13 June, 2012

A night out at the Carlyle NYC in a Houndstooth capelet

One of the best nights of my life was spent at the Carlyle Hotel during my recent stay in New York. For those who are not familiar with this beautiful hotel, it is a very understated, historic hotel in the 'Upper East Side' of New York (the fancy schmancy area).

But first of all, my hubby and I started the day with a bike ride through Central Park . . .
The Reservoir, Central Park NYC
I thought the above photo, whilst obviously not chic, was a funny way to illustrate what difference a nice hairdo, make up and vintage clothes make. I do not always dress up, particularly if I am going to be out and about exercising on a bike. My only concern in these cases is that I put lots of sunscreen on and have a hat. So it was nice in the evening to get dressed up for our trip to the Carlyle . . .

Pictured on the steps of the Post Office, New York

I look a little different here than the first picture, no?! Navy and red are one of my favourite colour combinations, the effect is striking and seems to suit my very fair complexion. I would like to get a pair of vintage red gloves to match, I think they would look better than the navy, but red vintage gloves are actually difficult to find (? not sure why?). I like capelets because they don't overpower my fairly petite frame (I am only 5 feet and a half so I have to be careful with full size capes).

Hailing a cab in true New York style. Did I mention how much I love New York??
Before I get to my night out, I'd better mention my outfit details before I forget . . .

Outfit details:
Pussy bow blouse ebay
Houndstooth capelet etsy - seller: Chiffonier
skirt: Vintage Lilli Ann ebay
Gloves Love Vintage fair, Australia
Shoes: Novo (an Australian store, bought 2 years ago so prob no longer in stock)
Handbag: etsy PhotographicAmy
hat: etsy VintageVoyce

Now on to my night out at the Carlyle . . . We went to see the most fabulous jazz trio led by the composer/pianist Earl Rose (called, funnily enough, the Earl Rose Trio). I would highly recommend this performance if you go to New York. At the time of writing, the trio had a permanent booking there each Sunday and Monday nights at 9/9.30. We hadn't actually heard of Earl Rose before, but he is actually quite a well-known composer of film and TV music. He is quite simply an astounding pianist. Both my husband and I play the piano and we were amazed by his piano playing. The other musicians were great as well. Together with a few great cocktails, we had one of the best nights of our life.

As you can see, the Carlyle is a lovely, understated hotel (which is how I like 'em). If you have been watching Season 5 of Mad Men, you may remember that when the Jaguar guy gets 'entertained' by the Mad Men regulars (Don, Pete and Roger), and the Jaguar guy drops the hint that he is in the mood for a little 'excitement', Pete Campbell says 'Well, we can go to the Carlyle, it always gets a bit crazy there' (or words to that effect). Soooo not what the Jaguar man had in mind (Roger, a little more astute and wordly, took him to a high class brothel!. The Carlyle just oozes class. Real old world class. I loved it.
Photo courtesy of http://www.carlyle.com/

Photo courtesy of http://www.carlyle.com/

I couldn't get a photo of Bemelman's bar, which is where the Earl Rose trio plays, but I got a photo of Cafe Carlyle, which is a 'rung above' Bemelman's Bar. Woody Allen plays regular gigs here, so check out the entertainment calendar on the Carlyle website if you would like to see him play (he plays with a band). I will warn you that tickets to this venue are much more expensive than Bemelman's Bar - I am BIG fan of Woody Allen but bar tickets were $135 and premium seating (at a table) $185. This doesn't include drinks or tips. So I decided not to do that in the end (!). Still, if you have the money, it would be a memorable night and I may try to do it if I go back to NYC.

Above photo courtesy of the JFK digital library

Lastly, I couldn't finish this post without mentioning the Kennedy connection. The Carlyle Hotel is actually a very historic venue. JFK and Jacqui were regular patrons, in fact JFK had an apartment in the hotel for a number of years. In the lobby there are photos of Jacqui and JFK coming out of the hotel through the revolving doors. The facade looks a bit different in the photo above as they have an awning over it for the visit. It is truly a classy place.

The Carlyle Hotel, 35 E. 76th Street at Madison Avenue, New York NY 10021
Look on their website for the entertainment calendar so you can plan your trip.


  1. Fancy! I am mega jealous of your trip to NY! And your fabulous outfit :-) Red gloves are tricky to find! Though I guess you'd be one of the lucky ladies with miniscule hands who can fit those vintage gloves - mine are often too big!
    What did you think of the Mad Men finale? I thought it was a bit anticlimatic - but hoping the final scene didn't spell a return to old habits for a certain someone (Trying not to spoil if you havent seen it!)

  2. Great to hear from you. Yes, I do have smallish hands which makes vintage gloves good for me. I haven't seen the Mad Men finale yet, I am viewing via itunes and I think I am still mid-way. But I have been underwhelmed by the whole series unfortunately. There have been one or two great episodes, but mostly lacklustre. It definitely suffered from not having Betty in it as much. I know she is a controversial character for some, but I love Betty and think the chemistry/presence she has on screen is fantastic. Hopefully the next season will bring it back to its old form. Its still very good tele and I enjoyed seeing the 60s clothes (and Don!). Maria x

  3. Oh what fun! I've always wanted to go to New York, but looking at your snaps is the next best thing. Thanks so much for sharing.

  4. I like your red and blue outfit ensemble! and thanks for posting about the Carlyle, I have to check it out when I'm in NYC.

  5. Great outfit! Found your blog by accident when searching Google for vintage houndstooth evening gloves. Didn't find them, but I'm going to follow you! :)


    Red Sonja

  6. Dear Red Sonja, thanks so much for reading. I have a terrible weakness for houndstooth - but didn't know you could get houndstooth evening gloves! I will keep my eye out for these for you when I am doing my regular etsy searches.