Blog

Top Things to Do in Central Park

Top Things to Do in Central Park

shutterstock_116584246

Whether you’re a New Yorker or a tourist, there are plenty of exciting things to do in Central Park. The 843-acre park has tons of walking and running trails where you can explore the beautiful scenery of the park. The park is also home to about 50 foundations, landmarks and sculptures, the Central Park Zoo and more than 20 playgrounds. Check out these top things to do in Central Park from Hussain al Nowais, a former New York resident and business owner.

  1. Have a picnic – Enjoy the fresh air and magnificent scenery surrounding you by having a picnic in the park. Bring along your favorite snacks and a picnic blanket. Once you’ve enjoyed your picnic, you can sit back and relax, enjoy your favorite book, fly a kite or walk the trails.
  1. Visit the Central Park Zoo – The Central Park Zoo is one of Hussain al Nowais’s favorite places to bring his grandchildren. Located at the south end of the park, the Central Park Zoo is 6.5-acre zoo that houses animals from tropical, temperate and polar zones all over the world. The zoo showcases a wide range of animals, including sea lions, penguins, snow monkeys, snow leopards, grizzly bears, lemurs and more.
  1. Take a carriage ride – If this is your first time to the park, consider taking a carriage ride through the park. Since the park is so large, it’s nearly impossible to see the whole park in just one day. A carriage ride will take you through most of the park, so you can see get a full glimpse of the park.
  1. Ice skate at Wollman Rink – In the winter time, ice skating at Wollman Rink in Central Park is a New York tradition. You can bring your own skates or rent some at the rink.
  1. Tour the park’s statues and landmarks – As previously stated, the park has about 50 fountains and sculptures, including the famous Balto and Alice in Wonderland statues. Find out which landmarks you are most interested in visiting and spend a day stopping at all of them.

What are you favorite things to do in Central Park?

 

 

Buying Commerical Real Estate

Buying Commerical Real Estate

Tips for Buying Commercial Real Estate

commercial real estate

Whether you’re expanding your company or starting a new business, one of the most important facets of the progress is choosing your commercial property. Regardless of your industry, buying commercial real estate for your business is a huge investment, so you want to make sure you choose the right property. You commercial property should be well equipped with all the amenities and features your business needs to operate efficiently, as well as enough space should you need to expand your enterprise in the future.

To help you choose the perfect commercial real estate for your business, follow these tips from Hussain al Nowais. Al Nowais is a former-chef who operated his own restaurant in New York City for many years. Through searching for the right property for his restaurant, he learned the ins and outs of finding the best commercial property.

  • Budget – Before you can set out hunting for new real estate, you have to review your finances and establish a budget. Chances are you won’t be paying for the commercial space up front, so you’ll need to make sure you can pay for the down payment. Also review your credit score to make sure you’ll qualify for a loan. Once you understand how you will finance the space and what type of space you can afford, you can begin your search.
  • Location – Depending on what type of business you own, the location may be what sets your business up for success. For instance, if you own a restaurant or a retail store, you’ll need a property that’s visible and easily accessible. Properties that can be viewed from the street are great because they can attract consumers who are driving by. Maybe your business will perform best if located in a high-traffic shopping area, where shoppers always frequent. Your property should also have plenty of parking spaces. You don’t want to lose out on potential sales due to lack of parking. Likewise, if you own a business that often meets with clients, your business should also be easily to find. All businesses should consider a location that’s safe and provides an easy commute for employees.
  • Amenities – Once you find a space you like, you must make sure it has all the amenities your business needs to run successfully. Things to check for are if the building has a security system, central air and an HVAC system, and pre-wiring for internet access. As the property owner, you’ll also be responsible for maintenance, such as repairs, snow removal and landscaping, so be sure to factor those additions into your budget.
  • Growth potential – When buying commercial real estate, you need to consider the future. Think about where you’d like your business to be in the next year or so. Hopefully, you’d like your business to grow. If so, you need a space that can accommodate that growth.

When you set out on your search for the perfect commercial real estate, be sure to keep these 4 factors in the back of your mind.

Best Neighborhoods in Miami

Best Neighborhoods in Miami

4 Best Neighborhoods in Miami

best miami neighborhoods

With its beautiful sunny skies and miles of white sandy beaches, Miami is prime travel destination. It’s difficult not to fall in love with Miami’s scenic views, unique culture and plethora of activities. It’s no wonder why so many people choose to purchase vacation homes and retire here.

If you’re planning on purchasing residential real estate in Miami, consider one of these top neighborhoods from Miami resident Hussain al Nowais.

  1. Downtown Miami – As the most walkable place in the city, Downtown Miami is a beautiful and exciting place to live. It’s the heart of Miami, as well as the commercial center of South Florida, where you’ll find many businesses, banks, shops, entertainment centers, parks, museums and real estate. About 14,000 people live downtown, and homes here range from historic buildings to modern apartments.
  1. Coral Gables – Located 6 miles southwest of Downtown Miami is Coral Gables. You may know it as the home of the University of Miami or by its nickname The City Beautiful. The neighborhood is lined with lush banyan trees and beautiful Mediterranean Revival style architecture. Coral Gables is home to many thriving corporations, as well as great shopping, hotels, golfing, and restaurants. Here you can find a range of modern apartments, single-family homes and lavish houses.
  1. Little Havana – Situated west of Downtown Miami and south of the Miami River is Little Havana. Approximately 76,000 people live in this neighborhood, and many of them are Cubans. The schools here are operated by the Miami-Dade County Public Schools system, and the neighborhood is known for its vibrant culture and great sense of community.
  1. Coconut Grove – Coconut Grove has a relaxed and laid-back vibe with beautiful views of lush tropical foliage and easy access to the beach. The neighborhood has several private schools and a variety of different style homes, including cottages, historic homes, modern condos, and Mediterranean villas. Here you’ll find many great activities like art festivals, fresh markets, and great museums and shopping.

What’s your favorite neighborhood in Miami?

Why New York City Bagels Are the Best

Why New York City Bagels Are the Best

shutterstock_158416928

Have you ever heard a New Yorker say New York City bagels are the best? If you don’t live in or near the city, then maybe you’ve simply brushed off this claim. But, if you’ve ever tried a NYC bagel, then you understand.

What makes NYC bagels so great?

Classic NYC bagels are fresh out of the oven and require certain preparation and ingredients. Bakers use high-gluten flour, water, yeast, salt and barely malt. The malt creates the smooth sweetness that gives NYC bagels their infamous great taste.

NYC bagels are typically shaped by hand. Once shaped, the dough is left for about 12 hours so it can rise. They are then boiled in water, pressed and baked. When bagels first took over the city, there were four main flavors: plain, sesame, poppy and salt. Today, you can find all sorts of flavors in NYC bagel shops, including garlic, onion, chocolate chip, wheat, everything and cinnamon raisin.
The NYC bagel tradition stems back to Poland in the 1700s. Eastern Europeans started immigrating to NYC in the 1880s, and brought with them their bagel craft.

Top NYC Bagel Shops

Today, amongst all the authentic NYC bagel shops, you may also find chain bagel stores that mass produce bagels, without putting added time or effort into the bagel making process. To help you differentiate the good from the bad, here is a list of the top bagel shops in NYC from Hussain al Nowais, a retired Manhattan chef and restaurant owner. At these bagel shops, you’ll get a taste of old-world New York and understand why NYC bagels are simply the best in the world.

  • Absolute Bagels – Situated at 2788 Broadway on the Upper West Side, this bagel shop usually has a line out the door. Here the bagels are always coming fresh out of the oven, and you’re likely to get one when it’s still piping hot. When bagels were first introduced to NYC they were 3 ounces instead of 7. At this bagel shop you can get the traditional 3-ounce bagel.
  • Barney Greengrass – Since its humble beginnings in 1908, this bagel shop has served up some of the best bagels in the city. Located at 541 Amsterdam Avenue on the Upper West, this shop is famous for its Jewish specialties. Try a bagel topped with Nova Scotia salmon or chopping herring salad.
  • Russ and Daughter’s – This shop is a must-visit foodie destination, located at 179 E Houston Street on the Lower East Side. The shop is famous for its Jewish delicacies, which it has been serving up since 1914. This shop gets their bagels fresh from Bagel Hole in Brooklyn and finishes them off with their signature Nova lox and Ben’s Cream Cheese.

What’s your favorite bagel shop in NYC?

 

 

 

 

Best Luggage to Carry on a Plane

Best Luggage to Carry on a Plane

luggage 2

Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, it’s important that you have a good carry-on bag. There’s nothing worse than having to lug a heavy bag around the airport or having your carry-on not fit properly underneath your seat or in the overhead compartment. The best carry-on bags are lightweight, sturdy, compact and on wheels.

If you’re hunting for new carry-on luggage, follow these tips from Hussain al Nowais, a frequent traveler:

  • Choose the right size – Airlines have specific guidelines for carry-on bags. They have to meet a certain size requirement in order to be considered a carry-on. To ensure you are choosing the right size bag, check the measurements required by your airline before making a purchase.
  • Know the weight limit – In addition to the size of your bag, there is also a weight limit. When you’re packing your carry-on, make sure it meets the weight requirements for your carrier.

For a carry-on that’s lightweight, durable and spacious, choose one of these bags:

  • Delsey Helium Carry-On Trolley Case – This carry-on is great for any kind of trip. The bag has tons of storage space and is separated into two compartments. The exterior hard case makes it extremely durable, without adding any extra weight. Even with the bag fully packed, it’s exceptionally lightweight, so you won’t struggle to put this bag in the overhead compartment or carry it up and down the stairs at the subway station.
  • Genius Pack 21″ Hardside Carry-On – Like the Delsey Helium Carry-on, this bag is extremely durable and roomy and has a durable hard case exterior. One of the best features of the bag is the interior compartments. The bag offers deep, zippered pockets for storing all your travel essentials.
  • Flight 001 F1 Avionette Carry-On – This incredibly lightweight carry-on bag features a nylon shell and brass hardware. The interior is very spacious, perfect for storing clothing or your laptop and business files with extra room to spare. Like the other bags, it’s very sturdy and durable, making it ideal for navigating through the airport, overhead compartments, subway station and stairs.

What’s your favorite carry-on bag?

Is the MLS Catching Up to the European Football League?

Is the MLS Catching Up to the European Football League?

MLS

In the United States, soccer is very popular among our youth. But, when it comes to professional sports, many of our talented athletes neglect soccer for other sports that are arguably more popular, such as football or baseball. In America, baseball is known as our country’s pastime; in Europe it is soccer.

There is a constant debate among soccer fanatics about whether the MLS is inferior to European football leagues. Some people will claim the MLS is an amateur league in comparison to major European leagues. Despite these critics, the talent level of the MLS is catching up to the European soccer leagues and the league itself is gaining popularity. The MLS may not be on the same level as the world’s top leagues, but the league has come a long way in the past decade. While it may be unlikely that the MLS will surpass European teams in talent and skill, the MLS will soon be able to compete on a more equal playing field.

Here’s why soccer fan Hussain al Nowais believes the MLS is catching up to European leagues:

  • Increasing popularity – While other professional sports are more popular in the U.S. right now, soccer is gaining traction in popularity, according to the ESPN Sports Poll. In 2012, the poll surveyed 18,000 people and found one-third identified themselves as MLS fans. This was a 24% increase from five years prior and a 33% increase from 2002. The percentage of people who identified as avid fans also rose, increasing by 35% from 2007and by 43% from a decade ago.
  • Growing talent – The U.S. has never really been a major contender when it came to the FIFA World Cup. Top European teams like Spain and Germany frequent the championship title. However, during the past FIFA tournament in Brazil, the U.S. played strongly. According to FIFA statistics, the U.S. team was ranked as the best defenders in the tournament.
  • Attracting attention – Not only has the MLS increased its talent among U.S. players, but also it is attracting players from the European leagues. Many European soccer stars, such as David Beckham and Cuauhtemoc Blanco have chosen to play in the MLS. Other famous players, including Thierry Henry, have announced they will play for the MLS before retiring.