Each weekend with The Astor as your home base would be like none other. Start with a Saturday-morning breakfast in a kitchen that’s an exercise in elegant efficiency. The high ceilings and generous windows let the morning light in, making the open-plan, eat-in kitchen a welcoming space in which to contemplate an espresso. Appliances by the likes of Gaggenau, Miele, and Sub-Zero are as easy to use as they are advanced, making your kitchen fully ready for entertaining a crowd, or hosting a quiet breakfast for two.
After breakfast, take a short walk to Central Park West where the New-York Historical Society, the Museum of Arts and Design, the Bard Graduate Center, and the American Museum of Natural History are always hosting exciting exhibitions and events. Though the AMNH offers new exhibitions year ’round, some of its most enchanting displays are decades-old and wonderful as ever. The Harry Frank Guggenheim Hall of Gems and Minerals is a perennial crowd favorite with its dark interior and dramatically illuminated galleries of rare and priceless gemstones. The giant topaz crystal from Brazil, the nearly five-ton azurite-malachite block from Arizona, and the countless sparkling stones from all over the world make this permanent exhibition a must for budding naturalists and jewelry aficionados alike. (Visit http://www.amnh.org for hours and details.)
While the Astor is nestled in a rich cultural enclave, it offers a taste of nature as well. Steps from your front door, some of New York’s loveliest green spaces can be found in Central and Riverside Parks. Known for their scenic jogging and bike paths and well-maintained trees and flowers, the two parks offer plenty of opportunities to unwind with a brisk walk or a challenging run. You can circle the reservoir for open city views, or explore a quieter route and admire springtime cherry blossoms or summertime wildflowers along the way.
There’s nothing like a hot shower or bath after some fresh air and exercise, and back home in your Astor residence you’ll enjoy showering or bathing even more in your elegantly outfitted bathroom. Designers Pembrooke & Ives selected soft colors and subtle mosaics to make this experience feel like a true respite from a busy day for Astor residents. Once you’re refreshed and ready to venture out once again, you can choose a fashionable ensemble you’ve procured from a neighboring shop such as Barneys New York, Stuart Weitzman, Burberry, INTERMIX, Rag & Bone, Alexis Bittar…. On top of everything else it has to offer, the Upper West Side is also a little slice of retail heaven.
As far as the performing arts go, both Lincoln Center and Symphony Space host world-class musical, dance, and theatrical productions all year long and for all ages. Jazz at Lincoln Center, housed inside the sleek Time Warner Center and overseen by artistic director Wynton Marsalis, features performers ranging from celebrated jazz musicians to renowned jazz singers as well as countless emerging artists in its acoustically ideal spaces. This summer, find Michael Feinstein performing “A Right to Sing the Blues,” a collection of classics by George Gershwin and Harold Arlen, and the inimitable Diane Schuur performing the Ray Charles Songbook. Visit http://www.jazz.org for schedule and ticketing info.
There are plenty of places near The Astor to have a quick bite, a glass of wine, or a real feast, depending on your appetite and mood. If you’re meeting a friend for dinner following a concert or performance, you can’t do better than Bar Boulud. Chef Daniel Boulud’s intimate restaurant just across from Lincoln Center offers all the signature tastes we’ve come to love from this French proprietor of Michelin-starred eateries around the world, and yet it’s small enough to feel welcoming and relaxed. The cellar is well-stocked with outstanding French wines, not surprisingly, and the communal charcuterie bar as well as a tasting table offer culinary treats not to be missed. Visit http://www.barboulud.com/nyc/about for more information about the menu and reservations.
After a good night’s sleep in your spacious master bedroom at The Astor, pick and choose which local highlights you’d like to experience to wrap up your weekend. Whether you opt for a casual Sunday stroll, a stimulating day of retail therapy, a long afternoon meal in your favorite neighborhood restaurant, or a culturally rich expedition, you’ll be hard pressed to run out of ideas for outings with The Astor as your home base. In fact, The Astor puts you so close to New York’s best tastes, sights, and sounds, you’ll have an endless list of new things to try every weekend. At the same time, however, you’ll find that the serene luxury of the interiors and amenities of The Astor will always draw you home.