Around The Neighborhood: Where to Cool Off During a NYC Summer

Everything just seems cooler in New York City. That is, everything except a sweltering summer day.

Manhattan is an urban heat island. Sounds exotic, right? Hold on though—this means the air is actually hotter in densely-populated areas where vegetation is replaced by buildings and dark asphalt.

Add to that the city’s legendary humidity and, as USA Today reports, you’ve got yourself the “Sweatiest City in the U.S.

But, not to worry. There are plenty of cool ways to beat the heat in our fair city, with many right here in Ayza’s neighborhood.

Madison Square Park

Sometimes the best way to cool off and relax on a hot summer day is to head for shade.

Madison Square Park offers a lofty green canopy of magnificent elm trees. The park’s extensive variety of tree species are planted, maintained and protected by a 60-year Tree Conservatory Program.

Pick the shadiest spot you can find and crack open that novel you’ve been meaning to read.

Or, just sit back and relax on the lush lawns and let the tranquil stillness of nature cool you down. You might even catch a breeze.

The park also offers many free concerts throughout the summer, including their “Magical Summer Nights” series.

Even though you’re escaping the effects of an urban heat island, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a Coconut Tropical Pleasure just a few short blocks away on Ayza’s outdoor patio.

Grand Central Terminal

Cool down at one of New York City’s major transportation hubs and most popular destinations: Grand Central Terminal (GCT).

Since opening in 1931, this beautiful Beaux-Arts style train terminal has undergone several expansions and renovations, becoming a U.S. National Historical Landmark in 1976.

Before stepping inside to air-conditioned comfort, though, glance up at the top of the façade facing Park Avenue. You’ll see Hercules and other sculptured gods surrounding a Tiffany clock large enough to make Holly Golightly swoon.

Once inside the massive Grand Concourse, gaze up at the 12-story zodiac ceiling. Then head over to GCT’s legendary 4-sided opal clock. It’s an iconic spot in NYC. You might even witness a marriage proposal, a photo shoot or a flash mob!

Meet up with your girls there, and then enjoy a cool day indoors taking a tour, attending an event, or checking out GCT’s nearly 100 retail establishments, restaurants, bars, and European-style gourmet market.

Top it off with a “Girls Night Out” at Ayza.

The Morgan Library & Museum

What started as a private collection of Financier Pierpont Morgan in his private residence has evolved into a magnificent and multi-faceted cultural complex.

The unique galleries include music, manuscripts, paintings, drawings, rare books, artifacts and more created by masters such as Pablo Picasso, Georgia O’Keeffe, Mozart, Michelangelo, Debussy, Emily Dickenson, Jane Austen, Mark Twain, and more.

For a perfect weekday excursion, step into the magnificent Italian piazza-style center court. From there, you can spend hours in the A/C, meandering through the impressive collection of buildings that hold some of the city’s most interesting collection of human artistic endeavor.

The museum also offers tours, lectures, concerts, and films.

When you’ve had your fill, pick up a book or other treasure at the Morgan Shop and head just a few blocks down to Ayza for a refreshing drink and an affordable two-course Lunch Prix Fixe.

Be More Chill

Of course, what could be cooler than live jazz?

Stop by Ayza on Monday nights from 7-10pm to cool off with the smoothest sounds while sipping your favorite cocktail, sparkling rose, or one of our decadent chocolate martinis.

Need to plan a group event? Treat your guests to an unforgettable group wine-tasting event at Ayza.