I love spending summer holiday weekends in the city to enjoy the urban "beach."Take advantage of these spots on Labor Day weekend, the last before theHamptons crowd returns.
If it’s physical activity you crave, get your bike ready and ride across the Brooklyn Bridge to visit the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory. The views of Lower Manhattan are amazing and free! Through Sept. 1 you can also see free opera outdoors at Lincoln Center.
For those seeking relaxation with good eats and water views, consider the below when planning your weekend.
The Frying Pan (Pier 66)
Want to impress your friends? Bring them for an afternoon aboard this collection of ships. The views from the rooftop balcony are stunning — I feel like I'm on vacation when visiting here. The burgers and fries ($12) are great, but the restaurant also offers clams, mussels and lobster, alongside a full bar with a mean margarita and buckets of Rolling Rock (6 for $34).
The Boat Basin (West 79thStreet)
I like The Boat Basin because it offers Hudson River and marina views from a covered patio and an open-air picnic area for large groups and overflow crowds. The atmosphere is laid back whether you are enjoying a cold beer on the steps or a sandwich at a table, and is located right on the West Side bike path. The menu is mostly sandwiches and tasty burgers ($9.50), but you'll also find interesting items like mahi-mahi tacos ($13). Take $2 off drinks from 4-7 p.m. Monday through Friday. Family- and dog-friendly, this is the perfect spot to spend a beautiful sunny day by the water.
North River Lobster Company(Pier 81)
Though new, this is already one of my favorite places to enjoy an outstanding raw bar while cruising on the Hudson River. The floating restaurant goes out for free half-hour cruises seven times a day on weekends and five times Monday through Thursday. At $29, the lobster dinner served with potatoes and a vegetable side is delicious. Want a shareable snack? The Acadia includes six shrimp, 12 oysters, six littlenecks and six Jonah crab claws for $59. The raw bar is top notch and the staff is super friendly. It's a great way to get out on the water.
Monica DiNatale is a deals expert, food host and author of “365 Guide New York City,”a treasure trove of restaurant deals and bar specials in New York. Monica has hosted segments for The New York Chocolate Show and Craft Beer Week Festivals. She dines out 8 days a week in search of the best deals in The Big Apple. “365 Guide New York City” is available in paperback and e-book.