Since most of the staff of Dandelion Chandelier live in New York, we’ve decided that now that the pandemic restrictions are finally being lifted, it’s the perfect time for us to open the vault and share our secret favorites in New York City. From the best indie bookstores to the iconic desserts you have to try, consider us that local friend who can help you make the most of your precious time in the city. For this edition of our luxury insider’s guide to Gotham, our correspondent Julie Chang Murphy has curated a list of the 10 most romantic and unexpected places to propose marriage in New York City (NYC).
what are the best romantic places to propose in New York City (NYC)?
We may be biased…OK, we are definitely biased, but New York City is one of the most romantic and enchanting cities in the world. It has cemented its position in the popular imagination as a place of blossoming love stories.
From Breakfast at Tiffany’s to When Harry Met Sally to Sex in the City. In real life, it’s a cultural hub that has something for everyone whether you lean towards the historic or most cutting-edge; the allure of quiet intimacy or unapologetic glamour; the gritty or elegant.
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If you’re looking to get down on one knee in this city of limitless options, we have some ideas. We won’t be suggesting overly predictable spots like the Empire State Building or Times Square. Instead, we’re sharing landmarks and places that are slightly under the radar. But that still ooze plenty of charm and picturesque romance (should you hire a photographer to document the occasion).
Here are our picks for the top 10 romantic places to propose when you’re in a New York state of mind.
10 most romantic and enchanting places to propose in NYC
1. Hunters Point South Park in Long Island City
It’s hard to believe this spectacular new waterfront park with unobstructed views of the Manhattan skyline used to be an abandoned post-industrial area. With lots of nooks, piers, terraces, and even a sculpture park inspired by phases of the moon, you’ll have many private, relatively uncrowded areas to pop the question. After, walk the promenade hand-in- bejeweled hand and head to Michelin Star rated Mexican restaurant, Casa Enrique, for celebratory drinks and delicious food.
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2. The MET Cloisters in Washington Heights
A fairy tale romance should end with a proposal at the magical Cloisters. Incorporating original elements of medieval European monasteries, churches, and castles, it’s like stepping into a story book. Even the enchanting gardens feature traditional plants and herbs grown at the time for pleasure, nourishment, medicine, and even magic. The museum is located in Fort Tryon Park so be sure to wander around for gorgeous views of the Hudson River.
3. Eddie’s Sweet Shop in Forest Hills
For an auspicious start to the sweet life together, go off the beaten path and propose at Eddie’s Sweet Shop in Queens. A century-old soda fountain with vintage marble counter tops and stools, they serve up towering sundaes with hand whipped ice cream made on premises. Whether it’s a banana split, milkshake or egg cream, it’s pretty sweet to think of your proposal becoming part of its history (and a place that your future children will love coming to).
4. Hammock Grove on Governor’s Island
Take a ferry ride past the Statue of Liberty to Governor’s Island. Here you can rent tandem bikes to ride around the island, grab some eats from the food trucks and enjoy the public parks and art exhibits. While there are many suitable spots for a proposal, we think Hammock Grove is an idyllic choice. A peaceful nook amongst lush foliage with city views, it’s perfect for cuddling and dreaming about your future together.
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5. Stone Street in the Financial District
The charging bull, New York Stock Exchange, and Wall Street hardly seem like a place for romance. But the vibe is totally different a few blocks away on Stone Street. The narrow cobblestone street has a distinctly old world aura. It feels like a secret passage in the center of it all. Atmospheric pubs and charming restaurants with outdoor tables flank the street ensuring some whoops and hollers should you become engaged.
6. Pebble Beach in Brooklyn Bridge Park
While you can technically swim into the East River at Pebble Beach in Brooklyn Bridge Park, we think staying on its adorable rocky shores is a much better idea. From its vantage point, the Manhattan Bridge, Brooklyn Bridge and Jane’s Carousel are all within view, as well was the Manhattan skyline. A sunset proposal would be pretty memorable here followed by drinks at 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge.
7. NY Transit Museum in Brooklyn
If your love story involves commutes on the subway to one another’s apartments, consider something really off the beaten path and go underground. The NY Transit Museum is built on an authentic decommissioned subway station with vintage subway cars that you can enter and pop the question in a historic coach. There are rotating exhibits and other unique artifacts that make you marvel at the subterranean magic that keeps the city (and lovers) united.
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8. Summit One Vanderbilt at Grand Central
Take your love to heights at the newly constructed 1,401-foot tall One Vanderbilt, the city’s latest observation deck. This one features multi-sensory art exhibitions with Transcendence being the most photographable and iconic space. Covered in mirrored surfaces, it feels boundless…sort of like falling in love. A proposal here isn’t for shy types. Get ready to see your image reflected from above, below, and all around.
9. Greenacre Park in Manhattan
Nestled between office towers on 51st Street between 2nd and 3rd Avenues, this little oasis invites you in with a beautiful waterfall cascade. It’s known as a “vest-pocket” park. It is a distinctly urban type of green space popularized in the 70s as a response to high density areas. This one is for New Yorkers looking to get down on one knee in a pretty environment that’s still connected to the hustle and bustle they know and love.
10. Hall of Gems at the Museum of Natural History
Amidst all the stunning gems on display at the Museum of Natural History’s newly renovated Mignone Hall of Gems and Minerals, the most precious one will be the one you use to propose. There are 5,000 specimens from 98 different countries. However, we think the ideal spot is in front of the gallery’s pièce de résistance: a 9-foot-tall amethyst geode, sparkling incandescently in bright purple.
10 most romantic and unexpected places to propose marriage in NYC
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Crediting her training as a cultural anthropologist at Wellesley College, Julie has immersed herself in various industries in the last 15 years including fashion design, event planning, and fitness. Julie lives in New York where she loves trying every ramen and dumpling restaurant with her husband and three children. She finds joy in bold prints, biographies of fierce women, kickboxing. And spending way too long finding the perfect polish color to express her mood.