It’s true, New York City will never get old. It might be the travel bug talking, or the countless food review videos that seem to target me on my “for you” TikTok page, but the charm of the Big Apple never escapes me. Unfortunately, I don’t have any concrete travel plans for my next visit; So when BAINA co-founder Bailey Meredith offered to accompany us on her latest trip to New York, I knew I had to get her personal travel guide.
From her insider tips on vintage shopping to the unforgettable sardines and gin martini that eclipsed every other meal on her trip, here’s how Meredith tackles New York City.
Tell us a bit about your travels through New York?
This trip was very different from the last time I visited New York before covid. The town felt calmer and had a kind of airy feel about it. I was there in April and I think at the time they were still recovering, but I hear the summer has been amazing and the city feels alive again. Can’t wait to go back in September.
Where did you stay ? Do you have a favorite hotel or establishment?
The Marlton. I love staying in the West Village and this has been my favorite hotel for years. The rooms are comfortable and inviting, as is the fireplace in the lobby. I also like The Ludlow in the Lower East Side. It has the best bath with the most incredible views overlooking part of the LES
What was your favorite moment of the trip?
Taking my mom to see Lisa Fischer perform. I invited her to join me on this journey; it was a coincidence that one of his favorite artists had a show the week we were there.
Which sites were on your to-do list?
There are always so many independent exhibitions taking place in different galleries or places in the city. I was lucky enough to attend Jean Michael Basquiat’s exhibition called KING PLEASURE – there were over 200 previously unseen works on display.
If the weather is nice, I love to ride my city bike from Manhattan to Williamsburg.
Vintage Shopping – I have a good friend who lives in Brooklyn and always sends me recommendations on where to find the best vintage. Lara Koleji, James Veloria, Desert Vintage.
Galleries – This time I only managed to go back to the Guggenheim and MOMA. But I always try to visit a new gallery on each trip.
What was the most unforgettable meal you ate?
Sardines at Saint Theos with the best gin martini I have ever had.
What are your favorite activities on vacation?
I like to walk in the streets of a city. I find that it is the best way to dialogue with my environment and also to orient myself. Most trips revolve around food and restaurants. I like to balance my travels with reservations at restaurants that have been recommended to me, but also the surprise of entering an establishment set back from the street.
What is your ideal travel outfit?
I always find that layers are essential when I travel. I need to be prepared for all temperatures, so I usually wear a cotton and cashmere top combination, paired with a pair of comfy drawstring pants. A light coat or jacket and some sort of scarf that I use as a blanket on the plane. My main priority is comfort.
What three things will you always have in your bag when you travel?
A bathing suit: Even in winter, I always take a bathing suit. Whether it’s a heated hotel pool or a Korean sauna, I never want to be caught out.
Melatonin: I always have it on me, because it really helps me in the first days of jet lag.
A shoulder bag: I always find that my handbag is the first thing that annoys me when I travel. I need something I can throw over my shoulder without worrying.
What’s your favorite travel read?
vanity lounge. I don’t usually pick up a novel because I never find the time to open it. But a copy of vanity lounge is the best distraction on a plane.
What are the essentials of your travel beauty bag?
A face mask: I always find that my skin gets so dull when I travel. I took my Lesse Bioactive Mask on this trip and it was the perfect product to apply after a long flight in the lobby.
Shampoo and Conditioner: My hair is quite temperamental so I never use the hotel amenities. I love the Davines mini travel bottles.
Night oil: I always carry a bottle of Omega Intensive Care Oil by New Zealand brand Maryse. It’s so nourishing and healing.
Moisturizer: The perfect lightweight moisturizer for me is Embryolisse Concentrated Milk-Cream.
Sunscreen: My current favorite is the La Roche Posay Anthelios Invisible Fluid SPF 50+. It’s the perfect size for traveling and fits the face and body well.
Where’s the next place on your vacation list?
Italy! In fact, I’ve never been there. We had reservations for summer 2020 and have since added to the list of places I want to visit.