NYC for the Holidays

Avenue Queue

by David Sokol

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  • Destination: Madison Avenue Shop Windows
    Madison Avenue (bet. E. 57th and E. 79th Sts.), Manhattan
    Alternative: Dyker Heights Houses
    80th to 86th Sts. and 10th to 13th Aves., Brooklyn
    In Madison Avenue's holiday windows, the signature qualities of posh New York come together: theatricality, luxury, fashion. When strolling these storefronts, don't forget to hang a turn at Barneys and catch the miniature milieus on Fifth Avenue between Bergdorf Goodman and Lord & Taylor. And for holiday spectacles of the residential variety, venture even farther to Dyker Heights. Homeowners in one section of this Brooklyn neighborhood go all out with their holiday displays: halls are decked in thousands of lights, inflatable characters and motorized scenes. Resident Lucy Spata launched the phenomenon more than 25 years ago, and today multiple extravaganzas are most concentrated between 83rd and 86th Streets and 11th and 13th Avenues and flashiest on weekends. Some of the approximately 150,000 people who come to "Dyker Lights" visit the once-a-year one-upmanship via A Slice of Brooklyn. It operates a three-and-a-half-hour bus tour that includes a hot chocolate–and–cannoli stop at an authentic Brooklyn neighborhood pastry shop.

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