New York City, a city of intertwined diverse cultures, can never be distilled to one simple theme. Its beauty is that it thrives in a state that is at once frenzied and subdued, gritty and pristine. Yet amid this perpetual juxtaposition, there is a recurring return to, and passion for, simplicity. In Brooklyn, for example, the hip outer-borough that is now as much a must-roam destination as the action-packed Manhattan epicentre, a spare, clean aesthetic pervades – particularly visible in the brazen creations chefs transform out of farm-fresh ingredients. A reverence for welcoming, old-world glamour, as revealed in a number of hot hotels and restaurants, now trumps a flair for the overtly modern and dramatic spaces typical of New York City’s brassy personality. The old and the new unite in unabashed opulence.