WestSide Wednesdays

Welcome to WestSide Wednesdays, a video series by me, Annette Akers. I am an Upper West Side real estate agent exploring local businesses in the neighborhood I reside and love.  Find out what makes each of these businesses unique and how they are bringing love to the west side. Subscribe to WestSide Wednesdays You Tube channel and get  know of what's happening in the hood and support your local neighborhood merchants. Follow me at #WestsideWednesdays.


It's not everyday you find a business that specializes in making and repairing string instruments. David Segal has been making violins on the Upper West Side since 1975 and his instruments are played all over the world. He is also a dealer of rare instruments and possesses the last instrument made in 1737 by famed artisan Antonio Stradivarius. Making this video was an amazing experience and I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed making it. Happy Holidays.


Uprooted: New York City's first florist on wheels. It's not every day you see a florist on wheels. In a city full of ice cream and food trucks, a flower truck is a welcome surprise. When filming this episode of WestSide Wednesdays, I noticed everyone who passed by had a smile on their face and shouted with delight on how much they love Uprooted. Founders Ashley and Kristin created a business that delivers happiness all across New York City. They offer subscriptions, classes and will come to your private event. They park all over NewYork City, but you can find them on the Upper West Side on Broadway or Columbus Avenue most weekends. Check out their website or their social channels to find where they have rooted themselves. Learn more about Uprooted here http://www.uprootedflowertruck.com



Katie Thompson started creating jewelry as a hobby, but soon she was capturing the attention of fashion editors and she was on her way. ktCollection was a favorite at New York City street fairs and festivals so in 2010 Katie opened her flagship store on the Upper West Side. At ktCollection you’ll find their line of handmade jewelry, fun costume jewelry as well as beautiful scarves and handbags. Whether you’re looking for an investment piece you’ll wear forever or an inexpensive trendy show stopper, you will find it at ktCollection. They also host regular wine events to stay rooted in the community and make new friends. ktCollection is a true family business!

Learn more about ktCollection here: https://ktcollection.com use Code: KTANNETTE17 for 10% your entire purchase through 2017


Episode #20

Welcome to WestSide Wednesdays special Thanksgiving episode where I had the pleasure to bake with the lovely Chief Baking Officer, Bobbie Lloyd. Bobbie teaches me a how to properly bake a beautiful caramel apple hand pie. She has great baking tips and the end result was incredibly delicious. I had an amazing experience, and it's easy to see why Magnolia is so loved.

Learn more about Magnolia Bakery here: https://www.magnoliabakery.com/locations/upper-west-side/



Episode #19

Do you love games? If so, you are going to love this place! With over 1000 games to chose from, Hex & Co. caters to everyone regardless of age. Owners Greg May, Jon Freeman Ph. D and Mark Miller have introduced the first uptown board cafe. Serving delicious bites and soon beer and wine. They also offer delicious locally roasted coffee and sweets so you can spend the whole day playing your favorite childhood games. They have something going on almost every night and on Wednesday night they host Dungeons and Dragon encounters. I am personally looking forward to a future Scrabble tournament. Hex & Co. offers after school educational programs and camps. You can learn about Hex & Co. here http://hexnyc.com


Episode #18

Mugi pottery studio has been an Upper West Side gem for 30 years. This special business provides a relaxed atmosphere where you can learn to create pottery guided by patient and skilled instructors. They offer classes for children and adults of all ages and skill levels. You can also host an event, bridal shower or birthday party at this lovely business. Mugi also has couple's night twice a month for couples looking for a new way to spend date night. You will find amazing pottery in their gallery where you can purchase special pieces made by talented artists.

Learn more about MUGI pottery studio here: http://www.mugipottery.com


Episode #17

Floating Mountain sits above the hustle and bustle of the Upper West Side's west 72nd street. Inside this serene tea house you will find peace and tranquility, as though you just entered a zen-like haven. They offer over 60 types of specialty Chinese teas, curated by the co-founders on their trips to China. Floating mountain is also a gallery where they showcase artists who specialize in ceramics. Floating Mountain also hosts tea tastings, live music events and various workshops. They sell tea packages by the grams so you could also make their delicious teas at home. Learn more about Floating Mountain here: https://www.floating-mountain.com


Episode #16

Izakya refers to the casual gastropub scene of Japan. Ida translates to between, during, or "a while". Located in the heart of the Upper West Side, Izakaya Ida is a restaurant where you can relax and enjoy Japan's gastropub inspired food with your favorite people. They offer a diverse menu including Yakitori/Yakaiyasai grilled vegetables and meat skewers, delicious ramen dishes, rice bowls and fresh sushi and sashimi favorites. They also offer 20 different kinds of Japanese beer sake and asian spirits.


Episode #15

In the age of technology, it's a welcome surprise to see an enrichment program for kids that is making reading fun. Walking into Book Nook is like walking into a real life fairy tale. Providing an environment any child would enjoy spending time. Book Nook uses an organic approach to literature and storytelling to expand the minds of children through words and illustration. After a successful opening in the Upper West Side, Book Nook recently opened a second location in Tribeca.


Episode #14

Book Culture in New York City's Upper West Side, is undoubtedly a neighborhood favorite hang out. This incredible book store is filled with books (check out the staff picks) candles, kitchen items and beautiful stationery. The Columbus street location, has an entire lower level filled with children's books and toys to delight any young mind. The store has a true community vibe and focuses on providing their customers with an amazing shopping experience. They also hold a variety events including readings from local authors. I absolutely love this store and I know I share the same adoration with my neighbors. Book Culture is a perfect example of why we need to support our independent merchants.


Episode #13

Voila Chocolat is a chocolate lovers paradise where one can learn the art of making chocolate. Create your own custom bars, lollipops or truffles with incredible educators including renowned pastry chef Christophe Toury. One of the top 10 Chocolatiers in North America. Voila also offers space for special events or parties. Come relax with one of their extraordinary hot chocolates or a glass of wine. Reserve a spot or just walk-in. This is a charming neighborhood spot for all ages. Oh, they even have happy hour. Cheers. Learn more here: Learn more here: http://voila-chocolat.com


Episode #12

Some of the most beautiful flowers can be found at the West Side Community Garden in the heart of the Upper West Side. This urban green space is entirely run by volunteers. The space also houses a large vegetable garden and small amphitheater where they feature movies in the park during the summer months. The garden hosts other fun events including, live jazz and arts and crafts festivals. A great hang out if you are in the Upper West Side and want to relax in tranquility. Learn more about the park and make a donation here: http://www.westsidecommunitygarden.org


Episode #11

Learn more about sensuous bean: http://sensuousbean.com/store/ It's not easy to find an independent coffee shop these days. Lucky for upper west siders we have Sensuous Bean at 66 w 70th. It's been around for 41 years and has 70 different coffees to chose from. They blend to taste and offer 40 selections of flavored coffees. They also an amazing selection of tea including green and black teas. They are a neighborhood favorite and experts in everything coffee.


Episode #10


Meet Jeannie owner and lead hat designer at Jeannie's dream. This Upper West Side shop will looks like an ordinary store on the outside, but upon entering you will be blown away by what's inside. Jeannie carries all hand made hats designed by renowned designers including Philip Treacy, hat designer to the royal family and the cast of Sex and the City. She also carries KMO jewelry from Paris. My favorite jewelry line and I wear it on every episode of this series. Jeannie's also carries the most amazing scarves which she carefully curates. Jeannie's Dream is a true neighborhood treasure and so is Jeannie.


Episode #9

Known for their outstanding customer service and knowledgeable wine staff that takes you a joyful journey through the wine world. Amsterdam Wine Co. provides an expertly curated and ever-changing selection of the world's finest wines.  They taste every wine that comes into the store and bases them on style and value.  This is truly one of the best wine stores in NYC. 

Twice voted “Best NYC Wine Shop” – Citysearch

“Critic’s Pick” – New York Magazine

Top 20 NYC Wine Destinations – Food & Wine Magazine

“Small but excellent…helping to extend and improve the wine culture in the United States.” – Eric Asimov, New York Times


Episode #8


The upper west side is a well traveled neighborhood. Long time upper westside Gabriella Contestabile is the founder of bespoke travel service company Su Misura which means tailor made. She customizes tours of Tuscany to give her clients the ultimate travel experience with uncompromising detail. Her travelers get the true Italian experience by interacting with the local artisans, designers and culinary experts. Su Misura is not a travel agency, it's a travel experience at a whole new level.


Episode #7


Go back in time and arrive in style! Icon style is the most amazing vintage store in New York City. Pieces you have seen at the Oscars and other major award shows are available at this Upper West Side gem. Want something special? You will find it here!


Episode #6

Knitty City

Upper West Side's Knitting City is hands down the best knitting store in New York City. It's not just a store, it's a place to feel a real sense of community where everyone is welcome. They have a huge selection of yarns, books and accessories. Want to learn to knit? This is the place. They have knitting and crochet classes with the most talented and patient instructors. They have free classes in Bryant Park every Tuesday through the summer and a men's night every Wednesday. You can sign up for a class or take a private lesson, there is something for everyone at every level. This truly is one of the Upper West Side's most special stores. 


Episode #5

Septuagesimo Park

Want to discover what makes Upper West Side such an exceptional neighborhood? One of it's hidden secrets is this tiny pocket park which happens to be the tiniest in Manhattan. It is nestled between Central Park and Riverside Park. Come to relax, eat a quiet lunch and just relax and escape the chaos of the city. You can learn more aboutttp://voila-chocolat.com


Episode #4

Carried Away Chefs

Too busy to cook but still want healthy, nutritious meals. Carried Away chefs is New York City's premiere in home personal chef service. Custom weekly menus, catering and in home cooking classes are some of the services provided by this phenomenal company. Founded by Kate Homes, she is constantly sourcing the freshest, highest quality seasonal ingredients available.  Her chefs are all formally trained at the finest culinary schools and restaurants the country has to offer. No time, no problem. Carried Away Chefs is bringing families back to the dinner table.  You can learn more about Carried Away Chefs at http://carriedawaychefs.com


Episode #3

Julie's Beet

This little gem of a shop has been under your nose and you probably didn't even know it. Julie's Beet carries the most unique and lovely food item you can't buy at your local grocery store. Her chef background and sophisticated taste in food, lends to curating the most amazing food items. Everything from chocolate, sauces, teas, and pickles. This is a culinary dream come true. 

Episode #2


If you are looking for beautifully crafted one of a kind gifts, organic products or letterpressed stationery made from recycled paper, you have to check out Magpie. Many of their products are locally made and constructed from recycled sustainable materials. Owned by native upper west sider Sylvia Parker, Magpie is a true neighborhood gem. You can find Magpie at 488 Amsterdam Ave. or online


Episode #1

Marie & J

Want to shop like a Parisian on the Upper West Side? Then check out Marie & J a brand new jewelry and clothing boutique offering custom designed natural stone pieces. This adorable boutique carries designers from all over the world including Korea and Italy.  Jewelry, bags, shoes, clothes...you won't be disappointed.  You can find Marie & J at 215 W 83rd