By Della Hasselle and Serena Solomon
MANHATTAN — The royal wedding is right around the corner, and Manhattanites can expect a slew of champagne toasts, English breakfasts, costume contests and broadcasts of the royal wedding starting as early as 4 a.m. Friday.
More than 2 billion people across the world are expected to watch the wedding, which begins at 11 a.m. in London (6 a.m. in New York). Here are DNAinfo's picks for catching Prince William and Kate Middleton's special day.
British-owned Tea and Sympathy and restaurant Lyon Bouchon Moderne spearhead the main avenue's festivities, which will include an early-morning breakfast of sausage, bacon, grilled tomatoes and beans at Lyon.
Later, British beer will be served along with festivities at A Salt and Battery, the neighborhood's renowned fish and chips joint.
"It's a little bit of a British enclave down here," Lyon owner Penny Bradley said of the British-themed and British-owned shops on Greenwich Avenue. "It is a very nice community here and everyone has pitched in to help."
For those who aren't necessarily early birds, Tea and Sympathy and A Salt and Battery will serve wedding themed dishes all day, including deep-fried wedding cake.
There will also be a Royal Wedding raffle, with prizes worth over $30,000 that include a flight to London or a designer wedding dress.
Even stores with no English connection, such as quirky home-decor store Mxyplyzyk, have jumped on board by donating products to the raffle and adorning their windows with royal paraphernalia.
"This is a big deal globally," Lyon's Bradley said.
The Greenwich Village festivities will include a 6 a.m. live screening, a 9 a.m. brunch and 12 p.m. lunch and Lyon, and day-long festivities at Tea and Sympathy. All shops are located on Greenwich Ave. near Jackson Square.
Although this Greenwich Village hangout is a far cry from Buckingham Palace, the Imperial Court of New York is hosting a nightime costume extravaganza fit for a queen.
The drag queen club, headed by Dowager Emperor Jack and Duchess Gracie Steels, invites commoners to join the festivities by dressing as a member of a royal wedding party, and to sip tea and watch a repeat screening of the wedding.
"It will be a fun one, especially with how wonderful England has a breath of fresh air in it now, with Catherine and the young prince," Steels said.
Since Kate Middleton's dress designer is one of the royal wedding's best-kept secrets, Steels suggested that '80s clothing would be appropriate, as a nod to the groom's mother's wedding.
"The fashion of the '80s was so ridiculous and everyone can do something [for that era]," Steels said. "There was an iconic period of time for any age. We love the music, the fashion. And let's not forget the wedding dresses!"
Imperial Court of New York will celebrate at Stonewall Inn on 53 Christopher Street from 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.
THE EVENTI HOTEL
A "Kate and Wills" Look-A-Like Contest will take place after a screening of the wedding at the hotel's Bar Basque restaurant, located in Chelsea. The couple that looks the most like Prince William or Kate Middleton will receive a complimentary weekend stay at Eventi and a romantic dinner for two.
"The buzz about the royal wedding has been tremendous," spokeswoman Erica Cohen said, adding that the look-alike contest will be a "great interactive" for Manhattanites obsessed with all things royal.
The winners will be announced after the bar serves its Royal Wedding Breakfast of home-made scones with jam and cream, English muffins and a Bloody Mary or Mimosa.
The Eventi Hotel will host their Royal Wedding party from 7 a.m. onwards at the Bar Basque restaurant, 851 Avenue of the Americas.
LONDON CANDY COMPANY
This new Upper East Side candy store will offer afternoon tea all day, with a side of their signature dish, the coveted English Cadbury's chocolate.
To put customers in a wedding mood, DJs will spin Brit Pop classics from artists such as Oasis and The Beatles. And if that's not English enough, London Candy Co. also be inundated with bunting, bowler hats and cucumber sandwiches.
"I think that true English chocolates...bring back memories for a lot of people," said owner Jignesh Patel. "They're also richer and sweeter than many American chocolates, to which I say, 'What could be bad?'"
London Candy Co. will host their festivities from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. at the store on 1442 Lexington Avenue and 94th Street.
The Paley Center is inviting guests to wear their favorite bridesmaids dresses and turn up from 5:30 a.m. to watch the wedding in high-def in the Midtown theater along with footage of other classic weddings.
English scones will be served and prizes are to be had for the woman dressed in the most impressive attire. Royal wedding buffs should bone up on their facts, as royal wedding trivia is part of the fun.
The doors open at 5:30 a.m. at the Paley Center, located at 25 West 52nd Street between Fifth and Sixth avenues. The event is free, but reserve your ticket through their website.
NEW YORK PALACE HOTEL
If 5 a.m. sounds a little ambitious, head to Midtown's luxurious New York Palace Hotel for a truly royal pampering. For $150, the appropriately named hotel offers guests pillows, blankets and slippers to cozy up in while watching the wedding in the drawing room of the Villar Mansion.
The cost includes party favors and an English breakfast of scones and marmalade, scrambled eggs with Devonshire cream and breakfast bangers.
The New York Palace Hotel will open their doors at 455 Madison Ave. between 51st and 52nd streets with coffee at 5:30 a.m. and conclude with an 8 a.m. champagne toast.
For a less decadent experience, well-wishers can watch the nuptials live at Lower Manhattan's historic Trinity Church.
Trinity will show the wedding on a big screen inside the looming and ornate Episcopalian church, which was founded by the Royal Charter of England in 1697.
Trinity Church, located on Broadway and Wall Street, will open their doors to the public for the wedding viewing at 5 a.m.
Celebrity commenters will broadcast their pre-show and wedding coverage live from London on giant digital billboards and large-screen televisions at the Times Square party,hosted by the TLC network.
"If you're going to celebrate the biggest wedding of the decade in NY, there is no better place to do it than in Times Square," said Tom Carr, a TLC spokesman.
Starting early Friday morning, the network will also host a fashion show, on-site weddings for three couples and a performance of the perky pop song "I Do" by Grammy winner Colbie Calliat.
"This is without question the most widely anticipated wedding in a generation," said Paul Buccieri, president of production company ITV Studios America.
TLC will begin programming at 4 a.m. at Father Duffy Square, located between Broadway and Seventh Avenue from 45th to 47th streets.