Night at the opera — Lincoln Center, New York City

The Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center is located in one of the most prestigious neighborhoods of New York  City.  Amidst the hustle and bustle of uptown traffic, this section of Manhattan is graced by swanky shops and corporate giants.  As we entered the ornate halls of  “The Met,” excitement filled the air.  Opera lovers crowded the hallways, glass of wine in hand, chatting about the night’s performance, anticipating the curtain going up.

Lincoln Center

It’s never too chilly to pose for a picture in front of the famous fountains.  In the backdrop, the lavish window design will mark your most memorable evening.  Inside there is also opportunity for photo ops against magnificent decor and sparkling crystal chandeliers.

The Met

A view from outside the Metropolitan Opera House

Don Carlo, the night’s grand opera, would take its audience into the world and life of Juan Carlos, a Hamlet themed opera.The audience was entertained for four hours and twenty minutes that also included two much-needed twenty minute intermissions.  These intermissions allow the talented performers a costume change and a chance to take a breather in-between acts.  These breaks allow the audience, as well, to stretch, stand and mingle in the hallways, while offering opportunities to purchase another glass of wine, take a bathroom break, or scan the souvenir counters.

Surrounding Lincoln Center there are restaurants galore up and down 64th Street.  We enjoyed our dinner at the Atlantic Grill,  right across the street from Lincoln Center. Dinner was a bit pricey, but they offer a price fix menu for $42, which included soup, appetizer, main entree, coffee and desert.

The prices are a bit lower in the midtown area, for instance, in Carmine’s on 46th Street, in the heart of the theater district.  You’ll discover what “family style” really means. Think large portions. One of my favorite appetizers at Carmine’s is breaded zucchini strips. Squeeze a bit of fresh lemon juice on top, and you’ll be smiling with every crunchy bite.

Zucchini appetizer

Zucchini appetizer

After a delicious appetizer, you’re just getting started at Carmine’s.  As a second course, I recommend clams, shrimp over linguine in white wine and olive oil with a hint of garlic.  (Ask your server to recommend one of the house specials).  I suggest you go to Carmine’s hungry and take home any leftovers.

Main course, shrimp, clams over linguine

Main course: shrimps and clams over linguine in white wine and olive oil

Have your desert to go at the chocolate shop in the theater district at  Hersey’s new store.  If you’re a chocolate lover, like me, you definitely have to add this sentimental favorite to your list.

Hersey Store in Times Square

While you’re in Times Square, there’s always something or somewhere interesting at which to point your camera.  Enjoy New York City for a day-trip, overnight, a weekend, or whenever you want to connect with relatives and friends on the East Coast.  Mayor Bloomberg is always happy to have visitors come to this great city ready for an adventure.


Coming up in my next article:  a weekend in New Orleans, the Big Easy.


Photos: Patricia Florio