World Series Smackdown: New York vs. Kansas City

Each week, Yahoo Travel pits rival destinations against each other to determine once and for all which is the best. With the New York Mets and the Kansas City Royals about to face off in the World Series, we look at the two cities locked in a heated series rivalry: New York City vs. Kansas City.


(Photo: Getty Images)

The Case for New York City:

Honestly, is there really a competition here? Everything is bigger and better in New York City. It’s home to the federal reserve, businesses are born here every day, and it’s a hub for creativity. This is literally a city people write songs about.

In New York, sports are a way of life. Sure, the Yankees have dominated baseball with 27 World Series titles, but that doesn’t mean that Mets fans have jumped on the Bronx Bomber bandwagon. No, Mets fans have stayed true through decades of disappointing seasons, and now it’s their turn to bring the title back to New York for themselves.

Royals fans, we’re not in Missouri anymore —this is the big leagues. Don’t you know that New Yorkers invented baseball? It’s best you let us take it from here.


The Mets have a lot of celebrity fans…including Jerry Seinfeld. (Photo: Corbis Images)

Population: 8.4 million

Famous faces: When it comes to A-list Mets fans, New York City can’t be beat. Jerry Seinfeld, Adam Sandler, Robert DeNiro, Chris Rock, and Glen Close all love the Mets. Piano Man Billy Joel is also a huge fan, even playing the final concerts at Shea Stadium in 2008 before the team relocated to Citi Filed. And on Oct. 21, Joel played “Meet the Mets” during one of his sold out shows at Madison Square Garden.


The Wythe Hotel was formerly a factory, and the original brick make it a beautiful landmark. (Photo: Getty Images)

Hip hotels: Visitors looking for a cool hotel in New York City have plenty of options to choose from.

In Brooklyn, people can’t wait to check into McCarren Hotel and Pool, located in the ultimate hipster neighborhood of Williamsburg. The eight-story hotel has stunning views of Manhattan, and 64 rooms decorated in trendy and modern decor. During the summer, the pool is the main attraction, but the hotel is in a lively neighborhood, so there’s never a shortage of fun things to do.

There is nothing more hip than the Wythe Hotel in Brooklyn. Exposed brick dominates throughout this former factory building built in 1901. From wallpaper to furniture, all of design elements are locally sourced, and all of the products provided are environmentally friendly.

The best part about sleeping at Hotel Z in Long Island City is taking in the amazing view of the Manhattan skyline. The Queens hotel, located on the East River, has a bike share program, complimentary wine, and is dog friendly. Did we mention that it has a stunning view of the skyline? Because it’s that good.


Go Mets! (Photo: McFadden’s Citi Field/Facebook)

Spectator spots: Getting tickets to the World Series will might just cost you your life savings, so save your dough, and head to one of NYC’s many sports bars to watch the games instead.

If you’re looking for stadium-level excitement, a visit to McFadden’s is just what you need. The 13,000 square-foot tavern is located behind Citi Field’s bullpen gate, has 50 HDTVs— so you’ll definitely be able to get a good view of the game. Still, there are a lot of Mets fans, so if you want to join the fun, be sure to buy tickets for the viewing parties ahead of time.

For a smaller, but just as energetic time, head to Mulholland’s in Brooklyn or Foley’s in Manhattan, both are guaranteed to have a good turn out. But to be totally honest, it doesn’t matter where you go. There are thousands of bars in New York City, and every borough will be watching the games.


We bet you can’t eat just one slice at Patsy’s. (Photo: Patsy’s Pizzeria/Facebook)

Pizza perfection: In New York, we like our baseball, and our pizza. If you’re looking for a bite after the game, do yourself a favor and stop by Pizza Garden in Flushing. A part of the community since 1960, a thin slice at Pizza Garden will cost you just two bucks! You can’t beat that!

The Mets are a New York institution and so is Patsy’s Pizzeria. The location in East Harlem opened in 1933 and is one of the oldest pizzerias in the city. You can’t go wrong with ordering the fresh Margherita pie made with a paper thin crust and topped with tomato, mozzarella, and basil. Heck, order a whole pie and save some for tomorrow. It’s just as tasty the next day.

In Brooklyn, Di Fara Pizza is often named the best in New York City. After all, any slice that is endorsed by Mayor Bill DiBlasio has to be pretty good. The only issue is that Di Fara is now so popular that a slice will cost you five bucks. So, even though a mouthwatering slice will leave you wanting more, you might want to pace yourself.


The Whitney Museum is located between the High Line and the Hudson River. (Photo: Whitney Museum/Facebook)

Catch some culture: Sorry Kansas City, but New York City is the center for culture. Everywhere you look there is someone doing something awesome.

New York City is the museum Mecca, and is home to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim, and the Museum of Modern Art — all of which showcase priceless pieces of work from around the world.

For a unique museum experience, check out the Whitney in the oh-so-trendy Meatpacking district. It is the first museum dedicated to the work of living American artists, and frequently purchases works in the year they were created.

Oh, and if you want your culture less organized, just head to to Times Square and take a seat on the red stairs. You’re bound to see some “culture” there.

Related: Check Out These Pics: Obama Hits the Baseball Hall of Fame


You can’t leave New York with a Mets t-shirt. You just can’t. (Photo: Getty Images)

Souvenir shopping: Dressing the part is half the battle of being a true fan, so to get the ultimate gear at the Mets Clubhouse shop in midtown Manhattan. From uniforms to keychains and scarves, this is one stop shop for the ultimate Mets fan.

Want a NY souvenir that’s not baseball-themed? Go to Story. This adorable space is filled with unique gifts sure to put a smile on the faces of your friends and family back home. Items like drinking dice and graphic tees will have you swiping your credit card more often than you’d like.

The Case for Kansas City

Located smack-dab in the middle of the country, Kansas City, Missouri, is the pulse of America’s Heartland. Those who are lucky enough to live or visit KC know it’s a hidden gem in what arrogant New Yorkers call “flyover country.”

We’ve grabbed a lot of attention in the last few years for our burgeoning tech scene, world-class arts facilities, affordable lifestyle, and, of course, our Kansas City Royals, who are competing in the World Series for the second year running. Sure, it’s a little intimidating for our boys in blue to take on 27-time World Series winners—oh, wait, that’s the other New York team I’m thinking of. Who exactly are the Mets? To put it in terms they’ll understand: Fuhgeddaboudit! They last won the Fall Classic in 1986, the year after Kansas City took the title—might as well get used to following behind us, guys.


Paul Rudd, right, talks to Kansas City Royals’ Eric Hosmer at a game in 2014. (Photo: AP)

Population: 467,007

Famous faces: Funny guys Paul Rudd, Jason Sudeikis, and Rob Riggle all call the KC metro home, and return every summer with their Hollywood pals for the Big Slick Celebrity Classic Wiffle Ball Game, played at the Royals’ own Kauffman Stadium.

Hip hotels: KC has several cool, independently owned options in the city’s main entertainment and shopping districts.


The jazz is free at Hotel Phillips. (Photo: Hotel Phillips)

Located downtown, Hotel Phillips is a recently renovated Art Deco stunner built in 1931. Its marble walls and gilded details are elegant, but what makes it truly unique is its commitment to the local arts and culture scene. In addition to free weekly performances from local jazz musicians, the hotel also hosts an artist-in-residence program.

In the hip Westport neighborhood, the 816 Hotel (named for the city’s area code), celebrates all things Kansas City with themed rooms dedicated to some of our favorite things — such as barbecue, baseball, and Boulevard Brewing Co. beers.

Overlooking the picturesque Spanish-style Country Club Plaza is the award-winning Raphael Hotel. Built in 1927, this boutique beauty features traditionally stylish rooms, a cozy restaurant offering inspired Southern cuisine, and the Chaz Lounge, which serves up classic cocktails and daily jazz performances.


Join the crowds in the Power and Light District to watch the Royals win the World Series. (Photo: Power and Lights District/Youtube)

Spectator spots: If you can’t get a seat at Kauffman Stadium a.k.a. “The K,” the next best (and almost as packed) place to watch the World Series is the Power & Light District. Thousands of fans will crowd into the courtyard at the center of the downtown entertainment district to watch the Royals bring home the crown on huge LED screens.

Looking for a more low-key spot? Fat chance. Every TV in every bar will likely be tuned in to the games, so embrace the chaos and get ready to high-five strangers-turned-new-best-friends in KC’s oldest bar, The Peanut. What this epic dive lacks in amenities, it more than makes up for in atmosphere. And speaking of KC beating New York at its own game (they claim they invented baseball, of course), The Peanut’s peppery Buffalo wings—as big as a Mets fan’s ego and served with chunky house-made blue cheese sauce — are not to be missed.


A Royals win and this sandwich makes for a perfect day. (Photo: Joe’s Kansas City)

BBQ and beyond: Kansas City is known for its barbecue, and people come from all around the world to sample our slow-smoked meats topped with rich, tangy tomato-based sauces.

Across the border, tucked inside a gas station in Kansas City, Kansas, is Joe’s Kansas City (formerly known as Oklahoma Joe’s). Anthony Bourdain put it on his list of “Thirteen Places to Eat Before You Die,” and he’s far from its only fan — expect a long queue for this ’cue anytime you go.

Since 1930, Arthur Bryant’s near the historic 18th and Vine neighborhood has been dishing up piles of pit-smoked ribs, brisket, and more. The old-school joint once called “possibly the single best restaurant in the world” by famed former New Yorker editor and native Kansas Citian Calvin Trillin, is perhaps best known for its burnt end sandwiches. A Kansas City specialty, these flavorful tips of beef briskets are the best thing since the sliced white bread AB’s serves them on.

Even though it only opened last year, Q39 on restaurant row is a favorite among locals. To get the best bang for your buck, head to the trendy restaurant during happy hour, when you can sample a little bit of almost everything (including mouthwatering sides like meaty baked beans and apple slaw) while sipping on a craft cocktail.

Related: Record-Setting Baseball Fan Travels on a Minor League Budget


(Photo: Negro Leagues Baseball Museum)

Catch some culture: Home to the Kansas City Symphony, the Kansas City Ballet, and the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, the dazzling Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts (yes, it’s the same Kauffman who built the Royals’ home stadium) has dramatically altered the physical and cultural landscapes of the city since it opened in 2011. Renowned architect Moshe Safdie’s design features a pair of shell-shaped structures connected by a glass-walled atrium, affording fabulous views of the city. Expect its stainless-steel clad exterior to be illuminated in Royals blue throughout the Series.

No true baseball fan’s trip to KC would be complete without a trip to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in the historic 18th & Vine neighborhood. Featuring interactive exhibits and an impressive collection of memorabilia, this museum pays tribute to the pioneers who helped integrate the league and the players who paved the way for today’s baseball leaders.

In midtown, the National WWI Museum and Memorial —the only museum in the country dedicated to the Great War—explores the subject through the eyes of those who lived through it, on the battlefield and at home, through films, interactive displays, and more.


The Balwin cap is so simple…and so perfect. (Photo: Baldwin)

Souvenir shopping: Bring home something truly unique from one of the shops in Crossroads Arts District. Local Tara Light’s clean, modern designs mingle with American-made looks from other emerging talents in her blush-pink boutique Fable. Blocks away, Southwest Boulevard letterpress studio Hammerpress sells prints, cards, and more bearing its distinctive, bold designs, alongside handcrafted accessories from other local and national makers.

You’d be batty not to stop in Standard Style or Baldwin to pick up one of the signature Baldwin KC baseball caps you’ve seen celebrities like Jason Sudeikis and his wife, honorary Kansas Citian Olivia Wilde, sporting in the tabloids.

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