We are going to go off the beaten track here today and instead talk about one of New York State's most underrated vacation spots, White Plains, NY (Disclaimer: This is not a paid blog post).
Why White Plains? Why not? White Plains central located in, and is the county seat of, Westchester County. White Plains is 10 square miles and has a population of 57,866, but a daytime population of 250,000. For those history buffs, White Plains was where the Declaration of Independence was read for the first time in New York State. The Battle of White Plains in the Revolutionary War was also fought here along the banks of the Bronx River near the Metro-North train station in the area known as Battle Hill.
But you ask, "How can I get to White Plains?"
White Plains is served directly by the Bronx River Parkway and Interstate 287 better known at the Cross Westchester Expressway. The BRP let's you off in downtown while 287 loops around downtown but you will be close enough.
If you don't have a car you can take Metro-North to the fabulous and modern White Plains station. There you will find plenty of taxi's and right across the street is the White Plains transcenter where one can catch the Bee-Line buses for trips through White Plains. There fare is only $2.75 and you can pay in cash or Metro-Card!
If you don't want to take the train you can fly into Westchester County Airport which is just a few miles north of the city. There is no scheduled direct flights from the three major NYC airports, but if you are self-important enough you can get a private plane from Teterboro to fly you there.
"Where can I stay?"
White Plains has many hotels to stay at. The Crowne Plaza where I stayed on my wedding night. Residence Inn, the new and exciting Cambria Suites, and of course the Ritz Carlton. All these hotels are within walking distance of downtown.
But what if you are on a budget? Or not really important enough to stay at these hotels? Then the Central Motel Court on Central Ave right near the Greenburgh border is the place for you. Not only do they have day rates, but rates by the hour. Don't worry, the Bee Line 20 bus stops right in front and will get you into downtown in 5 minutes.
"Where can I dine?"
White Plains has become a restaurant haven, especially along Mamaroneck Ave. Too numerous to list here but just follow this link. But most of these restaurants only take the really important. For those less important we recommend the snack bar at Target, Five Guys, Kennedy Fried Chicken on Post Rd, and my favorite place, Tu Pais Deli on the corner of Fisher Ave and Bank St. I worked there in the late 80's under former ownership and it was a different name. Tell them The Crack Team sent you and get a cup of joe on the house!
"Where Can I Shop?"
White Plains is a shopping haven. There is The Westchester Mall which is for the really truly self important, the Galleria, Mamaroneck Ave, The City Center, and of course Wal-Mart,where we know we can't go. Also don't forget The Source. And lest we forget, Bloomingdale's. Bloomies just doesn't allow anyone to shop there, I should know. I worked there 30 years ago.
"Where can I be entertained?"
There is the Westchester County Center, home of the NBA D-League Westchester Knicks, and the movies at the City Center. And many of the restaurants and pubs along Mamaroneck Ave have live music.
"What touristy things are there to do?"
The Jacob Purdy House, Elijah Miller House, White Plains Armory, Percy Grainger Home and Studio, and the the Bar Building are some of the fun things you can do. Make sure you have your cameras ready!!
"What happens if suddenly I go mental and start believing I am the Second Coming, or that I am the Queen of England, or Mussolini, just plain paranoid, or just off my meds?"
You are in luck! New York Hospital, Westchester Division runs one of the leading mental health care hospitals in the country in White Plains. Offered up is in patient and out patient facilities and a place where the psychiatrists work with you to find the right meds for you. All insurance is taken!
Enjoy your stay in White Plains!!