Travel Trade Newsletter – November 2015

travel trade

  • print

New in NYC

NBC Studios Tour Reopens
How historic are the historic NBC Studios? Both the studios and this tour have been in operation since 30 Rock opened its doors in 1933, way back in the radio era. The new-and-improved tour returns following a year-plus hiatus for renovations, with visits to working studios (The Tonight Show, Saturday Night Live), the NBC broadcast operations center, and a special Tour Studio, where participants can create a TV show of their own. The tour is limited to 15 guests; reduced prices are available for groups. 

Star Wars Costume Exhibition Opens at Discovery Times Square  
With the Force primed to awaken, the Smithsonian and Lucasfilm have teamed up to bring Star Wars and the Power of Costume: the Exhibition to the crossroads of the world. The show presents more than 70 costumes, designs and artifacts in all, featuring old favorites (such as Darth Vader's samurai-influenced black mask and Chewbacca's yak-hair Wookiee suit) and a few new ones from the latest installmentThe exhibition runs from November 14 through September 5, 2016. 

A Very NYC Holiday Round-Up

The New York holiday season unfolds to its own special rhythm. The first herald is the arrival of outdoor ice-skating at the world-famous Rink at Rockefeller Center, Bryant Park's Winter Village, Prospect Park, Central Park and all around the town.

In November, the curtains rise on two long-running favorites: The Radio City Christmas Spectacular, starring the high-kicking Rockettes, and George Balanchine's The Nutcracker at Lincoln Center, with visions of sugar plums set to Tchaikovsky's unforgettable music.

Everyone turns out for the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, to see Santa, miles of marching bands and favorite floats and balloons. (The annual inflating of the balloons the day before the parade, on Manhattan's Upper West Side, has become a holiday tradition as well.) A number of hotels offer rooms with a view right along the route

Then the shopping begins. Browsing the stalls of local artisans at the City's Holiday Markets has become increasingly popular in recent years. For a respite, catch the annual lighting of the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center or the over-the-top mom-and-pop flavor of A Slice of Brooklyn's Christmas Lights and Cannoli tour

During Hanukkah (December 6–13), witness the only-in-NYC battle between Manhattan and Brooklyn's dueling "world's largest menorahs." And all season long, kids can compare the City's two holiday train shows, at Grand Central Terminal  and the New York Botanical Garden.

New Year's Eve Celebrations
The night's big event is, of course, the Times Square Ball Drop. The Waterford Crystal ball begins its descent at 11:59pm, but the star-studded festivities start much earlier, and prime spots fill up quickly, so consult our handy guide for details.

In Central Park, thousands of runners ring in the New Year with dancing, fireworks and a four-mile road race at the annual NYRR Midnight Run. And at Brooklyn's Grand Army Plaza, a fireworks show on a larger scale lights up the night.

Many hotels offer special New Year's parties and packages. It's good to book in advance, especially at hotels that offer rooms with a view of the ball drop—such as the Novotel Times Square, the Renaissance Times Square, the Millennium Broadway, the Marriott Marquis and The Knickerbocker, whose rooftop bar, St. Cloud, offers an up-close view of the festivities. Our Where to Stay guide can help you find accommodations in neighborhoods citywide.

Upcoming Events & Exhibitions

We cover all the festivities in our holiday events guide, and all the hot shows, happenings and exhibitions in our fall and winter events guides. For even more to do in all five boroughs, seven days a week, check out our comprehensive events calendar.  

Hotel Updates

Newly Opened
The Brooklyn A Hotel 
Brooklyn – Bedford Stuyvesant
34 rooms

Newly Opened
1 Hotel Central Park 
Manhattan – Midtown West
229 rooms

Newly Opened
The Renwick 
Manhattan – Murray Hill
173 rooms

Newly Redesigned
Smyth, a Thompson Hotel  
Manhattan – TriBeCa
100 rooms

Newly Redesigned
The Time 
Manhattan – Times Square
193 rooms

Download the latest Hotel Development Fact Sheet

NYC & Company Signature Programs

Unlock NYC™
Unlock NYC is NYC & Company's new year-round seasonal promotion, whose first iteration aims to expand visitation to the five boroughs this winter. Inspired by the magic and wonder that happens around NYC from January through March, visitors from near and far will be invited to discover quintessential New York City experiences enhanced by hidden insights and unexpected highlights. Explore Unlock NYC and find ideas for winter content, along with imagery and video assets for your use, to encourage visitors and readers to discover a "winter less ordinary." Visit for more, and for assets, log on to the NYC & Company Multimedia Library and search "Unlock Winter." 

NYC & Company Resources for the Travel Trade

NYC & Company has all your travel trade needs covered. Visit to access the NYC Travel Training Academy, browse neighborhood tool kits to help you sell select neighborhoods throughout the City, order collateral materials, find trip planning tips, download NYC videos and images, and to download your copy of the NYC 2015 Official Travel Planner. It brings together a rundown of what’s new for travelers visiting the City in 2015, updated events calendars, our curated “Things to See and Do Guide,” and extensive listings for the City’s hotels and event service providers. 

For More Information

Should you have any questions or require additional information, feel free to contact us directly at or contact your local office. For general information, including a calendar of events and other essential information about New York City, please visit