March 17th, 2012
On St. Patrick’s Day the streets of Manhattan fill up with green-clad revelers from near and far. The St. Patrick’s Day Parade, and a visit to the nearest Irish pub works for most traditionalists. Others know that St. Patrick’s Day in New York means more than parades and green beer. But first, the parade. This yearly tradition of bagpipes, clan tartans and green hats began on the streets of Manhattan in 1762 and has not relented since. The 2012 parade kicks off at 11 a.m. at 44th Street and Fifth Avenue.
After the parade, stop at St. Patrick’s Cathedral for a traditional mass, or scope out the architecture before hitting one of New York’s fine pubs. For an old-school experience, start with McSorley’s (15 E 7th Street), New York’s longest running saloon. Take in the history, the sawdust-covered floors, and the ghosts of Prohibition. Choose from two kinds of beer—McSorley’s Light or McSorley’s Dark—and belly up. There are no stools.
For a cozier experience, try Molly’s Pub & Restaurant (287 3rd Avenue), a traditional Irish pub with plush chairs and a log-burning fireplace, famous for its Shepherd’s Pie and well-foamed pints of Guinness. The Swift Bar (34 East 4th Street) offers one of the city’s finest draft selections. Named after Irish author Jonathan Swift, the pub has church-pew booths and a mural that pays homage to its namesake. Paddy Maguire’s Ale House (237 3rd Avenue) boasts the largest pint of Guinness below 20th Street. Original doors from Ireland authenticate the experience.
More serious imbibers might enjoy Saint Paddy’s Pub Crawl Saturday, March 17, when thousands of sudsers hit more than 100 pubs across five miles in three days. Tickets: $15 per day of crawling. For a brief reprieve from drinking, an evening with The Pogues, that most Irish of groups, is the ticket. The Pogues return to New York for an all-ages show that will include drunken sing-a-longs and non-traditional Irish dancing. Terminal 5, 610 West 56th Street. 7 p.m.
If you’re seeking a more refined St. Patrick’s Day celebration visit the Irish Arts Center on Sunday March 18 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. for a free, family-friendly afternoon of authentic Irish music, dance, song, language and crafts. Join the workshops or take in the performances and activities. Reserve through irishartscenter.org.
And if you want to forgo the green beer and Celtic arts for good Irish cooking, Gourmet St. Patrick’s Day at 9 (800 9th Avenue) features reinterpreted Irish classics like corned beef & potato ravioli with corned beef consommé, and green potato risotto with asparagus.
WHERE TO STAY: The 4 star Waldorf-Astoria hotel is near the parade route, and is known as one of the quintessential New York hotels. World-renowned for over a century, Waldorf Astoria’s grace and elegance is enhanced by its deep-rooted history. From Waldorf Salad to countless depictions in film, engulf yourself in Old World New York atmosphere. Book with us for a complimentary upgrade before March 31st, 2012.
For a more luxurious experience, located on the top floors of Waldorf Astoria, Waldorf Towers are the crème de la crème of the Waldorf experience. This 4.5 star hotel within a hotel offers guests unsurpassed service, dedicated staff, and a truly gracious New York experience. Enjoy an upgrade on us during select dates this spring.
The 4.5 star Loews Regency Hotel is located on the cusp of both Midtown East and the Upper East Side, guests have access to two of Manhattan’s most desirable neighborhoods. Both new and returning guests feel that they are coming home to Park Avenue and appreciate the consistency they experience at this 4.5 star Upper East Side/Midtown East hotel.