Austin is nice most of the time except for our winter–luckily, we did not even get that much this year. But being from the East coast, every now and then I need to get my cultural Big Apple trip fix. I love being a hometown tourist whether it’s going back to my roots in the Big Apple or having a staycation right here in Austin. In this article, travel with me to Midtown East in New York City and stay at the most perfect bed and breakfast there–Ivy Terrace! Then, join me back in the Big A (Austin), where I spent the weekend at Strickland Arms Bed and Breakfast in Hyde Park.
Come along with me as we board a flight to New York City. After a five or six-hour flight I was anxious to get to my heavenly place of rest–Ivy Terrace–located at 230 East 58th Street. Tourists can reserve a car prior to flying to the Big Apple or, better yet, just take a cab. It’s cheaper and more efficient. I have to say, I was overjoyed when I saw John Corboy, the innkeeper’s right hand and friend, waving to me from the curb as my car arrived. He was kind and helped me up the stairs with my heavy bag. Next he made me feel right at home by showing me around what was like my very own apartment. It had everything I could ever need. Needless to say, the weather was perfect and did not snow until the day after I left. The temperature inside the bed and breakfast was so perfect I would not have known it was winter outside.
My apartment/bed and breakfast had a full kitchen with refrigerator, pots and pans and my pantry was stocked with all kinds of breakfast foods and snacks. It was a traveler’s dream not to have to run out daily and buy snacks or food. Of course, it was for a fee but well worth every penny. There was delicious gourmet-tasting coffee, yogurts of all flavors, apple juice, English muffins, real butter and preserves, fresh assorted fruit, oatmeal, Raisin Bran cereal, eggs, and assorted teas. I honestly could have moved right in and never moved back to Texas. I also had a warm robe, extra blankets, books to read and plenty of toiletries. The Greenwich room was charming and classy. But the service there was over the top thanks to John. He made sure I had a wake-up call and everything I could ever need replenished upon request. I was in walking distance to Bloomingdales, Magnolia Cafe, Blooms Irish Tavern and shops just outside my door. This was unlike any other bed and breakfast I have ever stayed at in Texas or anywhere I have traveled. This is my first choice in a bed and breakfast in New York City. More information is available at ivyterrace.com.
Now, to all Austinites who aren’t able to travel to the Big Apple now, why not book a room in our very own Hyde Park bed and breakfast Strickland Arms? This beautiful antique-filled abode is in walking or biking distance to the Hyde Park Grill, Quack’s Bakery, Mother’s Cafe and Julio’s Mexican restaurant. The home is like something out of a storybook. The grounds are filled with beautiful statues and a flowing fountain. The porch is decked out with comfy wicker furniture and swing. Inside the home you will be greeted by the darling family poodle and the Stricklands themselves.
What I love the most about this local gem is the resort-like pool area. Lounge around the pool and listen to the sounds of trickling water. The owner plays the most beautiful music by the pool and a glass of wine makes the experience even more enjoyable.
For a weekend retreat without leaving Austin, stay at Strickland Arms. It is my vacation in town and I hope it will be yours too! For information go to stricklandarmstexas.com.