Hip Hop Sundays With a Side of Bubbles, Please.
Sunday Fun-Day! We spend the entire week, waiting for the weekend to come, while trying to plan the perfect weekend, jam-packed with fun stuff that we can't wait to let the world know we're doing via social media.
Boozy brunches, rooftop cocktails, art, music or some kind of event that allows us to enjoy the warm (VERY HOT) weather which will soon be gone (it's almost fall, BTW).
I woke up on a Sunday with no set plans, but a strong desire to take a mental break from the crazy week that I knew lie ahead. I knew that my Sunday needed to include a workout, despite the fact I biked 7 miles the day before, for fun (thanks Citibike).
My body was craving yoga of some sort. I tend to like Bikram Yoga over any other, because it burns a ton more calories with just the heat alone. I was in dire need of some intense stretching & meditating to clear the mind. So, I hopped on my phone, opened up the Classpass app, and found something starting soon.
There are many things I hate about Classpass (the inability to book a studio more than 3 times in a month, the fact that they have zero Crosssfit classes in the city and the fact that all the good Barry's Boot Camp classes are at the butt crack of dawn), but the ONE thing I do love about it, is the flexibility.
You just open up the app, and BOOM; you've got a ton of classes nearby that you can book instantaneously. I came across a yoga class in Flatiron titled "Hip Hop Sundays"- If you know me, you know I love hip-hop anything. So, I booked and within 30 minutes I was on my way to a new experience.
I loved Y7 Studio over any other Yoga studio I've been to in NYC. Al though I have to admit, I was bitching the whole 4 flights up (there is no elevator, but hey, we're here to workout, right?)- the studio made it almost impossible for you to be angry once you get up. Check out their super cute stairs:
I was running a few minutes late, but quickly walked into a dark candlelit room, with barely no room for me to squeeze my tiny towel in. I was in shock to see a room packed full of women wanting to do yoga on a Sunday (instead of boozy brunching somewhere else).
When I left the class, I understood why- Hip Hop Vinyasa is legit!! Y7's fast-paced and athletic vinyasa flow classes are a real workout! Classes are heated to 80-90 degrees. Y7 Studio's music-driven yoga classes put a fun twist on the ancient art of yoga. The creative sequencing makes their classes both invigorating and detoxifying. Each class is themed with different hip hop music. There I was downward dogging to The Weeknd and I couldn't be happier.
The instructor was amazing; she talked us through each pose, and really challenged us. She was especially good at helping us get to that meditative point. She talked us through our week, our emotions; whatever was really stressing out at the moment- all we needed to do was focus on the present moment.
The instructor & the music made the entire experience worth getting up on a Sunday. The studio is adorable and I am definitely going to make hip-hop yoga part of my weekly routine.
Drenched in sweat, but HANGRY- I headed home to make myself a protein packed smoothie (quite the difference from my usual bubbly Sundays). But first, I stopped at FIKA Espresso Bar on the way home. They are on Park Avenue and e 28 St, literally blocks from my door. Coffee shop exploration has been one of my main adventures in NYC and this neighborhood spot did not disappoint. I ordered an iced almond milk latte and was on my way.
I went home to shower and decided I wanted to do some exploring. I'll be taking a trip next month and I wanted to buy some travel guidebooks. I did NOT want to go to the typical Barnes & Noble. I remembered that while I was in LA last year, I stumbled across the cutest travel bookstore, solely focused on travel writing, books about travel & destination focus guides. I figured there had to be something similar in NY.
Allow me to introduce you to Idlewild Books. The ONLY bookstore in NYC focused specifically on travel. Every book you will find in there will consist of some sort of subject matter related to my passion: Travel. It is the cutest, quaintest bookstore ever. The employees are just as passionate about travel, and they make the experience that much more unique.
I immediately inquired about books on Thailand, within seconds, the gentleman lead me to the section. He handed me about 7 different books, all on Thailand, including its beaches. I sat down at a nice table they had, and was free to read and check out all the books before I decided which ones to buy.
I could have stayed there the rest of the afternoon just wanderlusting over different books & countries, but they closed at 5pm, and I was literally forced out. I walked out with two books on Thailand & one book about New York City, of course.
I wanted to work on my blog, so stumbled upon another coffee shop. This time it was Brooklyn Roasting Company. I ordered the usual, almond milk iced latte and took advantage of the free Wi-Fi. It looks like Sundays are no good for coffee shops or bookstores, as within the hour, I was being forced out of there as well. So, I made my trek back home.
Did I mention I got hungry again? I decided I would treat myself to a nice solo dinner at a spot I had wanted to check out. Whitman & Bloom. I sat outside (it was turning out to be such a nice afternoon) and ordered some bubbles (I couldn't resist), and some delicious food. I ordered the brussel sprouts with caramelized onions & Gouda cheese, along with the veggie burger, sliced avocado and hand cut fries.
Whitman & Bloom is a tiny spot with both indoor & outdoor seating and they even have an underground speakeasy bar. This is what I love about New York City- you can never run out of places to discover or new food to eat.
I continued to write my blog, finalize some travel plans and then decided it was time to head home. But, not without satisfying my sweet tooth. After all, all those miles of walking and that sweaty yoga class left me feeling deserving of something sweet- Ice Cream of course!
The ice cream options in NY are endlesssssss. I have a 16 Handles & Tasti D Lite within one block. But, I wanted to try something new-and right across from Whitman & Bloom was Mia Chef Gelateria. Mia Chef Gelateria is a high-end New York based culinary institute specializing in artisanal gelato. The offer sustainable practices, while still offering high-end gelato and they work with local farms and businesses. They also have an insane amount of pastries and macaroons GALORE.
I tried one scoop of Salted Caramel & one scoop of Peanut Butter. The gentleman offered me a free macaroon, since it was my first time. So, I picked the Peanut Butter Macaroon, to accompany my scoops. It was heaven in my mouth. They offer gelato-making classes; so I know I will def be back soon!
I headed back home (this time for real) and was quite pleased with how relaxing and adventurous my unplanned Sunday was, all by myself.
It's easy to get caught up in the hustle & bustle of this city. From business meetings, to cocktails with friends, and wild nights out, it was nice to wake up with no plans and truly indulge in the things YOU want to do, without checking on anyone else's agenda.
Friendly reminder that we all need to disconnect, be good to ourselves and treat ourselves to the things that make us happy from time to time. Even if that means sitting quietly on your rooftop, with this view...
With that said, I have to go make dinner- I am getting hungry, again. You're not surprised, are you?