taxiNew York City’s taxi app Uber is currently on the lookout for 10 employees to join its team. The firm would like to hire: a marketing manager, operations and logistics manager, recruiter and four software engineers.

The firm is trying to “become an integral part of the transportation infrastructure of every city around the world. To help make this vision a reality, we’re rapidly growing our local engineering and operations teams right here in NYC.”

At the present time, Uber has approximately 60 employees in New York City (as well as a new office in Chelsea), rendering it a key player in the yellow taxi market.

UK Cows Return to NY

cowAfter all the years of talk of mad cows disease hailing from the UK, a fancy restaurant in the Upper West Side is basically saying ‘enough is enough.’ The owners of Daniel Monday have brought in Irish beef for the first time since the 1998 ban was implemented.

According to Simon Coveney, Agriculture Minister in Ireland, there are no health concerns with such high quality beef from Ireland since it is grass-fed.

America is not alone in welcoming back the best of British beef. At the Dubai Food Festival, the Desert Chill team is to be serving gourmet burgers and other meat-based items that hail form the UK. Indeed, ten food trucks came from the UK to join in its Street Feast event, bringing in British offal and more.

Texan-Indian Cuisine comes to Flatiron District

chickenA Texan-Indian style restaurant – Pondicheri – is making its way to New York. Leasing a 3,363 square foot ground floor space in the Flatiron District, close to Shimmie Horn’s Triumph hotels, this eatery will be the first retail tenant using space from the Madison Square portfolio. A 15-year lease has been signed and the restaurant will take possession in April or May.

Featuring an updated skylight and storefront, high ceilings and floor-to-ceiling casement windows, Pondicheri will serve its clients a whole array of foods, from the Hopper (a Sri Lankan inspired, crisp coconut, chia seed & rice shell filled with masala eggs / coconut salad / kerala sauce) for a mere $5, to the Fried Chicken Tuesday (Half of a Bryan Farm chicken marinated in a spicy yogurt masala then dusted in chickpea flour, served with curried fingerling potatoes, arugula & blueberry salad, chutney and pumpkin buns) for $25.

However, the owners are not committing to the menu staying the same all the time, claiming that it “might change due to seasonally available ingredients, relentless experimentation, and musing moods.” Don’t forget to leave room for dessert though, and hope that the powers-that-be will always make the Café Annie Brownie (moist brownie from the legendary restaurant with Valrhona cocoa & walnuts) and Ginger Cloud Cookie available.

Maille Makes it to Manhattan

mustardFrench Dijon mustard Maille has just arrived in the Upper West Side. There are over 20 varieties showcased here, at the Columbus Avenue/68th Street location. And for those non-experts who want to know more, Pierette Huttner is there to help.

The mustard sommelier enjoys describing the various flavors that range from truffle-type to nutty-type and everything in between. She’ll also suggest pairings such as mashed potatoes with black truffle and Chablis. For those who want to go all out there is the black truffle that retails at $45 for a 4.4 ounce jar.

Perhaps this mustard was just what midtown Manhattan was missing!

Canine Café?

dog-220373_1280It’s not always so easy to have a dog in midtown Manhattan. Indeed, cities in general are a more challenging environment in which to house a pet. But for dog lovers in the area, there may soon be a solution. Maggie Chan and Mandy Chow are two 24-year old women who are hoping to get their Indiegogo campaign to raise $75,000 to build the Dog Café – a doggie playground and café for humans to match up New Yorkers with adoptable shelter dogs.

For those who just want to hang out with a dog and not adopt it, the café provides them a service too. The two women thought the lower east side’s Cat Café was pretty cool and based their idea on that. Their idea is a large indoor space in the area that will offer pet-sitting services, as well as give dogs the opportunity for playdates. New York shelters could then send in dogs that café-goers might be interested in adopting, getting to know them at the café before bringing them home. There are currently numerous abandoned dogs looking for homes in the city. As well this could help solve the city’s stray dog issue, by getting these dogs adopted too.

So just because you’re in Manhattan might not mean you to have to ditch your love for your canine companion.

Selfies: The new Foodies?

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Selfies seem to be the ‘in’ thing these days. Whereas it used to be that people would post pictures of the food items they were enjoying in various eateries to boast of their prosperity and joie-de-vivre, now it is selfies. But go one step ahead and you’ll get the selfie stick.

Selfie sticks are the latest craze in the city that never sleeps. And that was definitely no less the case a week-and-a-half ago as tourists and natives alike saw in the new year around Rockefeller Plaza and Times Square. One would have been well advised to watch their back (or front) for these digital sticks as getting poked was not such a strange possibility on December 31st in the heart of New York City.

The selfie stick – a kind of rod that can attach to a smartphone – is used to snap selfies without having to have someone’s arm lurking in the end result. Apparently they have been very popular in Dubai now for quite a while. But in New York – and the rest of the nation – it is a gimmick that is only just starting to gain popularity, even though phone-holding rods have been available in the country for the last four years. It was iStabilizer CEO Noah Rasheta who thought of the idea as he was frustrated on a trip to Asia that every picture had his arm in it. So he started working on a selfie stick, and thus the Monopod was born. Retailing for around $35, there have been approximately 40,000 of the device since 2012.

Sweetgreen Opening in Soho

SCG Retail just signed a lease for Sweetgreen to open in Soho, on Kenmare Street. Not far from The Evelyn, Shimmie Horn’s hotel in the Manhattan NoMad area, SCG Retail broker David Firestein pointed out that the neighborhood is “perfect for Sweetgreen’s farm-to-table approach to convenient food. Kenmare is a great location because it’s strategically positioned to tap into the tourist flow, the daytime office crowd, and the residents who are hungry night or day.”

Fast food has traditionally been extremely unhealthy fare. Now though, Sweetgreen has given fast food a different rep. When the company was launched back in 2007 it was through the three founders’ “locally sourced and organic ingredient” approach. The company is committed to “community and sustainability.”

In addition, the company offers local NYC schools educational programs in schools on the importance of eating healthy, wellness, etc. SCG Retail decided on the Kenmare Street location because of the food rejuvenation occurring in the area, with places like: Taim, Rubirosa, Parm, la Esquina, Osteria Morini.

Upcoming Festivities in the Upper West Side

Over the Christmas season, NYC & Company will be making amendments to its Upper West Side Neighborhood x Neighborhood campaign. The reason being, that it’s a major happening place for seasonal festivities. Both visitors and residents alike will be able to enjoy activities between West 97th Street to 62nd and Broadway. Indeed, the city wants people to come and take part. As NYC and Company’s VP of Borough Promotion and Engagement pointed out:

“The Upper West Side is one of the most festive neighborhoods during the holidays, and we encourage everyone to explore this family-friendly and culturally rich destination throughout the winter.”

Some of the enticing attractions include: The Nutcracker by the New York City Ballet, Holiday Cheer for RUV concert at the Beacon Theater and origami holiday tree that can be found at the American Museum of Natural History.

There sure is something very special about Christmas on the Upper West Side.

Welcome to Spa Castle!

candle-335965_1280Spa Castle is about to open in Manhattan for the first time. Measuring in at 39,000 square feet, Spa Castle Premier has quite a Manhattan vibe about it. Spa Castle Original – located in Queens on a quiet street – doesn’t have the same flair, but that could be due to location. What happens in Manhattan has to have an extra level of culture and pizzazz.

Manhattan’s Spa Castle Premier has that polished feel, typical to many Manhattan buildings. Grab a cocktail from the pool bar and enjoy the glittering lights. Then luxuriate in the saunas.

Manhattan could definitely do with additional relaxation outlets. The most densely-populated of the five boroughs in New York, it is not the most stress-free place to live. Too much time is focused on being in the rat race. This is a great way to unwind and enjoy the ride!

Synchronized Swimming

Manhattan has synchronized swimming classes. Not only that, they are actually affordable. One does not have to be a wannabe athlete to make it happen. At the Manhattan Plaza Health Club, lessons are just over $15!

So not only does one not have to be rich to join, they also do not have to be overly-talented. The classes house everyone – from beginner to advanced – and then split up into skill level.

Those who take the classes generally report them to be a lot of fun, and something that can be built up over time. There are many basic attributes to it, and one needs to have a lot of them under their belt as it were, to be able to really participate in the sport.

In addition, synchronized swimming is great for the body, being both an aerobic and anaerobic activity.