5 Last-Minute New Year’s Eve Ideas for Busy New Yorkers

Dec 29, 2017

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

New Yorkers are (in)famous for holding their city in a rather high regard. Most people love their hometown, but only someone from the five boroughs has the audacity to call theirs the “center of the universe.” But one night of the year, at least, it’s difficult to dispute the claim. That night, of course, is the ultimate end to the calendar year, when eyes across the world fix a collective gaze upon Times Square for the dropping of the ball — the official ringing in of the New Year.

If you’ve never made it to the Big Apple on this very special evening, you’re missing out. No need for that. Because even in this late stage of the game, there are still a number of quality ways to place yourself in the center of it all. Consider these last-minute deals for where to play and stay your way into 2018.

LUMA Hotel Times Square

Times Square’s newest boutique hotel is a modern getaway complete with its own robotic butler service. On the big night, Ortzi — its Spanish-themed lobby bar and dining room — serves up a special party menu, including jamón carving stations, copious quantities of paella and table-side sherry service. And sangria. Lots of sangria. Most of the hotel’s high-rise rooms feature direct views of the ball, above the million-plus revelers gathered below. If you’re looking to ball out yourself, you can still book the $10,000 NYE Experience, which includes three nights in a top-level suite, a helicopter ride around the city, the Ortzi tasting menu and even a $2,000 shopping spree.

©Dylan Patrick Photography Inc.
©Dylan Patrick Photography Inc.

The Ritz-Carlton, Central Park

Keep it classy this new year with the Luxury Tasting Menu at the Ritz. The property’s stylish dining space, seated at the foot of Central Park, hosts a six-course affair for $195. Highlights include smoked duck, Beef Wellington and the restaurant’s signature multilayered white chocolate dome dessert. In addition to the meal — and the brand’s expected elegance — this specific real estate is especially alluring for its address. Central Park South is conveniently located in the very heart of Midtown, yet just far enough away from Times Square (about 15 blocks), to reserve yourself some breathing room.

The Knickerbocker’s Ultimate New Year’s Eve Experience

If you really need to be in the thick of it all, it’s high time to book your ticket to the closest view of the live ball-drop available in the world. The historic Knickerbocker Hotel is located on 42nd Street, a literal stone’s throw from the Waterford crystal-covered orb in question. All-inclusive guest packages range from the Bronze tier up to Platinum, and will guarantee you space upon the hotel’s rooftop bar, from 8pm until 2am. It’ll cost you, of course. The most affordable rate still available is the “Superior Room King Bed,” at $3,799 for the overnight.

New Year’s Eve at Spring & Varick

If you’re more comfortable wandering New York neighborhoods beyond Times Square, Lower Manhattan is full of action. An evening-long bar crawl along Houston Street is always an option. But why not consider one of the area’s endless all-inclusives? A prime example is this hotel bar in the heart of SoHo: For $250 each guest is treated to a five-course tasting menu, designed by chef John Creger, along with five hours of open bar and endless “party favors.” As the zero hour nears, festivities push out and over to the adjoining Mr. Jones bar for a Champagne toast.

Hudson’s Dinner Cruise

For nautical-loving night-goers, the obvious choice is a scenic cruise peering into the heart of Times Square from the Hudson River. This is truly a three-hour tour to remember, including dinner, a live DJ and an open bar. After the ball drops, you’ll have unparalleled views of the ensuing fireworks above the harbor, with Lady Liberty looming proudly overhead. The ride departs out of Hudson’s at Pier 81 and tickets are still available for just under $500 a head.

Out with the old, in with the new and a very happy and healthy 2018 to you and yours.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
15.74%-24.74% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.