nyc gift guide

Jared Paul Stern

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Whether you’re shopping for someone who loves New York, a recent visitor who’d appreciate a souvenir of their best trip ever or just want to treat a friend to a memento of your favorite town, there’s a wealth of NYC-themed merchandise to meet the needs of every gift-giver’s list this holiday season. In a city of infinite possibilities, it’s easy to find something to suit every taste, age, budget and aesthetic sensibility. We’ve waded through it all to find the very best the City has to offer, so you can relax and get on with the business of enjoying the holidays to the fullest.

Plus: From now until December 31, receive 50% off all items at NYC Shop, including FDNY and NYPD gear and more. Visit NYC Shop now and get your gifts!

Courtesy, onthefly.com

Grand Central Terminal Clock Cuff Links
  A clever memento of one of the City’s most famous symbols for the natty gent on your list, the Grand Central Terminal clock, rendered here as cuff links, has been seen in countless movies. The terminal opened in 1913 and was restored in the 1990s to its original glory, with the iconic clock serving as the nucleus of this unrivaled landmark of civic architecture. Available in either brass or sterling silver, each pair comes presented in a gift box with a certificate of authenticity, hand-signed and individually numbered.
$125; available at onthefly.com

 

Lego Guggenheim
Speaking of architectural landmarks, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is as important an icon of modernity as Grand Central Terminal is of an earlier era. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and opened in 1959, it is both a repository of one of the world’s finest art collections and a work of art in its own right. A new Lego building set allows you to construct a model of the masterwork in your own home. Part of an innovative new line of Lego products designed by architectural artist Adam Reed Tucker, it’s bound to fascinate art and architecture enthusiasts of all ages.
$40; available at guggenheimstore.org

Courtesy, The Skyscraper Museum

Empire State Building Archival Prints
  From the Skyscraper Museum in Lower Manhattan (dedicated to the study of the high-rise building) come these beautiful archival prints charting the construction of the Empire State Building from the museum’s vast collection. Completed in 1931 and for decades the world’s tallest building, the art deco masterpiece is the enduring symbol of a city known for its architectural marvels. With a brand-new $500 million renovation under way, the building is entering a new era, lending fresh interest to these exclusive glimpses of its illustrious past. View the images online; they can be printed on request.
Prices vary; available at skyscraper.org

Courtesy, Restoration Hardware

Vintage NYC Subway Sign Art
  Available in three different sizes, Restoration Hardware’s vintage NYC subway signs are artistic emblems of the City’s past. Adorned with names of stations and lines, including some that now exist only in fond memories, the signs are modeled on the early-20th-century originals. Printed on heavyweight card stock and floating on an off-white linen mat framed behind acrylic in classic black wood, they arrive ready to be hung—and admired by all straphangers.
$495–$795; available at restorationhardware.com


Courtesy, Rhino Entertainment

The Doors: Live in New York
  In 1970, the Doors played in NYC for the last time, with four shows at the Felt Forum. This new six-CD box set contains all of those performances in their entirety. Most of the music collected here has never been released, with only a few songs having appeared on the band’s 1970 album Absolutely Live. All the shows were mixed and mastered by the band’s longtime engineer, Bruce Botnick, who recorded a number of shows from their tour that year. The well-designed set also includes a comprehensive hardcover booklet with dozens of rare photos.
$67.99; available at amazon.com

Courtesy, Monacelli Press/Random House

Only in New York: Photographs From Look Magazine 
Featuring both photographs published in Look magazine, and, perhaps more importantly, beautiful and captivating images that never appeared in the magazine’s pages, this book compiles 200 duotone images depicting the transformation of the City from 1945 to the early 1960s. Drawn from the magazine’s incredible archive of more than 200,000 photographs—which were donated to the Museum of the City of New York when the magazine folded in 1971—the book features some snaps by one of the publication’s young lensmen who went on to achieve lasting fame in Hollywood behind another kind of camera: Stanley Kubrick.
  $31.50; available at amazon.com

Photo: Jen Davis

Official FDNY and NYPD Gear
  Joining the ranks of New York’s legendary fire and police departments has long been a dream for adventure seekers and adrenaline junkies of all ages. While only a few can make that a reality, the rest can show their support and look snazzy in an impressive selection of official FDNY and NYPD gear. Choices range from classic caps, sweats and T-shirts to kids’ clothes and a rather cheeky pair of shorts emblazoned with “Keep Back 200 Feet.” Speaking of warnings, beware of cheap imitations—this merchandise is the real deal. Plus, from now until December 31, receive 50% off all items at NYC Shop, including FDNY and NYPD gear and more. Visit NYC Shop now and get your gifts!
  Prices vary; available at nycshop.com

Photo: Jen Davis

Sesame Street NYC Merchandise
  In celebration of Sesame Street‘s 40th birthday (and its New York City heritage), the show and NYC & Company have produced a line of co-branded children’s apparel. The assortment of T-shirts featuring New York City agencies and Sesame Street characters are being sold exclusively at Toys “R” Us in Times Square, Babies “R” Us in Union Square and FAO Schwarz.
$4.99–$11.99

Courtesy, Rizzoli New York/Random House

Indochine: Stories, Shaken and Stirred
  Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the opening of downtown eatery Indochine—one of the City’s most enduring hotspots and the scene of some legendary celebrity escapades—this book is as good as the best table in the house. Featuring scores of photos and famous faces, as well as reminiscences from regulars like Salman Rushdie, Moby and Julianne Moore, the history of the glam-packed watering hole is told through anecdotes as savory as the French-Vietnamese cuisine.
  $31.50; available at amazon.com

Courtesy, Abrams Books

New York Yankees 365
  With yet another World Series win under their belts, the New York Yankees are baseball’s undisputed superstars. New York Yankees 365, with a foreword by one of the most celebrated pin-striped players of all time, Don Mattingly, is both a tribute to the great team’s history and a colorful collection of its many moments in the sun. Drawn from the archives of the Associated Press, the book charts the team’s start as the New York Highlanders through the eras of legends like Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris, Reggie Jackson and Derek Jeter, the latest in an illustrious lineup.
  $19.77; available at amazon.com

Photo: Jen Davis

New York: The Big City and Its Little Neighborhoods
  Much of the City’s charm lies in its small neighborhoods and ethnic enclaves, but even lifelong residents may not be aware of the diversity that’s just a subway ride away. This book highlights 20 destinations throughout the five boroughs—from Chinatown and Little Italy to lesser-known areas like Little Senegal—and provides subway directions from Grand Central Terminal to each area. Once you’re there, you’ll be guided to local landmarks and shopping destinations—the book even suggests authentic cuisine to sample in each neighborhood. Visitors and locals alike will appreciate this guide to urban exploration.
$16.50; available at amazon.com

Photo: Jen Davis

The New York Restaurant Cookbook
  The City’s best chefs come together under the covers of this compendium to share recipes for their best-loved dishes. Reservations at some of the hotter spots may be quite hard to come by, but with this volume handy you can whip up their creations in the comfort of your own home. Edited by New York Times dining scribe Florence Fabricant, the book runs the gourmet gamut from longtime classics to new favorites and includes advice from wine experts and the chefs themselves.
  $19.77; available at amazon.com

Courtesy, Steve Vigar Designs

Architectural Chess Set
  Designer Steve Vigar’s handcrafted wood chess set represents the City’s varied landscape. The back-row pieces include famous skyscrapers, churches and armories, while the pawns depict some of the many styles of brownstones and row houses that give each borough a distinct look. When the pieces aren’t displayed on the board, they can be stored in the velvet-lined drawer beneath it.
  $2,100; available at stevevigardesigns.com


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