Use This Code for a Great Holiday

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The Downtown Alliance uses 2D barcodes to improve your holiday experience in Lower Manhattan. Don't have a code reader? Download the ScanLife app from your app store or text SCAN to 43588.

By Liz Berger

If you’re like me, you’re always saving those little scraps of paper you ripped out of a magazine or catalog or brochure—reminders of the restaurant you want to try, the gift you hope to buy or the event you mean to attend. The trouble is, you can never find the right scrap at the right time, and the problem grows exponentially during the holidays.

Well, the Downtown Alliance has a solution. We are the first Business Improvement District in the city to use Scanbuy 2D barcode technology to guide Lower Manhattan’s shoppers, diners, workers, residents and visitors through the holiday season.

What’s a 2D barcode?  It’s a data storage device that looks like a cross between an empty crossword puzzle and a Space Invader which links our shopping, dining and holiday guides to your smart-phone browser with a click of your phone’s camera.  It’s technology made easy, placing all you need to know about what’s happening this holiday season in Lower Manhattan at your fingertips.  Never tried it?  Follow the directions in the illustration, or do what I do: Ask your kids.  (To find our holiday information on your computer, click here.)

Want to know where in Lower Manhattan Santa is presiding this holiday season?  (In the Winter Garden of the World Financial Center.)  Hear Handel’s Messiah at Trinity Church?  Find out when the Museum of Jewish Heritage is celebrating Hanukah?  2D barcodes give you times and dates and other salient information.

Looking for a warm and cozy restaurant?  A great toy store? The perfect patisserie? A top-of-the-line car or motorcycle? We’ll serve as your guide to more than 1,000 retailers and restaurateurs—all within walking distance. Whether you’re a resident, worker or  visitor, Downtown has something special for every pocketbook.

But of course, holiday shopping still takes time, a precious commodity for most of us. So the Downtown Alliance has mapped out a series of convenient lunchtime excursions for the time-challenged shopper:

Wall Street Luxury: Tiffany & Co. at 37 Wall Street, Thomas Pink at 63 Wall Street, Tumi at 67 Wall Street, La Maison du Chocolat at 63 Wall Street, BMW at 67 Wall Street, and Hermes at 15 Broad Street.

Extraordinary Value: J&R Music World at 23 Park Row, Century 21 Department Store at 22 Cortlandt Street., Borders at 100 Broadway,  and Men’s Wearhouse at 115 Broadway.

By-the-Bull: Centered around Bowling Green Park. Nine West at 2 Broadway, Daffy’s at 50 Broadway, Christopher Norman Chocolates at 60 New Street, and California Wine Merchants at 15 Bridge Street.

Fabulous Front Street: Centered around historic Front Street and the South Street Seaport. J. Crew at 203 Front Street, Coach at 193 Front Street, Provisions at 150 Beekman Street, Toys “R” Us at Fulton and South streets, and Abercrombie & Fitch at 199 Water Street.

One-Stop Shopping: Century 21 Department Store at 22 Cortlandt Street, Fine Leather Collection at 99 Nassau Street, Modell’s Sporting Goods at 150 Broadway, Sephora at 150 Broadway, and Downtown Cellars (formerly the Greene Grape) at 55 Liberty Street.

Northern Exposure: Shops reachable on the new northern extension of the Downtown Alliance’s free bus service, the Downtown Connection. Babesta Cribz at 66 West Broadway, Mysterious Bookshop at 58 Warren Street, Korin at 57 Warren Street, Barnes & Noble at 97 Warren Street, Bed Bath & Beyond and Whole Foods, both at 270 Greenwich Street.

I’m going to try all six. See you at the gift wrap table!

—Liz Berger is President of the Downtown Alliance