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Statue of Liberty Cruise: Classic Harbor Line
Special Discount, Now – October
Pier 62 at Chelsea Piers, Manhattan
Tickets: Adults $42, Kids $24 (50 percent off with code “KIDS12”)
In a previous post on NYC Sights, I recommended the Staten Island Ferry for incredible views of Lower Manhattan, One World Trade, the Statue of Liberty, and the entire Manhattan skyline for free. Now, with some strategizing (getting to the ferry terminal early before the line forms, asserting your spot on the Statue side of the ship, and making an efficient loop to get back on the same ferry), this is an excellent way to view the harbor and the Manhattan skyline.
However, if you want to avoid the masses and spend a longer, carefree, quality amount of time on the water, you have other options.
This past Saturday, I tried one of those options, namely a day sail on Classic Harbor Line’s Schooner America 2.0. When I researched boating opportunities for NYC, Classic Harbor’s harbor cruises had great reviews and the sailboat I wanted. Motorboat cruises are very ordinary ways to cruise the harbor, but a sailboat offers both the views of the harbor and the excitement of the crew fixing the sails and navigating to shut off the motor and truly sail. My partner-in-crime for this adventure and I both want to learn how to sail (considerably smaller sailboats), so that was another reason for a sail.
Another highlight- the boat was not crowded, which was a refreshing change of pace from Manhattan as well as more touristy trips. This cruise is for visitors or New Yorkers- it’s a nice way to get out on the water, not a tour. The cruise was quiet, not narrated, included beer and soda, and offered wine and champagne as well. The guests on our cruise had various purposes for being there as well: a date, a ladies’ day out, a double date, a quiet bachelor party sailing before their evening festivities, families, photography enthusiasts, and individual explorers.
The crew is friendly and takes care of the ship while regularly making sure you have something to drink and taking pictures when asked. The ship itself is beautiful and the newest addition to the Classic Harbor Line ships. The trip heads out from Chelsea Piers down the Hudson River, into the harbor, past the Statue of Liberty, lingers by Lower Manhattan, and makes its way back to Chelsea Piers.
I highly recommend sailing the America 2.0 this summer. Try the late afternoon (4:30-6:30) or sunset cruise to maximize your views of Manhattan in the daylight and not get too hot before the sailboat leaves the dock for the harbor breezes. I hope to sail again and bring family or friends soon. Check out the photos from my cruise below.
Note: if you are not familiar with Chelsea Piers, like me, you will find the Classic Harbor Line check-in outside behind the Pier, not inside it.
As our warm-weather days are winding down, let us not forget that there is still time to plan a summer adventure with your friends and family. The Classic Harbor Line of New York offers guests a variety of experiences–none of which involve the stress of dealing with airlines and hotels. The cruises are great for any family, couple, or friend group looking for luxury the way it’s supposed to be–hassle free! Take a peek at some of the exciting packages and spend the day or night on the waters of New York City.
1. The Architecture Cruise. This option provides guests with the opportunity to experience New York through the eyes of AIANY (American Institute of Architects New York) members, who guide the tour and introduce Lower Manhattan’s greatest skyscrapers, as well as the key features alongside the East River. Learn about New York City and enjoy hors d’oeuvres and champagne with your party as you cruise on a Gatsby-style yacht. For two hours and forty-five minutes, you will pass under eighteen of Manhattan’s bridges and circumnavigate the island. This cruise is ideal for any party, any size, and is regarded by many as one of the best experiences that Classic Harbor Line has to offer. Also note that due to popular demand for this type of cruise, Classic Harbor Line is also offering various time slots made available to all!
2. Schooner Sailing. The Schooner America 2.0 is the pioneer in relaxing daytime cruises. Built in 2011, it caters to the customer looking to truly kick back on the seas and embrace the breeze of New York’s Harbor. On the Schooner, you can experience true boating and get to know the harbor in an entirely new way. This option accommodates any size group from 6 to 60, and includes a narrated presentation of the island of Manhattan.
3. Sunset Jazz. Enjoy some evening jazz and a complimentary drink on this cruise when you depart from the Chelsea piers on a Sunday afternoon. This cruise is the perfect option for a romantic date, featuring the talents of the cruise’s very own trio “The Sound Waves” playing works of Gershwin, Cole Porter, and Duke Ellington. Admire the views with your party all the way from Battery Park to Brooklyn in this one and a half hour cruise.
4. Chef Morimoto Sunset Sushi & Sake. The famous Morimoto from the Food Network’s Iron Chef can be found on Classic Harbor Line’s Sunset Sushi & Sake cruise. This option is adaptable to guests, as you can choose the ways in which you would like your food served. Request an open saki bar if you wish, or fine cuisine served buffet-style. These cruises can be scheduled privately, however there is a selection of pre-scheduled Morimoto cruises if you would like to purchase tickets at a predetermined date.
5. Brunch. This option includes a delectable ensemble of meal choices for each guest to enjoy. What could be better than brunch on a leisurely weekend? Brunch with a breathtaking view of Downtown Manhattan, of course. The menu offers a variety of brunch favorites, from Belgium Waffles to Salmon Platters. And be sure to save room for some Italian cookies and fresh fruits for dessert! This type of cruise is the perfect way to spend a day catching up with loved ones and rekindling your inner foodie.
6. Wine Tasting. There are multiple Wine-Tasting options at Classic Harbor Line, NY. Each wine featured on the cruise is carefully selected and served to each guest, alongside the finest artisan and farmside cheeses. And if you have no time left during the summer to schedule one of these wine-tasting cruises, they are also offered during the holidays, an ideal way to celebrate the season in style.
7.Full Moon. The Full Moon Cruise Option provides an opportunity to sail beneath the stars. You’ll sail by Ellis Island, the Statue of Liberty, among other city icons. There’s nothing like New York past sunset; guests will watch the city come alive. Complimentary wine, beer, and champagne will be provided to those who choose to attend the Full Moon Cruise, created with elegance and sophistication in mind.
8. Full Day Bear Mountain. This nine-hour long event begins with an open breakfast buffet and travels north throughout the Palisades and the lower Hudson River Valley. After the boat docks at Bear Mountain, guests enjoy three hours of outdoor activities. This cruise is perfect for families and friends who enjoy hiking and exploring. If you wish, you can also visit the museum or zoo alongside the beautiful Hessian Lake!
If you’ve got a free day to spare and you’re looking for something to do with friends and family, then browse through the selection of cruises offered by Classic Harbor Line! There is bound to be one that fits your taste, time constraints, and craving for luxury. Don’t let the last month of summer fly by; these cruises are the perfect opportunity to get away from the hustle of the city…but not too far away!
Instead of sitting back and watching summer slip right through your fingertips, it’s time to grab it by the horns.
And where’s the best place to do that? On a boat, obviously.
Leave the Circle Line for the tourists, because these cruises are anything but ordinary. You’ll indulge in fresh local grub, enjoy some off-kilter entertainment, and maybe even learn a thing or two.
Yelling, “I’m on a boat!” never felt this good.
Whether you’re trying to impress your date or just get your fill of fresh seafood out on the water, the Morimoto Sunset Sushi Cruise serves up sushi from NYC’s Iron Chef Morimoto along with an assortment of crisp sake.
While you nosh, enjoy unparalleled views of the skyline, Ellis Island and more aboard the Classic Harbor Line’s newest and largest vessel, the America 2.0.
Book it: $124, at zerve.com/sailnyc
Want to avoid the hassle of big-name cruises? Westchester Magazine staffers took to the water and found a classic yacht & sailboat tour around the NYC harbor.
Sure, everyone knows about the Circle Line tours—but do we really want to join that circus? I, for one, much prefer the idea zipping around New York harbor in a classic yacht or sailboat, while sipping a glass of Champagne. And that’s just the type of experience you can expect with Classic Harbor Line, which operates out of Pier 62 at West 22nd street. The company offers a variety of themed cruises (as well as private charters), with sunset sails the most popular, along with the critically acclaimed AIA-NY Around NYC Architecture Tour, Morimoto Sushi & Sake Sail, and full day trips to Bear Mountain and back.
I set sail on a perfect Sunday afternoon on the 105-foot Eco Schooner America 2.0 with my three daughters and a few of their friends. The entire experience—chatting with the crew and other passengers, enjoying the breezes and expansive skyline views was fabulous. No matter how many times you visit the city, seeing it by boat is the best way to fall in love with New York all over again. I know I did.
“It was brilliant,” agrees my daughter Lauren Giles, visiting from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. “The last time I was that close to the Statue of Liberty I was actually on the island. Seeing her so clearly on such a beautiful day was practically magical.”
Lauren Steffens, visiting from Columbia, Missouri, loved seeing the city from a new vantage point. “It gave me a new appreciation for NYC’s shining architecture and magnificent waterfront,” she says.
“It felt like a comfortable living room on the water,” says Westchester Magazine Creative Director Aiko Masazumi, who took the sunset tour with her husband and son on the Manhattan, an 80-foot 1920s-style yacht. “Unlike Circle Line or World Yacht, it was a small and cozy boat. The crew members were paying attention to all the passengers, taking care of the food, drinks, and entertainment, including a magic show for the kids on board. We enjoyed the beautiful view of the Statue of Liberty, the gorgeous sunset, and the warm breeze on the perfect summer night. If I was lucky enough to throw a party on the boat, I would definitely call them up!”
Art Intern Alexandra Tutelian was also on the Manhattan. “I was unaware of all the beautiful architecture surrounding New York City until I went on the boat cruise,” she says. “The staff was extremely accommodating, checking up on the passengers often, which I found really nice. I would absolutely go again.” Indeed, that was the sentiment echoed by all the attendees. And it’s easy to go again—just a quick trip down the West Side Highway and into another world.
Insider tip: Park at one of the garages between 10th and 12th Avenues rather than the insanely high priced one at Chelsea Piers. Download a coupon for even greater savings.