Kips Bay may be by far the quietest part of the city, which is exactly what drew you to it. Reason more to find yourself starting your Kips Bay day at Stuyvesant Cove Park. The park’s boardwalk promenade meanders along the East River, exposing you to swelling views of Brooklyn and Queens as well as the Ed Koch Bridge. The biggest attraction are the park’s plants and shrubbery, a wide variety of plants native solely to Manhattan. Delightful little touches like the outdoor stage and gazebos, as well as the park’s environmental educational center Solar 1, complete Stuyvesant Cove’s magical offerings.
The beauty of Kips Bay is best seen from its two polar opposites, marketplaces Kalustyan’s and Todaro Brothers. The first spot has been around since 1944. Kalustyan’s specializes in Indian goods and products from Sri Lanka, Thailand, Germany and Lebanon. There are so many spices to choose from and they even carry some hard-to-find items like French curry, beet powder and carrageenan. In the end, at Kalustyan’s, you’ll be surrounded by more than 4,000 international products to scan. Todaro Brothers is an Italian marketplace that offers more than 100 varieties of cheese. Their deli department takes pride in a delectable array of charcuterie from prosciutto, to Serrano ham, and cotechino.
With the success of Barcade, the rise of retro video game stores has rapidly flourished. For the Kips Bay lover of the gaming nostalgia, head over to the Modern Pinball NYC. The pinball arcade has been spotlighted in the Wall Street Journal, NBC’s Today, Fox News and CNN as the area’s cherished geeky getaway. From Star Trek to Games of Thrones, the games in here are so plentiful that you may end up dizzy. The place gets very busy, given how even schools use it place for field trips.
There are definitely some hidden gems in Kips Bay that you need to check out, but the best dining spot, hands-down, is the floating eatery The Water Club. For nearly 40 years, the restaurant has been the destination for a romantic on a quest for classic American fare. The place is gigantic, with three party rooms, enhanced by the restaurant’s fireplace in the lobby, and the majestic views of the East River.
The night is still young so, naturally, you want to keep it going. Conveniently enough, near the drop-off spot from your evening cruise is the Waterfront Ale House. The bar specializes in BBQ flavors, and excellent beers. If you’re in the mood for something tamer, head over to the Albion, which features a great selection of Belgium beers. There’s also another local favorite you may want to explore – The Gem Saloon dive bar and its beautifully laid back atmosphere.