One area of the city I do my best to avoid is Times Square. Ask any New Yorker and I’m sure they’d say the same. It’s loud, overrun and it burns my eyes – but it also means that I’m short on suggestions for what to do up there.
But Ryan started working in the area last week and came across a bar that’s perfect for a drink, catch up or, in our case, an impromptu date night.
As soon as I caught site of Lillie’s, I knew I was going to like it.
It has high ceilings held up with pillars, and the walls are covered with delicately painted portraits hanging in heavy frames. Most beautiful is a stained-glass window on the far window.
Lillie’s is named for Lillie Langtry, a beautiful British actress and socialite who flirted with royalty in the 19th century, before moving to the U.S. in 1882 to become an actress. She traveled the country, worked as a model, purchased a California winery and ultimately became an American citizen before passing away in 1929, aged 75.
As a Brit, I think I’m pretty good at sniffing out insincere representations of European history, but I was blown away by this place. It was over-the-top, yes, but so beautiful with an amazing attention to detail. Our server said that everything was from Europe and I believed it.
Unfortunately the food was a little lackluster. We started with a warm beet salad with goats cheese and cranberries, which was delicious, but our mains – vegetable quiche for me, a Portobello mushroom burger for Ryan – were a little uninspiring.
The drinks, however, were perfect and we agreed we’d definitely go back, grab another snug corner or a stool at the bar, and dig into that cocktail menu for a little longer.
I appreciate it’s not the most American of places but take one trip to Times Square and, I assure you, you’ll be happy for the respite.
Great suggestion, Ryan!