Get us in your inbox

Rose reading room nypl scarf
Photograph: courtesy of the NYPL

The best NYC-themed gifts for the holidays

Is the New Yorker in your life tough to buy for? Here's some NYC gifts that will make even the most jaded New York City resident smile.

Shaye Weaver
Written by
Shaye Weaver

New Yorkers love their city, so if you're shopping for a Gothamite, an NYC-themed gift is always a good bet. Of course, the ultimate gift would be an in-unit washing machine and dryer (a New Yorker can dream!), but that's a pipe dream. Sure, an envelope comprising a gift card for them to blow at either one of the best restaurants in town or on a pair of tickets to see one of the hottest shows on Broadway would slay this holiday, but our NYC-themed suggestions are a bit more creative than that. Anyway, here’s our NYC shopping list including items that show off some of the best New York attractions.

RECOMMENDED: The full holiday gift guide

NYC gifts for the holidays

An illustration of their favorite hangout by Bop Bop Illustrations
Photograph: Bop Bop Illustrations

1. An illustration of their favorite hangout by Bop Bop Illustrations

Commemorate your fellow New Yorker's favorite spot or an important local haunt where it all began with a print of it by an NYC artist—Annie Schonberger or Bop Bop Art. She has so many city favorites to choose from, including Dante, the Little Owl, Books Are Magic, Katz's and Russ & Daughters. Schonberger also donates 15% of her profits at the end of each year to an organization called Protect Our Winterswhich is a group of winter sports enthusiasts fighting for climate change impact!, starting at around $65.

Carnegie Deli's Iconic New York Cheesecake
Photograph: courtesy Carnegie Deli.

2. Carnegie Deli's Iconic New York Cheesecake

If they really miss Carnegie Deli's New York Cheesecake (RIP the brick-and-mortar store, which closed in 2016) you can surprise them with one this holiday season! You can actually order a four-inch or eight-inch cheesecake through its store on Amazon right now., the larger cheesecake is $99.

NYC Subway Cognac Token & Revenue Bag Watch
Photograph: courtesy The New York Transit Museum

3. NYC Subway Cognac Token & Revenue Bag Watch

For a classy gift for the New Yorker who appreciates vintage NYC items and memorabilia, get the NYC Subway Cognac Token & Revenue Bag Watch. It’s a practical gift with a nod to the past made with an authentic 1970s-era 7/8-inch Y-cut New York Transit Token. The dial is made from a “revenue bag” that was used to transfer tokens throughout the system., $265.

If you want to commemorate the MetroCard before it’s fully gone (thanks to the new OMNY system), you can grab some ephemera here.

NYC Coffee Cups

4. NYC Coffee Cups

Only design nerds know what the New York City flag looks like. For the rest of us, our collective symbol would probably be the "We are happy to serve you" coffee cup. Now, with this ceramic homage to the Grecian icon, you can re-create that sweet street-java feel at home., two for $36

Katz's Delicatessen Carving Board
Courtesy Katz's Delicatessen

6. Katz's Delicatessen Carving Board

When you’ve been hacking through 23,000 pounds of corned beef and pastrami every week—for decades—you enlist the best surfaces for the job. Katz’s is selling limited runs of carving boards made from the deli’s old counters, oodles of knife marks and all., $125

NYC MetroCard Charm

8. NYC MetroCard Charm

“Can I get a swipe?” sounded less thirsty before dating apps.The person on your list can rep the city hard with this charm in sterling silver ($68), with a Simone de Beauvoir quote (“There is something in the New York air that makes sleep useless”) on the back., $68

Brooklyn Eagles 1935 Baseball Cap
Courtesy Ebbets Field Flannels

9. Brooklyn Eagles 1935 Baseball Cap

JAY Z already made the Yankees hat famous, but here’s your chance to champion another New York baseball team. This cap was sported by the Brooklyn Eagles, a Negro National League club that played ball for one season at Ebbets Field., $54

"One-Track Mind: Drawing the New York City Subway"
Courtesy Architectural Press

10. "One-Track Mind: Drawing the New York City Subway"

Architecture and underground art intersect, well, underground—beneath Gotham’s streets. Collected here for your perusal, Philip Ashforth Coppola’s intricate drawings celebrate our subway’s decorative elements, from overlooked mosaics and terra-cotta plaques to faience medallions and cornices.

wherever good books are sold, $24.95

Bodega Cat Pillow
Photograph: courtesy Peralta Project

11. Bodega Cat Pillow

If a wisp of cat hair is in your bacon, egg and cheese, that’s just part of the experience of getting a sammie at the corner store. And we’re fine with that: Some of our favorite New Yorkers are bodega cats., $40

A Gilder Center Sweatshirt
Photograph: courtesy of AMNH

12. A Gilder Center Sweatshirt

If they’re a big fan of the American Museum of Natural History, get them something to celebrate their love and the opening of the impressive, new Gilder Center!

AMNH has a great, heavy-duty sweatshirt made exclusively for the opening on sale for $78, here.

The New York Public Library Rose Main Reading Room Silk Scarf
Photograph: courtesy of the NYPL

13. The New York Public Library Rose Main Reading Room Silk Scarf

One of the most beautiful rooms in all of NYC can be around their neck. The Rose Main Reading Room is an iconic symbol of the library and one of the largest uncolumned interior spaces in the world. James Wall Finn and Yohannes Aynalem's celestial mural soars 52 feet above the room, giving the impression of looking through the ceiling up to a sky of billowing clouds, and is surrounded by ornate rosettes and recessed panels embellished with classical motifs. Its understated elegance has the feel of an "I heart NY" T-shirt without making you look like a tourist., $85.50–$95

Sunday Afternoon in Central Park Puzzle
Courtesy Museum of the City of New York

14. Sunday Afternoon in Central Park Puzzle

Give the gift of the sweet scapes of Central Park. This sunny New Yorker Cover by Artist Bob Knox, originally published on July 15th, 1991 has 1000 pieces, to keep you busy on cozy winter evenings.$18.95

Want to get 'em a unique NYC experience?


    More on Love Local

      You may also like
      You may also like