Ice skating (free-admission!) at Bryant Park
Macy's decorated for Xmas
And as the weather was absolutely beautiful (but cold), we had a great view from Top Of The Rock Observation Deck at the historic Rockefeller Center:
And of course at night: Xmas
decoration/illumination at the Rockefeller Center, including
the famous Xmas tree:
On the evening of 17-DEC, we met with a
few German Swatch collectors for a nice dinner and found some time
afterwards for a visit to the Swatch Store at Times Square. The
store was also very nicely decorated for the xmas season:
A unique maxi on top of the xmas tree
Many, many Swatches in the tree...
A unique lamp...
The hotel for the event was the historic Algonquin
****-Hotel, located very nicely on W 44th Street (between 5th and
6th). You can read some information about the hotel on the metal
plates below. By the way, I just learned (after the event) that
the brother of my Great-grandfather worked as a night chef in the
Algonquin in the first half of the last century. The world is
The official start of the event was on
18-DEC at 6pm. We met at the nearby Kellari
Taverna ("Enter as strangers - Leave as friends"), a very
nice greek restaurant.
welcome desk at the Kellari Taverna
As this was the first
international Club event in the USA for many years, it was the chance
to meet again a few US collectors which we had not seen for quite some
time. A few bottles of red wine for the evening, great food and
lots of nice talking...
The next morning (saturday), it was a bit
unusual to see an almost empth 6th avenue in the morning when we walked
over to the nearby Bistro Saju which had been
chosen by Swatch for breakfast.
After breakfast, it was time for an
extended bus trip around New York with nice tour guides explaining a
lot of details about the city. In the south of Manhattan, it was
time for a stop for a visit to Ground Zero Word Trade Center construction
From the Two World Financial Center building, we had a good view of the construction site.
The Sphere sculpture at Battery Park
After a few hours, it was time to change
the bus. Now we used the historical bus...
Our bus journey finished in the historical
Town Bar & restaurant. Besides a few beers and a
nice lunch, we also played...
...a liquor smuggling game. It was explained to us before entering the bar. I am not sure if everybody understood the rules (I did not) but that was probably part of the game too :-) The whole Swatch group was divided into four different smuggling groups (clubs, spades, hearts, diamonds; everybody had received a poker card). The task of each group was to smuggle alcohol from one end of the bar to a dark corner of the first floor without being discovered. Each group also had a detective who was allowed to search and to arrest smugglers of other groups. It was a fun game...
One of the Barbershop music singers also had the secred codeword for Absinthe (worth more than normal liquor :-)
[but I won't tell you who it was!]
the secret(?) talk of smugglers at the bar...
In the late afternoon, we walked over to
the Ambassador theater.
Another highlight of the New York event was on the agenda: A
visit to the musical Chicago (with
Ashlee Simpson-Wentz in the
But before the theater, it was time for
dinner! This time, it took place at another excellent restaurant,
the Thalia. Highly
recommended, great food, nice atmosphere.
After the theater, we had a completely
different, unexpected experience! A blizzard
passed through the New York area during the night, bringing about 6 to
10 inches of snow. Fortunately, we had brought our sturdy boots
from Europe :-) I probably will never forget the snowball fight
at Times Square...
snow ball fight!
The Swatch store surely looked different compared to a few hours before!
to read part 2 ("A visit to Brooklyn") of my New York report.
Back to Stay tuned to Swatch.