An insider’s guide to New York City

An insider’s guide to New York City

Wake up in a city that never sleeps

Text: Nicole Najafi

Image: Getty Images
Image: Jerry Ferguson
Image: Nicole Najafi
Image: Pandiscio Co.
Image: Trendland

Nicole Najafi, the founder of denim brand Industry Standard, tells us about her favourite spaces in the Big Apple

New York, New York. So much of it has been enshrined in words and celebrated in song. Even if Joan Didion bid goodbye to all that, the city has been and always will be a mercurial melting pot for anyone seeking their slice of heaven — be it food, fashion, or culture. Forget Central Park and Times Square; pack some soul into your New York minute. Here are five spots for your Little Black Book. 


An intimate and beautifully designed seafood restaurant in west Soho. I love their antique sinks and menus written in perfectly messy handwriting. The branding here is just perfect. It's a great spot to be at especially on a sunny day. It feels very New York in the best way. 

137 Sullivan Street, New York, NY 10012



A New York classic. It was an artists' haven in the '80s and has since become a non-trendy go-to spot downtown (which is rarer than you might think!). It's in south Tribeca, a relatively quiet part of the city and frequently mostly by locals and regulars. You can always expect great service and good food. The cuisine melds American classics with French brasserie staples. I especially love the buffalo chicken dumplings and blue cheese dipping sauce.

145 W Broadway, New York, NY 10013

john derian

John Derian Company

This gem of a jewel box store in the East Village is full of decorative items and knick-knacks for the home. Be sure to check out Hugo Guinness's incredibly whimsical and cool linocut prints. The store feels a bit like a modern day cabinet of curiosities. This is a great place to shop for gifts, both for others and yourself. There's also the John Derian Dry Goods store next door. It's worth a stop if you're seeking beautiful home decor and furnishings, many of which are imported from Parisian and Moroccan flea markets. 

6 E 2nd St, New York, NY 10003

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La Garconne

The e-tailer's first brick and mortar store is a minimalist fashion haven. If you love color, it's probably not the best spot for you. They carry an amazing curation of under-the-radar brands alongside more well known ones. The store is so immaculate and organised, making for a very zen shopping experience. Post-shopping, head over across the street to Estancia for a drink or two (and say hi to Katie, the manager at Estancia!).

465 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10013

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Neue Galerie

This is an Austrian-German gem of a museum located uptown, one that's smaller and significantly easier to digest than the bigger museums. It houses some of Klimt's most famous works. The museum itself is architecturally stunning and has a fantastic restaurant on the ground floor called Cafe Sabarsky, where you can get Viennese coffee and delicious desserts. The vibe here is very old world Eastern European. 

Nicole is the founder of Industry Standard, a women's denim line that retails online. The line is made in LA and features five classic, everyday denim styles.