Monday, 11 September 2017

September 11th

Last year I happened to be in New York on September the 11th, the 15th anniversary of the Twin Towers. I wanted to pay my respect and see memorial light in person, so I headed downtown for a walk. 

The memorial blue light and pool, look so pretty in person. 

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Krispy Kreme | New York cheesecake donut

To celebrate Krispy Kreme opened 80 years ago, they have introduced 4 American style donuts, rocky road, peacan pie, New York cheesecake and Reece's peanut butter and jelly.

We couldn't miss out trying the New York cheesecake filled with Kreme cheese, hand dipped in vanilla icing and sprinkled with biscuit crumb and white chocolate flavoured drizzle.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

The Row Store by Mary-Kate and Ashley | New York

Am sure you've all heard of Mary-Kate and Ashley ? The Olsen twins who started of in Full house. The new Fuller house show mentions "Michelle" who was played by both Mary-Kate and Ashley are now fashion designers in New York. Reality they are busy fashion designers in New York City to the luxury fashion brands "The Row" and "Elizabeth and James".

Mary-Kate and Ashley has been my idol since I was a child, so I've felt like I grew up with Mary-Kate and Ashley. I've watched them start and grow the brands "The Row" and "Elizabeth and James". When I heard they were opening "The Row" store in New York City it was top of my to-do list for when I next visited New York.  

The Row store is on 17e 71st and apon  arriving it looks like someone's town house, with a small silver plaque. The plaque has the brand name "The Row". I headed to the door and the security door man opened the door, then staff greeted me with "hi how are you" ?.

I walked around all the floors, trying to take in all the layout, the luxury round staircase and how well each floor was set. I wanted to find something I could afford to say I'd been there. I headed ball down to the ground floor and decided I was getting a sunglasses. I spotted Ashley Olsen leaving The Row store the day before wearing The Row sunglasses, so I picked up the same ones she wore. (black don't bother me sunglasses)  

Monday, 31 July 2017

Places where to eat from on the go in New York

When am in New York, am always on the go trying to see everything. Also the fact I travel to New York on my own, I don't feel comfortable to sit in restaurants where the waiter keeps coming over asking if your food is ok. I think I would feel awkward, feeling like am sticking out sitting at a table on my own. I feel comfortable to go to fast food places, street vendors and grocery stores, where I feel I blend in with the crowd.

Am going to share with you the places I go to for food and snacks on the go, in New York City. 

Cheese biscuit 

Chicken nuggets and chips (fries)

Whole Foods
Hot chicken


Street vendors 
Hot dog

Chinese food

Shake Shack
Hotdog, chips (fries) and milkshake 

Lays crisps (chips)
Swedish fish
Ben & Jerry's ice cream 

Cupcake sundae

Sunday, 30 July 2017

How to get a new passport in 1 day

Loosing my passport before my flight is something I'd rather forget, but it's all part of life experiences. Am one of those people who only wears bags on holiday and they sit in my cupboard, the rest of the year. Sometimes I leave my passport in my bag, other times I'll put it on the shelf.  Last year a few days before my flight I went to look for my passport and it wasn't in my bag or on the shelf. I got myself in a panic and searched my whole house. By night my dad came to help me search, then phoned the passport helpline only to be told if I don't have my passport I can't get on the flight.

I started thinking I can't be the only person this has happened to, so I started googling "lost passport before my flight" and everything I could think of. All it was showing up was other stressing out asking what to do, as they lost their passport. I remembered a few friends saying they went to the passport office and got a new passport quick, so I came up with a plan to go to the passport office the next day. My dad had the rest of the photos, which was used for my passport so he said take them and it will save getting a new photo. I didn't thinking much of it, thinking the photos would be ok if I was just getting a replacement passport. The passport was 3 years old, so I thought since it's a replacement they'd just give me a new passport for the remainder 7 letting me use the same photo. I ended up staying up the whole night praying my passywould show up, incase my plan didn't work and it was save going to away to the passport office. I went to the post office, in time for it opening and ran home to quickly fill out the form. Then I had to find someone to sign saying they know me.

The most stressful part was running for the train and having to explain yourself at the passport office. The reception woman said try not to worry and go on the phone round the corner to book an appointment. The next available appointment was Monday. I went back to the reception woman and she said she'd phone up to add more appointment for today, then told me to go back to the phone to get an appointment. I got an appointment for half an hour later, so I thanked the reception woman for helping me out.

I sat waiting and a woman came forward shouting my name, so I stood up and walked forward. She goes are you deaf ? I've been calling your name for the last 10 mins. I thought it was rude and wanted to say something, but I needed my passport. I sat down and she asked to see my form and photo. The woman said isn't this the same photo ? I said yes, am just replacing it because I've misplaced my passport. She replied, so you've lost your passport. The woman said you can not use this photo, it's 3 years old it needs to be in the past 3 months. I was told if I went and got a new photo they'd try get my passport for the following day. 

I walked down the street to find a photo booth machine, but at the same time I kept saying I have been up all night, no makeup on and my hair wasn't done. I phoned my dad and said they won't let me use that photo and am not even ready for a photo. My dad said just get the photo done, only the airport people will see the photo. I had to accept it was better than loosing out on my holiday.

I arrived back at the passport office and the woman shouted me over and asked to see my holiday documents to show I had a flight in a few days. I showed my holiday booking on my phone, then I was told I had to pay an extra £20 for the fast service. I paid the £20 and was told to come back the following day, to pick up the new passport.  

The following day David, a friend chummed me back to the passport office to collect my new passport which am so grateful for as I was really stressed out. I walked in the passport office and the woman was a lot nicer second time. She went and got my passport, telling me to get my ESTA sorted as soon as I could.

I guess the passport office don't like passports getting lost, so they have to act strict. I just felt I was paying for the passport and had to pay extra for the fast service, yet I had to prove I had a flight to get. 

I couldn't thank the reception woman who was at the passport office for helping me get my passport. So if you loose your passport, don't give up hope. Try the passport office, as your last option. Be photo ready, even though you'll be stressed out. My only disappointment is I wasn't photo ready and a passport is valid for 10 years. I've looked into getting my photo changed, but you need to go through the hassle of getting a new passport again.      

Thursday, 27 July 2017

10 reasons to travel solo

I have been traveling solo to New York for 4 years now. Here am going to tell you 10 reasons why I love traveling solo.  

1. You can get away with booking a last minute holiday, without all the arranging time of work, money etc with friends or family. 

2. Not everyone likes the same holidays. Why wait till you can find someone, who wants to go to the same place as you. ?

3. When you book with other people when it comes to picking plane seats, you have to say and where do you want to sit. ? When you are on your own, you are only picking your own seat, window ? Aisle ?

4. There's no rushing arguing what time to be at the airport for. Although I still get my dad to drop me of at the airport, he still says "if you aren't ready for this time am not taking you" haha.

5. There's no stressing about loosing anyone at the airport, because you are on your on. My mum is the worst for disappearing in the airport shops, you turn your back and can't find her.

6. When you arrive, you can go at your own speed, walking as fast as you want.

7. You do things as you please, so there's no hanging about "what are we doing today?". You just get up and go.

8. You can stop and take as many photos as you want and no one is telling you to hurry up or your taking too many photo.

9. You can stay out as late as you want, without feeling you have to go back to the hotel. When you travel with others you feel when they say they are heading back to the hotel, you kind of feel you have to aswell. 

10. Having a solo hotel party ! Who else loves going to the local Walgreens or local shop, on the first night and picking up crisps or chips, as Americans call them and sweets or candy, as Americans  call it. I love sitting in the hotel late at night trying American things and checking my social media, to keep me sane and not lonely in my solo travel.

Have you traveled solo ? What do you love about traveling solo ?

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

The Sheraton Hotel Times Square | Review

Staying in New York solo, there's certain things you want, a hotel central and an intercontinental hotel. I always dreamed of staying in a hotel right on Times Square, to do late night shopping and walking straight into the hotel. 

    I always automatically booked to stay at The Roosevelt hotel, but when it came to booking last September I noticed the Roosevelt hotel now charge a resort fee. A lot of hotels in New York charge a resort fee, a fee you pay when you arrive. I prefer a one total price for a holiday, so it made me open up to look at other hotels. The Sheraton hotel is right on Times Square and worked out cheaper than other hotels which charged a resort fee. With the hotel I always stayed at started charging the resort fee and my dream was to stay right on Times Square, it was a no brainer to stay in no other than the Sheraton hotel on Times Square. I stayed at the Sheraton hotel September 2016 and January 2017.

My first visit to the Sheraton hotel on Times Square was in September 2016. I checked in to the hotel and was given room number 4011, on the 40th floor. The lifts were modern with type pads, where you clicked the number of floor you wanted before entering the lift. I dropped my suitcase of in the room, then went to look out the window and couldn't believe the amazing view looking down the the street right onto Times Square. The room had a double bed, tv, large desk, sofa chair and a bathroom with bath/shower. It's one of the most spacious hotel rooms I've been in, in New York City. It's also good for working people with the huge desk.

It was September the 11th, so I headed down to see the blue light shining into the sky in memory of 9/11. Then headed back to the hotel room, but my room card work didn't work so I had to trek down to the reception. First the reception person said am not checked in yet. I said well where's my suitcase. ? I showed my room card saying I must be checked in I have this card and went to the room. I had to stand for around 10 mins, before the person spoke with a few people and sorted my room card. The good thing, I got to keep the room and after the panic where my suitcase was, it was still in the room where I left it.     

 The suitcase storing was on the 6th floor and there's a sign saying it's $4 per bag to store. I had to pay $8, as I had 2 suitcases (a large and carry on suitcase). I think the suitcase storing charge is ridiculous considering you pay dear enough to stay at the hotel and you have no other choice, unless you want to pull your suitcase around New York City for the day haha.

The second time I visited the Sheraton hotel on Times Square was in January. I checked in and asked the reception woman, if I could get a good view like last time. The reception woman said I wouldn't get as good view, but I'd still see Times Square on the 14th floor (room 1407). So I went to the hotel room window excepting not as good view, but I think the view was just as good if not better.

(The view from the hotel room second time)

When I checked out of the hotel, the bag storage was moved to the ground floor. Again it was $4 per bag, but I squeezed my small suitcase into the large suitcase to save paying another $4.

I totally recommend this hotel, although I think it was just luck getting an amazing view.