2. Central Park
Although New York City does not have the sprawling open spaces that some areas of L.A. offer, Central Park is the bustling metropolis' crown jewel – and at 843 acres, it gives Runyon Canyon Park a run for its money. A National Landmark for decades, Central Park is a popular spot for working out (and there are tons of ways to break a sweat); though the running track around the Reservoir – just over a 1.5-mile loop – may be the most frequented workout spot, visitors to the park can also bike, kayak, ice-skate (during the winter), and even rock climb on Rat Rock and Cat Rock. Central Park is also a popular spot for movie sets so celeb-sightings are frequent, and Chris Noth, Heidi Klum, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Mark Ruffalo have all been spotted in fitness gear this past year in the park.
Where to Stay: Mandarin Oriental, New York
It's not an icon like the Plaza or the Pierre — but so what? The Mandarin Oriental, located across Columbus Circle from Central Park, offers a dizzying array of modern luxuries – a 75-foot pool, one of the city's best spas, sweeping views from nearly every common area (and some rooms have Central Park views), and superb on-site fine-dining options, to name a few – all while it upholds traditional values and outstanding service. For those traveling on a budget, the Excelsior Hotel on the Upper West Side is just a block from Central Park as well.