Budget

New York City on a Budget

by Aaron Barker

THE GLAMOUR PUSS (continued)

Hit a High Note
If springing for $275 orchestra seats at the Metropolitan Opera (pictured) gives you pause, you've got a few options: Stand for three hours at the back of the house, strain your eyes in a partial-view seat ($15–$20), or don your eveningwear and head to Lincoln Center two hours before curtain. That's when 200 orchestra-level seats are made available at the box office for a mere $20 (Mondays through Thursdays only and not on opening nights or other galas), meaning you too can sit next to benefactors during the performance and make snide remarks about Katharina Wagner's debut at Bayreuth. Of course, the opera isn't the only hoity-toity act in town: The New York Philharmonic's 9:45 am rehearsals at Avery Fisher Hall are open to the public; tickets are $16. Both companies take to the open air during the summer; their free Central Park performances are a standing invitation to picnic with the locals.

Financial Windfall
The Ritz-Carlton, Battery Park's high thread counts and posh vistas of New York Harbor and the Statue of Liberty might seem extravagant for a budget jaunt, but its Financial District location—and mostly corporate clientele—makes the 298-room hotel especially fond of dropping its rates on weekends. Consider that a room at the Ritz on Central Park South costs $875 and up, and Battery Park's $325 starting rate doesn't sound so bad. Throw in the huge marble bathrooms, Bulgari toiletries, and full soaking tubs, and it's a no-brainer.

Metropolitan Opera
Lincoln Center Plaza
Tel: 212 362 6000

New York Philharmonic
10 Lincoln Center Plaza
Tel: 212 875 5900

Ritz-Carlton, Battery Park
2 West St.
Tel: 212 344 0800

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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