David takes ultimate chicks' Sex and the City
tour of New York … let's go shoe shopping!
The phenomenal success of the television series Sex And The City is worldwide. It has been running since 1998 and follows the lives and loves of four young women living and working in New York City Carrie, Charlotte, Miranda and Samantha. Their New York pulsates with passion, romance, fashion and sex.
When Georgette Blau graduated from Skidmore College in 1999, she moved to Manhattan's East Side and hit upon the idea of forming On Location Tours, Inc.
Her tours, which start at the front of the Plaza Hotel, allow people to straddle the border of fiction and reality so they feel as though they are part of the show, and bring them close to the characters.
The two and a half hour Sex and the City tour follows the footsteps of the four women as they attempt to conquer New York City. You hop on and off the bus, have cocktails where they have theirs, shop where they shop and gossip where they gossip. You see the New York Sports Club where they work out, wine and dine at their favourite restaurants and see the shops which are the centre of Carrie Bradshaw's shoe fetish.
You will see Madison Square Park and visit Patricia Field's shop. She is head costume designer for the program, and also caters for transvestites and girls with outrageous taste in fashion. Stop at the quaint Magnolia Bakery, Miranda's favourite shop, where they sell more than 20,000 cupcakes each week, thanks to Sex and the City!
See Jimmy Choo's shoe and handbag shop where prices start at around $650, rising to an amazing $2000 for a pair of his stilettos.
In the West Village you will see the Furniture Co where Carrie meets her new love Aidan, a furniture designer.
Dolce & Gabbana is where they shop for the latest in Italian fashion, and Kerquelen is a space-age shoe shop which stocks more than 700 designs and styles of footwear from top designers and hip up-and-comers.
Some scenes are shot in a studio in Queens, but 90 percent of Sex and the City is filmed on location: a lot more than most television shows. It's an expensive way of doing things, costing up to $US60,000 a day, but the success speaks for itself, and with everything taken into consideration, $US60,000 is chicken feed.
All up, there over 40 sites included on the tour, and along the way you can become involved in a Sex and the City trivia quiz.
So amongst the Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Choo shoes, Magnolia Bakery's wickedly delicious cupcakes, learning the cigarettes smoked by the girls are actually made of honey rose herb, not tobacco, seeing the gallery where Charlotte works … you learn that Carrie's underwear, which attracts tonnes of mail, is boys' y-fronts by Calvin Klein. Most important when it comes to trivia!
Your last stop is for a Cosmopolitan at Scout, the bar owned by Steve and Aiden. The bar in real life is called O'Nieals, and it is a copy of the speakeasies which were popular during the prohibition era. The bars with side lane doors have little openings so those inside can see who is knocking.
On Location Tours also offer air-conditioned bus trips around Manhattan visiting the Friends apartment building, the Cosby brownstone, the NYPD Blue precinct building and sites used on The Sopranos.
Just in case you want to make your own Classic Cosmopolitan, here's the recipe:
1 oz vodka
½ oz Cointreau
1 tablespoon of fresh lime juice
Splash of cranberry juice
1 cup of ice cubes
Combine all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Shake gently and pour into a chilled martini glass. For a dash of flair, float a curl of lime peel in the centre.