I've been thinking a lot about this post for awhile because it's the kind of post I've been looking for, but could never find! There's so much to do in New York and so many cool places popping up all over, but one thing that can be hard to find is a cute, girly place. You know? Sometimes, I just want to hang out somewhere pink and Pinterest-y.
Drybar is one of those places (which is why it's included on the list I put together) because it's just made for women. The space is pretty, everything smells good, you're handed free champagne upon arrival, and there's always a fun movie playing. It's the perfect place, except you can't really just hang out there when you're not getting a blowout.
Since I couldn't find one anywhere else, I've put together a little list of girly places in the city to take refuge from the very masculine energy this city puts off. Not included but honorable mentions are the Lilly Pulitzer store, the Glossier showroom, and the ultimate girl hangout: Audrey Gelman's The Wing, which (unfortunately for out of town visitors) is members-only.
restaurants + cafés
cha cha matcha
This pink and green spot feels like a tropical vacation in Manhattan. There are about a million different aesthetically pleasing photo opportunities here to take advantage of while you sip your latte or eat your soft serve.
bakeshop by woops
One of my favorite places to hang out in Brooklyn is this little white bakery in Williamsburg. It's cozy but with plenty of seats and great space by the window for working on your laptop. They serve hot and cold drinks plus lots of really good macaron flavors.
little cupcake bakeshop
For something sweet, head to this bakery on Prince Street with its cute corner location and pistachio-colored walls. The checkerboard floor is great for photos, as are the variety of fun treats.
Just down the street from Little Cupcake Bakeshop is the iconic pink restaurant Pietro Nolita. You'll typically find a crowd of girls outside taking photos, but definitely stop inside for really good Italian food.
the happiest hour
I stumbled upon this place in the West Village and thought it was just too cute. It's another pink-and-green place, with a flamingo, palm trees, and stripes motif. It's a whimsical, kind of Southern-inspired spot with fun cocktails like the Pineapple Express, Mango Mango, and Belle of the Ball.
This is the classic girls spot in the city, if you ask me, probably because of the Sex and the City association but also just because it's cute and cozy. I recommend the Upper East Side location more than any others for its classic, French country decor. Order the lemon and ricotta pancakes, drink a mimosa, and buy a jar of preserves for home.
eloise at the plaza
Honestly I'd probably do this on my own without a child if I could, but if you're in the city and looking for something to do with a niece/daughter/little sister, The Plaza has so many fun Eloise themed things to do. You can stay in the Eloise suite. Or have the girly Eloise tea at the Palm Court or stop by the Eloise shop downstairs in the food hall for etiquette classes, gingerbread house making, tea parties, and more.
bash + bow
This little spot near Gramercy Park has a curated selection of cute gift items like accessories, jewelry, and cards. They also have really cute clothes! There are a ton of boutiques in New York, but this one feels really special.
The Mansur Gavriel stores on Madison Avenue and Wooster Street, respectively, are pink heaven. The entire store is monochromatic pink with little pops of other colors in the merchandise.
There are several Kate Spade stores in the city, but I'll recommend the flagship on Madison Avenue. To me, the store feels like you're shopping in Serena van der Woodsen's townhouse. It has that whimsical, Kate Spade glamour in every corner.
More than just a store, Bulletin is described as a 'feminist collective' and has several locations in the city. The shops are filled with super girl-oriented gifts and t-shirts all from female-run brands. It's sort of a curated version of Etsy where you can find Ruth Bader Ginsberg pins and hats with girl-power messages.
greenwich letter press
This cozy shop on Christopher Street in the West Village is the quintessential charming New York spot you should take your mom. The shop itself is adorable and they sell beautiful cards that could be perfect for all sorts of gift-giving occasions.
As I mentioned up top, Drybar is the perfect example of an essential girly spot in the city. Treating yourself to a flute of champagne, a professional wash, and big curls while watching Clueless is something we all need once in awhile.
the red door spa
If you're looking to really be pampered, try the Red Door Spa at Union Square. The upstairs storefront area is beautiful with intricately tiled floors and the downstairs spa area feels so luxurious. You'll be served fruit infused water or tea (try the berry tea, it's so good) while you wait for your manicure, massage, or facial. I stopped by recently to get a holiday manicure (I did the "warm cream manicure") and nearly fell asleep because the treatment was so relaxing. Plus, the prices are on par with nail salons in the city but you get so much more.
primp + polish
This is a great little place for manicures and pedicures with several locations in Brooklyn, though I really like the Grand Street location between Bedford and Driggs. Not only are they cute shops with tons of cute color options, but their service menu is really affordable for a higher-end nail salon. Manicures start at only $12, which is unheard of both in New York and smaller cities in my experience.
There are a ton of great beauty stores in the city, but I'm going to go with Shen Beauty for the purposes of this list. Their store in Carroll Gardens is bright and white with pretty floral arrangements and hard-to-find beauty brands like Pai, Bioderma (which is hard to find in stores in the U.S. at least), Kjaer Weis, Omorovicza, and Vintner's Daughter.
sweet lily natural nail spa
Another nail salon to add to your list is Sweet Lily in Tribeca. This place is adorable, with big overstuffed printed armchairs at the pedicure stations, French country manicure tables, and actual foot baths with cucumbers or rose petals. All of the products are all-natural, so this would be a great place to take your daughter/niece/little sister, too!
Blushington is like a Drybar for makeup. With makeup application services priced between $15 and $90, not including add-ons like facials, faux eyelash application, and waxing, you can head here to get your makeup done before an event or a night out. The space is really pretty and branded, with white cabinetry and pretty coral-colored accents.
Have anywhere to add to this list? Please let me know in the comments!