The New Yorker PART I: Bright Lights, City Lights, The Big Apple!
There's something about preparing for a trip that is just so enticing! The adrenaline you get as your departure date approaches, the excitement behind having a change in scenery, the anxiety over all the adventures that lie ahead. It's a feeling I enjoy, even if it's going back to the same ole' great "City of Bright Lights" anytime I want to get away, and escape to my creative safe haven. I'm talking none other than the great City and State of New York! The mecca of where fashion, entrepreneurship, corporate America, music, Broadway, Wall Street, and the grand hustle all coexist!
If you know me personally, you know I travel to New York at minimum twice a year- for a period a time during the summer months and during the cold winter holidays in late December. I enjoy getting the best of both weather worlds, because here in sunny South Florida, it is just that- sunny and CALIENTE all the time! (Thankfully we don't suffer from Arizona-typa heat. I hear that dry heat is the true definition of HOT.) Why not switch it up and create four seasons for myself since my home state cannot seem to produce anything else besides waves and beach days. (By the way, I live where YOU vacation, by no means am I complaining about South Florida. This is still paradise.)
New York is one of those amazing places that can check all your lists- there's something here for everyone. Every corner has a story, every person has a destination, everything is constantly moving, and it just keeps going and going and going and going until the next day. It's no wonder they call NYC the "City that Never sleeps."
From my Queen City-view suite in Yotel, located in the heart of Times Square, as I looked outside of my window, all I see is lights, tall buildings, and constant motion. It's almost rather poetic. Taxi cabs stopping and going, ambulance trucks raving through traffic, people traversing up and down the city, police horns consuming the sound of the peaceful air, crosswalks with constant pedestrians, the same old hermit asking for change with every other person that passes by, the halal man in the corner of the hotel hustling his way through the jungle selling $6 plates of YUM, the artist who is using New York City as a background for their latest visual project, the cartoonist eager to draw your face on carbon paper....truth is, your eyes are constantly entertained.
Don't judge me, but I really enjoy people watching; especially in a city where so much is going on. I love wondering what is their story? How did they get here? Where are they on their way to? If you've never heard of Humans of New York, you're definitely missing out on a great piece of biographical blogging. Uncovering the many truths and stories of the very people that call New York, home.
Every trip I take to New York varies from the last. I meet new people, discover new places, reach new heights, experience different things, and learn new tidbits about what hides inside this maze of culture and tourism. Of course in order to fully digest such an outlook on a mini blog-cation, one must have the perfect stay where to rest and prepare for the day.
Typically, I visit and stay with family either in New Jersey or in the Bronx. But after much adulting and responsibility, I decided to venture out on my own and intake my weekend in peace and serenity. I decided to find love within my passions and focus on this energy. Get out of my comfort zone and try something new- but still in a place I like to call home.
Modern, sleek, stylish- yet minimal and contemporary, Yotel offered the best in space-age architecture, cutting-edge technology and tranquility. I was in awe when I arrived- walking through a purple and pink-ish neon digital entryway into the self-service lobby, where a bot checks you in. Instantly you're time-warped into a whole new world. Sounds of EDM and modern-House greet you upon arrival. You know you have definitely arrived to somewhere totally hipster on this planet.
To the right of the entry, is this giant Wall-e ; Star Wars looking bot that stores guests luggage (which was far beyond what I had guessed the robot's role was). I couldn't make out if it was a smart trash chute or an inventory container with towels, sheets, and other hotel necessities. But on thing's for sure, it demands your attention as soon as you bestow your eyes upon it. It's one of those things that you see once and think you will never see again. At this point, I totally feel like I'm on an episode of The Jetsons.
If that's not eye-grabbing enough, a fun 5-ft photo booth allows guest to capture an image with fun filters, borders, and hashtags to commemorate their stay upon arrival as well. I wasted no time in saying "cheese" and posting my digital pic to my IG vlog. Conscious: "I've arrived dammit! Wash Poppin New York!?" The trip here alone from Brooklyn was no joke!
I missed my first flight because I mistaken LGA for JFK (yeah, I tell ya, the things I go through) while waiting at the airport. Arrived to New York only to have to post-pone my Empire State Building tour to next month, miles of walking through rain (thank God I traveled in Sneakers this time), crowded connected subway trains through boroughs, subway steps that felt like a never-ending stair-master, hills; underground train tunnels; and sidewalks full of people, and don't forget...watch out for strangers.
If you've never been on a New York City subway during rush hour, you will never truly understand the meaning behind the saying "walk with a purpose." It's just the way of life of New York. You can sit next to a CEO on one train, get off and enjoy some street dancers dancing in the middle of the station on your way to the city, then go up the subway station stairs and get you a hotdog and soda. The subway stations literally look like highways- only with humans instead of vehicles. But just a step up above ground, you will find just that- blaring horns and automobiles plastering the roads. Where else can you witness such a beautiful parallel between people and transportation? (Actually, I'm sure there are many places in the world- but New York is just that escape for me.) It's my home away from home, where I feel closer to success and achieving my dreams.
Yotel allowed my vision of "reaching for the stars" to come to life. Sleeping on the 19th floor in the middle of a big, bright city will do that to ya. It'll make you appreciate far beyond the concept of New York, it allows you to become a part of it. Analyzing it's metrics from above, the higher above ground you are, the more peaceful and tranquil your reality becomes. If you watch Power on Starz, we are now entering 50's opening Theme song. "They say this is a Big Rich Town// I just come from the poorest part// Bright Lights, City Lights, I gotta make it..."
I haven't even told you about how amazingly cool the rooms and greeting lobby are. Going along with their theme of technological and contemporary, the rooms at Yotel are not even referred to as "rooms," but rather "cabins." The lobby, which is different than the check-in lobby; you have to take these sick Back-to-The-Future elevators to the 4th floor, where you can then take another set of elevators to your cabin floor. But let's explore this lobby, because it was probably the most amazing lobby I have ever bestowed my eyes upon.
As the elevator doors open, you enter this totally groovy- modern loft with panoramic New York City views waiting for you right outside. To the left, a swanky yet refreshing bar to quench your binge thirst or go for a quick bite and to the right, colorful beaded curtains, bamboo chairs, and and open concept full of couches for intimate gatherings awaits. Great, we have now traveled from The Jetsons to Austin Powers. Oh yeah...I also made new friends and I NAMED THEM! Meet Quirky and Dorky. Check them out below. This place has so many photo ops. As you walk toward the cabin elevators, you're back in space. You have left the party-area and are now re-entering a scene from Star Wars. To the 19th floor we go!
So about these cabins. (Now I felt like a badass astronaut, like I got a cabin!?Okkkkkkaaayyyyy!!!!) Cabins are equipped with a state of the art bed that is remote controlled to angle itself perfectly for your body (it's the very first thing you notice as soon as you step foot in the room, because it basically IS the room.) In front of the smart-bed (that's the official name for it) is a smart-TV with AUX capability- just plug in your phone to the jack and the TV works like a speaker. Next is my personal favorite part- THE SHOWER! No shower doors, no privacy- just a glass open concept design for a minimalistic-style quarters. In placement of a door or separator, the bathroom has a white draped curtain that separates it from the rest of the cabin and leads to a small, New York City view window. This is paradise....even if it's in the middle of a busy street in Times Square; the chaos is a part of the adventure and beauty.
So what was my favorite part of my hipster Yotel stay? I'm somewhere between showering everyday in that sexy, open/ doorless shower and the lobby where my best friends live. But I'm pretty sure it was the shower. (Really Frankie???...Ummm..jaaaa!!!) For one, do you know how amazing it feels to shower butt booty naked on top of New York City without fear of being seen!? For two (why not? ...saying "for one" is normal), do you know how HOT New York summer's are. Look, I'm from Florida- and not even I could handle it! I must have changed at least twice a day. Just to stay fresh and get rid of the sweat and germs. (Yes germs...I love NY, but it's dirty as hell here.) I totally made it my business to ensure I was as naked as possible in that region of the cabin- JUST BECAUSE I can and find it funny. Remember what I said about everyone has a destination in New York City!? Right! Ain't nobody worried about me and my buns up here because ain't nobody looking. The thought is "who the hell can possibly see me up here when they got somewhere to be? Look New York...it's my VAGINA!" Let's just hope the neighbors didn't capture me and I end up on Worldstar.
No matter the destination, I always ensure to keep one thing in mind- HAVE FUN! This is just day uno, and I am in love with this hotel....I mean Yotel. They play my second favorite genre of music, their lobby entry and hotel design is my favorite color- Pink and they taught me that you can have a beautiful hotel suite with minimal furniture and space. It doesn't get any cooler and more peaceful than that. I'm ready to explore the streets of the Big Apple!
Spongebob....I'm coming boo! I'm coming! Bring your pupils back next week, to find out all about my Broadway adventures!
This is #aFrankieTale....get a peek inside my head!
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