5 NYC Holiday Pop-Ups You Shouldn’t Miss

Holiday in NYC 1

From Ski Chalets to Reindeer Lounges, it is possible to enjoy an enchanted NYC holiday minus the hordes of tourists.

(Updated on 11/30/2018)

Enjoying a NYC holiday season without the crowds is nothing short of a Holiday miracle. What is the big secret? Careful planning and hitting those places that tourists don’t know about. Today, we have rounded up the most incredible pop-up events for an unforgettable holiday experience in New York City, no matter how many Nor’easterns hit us this year!

Haven Ski Chalet at The Sanctuary Hotel

Haven Ski Chalet NYC holiday rooftop

Aspen meets Christmas at the Haven Rooftop, a winter wonderland dubbed Haven Ski Chalet at the Sanctuary Hotel. This heated, all-season rooftop, is lit in white lights with holiday decor throughout and even has faux snow machines to add to the ambiance. If your fingers itch when you are served an Instagram-worthy holiday concoction, you can’t miss their special cocktail menu–the Toasted Almond, Peppermint Cream, Ginger Toddy and Shot Skis will keep you warm and toasty, no matter what the weather’s like outside. A perfect date night spot for your Hallmark-esque take on a holiday romance.


When: From now until the New Year.
Where: Haven Rooftop at The Sanctuary Hotel, 132 W 47th St, New York City.

Donner & Blitzen’s Reindeer Lounge at The Springs

Holiday Cocktail


Brooklynites, rejoice! We have found one of the hottest holiday spots that celebrates the beauty of King county before the impending doom of the L closure hits us in 2019.  The Reindeer Lounge gives you the chance to parade your holiday regalia at the most extravagant pop-up at The Springs in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Expect all the ingredients of a Christmas carol for the folks at The Springs do know how to deck the halls. With four grand fireplaces, floor-to-ceiling Christmas trees and a Candy Cane wall, your Instagram story will be LIT (seriously, there will be so many lights). Additionally, artist Paulie Nassart is returning to create a Reindeer Playing Poker mural that will make your holiday season profile pic pop. Your stockings will be filled to the brim with familiar cocktails like Festivus mulled wine, Candy Cane Shots, and the Nog-Gonna Make It To Work Tomorrow, along with new creations like a White Chocolate Peppermint Bark Slushy. The lounge will also be serving up holiday munchies like the Fondue You See What I See, The Office Party Cookie Plate, Fried S’mores, and more. They have a fun programming scheduled through the month, including an Elf Movie Trivia Night (Dec 10), a Santa Baby Burlesque Night (Dec 16), and two holiday sing-along for kids (Dec 12 and Dec 18.) Be sure to look out for the Ugly Sweater Parties every single night. (Please note that if I’m there, I am snatching those prizes from under your nose. My Ugly Sweaters are truly something else. Sorry, not sorry.)


When: November 30- December 30 
Where: The Springs in Brooklyn (224 Franklin Street, Brooklyn, NY 11222.)

Zulily’s Free White Elephant Gifting Event in New York

white elephant present

Already stressed by the holiday season? We have great news for you! zulily is taking care of the office gifting shenanigans with its new White Elephant On Demand service. To celebrate its launch, the retailer of fun and quirky products will bring a van to the heart of New York City to give away FREE gifts to the fans of the brand. Yeah, folks, White Elephant gifts fo’ free! Consumers will be able to play White Elephant by choosing from either an unwrapped gift, or “swapping” for an wrapped, surprise present in the spirit of the beloved holiday game. In NYC, zulily will have a White Elephant van where local residents can come out to play a quick round of white elephant and receive a free gift. Some of the gifts available include (but are not limited to) a bag of reindeer farts, a Golden Girls coloring book, and a narwhal neck pillow. Enough to make you stop by at your lunch break.


When and Where: The van will make stops at Bryant Park (39th Street between 5th and 6th Avenues) on December 5 and Madison Square Park (26th Street between Broadway and 6th Avenues) on December 6 from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. ET.

The Historical Seaport District Hannukah Party

hannukah events new york

The Seaport District will be celebrating the festival of lights with a one-night festive bash. In one of the prettiest spots in New York City, you can expect to celebrate Hannukkah with food, live music, guest speakers, arts and crafts in an indoor and outdoor setting to keep y’all warm and toasty. Grammy-nominated artist David Krakauer will offer an exclusive rendition of his world-renowned Klezmer music. Have I mentioned that this event is completely free to attend? To register, head to their Eventbrite page. But hurry! The space is limited.


When: Tuesday, December 4.
Where:  South Street Seaport Museum (12 Fulton Street, NYC.)

The FREEHOLD Winter Lodge

Freehold sky lounge in brooklyn

FREEHOLD Winter Lodge is a fully enclosed indoor/outdoor heated courtyard and Penthouse lodge space decked with festive lights, a Christmas tree, fireplace, and blankets + pillows to create this winter wonderland.  Perfect for a cozy date, private dinner with friends, or holiday party of up to 200 people. FREEHOLD Winter Lodge will host a Holiday Market on November 30th showcasing local designers, a tarot card reader, stick n poke tattoos, and a DJ until late to get you in the holiday spirit! Someone said ladies’ night?


When: November 23rd to January 15.
Where: Williamsburg, 45 S 3rd St, Brooklyn, NY 11249.

Grand Holiday Bazaar, a true Xmas Market with local artisans

Grand Holiday Bazaar New York City
Bonus insider plan!
Grand Holiday Bazaar will welcome artisans and independent dealers to showcase and sell their most unique holiday creations and giftable items every Sunday in December from 10am – 5:30pm in an indoor and outdoor market. Find-one-of-a-kind handmade holiday decorations, fashion, vintage accessories and collectibles, handmade jewelry, furniture, food and more.  This special event will feature a carefully selected roster of over 150 vendors both indoors and out with an opportunity to find unique gifts you won’t find elsewhere. Vendors include Stonehill Design, Science Seeds, Rose Suds, Elemental Hardware, Ayala Naphtali, aQK, Stephanie Putter Jewelry, Dyer & Sparks, JD Prints, Pierre Laborde, Wavelength Antiques, Lua Belle and more. Food and treats will be provided to purchase from DownEast Lobstah, Maze-Maze, Little Red Kitchen Bake Shop and others.


When: Every Sunday in December.
Where: 100 W. 77th Street at Columbus Avenue in New York City.

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