The Queen City of the Sound, New Rochelle, goes big on diversity. With three universities within its borders and a large Latin American population, the city is an interesting mix of dense downtown, green spaces, and entertainment options. Quirky shopping and often-affordable cuisines from around the world add to the mix.
10 a.m. Kick off your weekend with a jolt of caffeine at Pop’s Espresso Bar (7 Huguenot St; 914.278.9533). In addition to cappuccino and cortado, the menu includes a full selection of breakfast items, like an egg and house-cured pork-belly sandwich; avocado toast with goat cheese, pickled onions, and pepitas; and the dannoli, an airy donut filled with cannoli cream.
11 a.m. Sharing retail space at 543 Main Street, Sweet Preserves (914.235.2442) sources vintage fashion accessories, while Consign It On Main (914.637.7600; www.consignitonmainllc.com) boasts an eclectic mix of furniture, tableware, jewelry, and objets d’art. Think that end table looks vaguely familiar? The two stores have provided pieces to TV shows and movies, including The Americans, Gotham, The Post, American Hustle, and the Golden Globe-winning Amazon series The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, among others.
Just a short walk away, The Little Ranch (328 Huguenot St; 914.235.5978) is the county’s only boutique specializing in Western wear and cowboy boots, made from high-end materials.
12:30 p.m. Grab lunch at Roc-N-Ramen (19 Anderson St; 914.365.1166). Located across from the New Roc entertainment complex, this small shop does a cloudy tonkotsu, plus fusion bowls like oxtail-curry and barbecue-chicken ramen. In more of a burger-and-fries mood? Try The Wooden Spoon (16 Division St; 914.278.9432; www.woodenspoonnewro.com), which also blends up shakes, floats, retro egg creams, and wine slushies.
1:30 p.m. After lunch, try your hand at problem-solving at Hour to Exit (466 Main St #206; 914.355.4272), the county’s newest escape-room experience. As the name suggests, you’ll have an hour to escape one of the themed rooms by finding hidden objects and cracking a series of puzzles.
3 p.m. Now that’s you’ve successfully escaped, reward yourself — and tip your hat to New Rochelle’s large Mexican population — with a fistful of warm churros from El Trigal Bakery (216 Union Ave; 914.633.9516).
3:30 p.m. If the weekend weather is more lamb than lion, head to Glen Island Park (Weyman Ave; 914.813.6720), connected to mainland New Rochelle by a 1920s drawbridge. Take an hour or so to explore the 105-acre park and look for cannons and German-style castles, remnants of Glen Island’s days as wealthy politician John H. Starin’s 19th-century summer resort.
5 p.m. Back in downtown, swing by Alvin & Friends (14 Memorial Hwy; 914.654.6549) for the Caribbean-meets-Southern-soul-food restaurant’s secret-recipe rum punch. Then stick around for dinner (there’s live music on Saturday nights), or dine on the freshest grilled fish and signature squid-ink risotto at Dubrovnik (721 Main St; 914.637.3777), the county’s only Croatian restaurant.