Tag - New York

4 most Dazzling Sunset Spots in the World
Purple 10: best places for holidays at Christmas
Purple 10: Most photographed places in the world
A Night Less Ordinary: The ship-shape Jane Hotel
2014 Travel Bucket List – 14 Holidays to book now
10 Kickass New Years Eve Party Cities
Unexpected Beaches for Stag And Hen Parties
Purple 10: hot swim-up bars
Cocktail Holidays
Purple Tips: A little Romance in New York City

4 most Dazzling Sunset Spots in the World

Beach-side cities welcoming you to explore the most dazzling sunset spots in the world… Whether a magic urban landscape snuggles you with gleaming skyscrapers grooving on imposing dunes or you just choose to bury your toes in white sands, wherever you’ve positioned, we’ve tucked an inviting list with the best sunset viewing locations around the world!

Just imagine yourself indulging in alluring ocean views while cuddling to your loved ones, together, gazing at the  sunset, as the sky changes colors with the brushstrokes of rich crimsons, orange, lavender washing every corner of the majestic landscape… The romantic getaway with the most treasured experience is about to begin, are you ready?!

New York ”Everlasting wine-orange Boulevard in Manchattan”

“Manhattanhenge” in NYC

“Manhattanhenge” in NYC

Our beloved ‘’Concrete Jungle’’ looks more elegant with an enchanting sunset at her back right?!

Book an urban cruise, grab a refreshing Cosmo in your hand and sail away… You’ll be hooked for sure! Dazzling views embrace the shimmering cityscape, as the sunset hues reflects off the glass, while you are bewitched by bags of eye-candies, from magnificent steep skyscrapers, lovely popular bistros, world-class restaurants to vast blooming parks and endless boulevards….

Purple Tip: If you want to experience something bizarre and so pleasing at the same time, organize your NY trip when the Manhattanhenge phenomenon occurs. It’s  a unique spectacle that cannot be missed! It happens when the sunset is aligned with the city’s elliptical grid of streets, as a result, every North and South Street becomes brighter and all landmarks of the town are palpable against a ravishing luminous sky!

Santorini Island, Cyclades, Greece  The island-volcano nuzzled by the stained-glass blue of Aegean

Pure Bliss in the Island of Romance, Santorini

Pure Bliss in the Island of Romance

Have you seen real fairy-tales? No, no , we are not teasing you! We found the place where a glimpse on this sunset is like a chapter of a living-breathing story… We present you the pure magical sunset of Santorini island!

Sugar-cube white houses, winding cobblestone streets, gentle sea breezes and the wine-like, pale pink and blue-violet shades of the sunset poise the dark dunes of the volcanic backdrop and the enigmatic elegance that pervades it.

Sunsets here are different, more surreal! Plus, as you already know one of the most jaw-dropping in the world! It’s not a stroke of luck that the phrase: ‘’Arrive spellbound, depart speechless’’, was made exactly about the island of Romance.

Best viewing-points to watch these incomparable vistas in Santorini:

Promenade in Fira, Santo Winery: wine tasting with caldera views,  the old lighthouse, Thirassia island

Dubrovnik – The enigmatic charm of Croatia

Sunset tunes in Dubrovnic

Sunset tunes in Dubrovnic

George Bernard Shaw described it once as ‘’The pearl of the Adriatic’’. So, have you ever seen a color-palette? No? Then, we present you the 3rd picture-perfect destination to enjoy brilliant sunset tunes….

There’s been a hype around Dubrovnik especially the latest three years… So, you’d better fly off instantly and enjoy all these wonderful marvels that everyone talks about! Glittering blue-green bays, bustling nightlife and postcard-perfect Adriatic design! Natural treasures jumping off every corner of the old town, walled hamlets and cobblestone pathways along with unspoiled pristine beaches…Delve into history and be swept up in the everlasting charm of Bled! Imagine all these unique treasures blending with stunning ocean views where the sun dips quietly into the horizon… Be pampered by choice!

Maldives – The exotic earthly paradise

A slice of heaven!

Worldly colorful landscape

Once again, this place never fails to capture our mind and soul…  A special taste of paradise with endless sandy beaches and turquoise waters, cute bungalows along a serene coastline…

Diving and snorkeling is the ultimate must here! Delve into the greatness of the engrossing underwater world; infinite treasures all around, so, don’t miss the chance to uncover your own Nemo! Every corner is shadowed by a never-ending palm-lined shoreline and each island looks like a white-sand pearl that dots the deep blue of Indian Ocean…

Sense of awe never fails to descend when the sun sets! The emerald-blue of the sky blends with the crystal-clear cerulean of the sea, offering you sublime purple views. The sunlight sparkles, kissing the ocean, while you sip your favorite cocktail! Tranquility and pure serenity reigns supreme here…



Purple 10: best places for holidays at Christmas

Any town or city can hang up a few lights in the city centre and call it a Christmas festival but there are places in the world that put the rest to shame. If you’re fed up of shoddy lights and a sad-looking tree take a look at these places that really know how to put on a show and offer the best alternative places for holidays at Christmas.

Barcelona, Spain

If you’ve got enough holiday to extend your holidays until the 5th of January (Three King’s Day) then there’s no place than Barcelona to spend it with Melchior, Gaspar and Balthasar. On Januray 4th the three king’s touch down at the city’s port on their very own ship – Santa Eulalia and completely kitted up in velvet. Canons are fired, fireworks are let of and as the mayor of the city hands over the keys of the city to the kings, the magic of Magi officially starts. The kings are paraded through the streets in an extravagant procession of floats comprising of camels, elephants and giraffes.

Il·luminació nadalenca a Barcelona - Av. Portal de l'Àngel
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Purple 10: Most photographed places in the world

Next time you’re away on holidays and decide to whip out your camera to snap some pics of the area’s most famous attractions like the Eiffel Tower in Paris, Barcelona’s Sagrada Familia, or the Empire State Building in New York, remember you’re not alone. Sightsmap is a heatmap that charts the most photographed tourist attractions around the world. The images are collated by how ‘hot’ they are, based on the number of people sharing them via Google’s Panoramio. Here’s the top 10 of the world’s most photographed places in the world, with a few that might surprise you. Which one is your favourite?

1. Guggenheim Museum, New York

The Guggenheim Museum

Guggenheim Museum via @ Chris Eason

2. The Spanish Steps, Rome

Pictures taken in May 2010 @ Rome, IT.   Near Spanish Steps (or on it)Spanish Steps via @ Raul

3. Park Guell, Barcelona

Park Guell Barcelona from Purple Travel
4. Moulin Rouge, Paris

Moulin RougeMoulin Rouge via @ Xavi

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A Night Less Ordinary: The ship-shape Jane Hotel

Our weekly series: A Night Less Ordinary is all about finding the most weird and wonderful hotels all over the world. From a James Bond hotel room, to sleeping underwater expect the unexpected. This week, we take a step back in time for a night on a cabin in the Jane Hotel New York.

What’s the gimmick? Lovingly renovated, the Jane Hotel’s rooms are themed around the cabins on a ship, complete with galley style bunk bed rooms,  brass fittings, warm colours and big mirrors, storage under over beds and buckets of bohemian history. A stay in the Jane Hotel, with its retro-uniformed staff and period design  is filled with character and one that makes the most of the NYC experience.

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2014 Travel Bucket List – 14 Holidays to book now

#1 Budapest The Hungarian capital is set to have a busy year amongst hipsters thanks to the release of Wes Anderson’s film The Grand Budapest Hotel (even though it was mostly filmed in Germany!) The city’s filled with architecture, baths, boutique hotels and laid-back cafes. It’s a must-do value city break. Makes a nice addition to our 2014 travel bucket list. 


Budapest via @ Cost3l

#2 The Greek Islands We especially love Ikaria, where your holiday can make you live longer and eternal favourite Crete, where you can visit the hippie village of Matala or go family friendly in Heraklion.


Crete via @ El Mostrito

#3 Reykjavik See the Northern Lights, go to the Blue Lagoon or trek across glaciers and volcanoes. Iceland holidays will leave your jaw on the floor and your soul refreshed.

Northern Lights 1

Northern Lights via @ GuideGunnar – Arctic Norway

#4 New York The Big Apple is always a good choice and is a big seller for cheap holidays from the UK. Plan a summer of NYC shopping, cocktails and rooftop pools for an unforgettable US adventure.

New York

New York via @ Ed Yourdon

#5 Corsica The gorgeous island off the South of France is home to striking mountain ranges, clear waters and untouched beaches as well as the world’s largest chestnut forest, Castagniccia.  


Corsica via @ Massalim

#6 Brazil Book cheap holidays to Brazil right now because cities like Rio and Sao Paolo are set to see a huge influx of visitors thanks to the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Instead of watching from your armchair, make 2014 the year you go there in person.


Brazil via @ Lautsu

#7 Bordeaux, France A wine lovers paradise, Bordeaux is closeby, with decent hotels and a lovely atmosphere and a modern edge. Bordeaux is a good choice for a foodie adventure in 2014.


Image via @ Grand Parc – Bordeaux, France

#8 Havana, Cuba It’s always been said, Cuba is a place to visit before it changes! Choose it for 2014 and get in there now before it’s too late and see the 50s cars, the old-time atmosphere and the eclectic accommodations on offer.


Image via @ Flippinyank

#9 Cork, Ireland Not only is the city of Cork a hive of activity, but the surrounding countryside has some of the most spectacular scenery Ireland has to offer. Go to Clonakilty for black pudding, Inchydoney for the beach and island hop to Sherkin.


Image via @ zopdeep

#10 Gulet Cruise, Turkey Fed up with the idea of hitting the bars of Kusadasi or Bodrum? You could opt for a traditional wooden boat cruise instead on your holiday in Turkey. The boat takes you to tiny, hidden beaches, deserted bays and well away from the crowds.

Gulet Cruise

Image via @ TurkeyVision

#11 Sri Lanka Go on an elephant trek, climb 8000ft of mountains, or sunbathe on incredible white sandy beaches. Sri Lanka holidays will pack a punch in 2014.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka via @ HAS PhotoDesigns

#12 Balearic Islands With new routes from Heathrow and London City Airports in particular, the sun-drenched islands of Ibiza, Majorca and Menorca play host to perfect 2014 summer holidays. There are stylish hotels, boutique farmhouses-turned-villas and an incredible choice of things to do to suit any budget and of course, Ibiza is always a top 2014 party holiday destination.


Ibiza via @ victoriapeckham

#13 Mexico If you really fancy Mexico, but you’ve already been to Cancun, try Puerto Vallarta. Once a spring breakers paradise, the resort is now more famous for its boutique hotels, great beaches and variety of diving spots.

Puerto vallarta

Puerta Vallarta via @ stab at sleep

#14  Cape Verde The former Portuguese colony is a beaut. It’s got Latin spirit by the bucket load thanks to its close proximity to West Africa. Go to Boa Vista for stunning beaches and loggerhead turtles for an unforgettable addition to your 2014 travel bucket list.

Cape Verde

Cape Verde via @ Wikicommons

Visit www.purpletravel.co.uk for more on cheap holidays 2014 from the UK or call our travel team on 02079929228 now.

10 Kickass New Years Eve Party Cities

Looking for some KICKASS NEW YEARS EVE PARTY CITIES? Us too. Why not make this one the year you finally do something cool for New Years Eve instead of just talking about it. Got more ideas? Let us know in comments below.

New Years Eve from Purple Travel

Image via @ NigelHowe

  1. Amsterdam Dutch folks certainly know how to party. Amsterdam plays host to large-scale dance parties, quirky costume flings and family friendly gatherings. The organised fireworks display is best seen at Leidesplein or Dam Square, but get there early to grab a spot. Otherwise head for trance spectaculars, a touch of Vegas or a raunchy New Year celebration you won’t forget. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Gelukkig Nieujwaar!’
  2. Barcelona Head for Placa Catalunya in Barcelona to join the crowds of party goers who gather to ring in the New Year. The main traditions are to wear red undies, and eat 12 grapes. The grapes are consumed once per chime of the midnight bells, it’s harder than you might think! After that grape balancing act, the clubs fill up and the party continues well into New Years Day. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Bon any!’
  3. Prague Beautiful, especially in winter, Prague makes an ideal choice for a New Years Eve city break. Book a restaurant for a sumptuous dinner, before heading to the King Charles Bridge to watch the fireworks over the historic castle. Worth it for a few days away. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Šťastný Nový Rok’
  4. Paris For a chic New Years Eve Paris is a good choice. Stroll around the artistic Montmarte neighbourhood and drop by the Sacré Cœur to admire the view or join the ‘official’ part at the Eiffel Tower where crowds sip on champagne as the festivities get underway. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Bonne année!’
  5. Rio de Janeiro New Years Eve in Rio is like the party to end all parties. A huge fireworks display lights up Copacabana Beach, while Brazilian samba bands get the crowds going. It’s traditional to wear white on New Year’s Eve in Rio de Janeiro, just bring something old as you’re likely to get drenched in champagne. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Feliz ano novo!’
  6. Dublin You’ll have your pick of the parties in the Irish capital. A people’s procession of light with glowing lanterns winds its way through the streets and a huge countdown concert will take place in the city centre at College Green. Just make sure to pair your party with a legendary creamy pint of Guinness. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Bhliain nua sásta’
  7. Madeira Go for a package holiday to Madeira for an incredible New Years Eve holiday that includes the largest fireworks display in the world. Glittering over the streets of Funchal, fireworks are lit from 50 locations to offer a feast for the eyes. It’s warm too so you can get a tan before the big party night out. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Feliz Ano Novo’
  8. New York You’ll have to fight tooth and nail to get to Times Square, but watching the famous ball drop, sipping beer from plastic cups, and a jaw dropping fireworks display give the Big Apple the edge over Vegas for a New Years Eve to remember in the US. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year!
  9. Goa Ringing in the New Year with sand between your toes, stars twinkling overhead and a warm breeze. New Years Eve has never sounded better. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Bhagi novem voras’
  10. Berlin the biggest New Years Eve parties in hipster heaven are at the Brandenburg Gate and Viktoriapark. Light shows, a live TV show, rowdy crowds, and fireworks at midnight. Hop on a cheap flight to Berlin now for a New Years Eve party you’ll never forget. Don’t forget to say Happy New Year: ‘Glückliches neues Jahr’.

Unexpected Beaches for Stag And Hen Parties

This one’s for all the guys and girls who want something a little bit more off-the-beaten track than your average beach. Hen parties and stag parties these days tend to be over the top but some grooms and brides just want to have a relaxing getaway to keep calm and carry on ahead of their big day. If you think sunbathing in California or Hawaii is too obvious or if you, can’t stand tourists, why not take the road less travelled? There are plenty of secret and unexpected beaches around the world, hidden gems reserved strictly for locals or connoisseurs.

Blijburg aan Zee, the beach in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Amsterdam Beach from Purple Travel

Image via @ webted

Amsterdam is the proud owner of 165 canals, but, did you know it also has an achingly hip beach set on an artificial island in the middle of the city lake? Blijburg aan Zee is the place to be during the summer, with DJs playing day and night, regular art events and lots of beach activities like campfires and sandcastle building competitions making it the real deal. Perfect for a lively hen or stag do that’s pretty close to home.

Rockaway Beach, New Yorker’s weekend escape

New York Beach from Purple Travel

New York Beach via @ Moonman82

This funky destination is located in Queens, New York and it’s the only official surfing destination in the Big Apple. It’s a great find if you’re looking for that bohemian beach destination in New York, making it a great addition to the city’s assets. It’s the newest hipster destination, but don’t let that put you off, it has great food and plenty of atmosphere. This is for the cosmopolitan hens who want the best of city break with a bit of beach thrown in.

Cadaqués, the artist beach in Spain

Spain beach from Purple Travel

Image via @ cobachoj

Spain is a pretty obvious choice for travellers. But, there’s a reason tourists queue to visit Barcelona, Madrid and the Balearic Islands. If you’re in love with the Spanish way of life, but feel tired just thinking of tourists crowding your every move, try Cadaqués. This Catalonian town was an artist resort and inspired brilliant minds, especially surrealist painter Salvador Dali. You can even visit his house or learn more about him at a really good museum dedicated to his genius in Port Lligat, a neighbouring town. Perfect for a stag or hen with an artistic streak.

Phu Quoc, the (still) secret island of Vietnam

Vietnam beach from Purple Travel

Image via @ ZoeShuttleworth

Tourists in Southern Asia have been known to ignore this beautiful island and choose more popular destinations like Phuket or Koh Samui. Phu Quoc is the largest island in the Gulf of Thailand and it boasts pristine beaches, fascinating reefs and hard–to-forget authentic Vietnamese cuisine. Get it while it’s still fresh and untouched by popular tour guide books. This is a long-haul stag or hen destination that you’ll never forget.

Capo Sant’Andrea, the island within an island in Elba

Sant Andrea from Purple Travel

The Mediterranean island is where Napoleon famously was famously exiled. Fishing villages, ancient castles and green hills are just a few sightseeing gems for you and your friends in Capo Sant’Andrea. If you’re looking for serious beaches and serious partying, then this little island has exactly what you need.

No matter if you’re looking for a city escape or a secret beach on a dream island for your hen or stag party, there are more choices than you’d think. New York, Amsterdam Copenhagen, and Barcelona are just a few cities where local beaches are a perfect destination for an all-boys/all-girls vacation, while splendid islands and fishing towns in Vietnam, Spain, Estonia or Tasmania will give you the perfect holiday without transporting you to Touristville.

Amber Kingsley is a travel writer and has contributed to several travel sites and blogs. She loves spending time at the beach with her puppy Charlie and is always looking for the hidden gems of a city on her travels. She would loves finding out about more secret spots through her readers!

Purple 10: hot swim-up bars

Who doesn’t like holidays with a little luxury now and then? Eh… nobody, right?! So, we’ve got the best ideas for swim-up bars. These are more like little slices of luxury (mostly in the Caribbean) where you don’t even need to get out of the pool to enjoy a cocktail or a beer. Could you imagine anything more luxurious? Us neither, that’s why we’ve found the 10 best swim-up bars anywhere. Ever! Enjoy.


1.      Catalonia Bavaro Beach, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic


2.      Room Mate Grace, New York City


3.      Hotel Punta Islita, Costa Rica


4.      The Westin Resort & Spa, Los Cabos



5.      Riu Ocho Rios, Jamaica


6.      ClubHotel Riu Negril, Jamaica


7.      Dreams La Romana, Domincan Republic


8.      Hyatt Regency Aruba Resort and Casino


9.      Bel Air Collection Resort and Spa, Cancun


All images via @ oyster.com

10.   Omni Cancun Hotel & Villas

Cocktail Holidays

Why not book cocktail holidays for you and your other half, your bunch of girlfriends or a stag or hen party. From Cuba to Paris, in spirit (!) of cocktail holidays, Purple Travel discovers some of the world’ most famous cocktails and where they came from…

cocktail pics

The Mojito, Cuba

Traditionally made using white rum, sugar, lime, carbonated water and mint muddled together, the Mojito is generally believed to be the world’s first cocktail. Thought to have been drunk as early as the 16th century by pirates and sailors, its origins can be traced back to 16th century Cuba, where the drink was called the “El Draque”, in honour of explorer and sailor, Sir Francis Drake.

The legend goes that the drink was first created as a way of disguising the taste of tafia/aguardiente – a primitive form of rum. The modern name for the drink comes from a Cuban sauce called mojo, made from garlic, olive oil and citrus juice; the drink became known as a cocktail with “a little mojo” or, in Spanish, a “Mojito.”

The Singapore Sling, Singapore

The Singapore Sling was first concocted in – you guessed it – Singapore, made from a mixture of gin, cherry brandy and Benedictine, in equal parts, with a dash of bitters and Cointreau, finished off with pineapple, lime juice and grenadine. While the exact year it was created is not clear, most agree that the cocktail was first produced by a Hainanese-Chinese bartender named Mr. Ngiam Tong Boon at the Raffles Hotel’s Long Bar sometime between 1910 and 1915.

Today, the drink is served on all Singapore Airlines flights. You may have also seen it mentioned in many films and books, including Hunter S. Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, in which Raoul Duke talks about drinking “Singapore Slings with mescal on the side.” You can also order an original Singapore Sling at the Raffles Hotel’s Long Bar, where icons like Rudyard Kipling and others would once sip this famous, fruity cocktail.

The Sidecar, Paris

This classic cocktail that dates back around 100 years is a mix of equal parts brandy or Cognac, Cointreau and lemon juice. The Sidecar is believed to have been first created in Paris sometime during WWI. Harry’s Bar in Paris is the “little bistro” credited as the birthplace of this sweet, yet tangy cocktail, named after the motorcycle sidecar that supposedly carried an American captain to the bar one evening. The captain asked a French bartender for a pre-dinner cocktail that would help ease the chill he had caught outside. The bartender knew brandy would be the best liqueur to take off the chill, but he also refused to serve the traditional after dinner drink alone as a pre-dinner cocktail. The result was the bartender mixed the brandy with Cointreau and added fresh lemon juice to make an appropriate pre-dinner cocktail so the Sidecar was born.

The Pisco Sour, Peru or possibly Chile

The Pisco Sour is made from Pisco (a regional brandy from South America), lemon juice, bitters and egg whites. Many debate whether the origin of this drink is Peruvian or Chilean: In Peru, the creation of the Pisco Sour is attributed to American expatriate Victor “Gringo” Morris at the Morris Bar in Lima; in Chile, it is attributed to the English steward of a sailing ship, which was stopped at the then Peruvian and now Chilean port city of Iquique in 1872.

Whatever the origins of this famous drink, the Pisco Sour has become an iconic cocktail in both countries. In fact, there are even two National Pisco Sour Days (Peru’s in the first Saturday of February and Chile’s is celebrated May 15th) to celebrate this famous cocktail!

White Russian, California

Named for the vodka used in the recipe, rather than the origin, White Russians combine equal parts of cream, vodka and Kahula. In 1961, the Diner’s Club Drink Book, gave a recipe for a “Black Russian” without cream, implying that the same cocktail with cream would therefore be named a White Russian. Today White Russians have inspired a drinking game, in which party-goers try to keep up with The Dude from The Big Lebowski (whose favourtie drink was a White Russian) in their consumption of the cocktail while watching the film itself.

The Manhattan, New York

Known as both “King of Cocktails” and the “Drinking Man’s Cocktail,” The Manhattan is a very potent mix of whiskey, sweet vermouth and bitters, garnished most often with a maraschino cherry.

Regarded as one of the best cocktails ever created, the Manhattan was supposedly first invented at the Manhattan Club in New York City in the early 1870s. Legend has it that the drink was invented for a banquet hosted by Lady Randolph Churchill (Winston Churchill’s mother) in honour of presidential candidate, Samuel J. Tilden. The success of the banquet prompted many people to request the drink by referring to the name of the club where it originated, calling it “the Manhattan cocktail.”

The Mai Tai, California

The tropical Mai Tai is made of a mixture of white and gold rum, pineapple juice, orange and/or lime juice and is of American origin despite its Polynesian name. First created by Victor Buergon, better known as “Trader Vic”, it was called Mai Tai as it was invented in the Polynesian-style restaurant in Oakland, California that bore his name.

Buergon created the first Mai Tai in honour of some friends who were visiting from Tahiti in 1944. As he served the new cocktail to his friends, they cried out, “Maitai roa!” (meaning “very good”), and the cocktail was born.

Tom Collins, New York

While many people assume the drink was named after a real person, there is much debate whether Tom Collins ever actually existed and whether he should be credited to this cocktail of gin, lemon and lime juice and soda water. One popular account involves a hoax that took over New York City in 1874.

A friend would tell you that he had just overheard someone named Tom Collins at a bar nearby saying terrible things about you. You would then race to that bar to confront him, only to be told that Tom Collins had just left for a bar a little further away. When you get there, the mysterious Collins would have decamped yet again for another joint across town. You would then chase him all over the city while your friends are in stictches laughing at you. According to Wall Street Journal columnist and cocktail historian Eric Felten, “It doesn’t take much to imagine how Tom Collins came to be a drink. How many times does someone have to barge into a saloon demanding a Tom Collins before the bartender takes the opportunity to offer him a cocktail so-named?”

Bloody Mary, California

Like the mixture itself, the history behind the Bloody Mary is a bit cloudy. One legend says that the original Bloody Mary, which was made using equal parts tomato juice and vodka and used as a hangover cure, was invented by comedian, songwriter and film producer George Jessel. Jessel claimed he created the drink one morning in Palm Beach during the 50s, as a way to recover from a night spent on the booze. He went as far as to appear in Smirnoff vodka ads declaring, “I, George Jessel invented the Bloody Mary.”

However, Eric Felten writes, “Given Jessel’s knack for self-promotion, many doubted his claim.” Many skeptics favoured a legend involving the head bartender at the St. Regis Hotel in New York named Fernand “Peter” Petriot. Petriot was supposedly serving up Blood Marys under the alias of “Red Snappers” at the hotel’s King Cole Bar from the ‘40s. In reality, the Bloody Mary popular today is in fact a combination of the two men’s creations; Petriot admitted that “George Jessel said he created it, but it was really nothing but vodka and tomato juice when I took it over.” While credit for the original drink goes to Jessel, Petriot wasthe one who added salt, pepper, cayenne and Worcestershire sauce to the concoction, creating the modern Bloody Mary.

 The Martini, California

The first Martini was poured sometime between 1862 and 1871 and was called a Martinez, a name to honour the town of Martinez, California, where it was supposedly first dreamed up by bartender Julio Richelieu, proprietor of the eponymous Julio Richelieu Saloon. Today, Martini has become more of a class of drinks than one drink in particular – with variations like Appletinis, Vodka martinis and others becoming popular over the years.

Although the origins of the first Martinez date back to the 1860s, the modern Martini first rose in popularity starting in 1900s during the prohibition period. The Martini then became the drink of choice (or no choice as the case was at the time!) in speakeasies across the country due to the quick accessibility of gin. The modern Vodka Martini, which James Bond enjoys shaken, not stirred, was not created until much later.

Purple Tips: A little Romance in New York City

Central Park - Horse

When you talk about romance, the cities that first come to mind are probably Paris and Venice. New York City however is a very popular destination for couples who want a romantic getaway or even to celebrate their honeymoon.

It’s no surprise though as New York has been the setting for a lot of famous love stories. Like Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan’s characters in ‘Sleepless in Seattle’ who meet each other at the top of the Empire State Building. And who doesn’t know the famous New York TV-couples like Ross and Rachel (Friends) and Carrie and Mr. Big (Sex and the City)? To top it off: New York City even has its own LOVE sculpture!

So what makes New York so romantic? What is there to do on a romantic getaway? Well the list is pretty much endless but this is our top six tips to make sure your holiday is one neither of you will ever forget.

‘Meet me at the top of the Empire State Building’

Made famous by movies like ‘An affair to remember’ and ‘Sleepless in Seattle’ as one of the romantic spots in New York City, the Empire State Building is a popular place for popping the question among couples from all over the world.

The beautiful iconic art-deco building, the amazing view from the observation deck across the entire city, it is something that just screams romance. The most romantic moment to visit the Empire State Building is late in the afternoon. You’ll get the clear day view, a beautiful sunset and shining night lights of the city.

Romance in the sky

With millions of lights shining brightly at night in the city, it’s no wonder New York City’s nickname is ‘the city that never sleeps’. The lights of New York are one of the things that make it perfect for a romantic getaway. The best way to take advantage of this is by taking a helicopter tour in New York. There are lots of day time tours but the one that tops them all is the night helicopter tour.

You’ll be picked up at the harbour by a boat have champagne on the way there and then you’ll fly above all the New York City sights which sparkle in the night.

Central Park

 Let’s take a stroll

No matter what the season is Central Park is the perfect place to take a long stroll holding hands with your other half. The park has a lot of spots that are perfect for a little romance like the Bow Bridge, Belvedere Castle, Bethesda Fountain and the Conservatory Garden. It’s even becoming popular for actual wedding ceremonies and the most beautiful photographs. If you get tired of walking, why not snuggle up in a carriage ride where you can see the Park’s famous sights, rent a boat on the lake, or relax in a quiet spot with a picnic?

A skyline dinner

New York City has a very famous skyline; it’s a mesmerizing sight to see during the day as well as at night. The best view is  by one of the many boat tours in New York around (part of) the island of Manhattan. There are scenic boat tours during the day or for something special a romantic evening dinner cruises by the light of the moon. Some boats even have a dance floor on board so the two of you can dance the night away.

Snuggle up at the movies

On a bit of a budget but still want a romantic night out? Bring a blanket and grab some snacks for a picnic at the movies. During the summer every Monday night you can watch a free film in Bryant Park. Imagine this: watching a great American Classic under the New York sky, while snuggling on a blanket and enjoying some of your favourite snacks. It’s personal, thoughtful and super romantic. Whoever said romance had to be expensive!

New York at night

The Blue Box!  

If you are planning on popping the question in New York, whether it’s at the Empire State Building, in the sky in a helicopter or at Central Park, don’t forget to pay a visit to Tiffany’s & Co. Almost every woman, New Yorker or not, dreams of one day getting that blue box with the iconic Tiffany’s engagement ring in it! No New York proposal will be complete without that little blue box!

BIO – Eric Lang

Eric Lang was born in Amsterdam but fell in love with New York at an early age. Between 2003 and 2008, he visited the Big Apple 11 times and in 2008 his dream to live in Manhattan became a reality! Because of his love for New York City he decided to start VisitNewYork.co.uk to share all his knowledge about New York City!

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