Mountain Mayhem: I’ll Take Manhattan
After what seemed like a very long hiatus – about two years time – it was invigorating to return to New York recently for a few days, packing in as much as possible from arrival to departure. First up was an Aspen Institute Society of Fellows reception at a private restaurant on Central Park South, which was generously hosted by Kim and Rob Coretz. Entitled “Resetting the Table: What’s Next for the Restaurant Industry,” the conversation with Danny Meyer, CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group and JJ Johnson, award-winning chef, founder, TV personality and author, was guided by Dawn Davis, Editor-in-Chief of Bon Appétit magazine. Topics covered spanned how the food and restaurant industry is responding to recent challenges, the rise of inclusion and equity issues, how business models have evolved as a result of the pandemic, what new imperatives have surfaced for sustainability and supply chains, and the culture of dining.
Next, a friend and I spent an evening at Collective Retreats Governor’s Island for a glamping getaway. Departing from downtown Manhattan by water taxi, we were whisked across the New York Harbor for an 8-minute ride to the outdoor sanctuary that felt like a world away from the buzz of the city, surrounded by sprawling green space with views of the Statue of Liberty and the Manhattan Skyline. Our friend Peter Mack is the founder and CEO of Collective Retreats, which he started six years ago.
“As an Aspenite. I took inspiration from these mountains and this community,” he said. “Each of our retreats is located in an iconic destination and features luxury outdoor accommodations, exceptional culinary experiences, and bespoke hospitality. The combination of old world Alps inspired service with Aspen style is our passion. We operate year round in Hill Country, Austin Texas and the New York City and Vail locations open back up in the spring. We’re also working on an Aspen location – which we’re very excited about because we have so many amazing guests from here – plus other mountain locations, Sonoma, Vermont, and more.”
Rounding out my visit, I ran into Aspen friends at various locations – running in Central Park, meeting at Soho House in the Meatpacking District and dining at Cote Korean Steakhouse. There’s no place quite like Manhattan – and I can’t wait to go back soon.
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