To an enviable number of CEOs and Forbes-listed elites, personal concierge Katherine Stromsland is a veritable lifesaver. From chartering Gulf Streams at any given moment to shopping for 60 relatives and friends, this svelte Nordic-Italian New Yorker makes it her mission to lighten the load of the asset-rich, time-poor. Stromsland's encyclopedic knowledge of her hometown is no mean feat considering the city's notoriously fickle nature. So where exactly should the corporate set head? The queen of 'In-the-Know' sheds light on New York's best
For a power lunch, try Milanese-inspired Casa Lever (390 Park Avenue). The 'space age' dining room features hexagonal booths and Warhol artwork, while the private dining room holds up to 20 guests. For dinner, consider Michelin-starred Marea (240 Central Park South). Its modern Italian seafood is unforgettable, especially the sea urchin with lardo (lard) and the lobster with burrata cheese. The restaurant only books one month ahead, so be flexible with your timing for a table. Serious carnivores should make the pilgrimage to Brooklyn's Peter Luger Steakhouse (178 Broadway, Brooklyn).
For a sublime caffeine hit, don't miss espresso bar Stumptown (20 West 29th Street) or the cafes inside Italian food emporium Eataly (200 5th Avenue). For after-work drinks, head to Bar Basque (839 Sixth Avenue; 646-600-7150) for the impressive wine list, tapas, and outrageously crimson lounge. The Pompidou-style glass courtyard features a giant screen beaming the work of emerging artists. The older business crowd adores Bar & Books (1020 Lexington Avenue) for its selection of scotch, whiskeys and cigars. Brandy Library (25 N. Moore Street) is another must for whisky connoisseurs, while entertainment industry types gravitate to the Waverley Inn & Garden (16 Bank Street; 917-828-1154) or its offshoot, The Lion (62 West 9th Street). Come here for the scene, not the food, and when booking, prepare to offer your bio. The more impressive it sounds, the better your chances.
Haberdasher Lord Willy's (223 Mott Street) specialises in sublime custom-made men's shirts and suits, though you'll also find ready-to-wear, beautiful topcoats, ties, boxers and umbrellas. Up-and-coming Seize sur Vingt (78 Greene Street) offers custom tailoring in bright colours and bold patterns for men and women, while Barker Black (198B Elizabeth Street) is the place for custom-made men's formal and semi-formal shoes that are both elegant and subversive. There's a waiting time of about four weeks, though you can opt for ready-to-wear. For must-have women's heels, try Intermix (98 Price Street) and Jeffrey (449 West 14th Street). For cufflinks, The Missing Link (40 West 25th Street) has over 5000 rare and vintage offerings.
Book a treatment at the Four Seasons Spa, which offers a handy 'Jet Lag' massage. Also in Midtown, Okeanos Club Spa (211 East 51st Street) offers signature Russian therapies like Platza, where you're stroked with birch branches in a traditional banya (sauna). Okeanos also offers handy express shaves, facials and back massages. On the Upper East Side, Sutton East Tennis Club (York Ave at 59th Street) is a great place to release some aggression, with eight indoor clay courts. Soho's Drive 495 (495 Broadway) offers high-tech golfing simulators of over 40 famous golf courses.
A lesser-known, less crowded gem on Fifth Avenue's 'Museum Mile' is the Frick Collection (1 East 70th Street). Occupying a massive neo-classical mansion, this former home of tycoon and art patron Henry Clay Frick houses one of the most varied and interesting collections of European art ever amassed. Highlights include works by Cimabue, Bellini, Corot, Gainsborough, and El Greco. Equally impressive is the museum's courtyard. It's a wonderful place to sit, listen to the gurgle of the water fountain and luxuriate in the Frick's peace and beauty.
It's hard to beat Midtown's Four Seasons (57 East 57th Street) for personal service and attention. Their in-house Business Centre offers round-the-clock services, including mobile phones and secretarial services. Rooms are contemporary, though the 52nd-floor Ty Warner suite has a French-Italian artisanal feel and 360-degree view of Manhattan. Soho's slick-and-hip Crosby Street Hotel (70 Crosby Street) is popular with a younger, more eclectic advertising and media crowd. The 99-seat screening room is great for screenings, and both the slinky Crosby Bar and eclectic Drawing Room are fabulous for meeting clients over cocktails.
Car services like Delroy's Limousine are often the easiest and fastest way to reach Manhattan from JFK, Newark or La Guardia airports. If the weather is bad, consider taking the New Jersey Transit train to Newark Airport or the subway to JFK. In town, taxis are usually the most convenient way to get around. If a lot of people are trying to hail a cab around you, position yourself so that you're ahead of them. Once hailed, close the door and then tell the driver your destination. Once the door is shut the driver cannot refuse the ride.