Travel: A Wellness Weekend in New York City

New York City, filled with honking horns and an energy often described as contagious, is not the most relaxing city in the world, but residents and tourists alike are starting to embrace the wellness weekend 

It’s 7am in New York and I am sitting cross-legged in Central Park. An hour long sunrise yoga session is the best way to start your day in Manhattan and proves that there is more to life here than cocktails and shopping. New Yorkers are embracing the chance to chill out and enjoy nature and health conscious residents are enjoying the benefits.

To help tourists enjoy an equally chilled visit, Viceroy Central Park is offering guests a new two-night Wellness Weekend Package that not only includes your hotel stay, but also the chance to try out a mindfulness class and a run or sunrise yoga session in nearby Central Park.

Arriving on a Friday evening we hit the ground running, and after checking into our fabulous rooms at the Viceroy, walked a couple of blocks across to Lavo New York (, a buzzy uptown destination that somehow manages to combine an impressive Italian restaurant with a late night club too. It’s the perfect spot to ward off your jet lag.

Clubs aside, we were looking for a calmer city experience and our gentle sunrise yoga class the following morning provided by the lovely team at Fit Tours NYC soon set us up for the weekend. Along with the perennially popular Central Park, the city’s 1.4 mile High Line gives residents and visitors alike space and greenery to escape the city fumes. It was our first stop after breakfast and the perfect place to rest up.

If you think mindfulness has taken off in the UK, wait till you get to New York

Our wellbeing quest continued that evening with a trip on a river cruise ( where we sipped G&Ts on deck as we cruised alongside the Statue of Liberty, then stepped inside the boat for a great meal. A cheeky nightcap at the Viceroy’s roof top bar overlooking Central Park ended our day on a high note.

A weekend in New York always seems to fly by, but by sticking to our plan of making it a chilled-out trip, somehow it seemed to last longer. Our last day in the city was the highlight of my trip. If you think mindfulness has taken off in the UK, wait till you get to New York. In the past two years meditation classes have sprung up all over the city and Manhattan’s frazzled citizens can’t get enough.

At MNDFL ( on 60th Street we took a Sunday morning meditation class on how to handle your emotions better. Mobiles are banned and sitting cross legged in a beautiful white room, it’s great to treat yourself to an hour of reflective time. Feeling positive, we ended our weekend at the Chalk Point Kitchen, a funky basement restaurant in the West Village ( where healthy eating is the order of the day. Giant organic salads are the popular choice here, washed down by matcha tea.

On the flight home I realised that while I hadn’t shopped up a storm on my trip, what I had brought home will last me longer than a new dress – the ability to find inner calm wherever I live.

A two-night Wellness Weekend Package at Viceroy Central Park starts from £272 per night for a king-bedded room;  a meditation session at MNDFL’s studio on 60th Street and a FIT Tour, choosing from a 5K run or Sunrise Yoga in Central Park. To book see