Urbanite

U.S. holiday sales better than last year: Report

shopping macy's

(Credit: Getty Images)

Sales during the 2013 U.S. holiday season grew from a year earlier as retailers used higher discounts and promotions to attract customers in a season with fewer shopping days, according to MasterCard Advisors.

Holiday sales between November 1 and December 24 rose 2.3 percent, compared with 0.7 percent a year earlier, data published in the MasterCard Advisors' SpendingPulse report showed on...

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MTA plans holiday transit schedule

Penn Station

(Credit: Penn Station (Charles Eckert))

City trains and buses will operate on special holiday schedules for Christmas this week.

There will be regular weekday train and bus service on Christmas Eve, with additional Long Island Rail Road, Metro-North and Staten Island rail service in the afternoon for the rush of people leaving the city. In Staten Island, however, there will be nine limited stop routes out of service.

On Christmas...

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Check out these annual holiday sights in NYC

rockefeller tree

(Credit: EPA)

The holiday season in New York has long been known as one of the best times of the year to enjoy the city. Whether you're in town for a few days or a New Yorker with the week off, here are some of the city's best holiday sights you simply can't miss.

Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree

What: Around 45,000 LED lights decorate this 76-foot Norway spruce from Shelton, Conn., topped with a...

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No rest for some merry gentlemen and women this Christmas

Some people have to work on Christmas

(Credit: Jeremy Bales)

In the city that never sleeps, many New Yorkers toiling to keep it awake won't be spending Christmas with their families, but at work with colleagues.

"About 70% of the restaurants close on Christmas, so the ones that are open take advantage of this opportunity to make money," said Kahlil Saliba, 42, left, co-owner of La Cerveceria in the East Village. Stratospheric rents...

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12 eateries open for business on Christmas

Lasagna

(Credit: On Christmas, indulge in this rich and layered lasagna from Buca di Beppo.)

Though most restaurants -- and businesses -- in New York City are closed for Christmas, a handful will be serving supper (and other meals, too). If cooking for the family on the 25th isn't in the cards, take a vacation from the kitchen. Whether you're craving a traditional holiday meal or Chinese, Italian or French cuisine, these eateries will surely satisfy.

Obao Hell's Kitchen

From...

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Gifts for men, eggnog among the top Yahoo searches this holiday

eggnog glass

(Credit: Eggnog is a top search this holiday on Yahoo.)

Yahoo Monday released its top searches for the holiday season, and, predictably, users want to know what to buy loved ones for Christmas.

Specifically, people are having trouble finding presents for guys, as the top gift search in the last 30 days on Yahoo was “gifts for men,” with 71% of those searches by women.

One popular search term was “gifts for men who have everything.” Spiking...

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Q&A with Dan Lauria, star of 'A Christmas Story'

Dan Lauria

(Credit: Dan Lauria in "A Christmas Story")

Dan Lauria returns to the role he originated on Broadway in the musical adaptation of the beloved holiday movie "A Christmas Story," as it returns to the New York stage.

The show, which is setting up shop at The Theater at MSG starting Wednesday night and running through Dec. 29, features the "Wonder Years" star, now in the TBS comedy series "Sullivan and Son,"...

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Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree arriving this Friday

This year's Rockefeller Center Christmas tree (the picture

(Credit: Getty Images)

This year's Rockefeller Center Christmas tree hails from the Nutmeg State.

The 76-foot tall, 47-feet wide Norway spruce, which is being donated by a family in Shelton, Ct., will be chopped down Thursday at 9 a.m., trucked into Manhattan, and prepared to be set up tomorrow at the famous midtown plaza.

The 12-ton, 75-year-old plant will be festooned with 45,000 multicolored LED lights...

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