Making our slice of the Big Apple a flavorful and happy place for our clientele means everything to us here at Ayza.
The vibrancy and beauty of our Midtown neighborhood is something that inspires us every day: from iconic landmarks and cultural hot spots, to picturesque cityscapes, awe-inspiring architecture and plenty of Instagrammable photo ops.
With so much to do and see in our own backyard, we wanted to share suggestions for some our favorite activities “Around The Neighborhood.”
Let’s begin with our picks for enjoying “Midtown in Spring.”
The Chrysler Building: “Best Supporting Skyscraper”
Spring’s mild temperatures make it a perfect time to take in some of Midtown’s outdoor landmarks.
With its glimmering steel-stepped crown, eagle gargoyles, and art deco ornamentation inspired by period Chrysler automobiles, the famed Chrysler Building was the tallest building in the world in 1930. That is, until the Empire State Building stole its thunder only 11 months later.
This caused the producers of King Kong to switch locations for the climax of their movie to the Empire State Building. The Chrysler Building did make it into that immortal scene, but only in the background—earning it the title “Best Supporting Skyscraper” by author James Sanders. Ouch.
Despite being dissed by King Kong himself, this spectacular architectural marvel is nonetheless impressive, and a perfect destination for a beautiful Spring day.
From afar, notice the spiked sunburst motifs on the terraced spire. Head to the corner of Lexington Avenue and 42nd Street for a closer look at the many automobile-inspired decorative elements.
While there is no longer an observation deck, the ceiling mural and other distinctive design elements in the magnificent art deco lobby is definitely worth a look-see.
When you’re done, enjoy the Spring air as you stroll down Lexington and head East on 31st Street to Ayza for an equally spectacular dinner and classic chocolate martini on our outdoor patio.
The Flatiron District in Full Bloom
The distinctively-shaped Flatiron Building is one of the most photogenic icons of New York City.
This wedge-shaped building—located on the deltoid lot where 23rd Street, Broadway, and 5th Avenue converge—created a stir the moment it opened in 1902, making it a popular subject of photographs, postcards and paintings.
Not everyone loved its triangular aesthetics, however. The New York Times called it a “monstrosity,” while the New York Tribune threw some early 20th century shade, labeling it “a stingy piece of pie,” and New York’s “greatest inanimate troublemaker.”
Perhaps the Tribune was referring to a rather creepy tradition that was unintentionally set off by wind currents surrounding the structure that caused women’s’ skirts to waft up and expose their legs. This natural phenomenon drew so many men, that police officers were dispatched frequently to the area giving these oglers the “23 Skidoo.”
Thankfully, this misogynistic custom no longer exists, as visitors today are more interested in gazing at, and photographing the building itself.
A particularly opportune time occurs in Spring when the tower is framed by the gorgeous pink Cherry Tree blossoms from adjacent Madison Square Park.
Mornings provide the best lighting for photographs, so it’s a great Saturday morning excursion in early May. Grab your phone before heading out, and stroll around the park to snap your most inspired Instagram pic.
Be sure to also check out the park’s current outdoor art exhibit, then relax on the lawn before ambling up 5th Ave and hanging a left at 31st, to enjoy a satisfying noontime lunch at Ayza.
Love is in the Air at The Empire State Building
Spring is truly a season for lovers. Add the magic of evening and twinkling city lights, and you’ve got the perfect romantic setting on the observation deck of the Empire State Building.
Arguably the most famous skyscraper in Manhattan (just ask the Chrysler Building), its upper tower was originally designed to serve as a mooring mast for dirigibles—a plan that went over like a lead balloon.
It’s also one of the seven “most photographed buildings in the world,” according to Cornell University.
This quintessential Midtown attraction at 350 5th Avenue offers magnificent 360-degree views of the city, with a totally different vibe once the crowds have dissipated and the sun goes down.
It’s the perfect outdoor setting to commemorate a relationship milestone, or experience a one-of-a-kind romantic evening with your bae.
It’s best to pre-order your tickets online so you can ascend without delay. Once on the 86th floor observatory, relax and enjoy some breathtaking views together while their saxophonist helps set the late-night mood.
Cap off your evening just two short blocks South at Ayza—with a “Love Affair” signature cocktail and decadent chocolate dessert.
Celebrating the Essence of Spring
We hope you enjoy our picks of what to do in our neck of the woods, and look forward to helping you pair your Springtime jaunt with a little Ayza flavor.
Learn how to make another perfect match: chocolate and wine.