A few months ago I opened a Marriott Rewards Premier Visa card with the sole reason of getting a vacation out of it. They had a great point incentive and we use Marriotts all the time so it was a no-brainer. The first thing I love about this card is that it is made out of metal and is hefty so whenever I pull it out and hand it to someone I feel so sophisticated and elite 🙂 The cashier always comments on how cool it is and my pride kicks in. So lame of me! Of course, the second thing I love about this card is that it was super easy for us to earn a bunch of free nights of hotel.
When I was deciding when and where to use our hotel nights I wanted to optimize. We get Friends and Family rates anyway so I didn’t want to use them in California or something like that because the rates there are relatively low anyway. I saw it as a waste of use. But in New York City, well, hotel nights are easily $250-$600 per night. Badda-bing! Rob and I had been wanting a weekend getaway to NYC for a few years now and this was perfect timing. I had just missed the chance to go to Israel so was anxious for a trip and Rob wanted to cheer me up. All year we had focused on the outdoors so this city with a good dose of culture was calling me. Plus, how fun would it be to go to NYC at Christmas time? The stars aligned.
Early Friday we caught our flight and arrived at dinner time. Rob had his heart set on using Lyft to get to the hotel and it worked out well. We dropped our bags and went to get some pizza-by-the-slice (another thing he had his heart set on).
We walked in the rain to the Morgan Library & Museum and made it in time for free night with beautiful live classical music being played in the Court.
This was one of the places I had most looked forward to visiting and it did not disappoint. I have no idea why this isn’t a more popular attraction for tourists because it’s wonderful.
The shelves were filled to the max with first editions of about every classic book you can name dating to the 1500s including an entire wall dedicated to different editions and versions of the bible, again dating back to the 1500s. Amazing.
Some of the collection’s highlights for us were the Crusader’s Bible made in Paris around 1250, Charles Dickens original manuscript of A Christmas Carol, original manuscripts of Mozart and Beethoven, a draft of the Declaration of Independence, and Benjamin Franklin’s copy of the U.S. Constitution. WOW!
Even the building itself was awesome. It was truly a treat to visit.
On the way back to our hotel we walked past the Empire State Building enshrined in clouds.
We also ran into a large, loud gathering. We realized it was a protest so we turned around and walked the other way. Minutes later, at least 20 NYPD cars with their lights on drove down the road we were walking on. Then, we walked straight into the very head of the march. Again we turned around and eventually made it out of the mess back to our hotel. We called the kids while we waited for things to die down in the vicinity and then went out again for doughnuts.
And doughnuts they were!! The best doughnuts Rob and I have ever had. We ended up back at the same shop stuffing ourselves three more times. Our favorites were citron, chocolate hazelnut, coconut cream, creme brulee, orange blossom, etc, etc, etc. We brought some home but found out they have a very short shelf life and the life had been sucked out of them. By the time we got home they were dry and stone-hard. So sad 😦
And check out the bathroom! Sweet!
So that was our wonderful first day.