bandage that the shop gave me for a few hours, then gently wash with unscented soap and moisturize with an unscented moisturizer. I used Dr. Bronner’s soap and a tiny bit of Cetaphil, and I am pretty happy with what’s happening on my wrist two days later.
After a few days, the ink starts to scab over and peel on its own. Don’t pick at it! If you pick at it, you will accidentally pull the ink out. Generally, aftercare is a little more crucial for bigger tattoos, but either way, it shouldn’t be ignored if you want to get and keep what you paid for. Can we also acknowledge that my nail polish looks 100 after four days?
4. Don’t Get A Huge First Tattoo
Look, if you’ve never gotten a tattoo before, don’t go big on the first one. Start small, like Maui in Moana did, and make sure you’re into the look and experience before going bigger and/or getting more. Honestly, because it didn’t hurt at all and it’s the literal cutest thing I’ve ever seen, my first tattoo is going to be my gateway to more, and that’s totally fine with me. Starting small is never a bad thing when it comes to most things, anyway. A friend of mine got a stick-and-poke (the OG tattoo method) of a giant bird on her thigh—and guess what? It’s kind of ugly and she doesn’t love it. She also struggles to cover it up because it’s huge. Yikes. Getting a large tat is never a bad thing if it’s what you want, but for your first tattoo, you won’t really have a sense for what’s what, so starting small is the move.
5. Don’t Forget To Research
No matter how lazy you are with work, the shop where you’ll get your first tattoo is one piece of research you should definitely do. Every shop is different and specializes in different styles and techniques. Mine was so tiny that I assumed it’d be really hard to screw up, but after beginning my research binge, I learned that for something so small and dainty, I had to go to a parlor that offered a single-needle machine, which a lot of places do not. And if you’re getting a really intricate design with a lot of shading, you basically need to be on the hunt for Michelangelo, because that stuff is a true art form that can very easily look horrible. Take the time to read reviews and check out different Instagrams for actual examples of the place’s work before booking an appointment or walking in. If you like what you see, reach out and ask questions on questions.
6. Don’t Ignore Your Artist’s Opinion
I know I literally just said to ignore anyone with an opinion, but I didn’t mean ignore the expert. I originally wanted a tiny, filled-in heart with red ink and walked out with a tiny, outlined heart with black ink. Why? My artist, Joel at Fun City Tattoo, basically told me that red ink gets broken up first, meaning it will fade really fast. He also said getting a tiny shape in red on my wrist will likely look like a really infected bug bite, which was 100% not what I was going for. After he suggested doing black ink and not filled in, I thought about it for a bit before remembering that he is an expert and I have no idea what the hell I’m talking about, so I should trust him. If you can’t tell, I am obsessed with his work and he was totally right.
Images: Giphy; Unsplash; Instagram
Spring is finally here, which means New Yorkers will actually start to enjoy
paying an exorbitant amount of money to survive living in this city. Unlike most places, spring in New York occurs for approximately two weeks between a disgustingly freezing winter à la March of the Penguins and a summer that is essentially just one giant heatwave. Fun times! New Yorkers generally don’t enjoy nature (at least I don’t), but that doesn’t mean we don’t like being outside when the arctic conditions have finally peaced the f*ck out. And because I refuse to pretend that I want to take advantage of the nice weather in Central Park, I will always be the first to propose the plan in the group chat before anyone else has the chance: rooftop bars.
Seriously, name one thing better than drinking against the backdrop of a beautiful skyline in pristine weather conditions. I’ll wait. Here’s the thing, as much as this city makes me question my will to live, there are times when I am happy to exist in a place where I can have a sit-down dinner at 11pm or run into Karlie Kloss every now and then. One of the most amazing qualities of this city is its ungodly amount of bars serving generous pours. So, while I couldn’t tell you where the f*ck to eat in the Theater District for a 6:30 show (which is what most people want to know), I can tell you where to knock a few back as the weather warms up. You’re welcome, darlings.
If you can’t picture where Gallow Green is on a map, would West 27th Street between 10th and 11th Avenues help? I know what you’re thinking, “Wait. Isn’t that where Marquee is?” Why, yes it is, but if you’re not in college anymore, you have absolutely no reason to be at Marquee, so just keep walking west and you’ll find yourself at the door of the McKittrick Hotel. Now, if you’re a cultured New Yorker, you’ll know that the McKittrick Hotel is home to the only reason any of us know what Shakespeare’s Macbeth is about aka Sleep No More. So far, so good! Just above the steamiest play of all time is a seriously chic cocktail-slinging garden-vibes rooftop bar called Gallow Green. To paint a picture for you, it’s the Garden of Eden with a bar in the back. It’s named after a Scottish field where accused witches were hanged (neat!), so the bar has kind of an old-timey feel complete with string lights, greenery and tattered white flags hanging from the ceiling. Most importantly, the cocktails are to-die-for and the food is actually pretty amazing, too. I’ll take a Sleep No More cocktail with a side of assorted pizzas, please.
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Raise your glass to nice weather! Rooftop patio is open from 6pm ☀️☀️☀️ #vidaverdenyc #mexicandrinks #rooftopbar #diningwithaview #rooftop #tequila #cocktails #delicious #mexico #comidamexicana #tacos #tacotuesday #margaritas #happyhour #tequila #foodporn #bar #mojitos #fiesta #mexicanbar #mexicoparty #mexicanrestaurant #mexicanfood #mexicostyle #midtownmanhattan #cocktailtime #cocktailbar #cocktailhour #happyhour
This place has a spring break in Cancun vibe, but for adults, and I am not mad about it. It’s right in Midtown, so you can head straight here after you’re done pretending to make the world a better place at your finance job. Vida Verde isn’t like, revolutionary, but there are two things about it that make me want to go here over every other Midtown rooftop. First, there are more tables than I’ve ever seen in one place, which is ideal because I have a standing desk at work and now associate standing up with Excel and calendar invites. If there is a drink in my hand and nachos in the vicinity, I need to be sitting, mmkay? Second, there are 10 flavors of margarita. Lastly, a drinking establishment is only as good as its vibe, and Vida Verde clearly knows that, which is why the roof is literally covered in murals and every chair is a different color. I know the menu is prob the most important, but you’re playing yourself if you think you’re not going to take any Instagrams up here, honey. Take a seat, sip one of your 10 margs and enjoy the beautiful weather up here.
Ophelia is set in midtown East, but like, all the way east to the point that you are almost walking into the East River. But once you get inside, you’ll realize it’s well worth the trek. Perched 26 stories above the city, the Gatsby-reminiscent bar offers 360-degree views of the East River and Manhattan skyline in both its indoor and outdoor sections, so checking out this rooftop is not weather-dependent. The cocktails are delicious (and will sneak up on you—buyer beware). I had the appropriately named Flapper drink, which came in a glass dusted in sugar, and was prettier than I can ever hope to be (and tasted as good as it looked).
I avoid the Garment District harder than I do making eye contact with my ex in the Trader Joe’s line on a Sunday morning. But I’ll gladly step foot in New York’s equivalent of District 12 for Refinery Rooftop. If you’ve ever experienced the nightmare that is a fashion internship, you’ll know that those four miserable blocks between 6th and 9th Avenues are the bane of human existence during the summer months, but Refinery Rooftop is a game changer, I promise. I don’t even get PTSD-induced flashbacks from my trips to Mood anymore! Anyway, Refinery is not a massive frat house like so many rooftop bars. It actually kind of feels like you got lost in someone’s enormous house and just stumbled around until you ended up on her outdoor deck. I mean that in the best way possible: it’s quaint, it’s chic and it’s surprisingly homey! The roof has a giant skylight and the walls are exposed brick, which is chic af. The cocktails are pretty decent, but be sure to order the bar’s signature sips because for each one sold, one dollar will be donated to GrowNYC! According to Refinery Rooftop, GrowNYC “improve New York City’s quality of life through environmental programs that transform communities and empower all New Yorkers.” It’d be cool if they could improve New York City’s quality of life by fixing the f*cked up subway system, but I guess environmental programs are cool, too.
The Crown Rooftop at 50 Bowery Hotel
When it comes to sweeping views, this Chinatown gem truly has them all: Brooklyn, Manhattan, maybe even Queens! Don’t get me wrong, Chinatown can def be disgusting what with the constant stench of freshly dead fish and enormous crowds that insist on taking up 110% of the sidewalks, but honestly, this is one of my favorite neighborhoods in Manhattan thanks to the mom in Broad City. Ok, back to The Crown. This summer, The Crown is rolling out all the stops with its new theme, Royal Summer. I’m into it. TBH, one of the things I love most about this place, aside from its bougie theme, is the fact that there are indoor and outdoor sections. As much as I love breathing in the polluted-beyond-reason New York air, sometimes I just want to sit on a plush sofa in an air-conditioned space with a drink in my hand. Is that too much to ask? The Crown doesn’t think so! This season’s new menu items include a lobster roll with North Fork chips and a “backyard” burger (among other items) and, for the drinks, Rose-Colored Glasses. My friends tell me I wear these on dates with attractive guys, fully knowing they will ruin my life for a few months, but whatever. To each her own, right?
Pod 39 Rooftop
Truth be told, I went on a horrendous date here when I first moved to New York, but the date was bad only because the guy absolutely sucked. The location was amazing and I have since been back many times. This bar is the perfect size, too: it’s not too big and not too small, but more importantly, they let only a certain amount of people up at a time, so you will never have to take baby steps with your arms bent and pressed against your body like chicken wings as you try to squeeze through a crowd. I’m not sure if there’s a theme, per se, but I have gotten chips and guac and a spicy marg more than once, so I’m going to go ahead and say Mexican is a safe bet? Like The Crown, there are indoor and outdoor sections, but the outdoor part is significantly better than the indoor one, which has exactly one sofa and one table. Feels like they are setting us up to fail here, but whatever. The outdoor part is also just really cute. There’s no roof, so obv plan to go on a day/night when it’s not monsooning, and enjoy the best views of Manhattan. The lack of roof also means the whole space looks and feels really open, so it doesn’t get so loud to the point where you’re scream-talking with your date/friends.
It’s the Arlo rooftop in Soho, get it? The Hudson River provides the backdrop to this rooftop bar, so your Instas will be on point. The bar has plenty of seating (and a number of plush chaises), so you won’t be fighting anyone for a seat (or, more likely, staring daggers at that table who just. won’t. get. up). They’ve got an inventive signature cocktail list and a respectable selection of craft beer, plus snacks and small plates that I can personally attest are amazing. (Try the deviled eggs or grilled wings and thank me later.) And when the sun goes down, you can check out what’s going down at the hotel downstairs, where they host all kinds of fun events, like a CBD pop-up, Movie Night, and once, a haiku poetry slam.
Say what you will about this place, but I f*cking love it. It’s in the Meatpacking District, which like, chic, and the music here is on fire. The journey to get from the terrifying college-bar vibes of the first few levels can be a lot, but once you actually get to the roof, all feels right in the world again. It’s the perfect place to go with a small group because there is so much space up there. You can push tables together, sofas together, your two friends you’ve always wanted to date together…etc. The drinks are like, fine, but no one really goes to rooftop bars for a truly quality craft cocktail. They are open pretty much all day and night, so go whenever you feel like, but I personally prefer to spend the day here than the night here because, after midnight, this place can be a cesspool rife with body con dresses and dudes asking what sorority you were in, which just shouldn’t happen if both parties have graduated. The French Toast and anything from the Something Sparkly part of the menu is a perfect pair, so order up! Be sure to wear sunscreen because there is zero shade up here and no one wants brunch with a side of fine lines, amiright?
Images: Gallow Green; Refinery Rooftop; The Crown at Hotel 50 Bowery; Ophelia NYC; Arlo Hotel; Pod 39, Brass Monkey / Instagram
As you well f*cking know by now, we here at Betches consider it our duty in life to rip Refinery29’s Money Diaries a new one. Seriously. That’s in our official company policy. Look, if they’re going to continue to “break down barriers” and promote the struggles of
Olivia Jade full-time trust fund babies and part-time influencers, then I’m going to continue to anonymously blast them about it on the internet, and I won’t apologize for that! We’ve already discussed how it costs a chill $2k to even breath in cities like New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Portland, and now we’re financially breaking down everyone’s favorite topic: moving.
If you’re anything like me, then moving feels like the undocumented 10th circle of Hell, right after that one about treachery. And I should know, because in the past 4 years I’ve moved four times, two of which involved moving to a different state. Yep, you heard right: FOUR TIMES. If you’re wondering where my mental stability is after said moves, let’s just say I’d rank it somewhere between Khloé Kardashian aggressively screaming “LIAR!” into her phone in the latest trailer for KUWTK and Britney Spears shaving her entire head in 2007. I hope that paints a clear enough picture for you. I think we can all agree that moving is not fun, and it’s hella expensive—especially if you’re moving in or to a big city. And since I’ve done both, and there’s nothing in this world I love more than b*tching about my own life, I thought I’d document my struggles for your viewing pleasure. For the sake of time (and your sanity) I’m only going to talk about the two moves that involved moving in and out of New York City, as those were the most expensive moves by far. You’re welcome.
1st Move: NC → NYC
When I first graduated from college, I realized that just because I had a degree in creative writing and listed “senior send-off T-shirt designer” for my for my sorority as my greatest career accomplishment, didn’t mean anyone would actually hire me. Which felt—and still feels, quite frankly—extremely unfair. Not everyone can come up with a slogan as catchy as “adios bitch-achos” and convince 100 something white girls to all agree on it, okay!!
I spent the first 9 months after graduation doing literally any freelance opportunity I could to pad my resume while living at home and applying for more full-time positions. The February after graduation, I landed a job in Manhattan as a publicity assistant for a major book publishing house and essentially had to move my entire life from North Carolina to NYC in a shorter amount of time than Forever21’s return policy—and you know that sh*t is a quick turn around.
Occupation at time of move: Book Publicist/Aspiring Writer/Actively Trying To Marry Rich
Industry: Anything that would accept my creative writing degree
Age at time of move: 23
Location: New York, NY
Moving Stipend: Lol. Companies actually do this? Just because I was hired at one of the largest publishing houses in the world doesn’t mean they would give up any of the billions of dollars they make a year to help my entry-level ass move. In fact, I was only given three weeks to move from North Carolina to New York City, find a place to live that didn’t end up with me a) living in a cardboard box or b) becoming the plotline of a Law & Order episode, and the only help they gave me was to “accidentally” change my start date to one week earlier.
Savings at time of move: $3K
What I Paid For During The Move
Moving truck rental: $900
Gas, toll fees, etc.: $500-$1,000
(I’m going to be completely transparent here, I was lucky enough to have my parents help me out a ton for this move. At the time, I was freelancing and only had about $3K in my savings, which, as you’ll see below, was almost entirely what was needed to pay upfront for my apartment. I know not everyone is lucky enough to have their parents help them move or help them fund said move, so keep this in mind if you’re having to move completely on your own.)
Apartment fees (deposit, 1st/last month rent, etc.): $2,850. My first apartment in New York was located in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn but, like, before Bed-Stuy had coffee shops that served avocado toast. I distinctly remember a cab driver making a crude comparison to Bed-Stuy and a war-torn country and then telling me to pack up my things and “run while I still can.” And they say New Yorkers aren’t friendly or helpful! My rent for one bedroom in a four bedroom apartment was $950 a month, and I had to put down essentially three month’s rent up front with first, last, and security deposits. This is not uncommon in the New York area, which was a shock to me. This was practically everything I had in my savings account, and I hadn’t even gotten the keys to my goddamn apartment yet.
^^Actual footage of me during my move
Furniture: $800. Fun fact: even if you’ve accumulated furniture throughout your life, don’t think you can bring it to this trash city, because odds are it won’t fit in the 300 cubic square feet your landlord is pretending is a bedroom. When I moved to New York I had to buy all new furniture because the bed and dresser I’d had from home wouldn’t physically fit in the limited space I had. Most of the furniture I bought was from Amazon and Goodwill so, like, cheap finds and it STILL cost me close to $800 when all was said and done.
Random Moving Costs: Can you put a price on your sanity? What about the Metrocard I had to buy before getting my first paycheck? Let’s just round this number $300 and call it a day.
Total Cost of Move: $6K. That’s right. SIX THOUSAND DOLLARS, and that’s mostly for rent and actually transporting my sh*t from point A to point B. That doesn’t even include any of the fun stuff like room decor or the boxed wine I needed to dull the sting of my savings being set on metaphorical fire.
2nd Move: NYC → NC
Cut to 3 ½ years later and I moved back to North Carolina from NYC. I won’t go into the details as to why I moved—you can read my sappy, wine-induced Instagram post for that—but I’ll just say it was time for a change. I’d been applying for jobs in North Carolina while I was still living in the city, but I actually ended up moving before I had another job lined up. This was a huge risk and, as my mother so sweetly told me several times during the course of this move, I could have really screwed myself. That said, I made saving a major priority before going into this move. I didn’t want to have to rely on my parents again, and I knew I could possibly be without income for a few months. See? I’m learning! And they say you can’t teach a basic betch new tricks.
Occupation at time of move: Just Actively Trying To Marry Rich (Kidding! I was also freelance writer, if you can call aggressively pitching Riverdale related content to any outlet that would listen “writing.”)
Industry: Parental pity
Age at time of move: 26
Location: Greensboro, North Carolina
Salary: $300-$1,000 depending on amount of freelance gigs I could hustle each month.
Moving Stipend: Do the Cheetos my dad sprung for at the 7-11 in bumblef*ck Virginia count? No?
Savings at time of move: $10K
What I Paid For During The Move
Moving truck rental: $900
Gas, tolls, etc.: $500-$1,000
Apartment fees (deposit, 1st/last month rent, etc.): $100. When I left the city I moved back in with my parents *shudders* but this also meant that I was living rent-free for a bit. I did owe $100 to my Brooklyn landlord for “miscellaneous damages” to the apartment, despite the fact that he could not name (or take photographic evidence of) one actual damage that he charged me for. K.
Furniture: +$200. I actually made money here because I was able to sell back some of my tiny-ass furniture I bought for NYC that I would no longer need once I moved to a city that wasn’t garbage. Blessings. What I couldn’t sell I left on the street to be fought over by my neighbors like the last weapon in The Hunger Games.
Random Moving Costs: $500. I may or may not have locked my keys and cell phone in my apartment mid-move. To set the mood for you, I spent the last two days before my move saying goodbye to my life in the city by binge drinking for 48 hours straight, as one does. My dad flew in approximately 12 hours before we were set to drive 13 hours back to North Carolina with all my sh*t and found me curled in the fetal position in my dog’s bed amongst piles of trash bags full of clothes. In the remaining 12 hours before the move, we managed to pack up the rest of my stuff, get dinner, see a show, and get approximately 4 hours of sleep before waking up at the crack of dawn to pack the truck. So, to summarize: I was severely hungover, exhausted, and in the midst of heavy lifting when I found out I’d locked my keys and cell phone in the apartment halfway through packing up the car. I think this is perhaps the best representation for my state of mind upon realizing what I’d done:
Long story short, after attempting to break into my own damn apartment, having my neighbors threaten to call the cops for said break-in, begging to use a random person’s cellphone to call my landlord, trying to call my landlord and crying when I realized it was a Jewish holiday and he would perhaps get back to me in the next 1-2 weeks, and finally using my dad’s apple watch to call my mom who called a local locksmith in the area, we were able to get back into my apartment to finish the move. For a cool THREE HUNDRED DOLLARS. Add in all the boxes and packing materials I bought, and we can just round this cost up to $500 here I think.
Total Cost of Move: $3K
What I Learned
As you can see from this deep analysis of my
psyche finances, moving is f*ckingggg expensive. And I’m only describing the moves that occurred across state lines! I also moved once while living in New York all on my own, without a car, or my parents to listen to me whine about it help me. Two months after moving to North Carolina, I moved into my own apartment in Greensboro, which effectively drained the rest of my savings. Will I move again, you ask? Only if I feel like sabotaging my own happiness in the near future. So, yes, probably.
That said, I have learned a few things about moving. For one, savings matter, especially if you’re moving on your own without any
parental pity outside financial assistance. It was key to my second move. I also learned that just because you have enough money for rent doesn’t mean you actually have enough money to move—you might end up spending three times what your monthly rent costs. Also, don’t drink before your move. Just don’t do it.
Images: Giphy (4)