A few quick small blog posts by @ajayjapan on food, tech and travel.

Midtown East Weekly

Welcome to the Midtown East Weekly Newsletter!

This week, we're celebrating the holiday season in New York City. From the world's largest menorah lighting in Times Square to the Maccabee Bar and Broadway shows, there's something for everyone to enjoy. Shop at holiday markets, stay at a kosher hotel, and enjoy a festive meal at La Grande Boucherie. We've also got the scoop on the new Grand Central Madison terminal, the repositioning of 825 Third Avenue, and the Sneakers Signature Auction. Plus, don't miss Essential by Christophe, Carrot Express, B&B Aesthetics, SantaCon, Manolo Blahnik's luncheon, Citadel's new office tower, FedEx Express' e-carts, and Tán's coastal cuisine. Finally, check out this stunning 1,493 sq. ft. home in Midtown East.

Stay tuned for more updates next week!

7 Ways To Have A Great Weekend Celebrating Hanukkah In New York City

Celebrate Hanukkah in New York City this year! The Menorah Project is poised to light the world’s largest menorah, reaching 52 feet into the sky at Times Square. Other menorah lighting events include one at Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn and a 32-foot tall, 4,000-pound steel menorah in Midtown East at the southeast corner of Central Park. Enjoy a pastrami sandwich and latkes at a Jewish deli, or a nightcap at the Maccabee Bar. See Fiddler On The Roof or Two Jews Talking on Broadway, or visit the Jewish Museum and Central Synagogue. Shop at holiday markets or stay at a kosher hotel. Celebrate your Jewish heritage in NYC!

Thrills and chills: New York at Christmas

New York City is a festive destination this December 13, 2022, with the Rockefeller Center's giant Christmas Tree lighting up the night sky and Fifth Avenue's window shopping reaching new heights. Central Park's Wollman ice rink beckons, and the New York Botanical Garden's Holiday Train Show and NYBG GLOW light experience are must-sees. Brooklyn's Dyker Heights Christmas Lights are a neighborhood favorite, and Midtown East's Greenacre Park provides a respite from the busy city.

19 Best NYC Restaurants And Bars To Celebrate Christmas In 2022

Head to La Grande Boucherie in Midtown East for a festive meal this Christmas Day. The restaurant offers a unique Belle Epoque style with a vaulted skylight ceiling and stained glass imported from Paris. Enjoy all the French bistro classics in a cozy atmosphere. Reservations are recommended.

Fred Ohebshalom faces foreclosure at Midtown office

Fred Ohebshalom is facing foreclosure in Midtown East from a Minnesota-based debt buyer. Stillwater Asset Management is looking to take control of Ohebshalom's nine-story office building at 226 East 54th Street after purchasing the building's debt in March.

Tips for visiting New York City at Christmas

From baseball to bluegrass, Midtown East offers a variety of experiences, from road trips to wildlife. Enjoy the best of the US!

New York City's 14 Best New Restaurants Of 2022 - New York

In 2022, New Yorkers were eager to go out and explore the city's new restaurants. A million wine bars and food halls opened up, and Midtown East saw a revival, becoming a cool neighborhood. Four restaurants stood out, including Koloman, L'Abeille, Kru, and Unapologetic Foods. With amazing food and unique experiences, these restaurants are the perfect places for a night out.

MTA Transfers Control Of New Grand Central Madison To LIRR

The MTA's Grand Central Madison terminal, located between 43rd and 48th Streets along Madison Avenue, is now open. The new terminal provides direct access to Manhattan's east side, new commuting opportunities for reverse peak travelers, and enhanced regional connectivity. The two-level caverns support four platforms and eight tracks, and upon opening, will save Long Island commuters up to 40 minutes of travel time per day. The terminal also allows the LIRR to accommodate anticipated customer demand to Manhattan when Amtrak begins a project in 2024 to rebuild its East River Tunnels to Penn Station. Grand Central Madison is the largest passenger rail terminal to be built in the country in 67 years.

The Durst Organization Announces New Leasing Transactions at 825 Third Avenue

The Durst Organization has completed the repositioning of 825 Third Avenue in Midtown East, with five new leases totaling 55,000 square feet. The building now features a high-end, communal amenity space on the 12th floor, with a conference center, tenant lounge, and coffee & wine bar, as well as a 6,000 square foot wrap-around outdoor terrace. 825 Third is now a top tier office destination for a range of industries.

NYC CRE Market Entered 2022 With Promise and Ends With Uncertainty

The office market in New York City has been struggling since the omicron variant of the coronavirus swept the city a year ago. Tech tenants have been giving up hundreds of thousands of square feet of space, and availability of empty space in Manhattan has stayed much higher than pre-pandemic levels. Average asking rents have also slid, and landlords have started to embrace the idea of converting office buildings to other uses. Retail leasing has been going well, but the industrial market is tighter than ever, with vacancy rates in the five boroughs and New Jersey at 2 and 1.1 percent, respectively. In Midtown East, retail vacancy is less than 15 percent, but the area is highly dependent on office workers, and asking rents are still down from their 10-year average.

Suspect sought in unprovoked slashing in Midtown subway

Police are searching for a suspect in an unprovoked slashing at the 33rd Street station in Midtown East on Thursday. The victim, a 66-year-old man, suffered slash wounds to his head and ear. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers.

Rare Air: Jordan 1 prototype, others in Heritage Sneakers Signature Auction

Heritage Auctions' Sneakers Signature Auction is taking place in Midtown East, Manhattan, with 99 unique sneakers up for bids, including pairs from Odell Beckham, Jr. and a prototype for the first Air Jordan. Don't miss it!

FedEx conquers holiday delivery with electric cart delivery, courtesy of GM's BrightDrop

FedEx has expanded its electric cart delivery pilot program to five NYC locations, including the Diamond District, Theatre District, Midtown, Midtown East, and Brooklyn Heights. The program is designed to reduce wait times and improve delivery efficiency.

Openings and Closings: Telio and Perfecto Ristorante; Essential by Cristophe; Shun Lee Cafe; St. Agnes Library; Sephora

Essential by Christophe, an upscale French restaurant, has opened in Midtown East at 103 West 77th Street. The restaurant is led by Michelin-starred chef Christophe Bellanca and offers á la carte dishes as well as three prix fixe options. The nearly 100-seat dining room is decorated with leather, brass and delicate touches of Élitis wallpaper and porcelain tile.

Inside B&B Aesthetics, New York’s One-Stop Shop For Wellness, Health, And Beauty

B&B Aesthetics, a med spa wellness center in Midtown East, NYC, offers a variety of services, from skin resurfacing to acupuncture, massage, and nutrition sessions. Founded by Dr. Bushra Helmandi, it's the perfect place to get a holistic approach to beauty and body health.

Carrot Express Continues Expansion Out of Miami With Two New NYC Leases

Carrot Express, a health food restaurant, has opened its second and third New York City outposts in Midtown East at 600 Lexington Avenue and 135 West 41st Street. The eatery signed a 15-year, 2,443-square-foot lease in the area and is part of the 17 locations in South Florida.

ATCO buys out Ruben at 630 Third Avenue for $98M

ATCO Properties and Ruben Companies have ended their six-decade partnership over 630 Third Avenue in Midtown East. ATCO bought out Ruben's stake in the office building for $97.8 million. ATCO's faith in the neighborhood and NYC's office market remains strong.

SantaCon 2022 NYC: Map, Bars Participating, Alcohol Bans — Here’s What to Know

SantaCon is returning to Manhattan on Saturday, with droves of 20-somethings dressed up as Santas, Mrs. Clauses, elves and all sorts of holiday favorites. The MTA is banning alcohol on all Metro-North and Long Island Rail Road trains for the weekend, and NJ Transit is banning all beverages on its trains, light rail vehicles and buses. The event kicks off at 10 a.m. at the Christmas Spectacular on Broadway and 40th, and more than 50 bars and clubs in Midtown East and the East Village will be hosting revelers.

A Festive Lunch With Manolo Blahnik, Alison Lou Blows Out 10 Candles, A La DoubleJ Disco, Moda Operandi x Assouline, And More!

Manolo Blahnik and Sarah Hoover hosted a festive luncheon at the newly-unveiled Holiday Bar in Midtown East. Guests enjoyed cocktails, a seated family-style lunch, a surprise medley performance from local choir NY Choral, and Manolo ornaments and Mr. Blahnik’s famed gingerbread cookies. Notable attendees included Nicole Ari Parker, Sarita Choudhury, Huma Abedin, Maria Borges, and more.

images unveiled of foster + partners' ultra-thin 'selene' NYC tower

Foster + Partners' Selene tower is a luxury condominium located in the heart of Midtown East off Park Avenue. The sixty-three story skyscraper offers ninety-four bespoke homes with eleven foot-high ceilings, full-height glass windows, and access to amenities such as a 60-foot swimming pool, fitness center, and Michelin-starred restaurant.

Changes Underway at Three Midtown Buildings With Vornado, Rudin Agreements

Citadel and an affiliate of its founder and CEO Kenneth Griffin have reached an agreement with Vornado Realty Trust and Rudin Management Company to build a new office tower in Midtown East. Citadel will master-lease Vornado's 585,000-square-foot 350 Park Avenue and Rudin's 390,000-square-foot 40 East 52nd Street, and the companies will purchase 39 East 51st Street to create a premier development site. Citadel will have the option to invest in the future of the development site, or purchase the development site for $1.4 billion.

FedEx Express Expands E-Cart Pilot in New York City

FedEx Express couriers in New York City are delivering more packages this holiday season with sleek four-wheeled electric carts (e-carts) on city sidewalks, including in the Diamond District, Theatre District, Midtown, Midtown East, and Brooklyn Heights.

Restaurateur Richard Sandoval Is Opening a Tulum-Inspired Eatery in NYC

Tán, Richard Sandoval's Mexican-inspired restaurant in Midtown East, is serving up coastal cuisine with a focus on seafood. With dishes like aguachile Tán and sea scallop ceviche, it's the perfect place to get a taste of the tropics.

New York, New York, Home With 1,493 Square Feet and Two Bedrooms Asks $2.4 Million

This stunning 1,493 sq. ft. home in New York, New York, features beautiful herringbone hardwood floors, floor-to-ceiling windows with magnificent skyline and river views, a windowed kitchen with 5-burner range, and luxurious amenities such as 24-hour valet and concierge, a landscaped garden and courtyard, and a high-end health club and spa with a 60-ft indoor pool. Located near Montessori Family School, Mary's Esthetics & Cosmetology, and Medical Rite Urgent Care in Midtown East, this property is a must-see.

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Jamie Larson