Category: Buddakan


May 27th, 2010 — 11:40am

Last night, I celebrated today’s opening of “Sex And The City 2” by climbing aboard SATC Hotspots Tour (see blog sidebar link for Single Gal In The City reader discount).

All Aboard: On Location Tours’ Meagan and me

The three-hour journey, now includes locations from both the series and the movies, kicks off at Pulitzer Fountain in front of The Plaza. Among the additions since I last did it in 2006 — Buddakan, site of Carrie and Big’s rehearsal dinner, and jeweler Alexis Bittar, who co-designed baubles with Patricia Field featured in SATC 2.

As we made our way through Midtown, the West Village and SoHo, I was excited to find myself sitting next to freelance writer Carrie Seim.

Carrie interviewed me in March by email for her about leaving New York to find love. A part-time LA resident, she told me she has no problem meeting men when she visits the Big Apple. There really is something about changing your zip code to spice up your love life.

Much to my great delight, Carrie introduced me to dating expert and author Julie Spira. We talked about the ups and downs of long-distance relationships, and about Andrea Syrtash’s smart new book, He’s Just Not Your Type (And That’s A Good Thing).

Also joining in the fun, wedding gown designer Matthew Christopher. He had us laughing when he said a few Norweigan tourists complained that the tour wasn’t what she had expected.

“I told her, ‘Honey, don’t build it up, just let it happen.’ ”

Good advice when it comes to dating too.

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February 8th, 2010 — 6:01pm

Over the weekend, I had the pleasure of catching up with blogger and galpal Stephanie.

A Kansas City native, Stephanie and I clicked at the big conference in Chicago last summer, finding we had both blogging and journalism-to-PR career trajectories in common. It was Stephanie’s first visit to NYC, so we enjoyed an action-packed girls night out on Saturday.

Girls Night Out: Stephanie and me at Buddakan

The evening’s festivities began with dinner at swanky Buddakan, site of Carrie and Big’s rehearsal dinner and one of my favorite restaurants. It never disappoints and this meal was no exception.

For appetizers, we indulged in chili rock shrimp, taro puff pork lollipops and wok hay frog legs. The gastronomic bliss continued with braised short ribs and shrimp and lobster chow fun, and for dessert, a carrot-ginger cake with cream cheese ice cream that was beyond heavenly. Steph is quite the foodie, not to mention a great cook, so I can’t wait to try her take on Buddakan’s braised ribs.

After dinner, we headed over to the Gansevoort Hotel, where we took in the dressed-to-be-seen scene at both the rooftop bar and Tanuki Tavern.

Big Drink: Steph with Tanuki Tavern’s oversized cosmo

Our last stop of the night — Irish pub O’Flanagan’s, for some final cocktails and the sounds of cover band Planet Groove. We danced to some classic tunes (“500 Miles” and “Sweat–La La La Long” among them), toasted our friendship — and talked about how Steph’s hometown will figure into my Grand 2010 Plan.

Stay tuned for the big reveal on Friday!

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April 15th, 2009 — 10:37pm

My eventful evening after Thursday’s NY Auto Show Gala Preview continued at one of my favorite restaurants, Buddakan.

I felt like anything but a fifth wheel as I accompanied the four guys I’d met earlier to a corner table downstairs.

The Library At Buddakan: The perfect setting for a big night out

At Chris’ prompting, I sat next to Cedric. A Buddakan veteran, Cedric ordered a mouth-watering selection of the restaurant’s best dishes (chili rock shrimp, edamame dumplings and steamed red snapper) — and placed his hand on my knee.

Dinner conversation included Chris raving endearingly about his wife, whom he met after wooing her away from a friend. When I asked if he’s still friendly with her ex, he said bluntly—

“F**k no, I’ve got a wife [to think about].”

As the saying goes, all’s fair in love and war. Having briefly dated an ex’s best friend once (two years after the breakup), I can appreciate Chris’ pragmatic approach to romance.

After we finished eating, he continued playing matchmaker, leading Ted and Patrick out of the restaurant while Cedric and I stayed behind. We exchanged business cards – and our first kiss of the night.

Clearly a regular of the Meatpacking district scene, Cedric received an enthusiastic greeting from the bouncers at our next destination, the Hotel Gansevoort.

On our way up to the swanky rooftop bar to join the others, Cedric impulsively pressed the button for a different floor, pulling me out of the elevator and into another exhilarating kiss. I was in a happy haze when we made it upstairs — until I discovered that one of my earrings was missing.

Upon informing Cedric that the gold baubles had been a gift from my brother 10 years ago for getting my master’s, he went off to retrace our steps. Much to my surprise and delight, he returned with the earring in hand.

Accessory crisis averted, I was able to refocus my attention on the standing room only crowd of beautiful people, and mixing a cocktail from the bottle service Chris & Co had sprung for.

As I made my way home around 330am, I couldn’t help marveling all over again at my beloved hometown. When it comes to the element of surprise, no place does it better than the Big Apple.

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April 15th, 2009 — 5:37pm

My eventful evening after Thursday’s NY Auto Show Gala Preview continued at one of my favorite restaurants, Buddakan.

I felt like anything but a fifth wheel as I accompanied the four guys I’d met earlier to a corner table downstairs.

The Library At Buddakan: The perfect setting for a big night out

At Chris’ prompting, I sat next to Cedric. A Buddakan veteran, Cedric ordered a mouth-watering selection of the restaurant’s best dishes (chili rock shrimp, edamame dumplings and steamed red snapper) — and placed his hand on my knee.

Dinner conversation included Chris raving endearingly about his wife, whom he met after wooing her away from a friend. When I asked if he’s still friendly with her ex, he said bluntly—

“F**k no, I’ve got a wife [to think about].”

As the saying goes, all’s fair in love and war. Having briefly dated an ex’s best friend once (two years after the breakup), I can appreciate Chris’ pragmatic approach to romance.

After we finished eating, he continued playing matchmaker, leading Ted and Patrick out of the restaurant while Cedric and I stayed behind. We exchanged business cards – and our first kiss of the night.

Clearly a regular of the Meatpacking district scene, Cedric received an enthusiastic greeting from the bouncers at our next destination, the Hotel Gansevoort.

On our way up to the swanky rooftop bar to join the others, Cedric impulsively pressed the button for a different floor, pulling me out of the elevator and into another exhilarating kiss. I was in a happy haze when we made it upstairs — until I discovered that one of my earrings was missing.

Upon informing Cedric that the gold baubles had been a gift from my brother 10 years ago for getting my master’s, he went off to retrace our steps. Much to my surprise and delight, he returned with the earring in hand.

Accessory crisis averted, I was able to refocus my attention on the standing room only crowd of beautiful people, and mixing a cocktail from the bottle service Chris & Co had sprung for.

As I made my way home around 330am, I couldn’t help marveling all over again at my beloved hometown. When it comes to the element of surprise, no place does it better than the Big Apple.

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April 13th, 2009 — 11:03pm

Thursday night, the final hour of the Auto Show gala preview took a surprising turn.

As I mentioned in , Chris – one of three guys from UBS I’d met earlier in the evening – asked if I needed a drink. I soon learned that Chris was married and his newly-arrived friend Ted was engaged, while European-born colleagues Cedric and Patrick were both single.

Chris and I exchanged tales of wine-related travel (he and his wife favor Bordeaux and Napa, I recommended Australia’s Hunter Valley region). Then, the five of us headed into the showroom. Though I had already done a lap around it, I suspected doing one with men in tow might offer a different perspective.

Sure enough, each of the guys were boyishly smitten as they took a seat in several of the floor models. Patrick invited me to join him in a Viper convertible, where he launched into a 10-minute soliloquy about the merits of driving a stick shift.

Behind The Wheel: Patrick gushed about stick shifts while trying out the new Viper convertible

When we caught up with the rest of the group, talked quickly turned to dinner and reservations at Buddakan. Chris invited me to join them and I happily accepted.

For once, being unable to find a cab proved to be a good thing. We ended up leaving the Javits Center in a limo instead (economically priced as just $6 per person).

During the short ride down to NYC’s Meatpacking District, I found myself next to Cedric, who moved swiftly into flirting mode. He took my face in his hands and leaned in to kiss me.

“I’m not going to make it that easy for you,” I said coyly, pulling back.

He quickly got over my (temporary) rebuff, poking his arms through the limo’s open rooftop and waving at passersby.

Upon arriving at Buddakan, we were shown to a corner table downstairs, just past the Chinoiserie where Carrie and Big’s rehearsal dinner was held in “Sex And The City.” The sexiest part of the evening was still to come.

Up next…Jennifer Hudson and Robin Thicke rock MSG and pre-tax day imbibing.

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April 13th, 2009 — 6:03pm

Thursday night, the final hour of the Auto Show gala preview took a surprising turn.

As I mentioned in , Chris – one of three guys from UBS I’d met earlier in the evening – asked if I needed a drink. I soon learned that Chris was married and his newly-arrived friend Ted was engaged, while European-born colleagues Cedric and Patrick were both single.

Chris and I exchanged tales of wine-related travel (he and his wife favor Bordeaux and Napa, I recommended Australia’s Hunter Valley region). Then, the five of us headed into the showroom. Though I had already done a lap around it, I suspected doing one with men in tow might offer a different perspective.

Sure enough, each of the guys were boyishly smitten as they took a seat in several of the floor models. Patrick invited me to join him in a Viper convertible, where he launched into a 10-minute soliloquy about the merits of driving a stick shift.

Behind The Wheel: Patrick gushed about stick shifts while trying out the new Viper convertible

When we caught up with the rest of the group, talked quickly turned to dinner and reservations at Buddakan. Chris invited me to join them and I happily accepted.

For once, being unable to find a cab proved to be a good thing. We ended up leaving the Javits Center in a limo instead (economically priced as just $6 per person).

During the short ride down to NYC’s Meatpacking District, I found myself next to Cedric, who moved swiftly into flirting mode. He took my face in his hands and leaned in to kiss me.

“I’m not going to make it that easy for you,” I said coyly, pulling back.

He quickly got over my (temporary) rebuff, poking his arms through the limo’s open rooftop and waving at passersby.

Upon arriving at Buddakan, we were shown to a corner table downstairs, just past the Chinoiserie where Carrie and Big’s rehearsal dinner was held in “Sex And The City.” The sexiest part of the evening was still to come.

Up next…Jennifer Hudson and Robin Thicke rock MSG and pre-tax day imbibing.

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March 5th, 2009 — 11:00pm
For as much as I love an evening out with friends, sometimes it’s fun to fly solo and see where the night takes you. Last night, it took me down to NYC’s hip Meatpacking District.

After a quick bite at Chelsea Market, a vibrant arcade of food, wine and dessert shops, I went next door to Buddakan, the dazzling restaurant that hosted Carrie & Big’s rehearsal dinner in “Sex And The City.”

Carrie and Big: Like me, SATC’s star-crossed couple enjoyed a night out at Buddakan

As I sipped on a perfect cosmo at the bar, I found myself sitting next to a cute but frazzled-looking derivatives trader. He was anxiously checking his Blackberry and when seven of his clients appeared a few minutes later, I understood why. In this economy, if you’re lucky enough to have a job, it’s even more important to bring your A-game to it.

From Buddakan, I jumped on the subway and headed up to Midtown, where I strolled past a few women camped out (literally – with tents) in front of Barnes & Noble, hoping to secure admission to a Miley Cyrus book signing the following day. More power to them in this nippy weather. I would do the same to see my beloved Ricky Martin, though the longest I’ve lined up for him so far is 5 hours.

At home, following a 30-minute chat with the Match.com guy du jour, I continued watching the with commentary from writer and exec producer Michael Patrick King. I smiled when the DVD cued up to none other than the aforementioned scenes at Buddakan. Filming for SATC 2 is scheduled to begin this fall – let the groupie activity begin!

Coming up…co-hosting happy hour at a hot Lower East Side nightspot and celebrating a friend’s birthday with a spa-dinner-karaoke trifecta.

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March 5th, 2009 — 6:00pm
For as much as I love an evening out with friends, sometimes it’s fun to fly solo and see where the night takes you. Last night, it took me down to NYC’s hip Meatpacking District.

After a quick bite at Chelsea Market, a vibrant arcade of food, wine and dessert shops, I went next door to Buddakan, the dazzling restaurant that hosted Carrie & Big’s rehearsal dinner in “Sex And The City.”

Carrie and Big: Like me, SATC’s star-crossed couple enjoyed a night out at Buddakan

As I sipped on a perfect cosmo at the bar, I found myself sitting next to a cute but frazzled-looking derivatives trader. He was anxiously checking his Blackberry and when seven of his clients appeared a few minutes later, I understood why. In this economy, if you’re lucky enough to have a job, it’s even more important to bring your A-game to it.

From Buddakan, I jumped on the subway and headed up to Midtown, where I strolled past a few women camped out (literally – with tents) in front of Barnes & Noble, hoping to secure admission to a Miley Cyrus book signing the following day. More power to them in this nippy weather. I would do the same to see my beloved Ricky Martin, though the longest I’ve lined up for him so far is 5 hours.

At home, following a 30-minute chat with the Match.com guy du jour, I continued watching the with commentary from writer and exec producer Michael Patrick King. I smiled when the DVD cued up to none other than the aforementioned scenes at Buddakan. Filming for SATC 2 is scheduled to begin this fall – let the groupie activity begin!

Coming up…co-hosting happy hour at a hot Lower East Side nightspot and celebrating a friend’s birthday with a spa-dinner-karaoke trifecta.

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August 26th, 2008 — 12:56am

In the four years that I’ve worked in travel PR, I had never been part of a hotel’s opening day — until last week. On Friday, my colleague Alexis and I attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony for one of our clients, the brand-new Hilton Baltimore.

Our visit to Charm City began the night before, at a delicious dinner at Pazo with the hotel’s fabulous local PR team. Reminiscent of NYC’s Buddakan in its ambience, Pazo dazzled with tapas ranging from mashed potato croquetas to beef tartar with manchego cheese, along with sesame flatbread crackers that everyone here rightfully raves about.

Between bites, Baltimore PR maven Barb and I bonded over our shared passion for travel publicity and a mutual appreciation for the value of an all-women’s education. Meanwhile, hotel general manager Matt regaled me, Alexis and Barb’s effervescent colleagues Beth and Ashley with tales of parenthood. We all had a lump in our throat when Matt spoke of how your priorities shift upon hearing your child take its first breath.

Speaking of giving birth, the period from Hilton Baltimore’s conception to opening day spanned nearly six years. Barb and her team put together a five-star celebration for the hotel’s long-anticipated debut that kicked off with an energetic performance from a high school marching band and continued with speeches from Mayor Sheila Dixon and Governor Martin O’Malley.

As officials spoke of the nearly 500 new jobs created by the Hilton and dozens of hotel staffers excitedly looked on, I couldn’t help getting a little choked up. These are the people whose hard work and dedication helped to build this enormous 757-room convention center hotel. I felt excited all over again to be part of the team helping to spread the word about it.

After the ceremonial ribbon cutting and lots of confetti, all of us PR gals skipped the Champagne and made sure the official photographer snapped some important pix, including this one…

Hilton Baltimore PR Ladies: Me, Barb, Beth, Ashley and Alexis

With only a few hours before our train back to New York, Alexis and I strolled around Baltimore’s charming Inner Harbor and took in sweeping views of Oriole Park from the Hilton’s fourth floor outdoor terrace. Along the way, we spotted plenty of Yankee fans, in town for the Bronx Bombers’ face-off against the Orioles. What a perfect backdrop for Hilton Baltimore’s homerun first day.

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August 25th, 2008 — 7:56pm

In the four years that I’ve worked in travel PR, I had never been part of a hotel’s opening day — until last week. On Friday, my colleague Alexis and I attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony for one of our clients, the brand-new Hilton Baltimore.

Our visit to Charm City began the night before, at a delicious dinner at Pazo with the hotel’s fabulous local PR team. Reminiscent of NYC’s Buddakan in its ambience, Pazo dazzled with tapas ranging from mashed potato croquetas to beef tartar with manchego cheese, along with sesame flatbread crackers that everyone here rightfully raves about.

Between bites, Baltimore PR maven Barb and I bonded over our shared passion for travel publicity and a mutual appreciation for the value of an all-women’s education. Meanwhile, hotel general manager Matt regaled me, Alexis and Barb’s effervescent colleagues Beth and Ashley with tales of parenthood. We all had a lump in our throat when Matt spoke of how your priorities shift upon hearing your child take its first breath.

Speaking of giving birth, the period from Hilton Baltimore’s conception to opening day spanned nearly six years. Barb and her team put together a five-star celebration for the hotel’s long-anticipated debut that kicked off with an energetic performance from a high school marching band and continued with speeches from Mayor Sheila Dixon and Governor Martin O’Malley.

As officials spoke of the nearly 500 new jobs created by the Hilton and dozens of hotel staffers excitedly looked on, I couldn’t help getting a little choked up. These are the people whose hard work and dedication helped to build this enormous 757-room convention center hotel. I felt excited all over again to be part of the team helping to spread the word about it.

After the ceremonial ribbon cutting and lots of confetti, all of us PR gals skipped the Champagne and made sure the official photographer snapped some important pix, including this one…

Hilton Baltimore PR Ladies: Me, Barb, Beth, Ashley and Alexis

With only a few hours before our train back to New York, Alexis and I strolled around Baltimore’s charming Inner Harbor and took in sweeping views of Oriole Park from the Hilton’s fourth floor outdoor terrace. Along the way, we spotted plenty of Yankee fans, in town for the Bronx Bombers’ face-off against the Orioles. What a perfect backdrop for Hilton Baltimore’s homerun first day.

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