15 ‘Gossip Girl’ Filming Locations In New York City That You Can Actually Visit In Real Life
Watching the show Gossip Girl can do two things to a viewer. One: it can give you the strange urge to go shopping and buy a lot of headbands, even if you've never worn one before. Two: it can help inspire a trip into Manhattan to get a glimpse at everything New York City has to offer. Even if you already live in New York, one episode of Gossip Girl can be enough to make you want to explore the city more. The show makes Manhattan seem even more alluring than it already is, a place full of magical romantic moments, crazy dramatic scenes, and tons of luxury. Even if you can't live the life of a Gossip Girl cast member (and think about it: would you really want to? They have a lot going on!), you can pretend you can by visiting the spots they use as backdrops during the show. GG was filmed in New York, on location at many famous places, and there are lots of Gossip Girl New York filming locations you can actually visit in real life.
Whether you live in New York and you just want to check out more of your own city, or you're planning a vacation and want to do your own Gossip Girl tour, the below sites are ones you definitely need to see with your very own eyes. Just be sure to plan far in advance: some of these places can be a little exclusive — what would you expect anything else from the lives of Blair Waldorf and Serena van der Woodsen?
1. New York Palace Hotel
Serena van der Woodsen and her family — along with Chuck Bass — lived in the Palace Hotel on Madison Avenue for a long time. The Lotte New York Palace is not exactly the most inexpensive place to stay in the city (far from it), but it is a beautiful spot to visit if you want a taste of luxury. If you can't get a room, head inside to the restaurant GILT.
2. The Empire Hotel
In Season 3 of Gossip Girl, Chuck invests in The Empire Hotel, which is indeed a very real hotel in New York. It's located practically right across the street from Lincoln Center. If you can't spring for a room, head up to The Empire Rooftop for beautiful views of the city and a drink. They even have a cocktail inspired by Gossip Girl!
3. Empire State Building
Who could forget that scene where Blair rushes to meet Chuck on the observation deck at the Empire State Building, minutes after he's already left? Chuck was being dramatic and the worst during that scene (like he was much of the show), but still, the Empire State Building is part of Gossip Girl history. If you're looking for a stunning view of Manhattan, head up there to get it.
Veselka is one of Dan Humphrey's favorite spots for pierogis and comfort food, and it's also where Blair and Prince Louis went on a date once. Veselka is a very real restaurant you can go to while you pretend to wait for Dan to come hang with you. It's an old Ukrainian restaurant located in the East Village, dating back over 60 years, and it's known for delicious food, even if it's not super fancy.
5. Grand Central Station
The beautiful main lobby of Grand Central Station is where we first get a glimpse of Serena — and that backdrop couldn't be more beautiful. Known as an architectural landmark as well as a bustling transportation hub, Grand Central Station is worth exploring. You can head to any of the restaurants on the upstairs balconies to people watch, or go downstairs to do a little shopping.
6. The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art are where Blair, Serena, and their friends hung out before and after school (remember, "Little J, could you move down a step?"). In real life, the Met is an incredibly popular art museum in New York that is always worth a visit. The architecture is gorgeous and the artwork is extensive. Try to find a spot on the steps if you want to sit outside and pretend to be Blair.
7. Museum of the City of New York
The outside of the Museum of the City of New York is used as the entrance to Constance Billard School for girls and St. Jude School for boys. You can simply walk by to check it out yourself, or you can head inside to get a glimpse at history and artwork.
8. The Russian Tea Room
The glamorous Russian Tea Room makes a few appearances in Gossip Girl — most notably in the Season 2 episode where Georgina Sparks is scamming Poppy — and is a very cool place to visit. Go for tea or some food, but be prepared to make your reservations far in advance.
9. Central Park Fountain
A lot of major Gossip Girl scenes happened in Central Park — especially near the iconic Bethesda fountain. Serena and Blair once made up by the fountain after a lengthy fight, and it's also where Chuck and Blair eventually get married. Take a stroll through the area to see it yourself.
10. St. James Church
Remember the first time Blair married? Her wedding to Prince Louis happened at the beautiful St. James Church on the Upper East Side. You can step to take in the beautiful design
11. Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum
Lily van der Woodsen and Bart Bass got married at the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and it's one sight you won't want to miss.
12. King Cole Bar
According to Serena, the best red snapper in New York can be found at the King Cole Bar. The restaurant is located in the swanky St. Regis New York hotel, and will make you feel as fancy as Serena.
13. Campbell Apartment
That infamous Serena van der Woodsen and Nate Archibald affair took place on the literal Campbell Apartment bar, which is located in Grand Central Terminal. Stop in for a drink.
14. Barrio Chino
Barrio Chino is a real Mexican restaurant in New York, and also the place that Serena spent a Thanksgiving afternoon in 2006 after drinking her family woes away.
15. Synod Of Bishops Russian Orthodox Church
The exterior of St. Jude's is filmed at the Museum of the City of New York, but the interior was filmed in the Synod of Bishops Russian Orthodox Church. You can head over there to see it yourself.