Taste of the Upper East Side high life | New York City
New Yorkers share their perfect day so you can find yours.
created by | Lucia
transit | walkable
total distance | 1.2 miles
est. transit time | 25 minute walk end to end
There are few places more synonymous with wealth, style, class then the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Of course it’s not always as glamours as the movies make it but there is no better place to live it up for an afternoon. When I’m in the mood to rub elbows with celebrities and take in some exquisite window shopping, I head to Madison Avenue for lunch and shopping. Of course there are many places to go but these are a few personal favorites. Hope you enjoy!
$$$ Traditional Italian restaurant | Vintage glitzy vibe
1000 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10021 (btwn 77th and 78th)
Sant Ambroeus is an upscale Italian restaurant on Madison. It’s the perfect place to begin your day of fine Upper East Side living. Delicious Italian dishes, cappuccinos, gelato, not to mention some very entertaining people watching. I love the standing espresso bar and the buzz at the front of the restaurant and the fact that you can often bump into local celebrities as well as few household names from Leonardo DiCapri to Bella Hadid. Of course plenty of old wealthy Upper East Siders in the mix. It’s a fun spot.
Ralph Lauren Women’s & Men’s Stores
$$$$ | High End Fashions
888 & 867 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10021 (near 72nd)
(212) 434-8000 (Womens’) (212) 606-2100 (Men’s)
There’s obviously loads of shopping along Madison Avenue. After lunch I’d recommend just strolling south on Madison and window shopping to your hearts content. In addition to all of the major names you’ll see along the way; Vera Wang, Carolina Herrera, Milly, Monique Lhuillier, Lanvin, Prada, Cartier, Goyard…you get the idea, I’ve listed just a couple of landmark spots you have to stop. Partly for the clothing but partly for their landmark status in the city. If you are a history or interior design lover you will also find the visit very inspirational.
Ladurée New York Madison
$$$ Upscale bakery with Parisian origins, specializing in French macarons and tea
864 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10021 (btwn 70th and 71st)
Laduree is a perfect place to pop in and break up your afternoon of shopping. It’s a Paris based bakery and tea shop that has recently launched a number of locations in the United States. The Macarons and tea are all amazing and they have even opened up a very small section for sit down meal service. Sometimes there is a line as this place has become very popular with tourists but it’s a worth a visit.
$$$$ | Landmark high end department store
754 & 745 5th Ave, New York, NY 10019
Bergdorf’s as it’s known is a landmark. It’s a beautful department store that is silly expensive but fun to explore when you’re living the ‘high life’. i’d say it’s as close to Harrods in London as New York gets. Certainly worth a visit. Be prepared for major style envy and major sticker shock.
The Plaza Food Hall
$$ | Food court with gourmet vendors
1 W 59th St, New York, NY 10019 (near 5th ave)
The Plaza is the perfect place to rap up your Upper East Side ‘high life’ tour. It’s where the Upper East Side meets Midtown and where old school elegance meets a somewhat affordable drink. Grab a glass of wine or a small bite and enjoy the bustle!
Looking for a hotel near this guide? Book a stay at The Pierre
5 star hotel | rooms $500+
2 East 61st Street &, 5th Ave, New York, NY 10065
The Pierre holds a special place in New York history and is the perfect hotel to host your ‘high life’ tour. Built in the 1920s, the iconic US flagship of the Taj reopened its doors after a $100 million renovation in 2007. Book your room now!