Today was my designated shopping day. My destination was the Woodbury Common Premium Outlets, an outlet center located in Central Valley, New York, about an hour from Manhattan. The center is part of the Chelsea Premium Outlets group and takes its name from the town in which it is located. Occupying more than 800,000 square feet (72,000 m²), the charming Colonial-American style village is one of the largest outlet centers in the world.
I surfed the Net and found several tour companies offering daily shopping tour to Woodbury Common. The kiamsiap me settled for Express Trails, the cheapest among all the tour companies at US$30 for a round trip ticket. It was scheduled to depart from NYC at 0930 and return from Woodbury Common at 1600. However, the bus didn't leave till about 1000 and as we were caught in the notorious New York traffic, the supposed one hour journey took much longer. I spent the time on the bus familiarizing myself with the layout of the center, and marked the shops I wanted to visit as I couldn't afford to waste any time. By the time the bus arrived at Woodbury Common, it was almost 1200.
Woodbury Common is a shopaholic's dream comes true. It features 220 stores offering upscale designer and brand name outlets. With familiar brand names such as Adidas, Banana Republic Factory Store, Burberry, Coach, Dolce & Gabbana, Donna Karan, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Zegna, Max Mara, Gap Outlet, Nike Factory Store, Off 5th - Saks Fifth Avenue Outlet, Polo Ralph Lauren Factory Store, Salvatore Ferragamo, Tommy Hilfiger, Timberland and Versace, one can spend hours, if not days in the center. As I only had four hours before the pick-up time, I rushed about locating the targeted stores and made my purchase. Even then, I couldn't accomplish as much as I'd planned. On hindsight, I should've paid a bit more for the Gray Line buses with a range of departure and pick-up times, as late as 7.51pm departing from Woodbury Common. That way, I could have shopped to my heart's content.
Bounty for me and Yiu Yiu
Anyhow, I arrived back in NYC at close to 1900. I made my way back to the hotel to drop off my purchases, took a quick shower and off I went again. I walked to Times Square, a mere five minutes away from the hotel. Known as the Crossroads of the World, Times Square is the heart of NYC, where commerce meets the performing arts, attracting both businesses and tourists alike. Most of the Broadway theatres light up the street off Times Square, with MTV studios and Good Morning America studio also calling Times Square home. The whole area is alive with bright lights and bustle; even the massive subway station is neon-lit.