Written in 1600, this play is a hilarious comedy about identical twins and mistaken identity, but it also explores the impact of love and mystery. Thus, it’s perfect for a romantic Valentine’s Day date or a family entertainment excursion. On February 14th, the Queens Theatre kicks of a three-day, four-show run of William Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. Presented by Aquila Theatre, this modern twist on a timeless classic includes never-before-seen innovation and theatricality and an original score. Attendees can expect shipwrecks, duels, disguises and authentic British accents.

Details: Twelfth Night, Queens Theatre, 14 United Nations Avenue South, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, Friday, February 14th, at 2 pm, Saturday, February 15th, at 2 pm and 8 pm, Sunday, February 16th at 3 pm,  Perfect for all ages. $42 for Friday’s performance/$49 for Saturday and Sunday performances/$25 for rear side seating for all performances. (Senior discount available, $20 student rush tickets available day of show.)


Happy Valentine’s Day!

Today is a day of love and we hope you will get to celebrate with your favorite loved ones (not necessarily romantic ones!). Remember, there are a bunch of specials going on in Sunnyside, and we have some alternate date ideas, and more romance options in Queens. You could have fun in the Z Hotel this month, too! Nothing says you can’t extend your Valentine celebration for a while.

And it’s Lent right now, too (in the western Church)

Lent in the Western church started yesterday, and we know a number of people that have decided to give up meat and take on a vegan diet during this time in the church year. Orthodox Lent begins March 18, and strict observers go vegan during this time. Our friends over at CitySpoonful have a great post up about two vegan dishes appropriate for Lent, from Astoria’s own Zenon Taverna. First there is Fasolada, made with Great Northern Beans, and then there’s Spanakorizo, which is spinach with rice.

New taste treats at Basil Brick Oven Pizza in Astoria

We had the chance to try a bunch of new dishes at Basil Brick Oven Pizza and they are really stellar. In particular we loved the green lasagna (made with potatoes instead of pasta) and octopus carpaccio, but there is amazing risotto, salads, fried calamari, lobster ravioli, meats and pizza. And that’s just the beginning! Definitely stop by and try some of their fantastic food – we can’t wait to go back!

Vander-Ende Onderdonk House in Ridgewood looks pretty in the snow

We really like this recent photo of the Vander-Ende Onderdonk House in Ridgewood taken over the weekend after the snow fell.

Image source: Vander-Ende Onderdonk House Facebook page

More photos can be found here, and more on the house itself can be found in our article on Queens historic houses.

A pair of hawks are hanging out in Jamaica

One of our readers wrote to us about two hawks that have been spending time on his fire escape. From what we can tell, for a while one of the hawks would come by alone, but recently he has brought another hawk with him: “It was about 7 years ago. I thought it was a owl. Then, I look again and realized, it was hawk. Over the years, he came back. But, this year, he came with a mate.”

Kind of a romantic story, if you think about it. It’s so great that these magnificent birds can be seen still living in the big city.


Rockaway firehouse a landmark

We learned that last night the Landmarks Preservation Commission scheduled a vote on city landmark designation for five firehouses throughout the city. One is Engine Co. 268/Hook and Ladder 137 on Beach 116th St in the Rockaways. It survived Hurricane Sandy. LPC Chairman Robert Tierney said about the firehouses, “Each of these buildings is a clear expression of civic spirit and pride of purpose that existed at the time they were built and continue to this day in our city’s municipal architecture. The FDNY has done an exemplary job of protecting these structures that have a vital role in protecting New Yorkers, and we’re grateful for its support of the proposals to landmark them.”

Congratulations, firehouses, you’re now landmarks!

Blast from the past – Broad Channel in 1903

The Rockaway Emergency Plan Facebook page posted this great image of Broad Channel on the front of the NY Tribune in 1903. Click to enlarge. The rowboat feels very Dawson’s Creek.


Image source: Rockaway Emergency Plan Facebook page

Valentine’s Day deals in Sunnyside

Our friends at Sunnyside Shines alerted us to all sorts of Valentine’s Day deals – drink specials, prix fixes, and sales, all in Sunnyside. Check it out! And remember, if you’re looking to celebrate in an unconventional way, check out our list of alternative Valentine’s Day dates in Queens.

Innocents Abroad hit Corona at Tortilleria Nixtamal

Two young Manhattan-based women, Kate and Nora, travel around NYC (they’ve been globe trotters, too), learning about various cultures through its food, and recently landed in Corona, Queens, where they ate delicious noms at Tortilleria Nixtamal. They even learned how to make tamales from the folks at Nixtamal! Nice.


Maps, maps, maps galore

We love maps at QueensNYC and like to feature interesting ones from time to time. We did a roundup of maps we’ve shared over the past months, including those having to do with voting patterns, top dog names, dating issues, and transit outages, among others. And if there are maps you love that you think we should know about, email us.


Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Local businesses in Sunnyside have banded together to offer some great deals this Valentine’s Day. Check them out! Thanks to Sunnyside Shines for the info.

Sunnyside businesses are gearing up for Valentine’s Day.  More than fifteen businesses (and counting) are offering deals to shoppers and diners on or before February 14, including special prix fixe dinners, gifts, services and drink specials.

Regina Tunney, owner of Pure Spa and Salon, one of the participating businesses, is offering discounted facials, massages and other treatments like a “Love Hurts” waxing special and a “Kiss and Make Up” makeup application in advance of a hot date.  “We are excited to offer Valentine’s Day specials,” Tunney said, “our most popular treatment this year is our Pure Love massage package which includes a couples massage, complimentary Champagne and chocolates.”

Rachel Thieme, executive director of the Sunnyside Shines Business Improvement District said: “It’s possible to completely shop and dine locally in the neighborhood this Valentine’s Day.  The first stop could be a delicious prix fixe dinner, followed by a nightcap at one of our local pubs, and topped off with roses or gifts from one of the participating businesses.


Image Source: Sheraton LaGuardia East Hotel

Tony Bennett might have left his heart in San Francisco and Virginia might be for lovers, but Queens is romantic royalty. On Valentine’s Day, the borough will overflow with enchanting places to stay, eat, giggle, listen or dance the night away. In fact, there are so many options that QNYC can only report a few of them and parts of their offers.


Images Source: Z Hotel

Sometimes good things happen to good — and bad — people. For the entire month of February, the Z Hotel is offering a Valentine’s Day-inspired Naughty or Nice package. (The Long Island City boutique property is not going to pass judgment, so it’s up to the consumers to judge themselves.) The Naughty deal includes accommodations in a Queen Room (like the one above); a box of trinkets upon check-in, including edible underwear, handcuffs, a tickle feather and blindfolds; a book of erotic games; chocolate strawberries; champagne; and breakfast in bed. Rates start at $245. Meanwhile, the Nice components include accommodations in a Queen Room; champagne and a dozen roses upon check-in; an in-room massage for two; and breakfast in bed. Rates start at $395. Plus, both packages can be upgraded to include a King room (like the one below) for an extra $30. Plus, on February 14, the Z Restaurant will offer a Valentine’s Day dinner special.

Z Hotel New York
11-01 43rd Avenue, Long Island City
Entire Month of February
12pm – 12pm | $245 +


We don’t have to try to convince you that Queens has awesome restaurants. Plus, you actually have a chance of getting a Valentine’s Day reservation here without having connections. But if you’re ready to think outside the dinner-and-flowers box and impress your one-of-a-kind date with something more creative than a dinner reservation, here are some uniquely romantic adventures to inspire you.

For NYC lovers: If your valentine is a geography or architecture geek, or simply has an appreciation for the five boroughs (or even just one borough), take them to see the Panorama of the City of New York at the Queens Museum of Art. This permanent exhibit is an eye-opening 3D model of the entire city. The two of you can pore over every detail together, getting close as you point out places you’ve been and places you want to go (together) someday.


Images Source: Rudy’s Bakery and Café

Those who have problems deciding between the flourless chocolate cake with milk chocolate sabayon, the red velvet whoopie pie with cream cheese filling and the milk chocolate panna cotta with vanilla cream don’t need to fret anymore. On February 8, Rudy’s Bakery and Café will host a Valentine’s Day Chocolate Lovers Tasting with three separate, hour-long sessions — 7:30, 8:30 and 9:30 — through the night. In addition to the previously mentioned desserts, patrons can savor the chocolate cheesecake with fresh raspberries, the dark chocolate covered strawberry with white chocolate drizzle or other decadent delights. Since 1934, Rudy’s has been famous for its desserts and coffee, but the Ridgewood favorite has built a reputation for its entrees over the years. So event attendees don’t have to indulge on an empty stomach.

Valentine’s Day Chocolate Lovers Tasting
Rudy’s Pastry Shop
905 Seneca Avenue, Ridgewood
Friday, February 8
7:30pm – 10:30pm | $15