I swear my heart beats to the rhythm of the streets of Harlem. Nothing compares to the magnificence of walking down 125th Street. Between the street musicians drumming to a beat that I am sure echoes the music of our heritage, to the well-dressed old men who can tell you stories of “I remember when” the greatness of Harlem is something that definitely needs to be experienced firsthand.
This year for New York Fashion Week, I decided to get an uptown perspective on the city, so I checked into the Aloft Hotel and was determined to see as much as I possibly could during my stay.
Let me first start with the Aloft Hotel- from the moment I walked in the door, I was greeted by the infectious smile of the gorgeous Rachel who checked me with graciousness and awesome customer service. Let me say if you have grown accustomed to the micro-sized rooms that are prevalent across NYC, the Aloft hotel will be a welcome change. The rooms are well appointed with free wireless and much to my delight- Bliss products in the bathroom!
I didn’t get too much retail therapy in while in Harlem, though there’s plenty of large retailers located right on 125th street- MAC cosmetics, H&M are just a few of the shopping choices Uptown. In spite of the major retailers, the real Uptown experience comes through the vendors that are prevalent- you can buy everything from batteries (no, seriously) to the most gorgeous jewelry on 125th street.
In spite of not getting too much shopping done, I truly entertained my inner foodie by dining at multiple locations during my stay. Nectar Bar offered vibrant nightlife and my photographer and I scored an open mike and the most amazing cocktails the evening we visited. I also fell madly, deeply in love with Billie’s Black! The menu offered an eclectic mix of everything from seafood to some soul food favorites like -black-eyed peas, collard greens, mac and cheese. The owner Adrienne Ferguson and her catering manager Alyce Emory were absolutely amazing. They were warm, welcoming and did I mention how awesome the food is? This is a great venue for dinner with friends or even a small special event. This is a must for any trip to NYC.
I had an opportunity to see several collections during fashion week, here’s a look at one of my favorite designers Korto Momolu of Project Runway fame.
photo credit: Sherrie Wood, @Glamcollective