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AUG
05

Breakfast at Tiffany's

As soon as I heard that luxury mammoth Tiffany & Co had opened a cafe in their flagship Fifth Avenue store, I was desperate to go. This is, after all, the girl who showed up early the morning that Tiffany's finally opened a store in Cleveland to have a pastry and hot chocolate in the parking lot. Breakfast at Tiffany's. Of course, actually getting a reservation at Blue Box Cafe is easier said than done. I can, in fact, think of almost nothing I've experienced in recent years that has caused me more frustration. Except my company switching from Aetna to United Healthcare. To hopefully save you some of this frustration, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Reservations must be made online, through Resy. Don't think you can do it by phone. Don't think you can show up and hope someone cancels. No one cancels. And you'll be waiting all day.

Install the Resy app. I tried just setting up an account online, like on my computer, and then when clicking a time to book, Tiffany's website would take me to Resy where I could then login to confirm the reservation. The problem is that it only takes a few seconds each morning for that day's reservations to be taken. Gone. Booked. So unless you put the actual Resy app on your phone, saving you the steps of logging in and entering your credit card number, you'll never be fast enough. So get the Resy app. It's the only way.

Reservations for a particular day open for booking 30 days before that day. So, roughly, reservations for August 1 are able to be made on July 1. You've probably noticed that this makes it near impossible to try to plan a trp around it, as you typically need more than 30 days to do that. Also keep in mind the reservations open at 9AM eastern (6AM pacific if you're as lucky as I am), and like I said, they'll be gone in seconds, so get yourself ready to work it first thing in the morning, 30 days before the day you want.

Sign up for notifications. Since you inevitably won't get a reservation, sign up to be notified if any slots open up on the day you're looking for. It will amaze you how many times this happens. That you get sent a notification that the table you want is now available. It will also amaze you that no matter how quickly you click "reserve" to snag the slot, it will already be taken by the time the screen loads. This happened at least 20 times in my quest to get a reservation, and only after all those missed opportunities did I finally snag the cancelled spot before anyone else. So keep trying. Keep those notifications on. 

Don't worry about time of day. All sections of the menu, even breakfast, are available all day. I had a 1PM reservation, but I wanted Breakfast at Tiffany's. And I got it.

Prepare to be underwhelmed by the food and overwhelmed by the charm. Let's face it. Food is not a strength of a luxury jewelry chain. I'd be concerned if it were. So you could sum up your meal by saying it's a lot of hassle and money for a mediocre croissant. But it won't really matter. Because that's not why you're there. You're there for the experience. For the swoony feeling, the charm of the robin's egg dishes (that you can, incidentally, buy just outside the cafe in the housewares department), for the cucumber sandwich tray. Besides, when it comes to charm, does it get any better than this: Waitress: "Do you want to see the dessert menu?" Tali: "I mean, I just had a waffle, but yes I do."

MAY
07

Top Ten Lessons from Dapper Day

Most Disney buffs know about Dapper Day, but this was my first time participating. The tradition is, in a word, charming. But then again, could there be any other way to describe thousands of people showing up to the park in circa 1950s Sunday best? Methinks no. A few tips for those looking to join in next time.

10. Arrive early. Like, really early. I arrived before 8:00 AM and they were already re-routing people from the parking garage to the Katella lot.

9. Bring a second pair of shoes. True that as soon as you change into your flats you'll feel about a billion times less cute, but your feet will thank you come about 2pm.

8. Rent a locker. For the shoes, yes, but also for your regular bag or purse. It's nice to be able to walk around the park on Dapper Day carrying nothing but the tiny vintage purse you bought just for the occasion. And the locker rental is super easy, and pretty cheap, too. You'll find them halfway down Main Street on the right side.

7. Bring a compact. So you can reapply lipstick after each churros, ice cream cone, and bread bowl.

6. Don't spend all day at Disneyland. I say this because there are actually more people dressed up in California Adventure than at Disneyland. And being all dolled up feels a lot more fun when you're en masse.

5. Look for ye olde photo ops. Disney doesn't actually sponsor Dapper Day, but they certainly support it. If you keep a lookout, you'll notice they've got multiple throwback photo ops ready (like old car models), complete with Disney photographers standing by. Seriously cute.

4. A hat is a must, but maybe take it off during Space Mountain. My courtesy picture shows me firmly holding my sky-blue pillbox on my head. I'd kept one arm there the whole ride. I should have just taken it off, but those damn pins had been so annoying to get in place.

3. Ease up on the rides. What I mean is this is a day that's all about the experience. The mood is different, lighter. And to me, the most satisfying thing wasn't maximizing ride time (usually I try to go on as many as I can), but rather soaking in the classic goodness. Admiring other people's outfits, listening to the band play, imagining what the park had been like 60 years ago when everyone dressed like this every day.

2. Pace yourself when putting together your outfit. You may find a vintage dress for $13 and think this is really no thing, but then the tailor might charge you $55 to take it in because of the detailed paneling. And the hat and gloves you find at the antique store might run you another $40, a purse $14, and a petticoat another $36. Hypothetically. In short, be prepared to wear the outfit every time you go to Dapper Day.

1. Bring a date. You'll want someone to take your picture, but mostly you'll want a man on your arm looking equally dapper.

Here's to November. I'll see you all there!

 

 

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