Across the dreamy Hudson River from New York’s Lower Manhattan, is a hidden gem in the form of New Jersey. While most of us globetrotters prefer the hustle and bustle of Manhattan, I’m certain that we are missing out on a plethora of places and experiences that simply lie across the glistening river.
The entire landscape of New Jersey has witnessed an interesting transformation over the years. Once merely a suburb of New York, the city has now attained a reputation of its own with an overabundance of financial skyscrapers and high-rise condominiums.
Thankfully for you, we’ve curated and compiled a thorough guide to the city of New Jersey!
Where to Stay:
For the traditional splurgers – Hyatt Regency Jersey City
One of the most lavish hotels across the Hudson, Hyatt Regency Jersey City is perched on the waterfront, with stunning views of the Manhattan skyline. What we love about this property is its easy access from the ferry and train stations. Considering the hotel’s rooftop houses a bee farm, it’s far from your conventional international chain hotel.
For the experimentalists – Zen Home Suites NYC
Granted this property does not entail a star rating, but it’s raving reviews and enviable location has earned it a spot on our list. If you’re one of those travellers that is ready to forego the arrogant pleasures of turndown service and round-the-clock butlers, Zen Home Suites NYC is your go-to. With impeccably clean and spacious apartments, the one and two-bedroom apartments offer stunning views of the river, yet offering travellers the convenience of en-suite kitchen and other amenities.
For the boutique-hotel seekers – Dharma Home Suites JC at Paulus Hook
Rated as one of the best apartment condominiums in the city, Dharma Home Suites JC at Paulus Hook offers stunning views of Hudson River and Manhattan. Think en-suite kitchenettes and modern furnishings whilst in the comfort of your own apartment.
Where to Shop:
In addition to the popular malls, a personalized boutique experience a few shops offer is something you truly can’t get at big box retail stores. Think: friendly shop owners who remember your name, curated collections, and *no* lines to purchase your items. From outlet malls and shopping districts to farmers and flea markets, this little gem has got it all.
Your main reason for shopping across the bridge: no retail tax.
While colossal outlet malls like Newport Plaza and Newport Centre dot the shopping landscape of New Jersey, cute boutiques like Kanibal & Co. and Casa Feena are definitely worth visiting.
The Historic Downtown Jersey City Farmers’ Market and the Riverview Farmers Market are few of the most interesting market experiences in the city. From fresh farm produce to freshly baked goods, these markets are the perfect way to spend a day in the city.
Where to Eat :
While the city of New York may play house to the likes of Bagatelle and Morimoto, a short drive across the bridge and you have a plethora of options ranging from waterfront restaurants and bars to fine-dining restaurants and eateries.
Would you believe it if I told you that the best pizza in New York City actually lies across the bridge aka Razza, a critically acclaimed pizza joint slinging pies?
Our recommended list of restaurants are:
Razza – apparently the best pizza in NYC. Now Razza may not have a 10-page menu but I can ensure you, this pizza joint is a must-try.
Piggyback Bar – Some Asian inspired bar food coupled with traditional favourites making it a gastropub favourite with the locals.
Skinner’s Loft – Seasonally adapting menu with vegan options too; just perfect for that Sunday Brunch.
Liberty House Restaurant – An inspiring farm to fork menu with absolutely stunning views over the Hudson River.
Dullboy – That typical American diner with a chill brick-walled bar serving unique takes on classic American dishes.
What to Do :
The Liberty State Park in the area, is one of the most beautiful and scenic spots. Overlooking the gorgeous Hudson River, the park ranks first in the Jersey City bucket list.
There are a host of nightclubs and bars in the area; namely Room 84 and Chandelier Room. Think innovative cocktails, a great ambience and some swanky music.
A day-trip to Atlantic City could be extremely entertaining for those who enjoy casinos. And if you are not in the mood to drive then you can get equal excitement from the comfort of your hotel room with an 888 online casino.
The underrated city of New Jersey can honestly give New York a decent bit of competition given its waterfront hotels, fine eateries and shopping havens. Since I’m certain you’re through with the usual list of spots in New York, I urge you to walk across the bridge to discover the hidden gem of New Jersey.