TimesSquare

The Paradise Club

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Dinner and a show in Times Square

A few years back there was this bacchanalia of a show in Times Square called Queen of the Night. If you didn’t know that it was in the basement of a hotel you would have never known it was there. Fast forward to now and you have the new Edition hotel in Times Square with a beautiful, yet minimalistic lobby on the 10th floor and one floor more, a cozy lounge serving as a entree’ to an upscale, multi-course dining room. “Hidden” on the 7th floor is a new nightclub/performance space; The Paradise Club. The Paradise Club takes some DNA from the aforementioned Queen of the Night as well as burlesque shows and Cirque Du Soleil. It is fun interactive dinner theatre on all the best levels and is brought to you by trendsetting hotelier Ian Schrager and The House of Yes.

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First let’s talk about the show. As previously mentioned you get a bit of burlesque, acrobatics, dancing and singing. It is led by a charismatic emcee and the troupe of performers give their all and leave nothing on the table. They are not afraid of interacting directly with the crowd; there is no 4th wall here so don’t be shy. The show is done in two 30 minutes-ish acts and culminates in a dance party of sorts. After the show there is a DJ and it turns into more of a typical NYC nightclub with different themed nights music-wise.

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CAVIAR NACHOS

CAVIAR NACHOS

Now let’s talk about the food. The dinner is a multi-course menu executed by the John Fraser team, and this is where they set themselves apart from other shows past and present for me. WOW! See you they could have easily put out standard “safe” food that would appease a crowd mostly just looking to be entertained and to get their buzz on. But they really put thought, creativity and feeling into this food. And there is something for everyone here. Yuzu oysters, Prosciutto with pineapple & tamarind, Strawberry sweet & sour cauliflower, Smoking spiced ribs and Duck breast with foie gras & apricot. These are just some of the dishes we were blessed to taste. Oh, I forgot to mention the Caviar nachos, just ridiculously good with crispy potato chips as a vessel for the sour cream and the salty caviar. This actually makes me excited to try out the other food outlets since the team is doing the food for the whole hotel.

So how would one do the Paradise Club? I would do it with a group of friends that are looking to have a great night without having to hope around venue to venue. Did I mention they have a Manhattan cart? A good looking gentleman (the whole staff is incredibly attractive) wheeled around a cart making specialty Manhattans table-side as another option to a complete bar menu. Back to my previous thought, yes make a whole night of it; dinner, show and then stick around for the nightclub afterwards. Just make sure you have the next day off....

 

Gulliver’s Gate

Do you remember the story by Jonathan Swift; Gulliver’s Travels?  Or maybe you are a fan or miniatures and Lionel model trains.  If so I have just the place for you.

Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges

Grand Central Terminal

In the heart of Times Square there is a fantastic miniature wonderland representing not only New York City, but many places around the world. These are all represented and laid out for you at Gulliver’s Gate.  So what is it exactly?  It’s best described as an on-going exhibition of major landmarks of the world.  They are all represented in miniature form and in great detail with numerous staged vignettes.  The majority of these “scenes” are static but some of them move with the turn of the magic key given at check-in.  These are clearly marked by lit up boxes located on the railings.  These will activate a helicopter in manhattan, Skiers down the Alps, concerts in London and even an old lady feeding chickens.  The challenge for some of them is finding exactly what some of them activate from all the scenes laid out before you.  It’s a fun little game and is a great way to interact with the exhibition. 

Museums and Macy's Parade

My a favorite part was just looking at the great detail and little pieces that may go unnoticed unless O’Neil really looking hard.  They could easily put together a “Where’s Waldo” type scavenger hunt with all the random little things that are placed in the exhibition.  For instance, try finding the crouching tiger-like flying fighters in the Chinese Village.  Or the Totem Pole in the Alaska Airport scene. And with New York City so well represented it is fun just trying to name all the notable landmarks.  There is even the Roosevelt Island Tram (hint, look up).

Oculas & 9/11 Memorial

Times Square & The High Line

Finally here is one of the coolest things, you can step into a 3D Pinter and have your likeness created in three different sizes to take home with you!  The detail on these statues like everything else in absolutely incredible and when you get one done you also get a miniature version of you to place somewhere in the Gulliver’s Gate exhibition.

Chinese village

The detail and scope of this fantastic exhibition is one that warrants a visit to excite, entertain and educate both young and old.  Go and see what you can find at Gulliver's Gate!

Ankor Wat

Taj Mahal

Arc D' Triomphe

Stonehenge

 

Star Wars and the power of costume - Discovery Times Square

One of the most anticipated openings this holiday season is not on Broadway, but happening worldwide, the newest installment of Star Wars.  Star Wars has become the modern folktale passed down from generation to generation and now introduced to a whole new age group with the newest movie, The Force Awakens.

With the new movie there has been tons of commercial promotions and tie-ins but one of the most interesting thing I saw is at The Discovery Times Square on 44th Street.  There is an exhibit just opened called "Star Wars and the Power of Costume."  Anyone that is a fan of the first trilogy, of all the films or if you are just being introduced to the Star Wars lore will find something interesting here.

Featured at this exhibit are numerous costumes from all six of the previous films and some from the upcoming film.  There are details on the inspiration of the costumes, the process of creating them  and the materials that went into making them.  You will see different costumes and how they work with the various character progressions through the films.

They also feature iconic props and how they were created like the lightsabers and blaster pistols. There is also the slab of Han Solo frozen in carbonite hanging like a wall ornament. Finally with the power of virtual reality you can become a Stormtrooper yourself!

As a huge fan of Star Wars I thoroughly enjoyed this exhibit, seeing all the fantastic costumes up close, finding out about the history and process of the making them and just generally getting excited about the upcoming movie.  This is a great exhibit for Star Wars or costume fans of all ages.

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