NEW JERSEY

Brooklyn’s Rockaway Home for Authentic ThaiThai Nam Phet

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Less than an hour’s car ride east of New York City you’ll come across Thai Nam Phet, a Thai restaurant unexpectedly located off Hwy. 46 featuring authentic flavors that have garnered it a loyal following. The restaurant offers a relaxed setting further complimented by the friendly staff and fast service. Thai Nam Phet has been critically acclaimed by both the New York Times and the Daily Record as one of the best destinations in the state for traditionally prepared, genuine Thai cuisine.

For a tasty appetizer, start off your meal with the Chicken Satay or Spring Rolls made of egg rolls stuffed with cabbage, carrot, bean thread noodle and plum sauce. You can also add shrimp, called the little Mermaid Spring Roll.

For an entree, move onto the Pad Thai, a constant favorite that consists of stir-fried rice noodles with egg, ground peanut, scallions, bean sprouts as well as your choice of chicken, beef, pork or tofu. You can also choose your level of spice. I recommend the Shrimp Pad Thai with lots of spice!

Finish things off with the Fried Ice Cream, there is no better or more dramatic ending to a meal. Presented while on fire, it is just as fun to eat as it is to look at!

BYOB

296 US Highway 46, Rockaway, NJ

 Additional location: Newton, NJ

http://www.thainamphet.com/

 Written by Eric Schnee

Atlantic City, NJ: The Chelsea Hotel

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The Chelsea, a retro 1950’s-era hotel located on the Atlantic City boardwalk is the first non-gaming hotel to open in the area since the 1960’s. The hotel is styled to capture the glamour and allure of Atlantic City during its heyday as a buzzing seaside resort town. The Chelsea offers several casual meeting spaces throughout the hotel, including the reading room-like lobby. The fifth floor is the entertainment center within the hotel. It is where guests can find Chelsea Prime Supper Club, a 1940’s style steakhouse complete with raised banquets that allow all diners to enjoy the sweeping views of the Boardwalk and ocean through the floor to ceiling windows. The Cabana Club is a roof-top pool and bar area with plush lounge chairs and secluded cabanas that features services during the day ranging from massages to palm readings and DJ performances nightly. C5, the inside section of the Cabana Club, is an art nouveau style lounge complete with fireplace, a purple felt billiards table and numerous classic board games. The fifth floor is rounded out by The Living Room, a champagne and cocktail lounge that features it own outdoor terrace overlooking the water.

The rooms in the Luxe Tower, the property’s 20-story tower, are large with minimal accent decor to keep the feeling both luxurious and airy. With all of the entertainment within the property and the direct waterfront location, the Chelsea is a great alternative to staying at a casino property. Plus, the Tropicana is a short five minute walk down the boardwalk if you feel the urge to try your luck.

111 South Chelsea Avenue

Atlantic City, NJ: Red Square at The Quarter at Tropicana

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Named for the famed city square in Moscow, Red Square is an elaborate, Soviet inspired restaurant and vodka bar anchoring the Tropicana’s selection of themed restaurants in its entertainment complex, The Quarter. Entering through the gold-leaf doors past the towering statue of Lenin evokes a tone of Imperial Russia. An opulent chandelier presides over the dining room with flowing, deep red velvet fabrics extending across the ceiling to the walls. Oversized, Soviet-era propaganda posters cover the walls and hallways, blending themed-kitsch with Russian luxury. The cuisine is Russian inspired, but also includes offerings with European and Asian flavors.

The restaurant also features a 60 foot bar, complete with shelves made from real ice. The bar stocks over 200 types of vodka from around the world, all stored at -30°.  Guests who buy a bottle or half bottle of vodka will be invited to don vintage Russian military jackets (for men) or fur coats (for ladies) and enter the subzero vodka vault to enjoy their last shot.

2801 Pacific Avenue (Tropicana)