Where to go for a fun night on Broadway — with photos

betty ming liu Money, Relationships, Travel 14 Comments

Want to know how crazy expensive New York City can get? I recently treated two teenagers to a fun, $462 night on the town. And it was glorious to get out of my budgeting head to just throw some money around. It made me feel like a cool mom (for a change).

This was the Jan. 6 itinerary for my daughter Gabi, her friend A.J. and me:

  • 6:45 p.m. — R Lounge for assorted dips, chips and snacks.
  • 8:00 p.m. — “Priscilla Queen of the Desert,” with excellent seats.
  • Backstage tour of the actual stage, costumes and orchestra pit.
  • B. Smith’s — Late night dessert after the show.
  • Midnight — Drive home to the ‘burbs before turning into pumpkin.

To remember our splurge, I took tons of photos. At first, the kids worried that the picture-taking made us seem tourist-y. Hey, I told them, so what? The truth is, we are all tourists in life. Besides, the truly cool don’t care about what others think.

Truly cool people also have good friends. And my personal network gets credit for making our excursion wonderful…

I’m so grateful to the gal pal who first took me to R Lounge last year. Then there’s the theater-loving former student who provided a discount code for purchasing the tickets. And thanks to Doug Hinrichs, a percussionist in the “Priscilla” orchestra, who took us back stage. :)

Based on our experience, we have a few recommendations for your own future night on the town:

  • My baby girl found us a garage deal at Icon Parking ($16 flat rate).
  • For info on R Lounge and B. Smith’s eats, check out my Yelp.com reviews. The bottom line for both? Food was decent, locations were terrific and the my drinks were bad.

As for breaking out the costs, the individual items weren’t outrageous. It’s just that things add up:

$259.95….. for three theater tickets ($86.65 each)
$100.83…..for onion soup, pretzels, finger food 
   $62.26….for dessert and snacks at at B. Smith’s 
   $16.00….for parking

   $13.00….for bridge tolls

Now, for the photos. Go here for a full-screen view of the collage below. And this link has close-ups of each shot, along with captions.  xo

Taking the teens to their first Broadway show in ages -- so worth it.



Comments 14

  1. Post

    i actually spent $472 because i tipped the r lounge hostess $10. the restaurant was packed and we didn’t have reservations but she found us a table right away. what can i say — in my heart of hearts, i really do love spending money.

  2. Post

    i’ve always believed in tipping. people in the hospitality industry put up with a lot. and laura, i thought about the 21 thing. thank goodness that they’re too young to booze. let’s hear it for those shirley temples!

  3. Sounds like great times all around. I think the memories will be worth the momentary pain of spending all that dough in one night, especially, for getting out of your head. It’s amazing to step out of our self-imposed boxes every once in a while. What did you use to put the collage together?

  4. What a wonderful thing to do for Gabi & her friend!! Many years ago, you and Gabi took me to see Hairspray on Broadway. A memorable evening – and a gift that has lasted for years! Thank you for being so generous, Betty!!

  5. Betty!

    I like throwing money around, too! Especially on my kid. I budget the rest of my life for the most part, so there are always exceptions as far as he is concerned. I do treat myself to Broadway just about every year, or my sister does. Off-off Broadway, a little more often :)
    But I shell out to create Silas’ gallery shows. I secure a studio, buy refreshments and hire a friend’s event company and her staff to serve drinks, quiche, raw veggies and bagel bites. We serve parfaits in martini glasses and Juicy Juice in champagne glasses (plastic). Silas invites family and friends from school and charges their parents a small admission. He sells drawings, sketches and paintings on various subjects or maybe a theme if he has one that year. A photographer clicks away for 2 hours memories I pray last a
    lifetime. Silas keeps all the proceeds (not as if I was going to break
    even, anyway) but has to save some, share some with a person or charity, tithe, and spend a little. I ask myself why spend over a grand to do this each time when he comes home with $200 or less?
    Answer: The look on his face…priceless. Maybe I am giving him experience as a curator? For now, I will take being the cool mom for

  6. Post

    charlotte and susan — thank you!

    christina, i love getting out of the box. and http://www.picnik.com/ is the place to make photo collages. the upsetting news is that google, which acquired picnik at some point– is shutting it down down on april 19. so i urge you to try it now on your food porn photos.

    isha, i’ve always been inspired by the nice things you say about your parents. gives me hope of maintaining a nice relationship with gabi when she grows up.

  7. Post

    and karen, i also have very fond memories of our night at “hairspray.”

    skye, i would like to see more off-broadway too. the whole approach to theater is different. by the way, your son is so lucky to have such a generous mommy. he’ll never forget these events that you host for him. i’ll bet they’ll change from year-to-year as you each grow. :)

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