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The Top Late-Night Hangout Spots for NYU Students

By  Heidi Patalano and Nikki Lohr | August 12, 2013 7:11am 

 These establishments will let you linger a little longer downtown.
Late-Night Spots Near NYU
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GREENWICH VILLAGE — NYU students who don't want to go to sleep when the sun goes down will find plenty of company in their neighborhood.

Greenwich Village has lots of places for under-21 night owls to grab snacks, dessert — and even a taste of culture.

From classic 24-hour diners to museums farther afield offering discounted rates, DNAinfo New York rounded up the best places for college students to hang out or have an inspired conversation late at night:

Late-Night Food

144 Second Ave.
Open daily, 24 hours
Nearly 60 years old, the Ukranian diner Veselka is a landmark of the East Village. Featured in movies “Trust the Man” and “Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist,” the diner is also famous for its homemade matzo ball soup, borscht and pierogies. While the entire menu is available at any hour of the day, co-owner Jason Birchard said the restaurant is starting a new program that will entice adventurous late-night eaters.

“We’re experimenting with a menu item that’s only going to be available in the late night,” he said. “One of my chefs came up with a creation — a buffalo chicken pierogi. We actually have a campaign: If you allow us to take your photo and put it on Facebook, you’ll get your order of pierogies for free.”

Masala Times
194 Bleeker St.
Sunday to Thursday noon to 3 a.m.
Friday and Saturday noon to 5 a.m.
The owners of this Indian street food restaurant knew exactly what they were doing when they decided to stay open just one hour past the closing time of the neighboring bars. Specializing in slow-cooked Indian stews and healthy barbecued kebabs all with a touch of Bollywood flair, this small space is cheerfully delectable.

Waverly Restaurant
385 Sixth Ave.
Open daily, 24 hours
Just steps away from NYU’s campus, the Waverly Restaurant is both a city landmark and a great place to stop by with friends in the early morning hours. Refurbished in 2011, the restaurant that retains its original fluorescent signage out front captures the charm of an era that predates the term “gastronomy.”

Just about a block from there is the Washington Square Diner, also open 24 hours, which honors student discounts and has meal specials that make saving a few bucks taste that much sweeter. Further west, French Roast serves up traditional diner fare alongside mussels and escargot at any time you may crave them.

Late-Night Sweets

Rice to Riches
37 Spring St.
Sunday to Thursday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 1 a.m.
Rice pudding: boring, right? Not at Rice to Riches. Founder Peter Moceo originally wanted Rice to Riches to be a restaurant that served all sorts of rice dishes. But when he visited Italy in the late ‘90s, Moceo became enthralled with the dessert artistry of gelato shops. So when Rice to Riches opened in Nolita in April 2003, it focused solely on creating deluxe, flavor-rich versions of rice pudding.

Today it upholds that standard with 21 flavors of rice pudding selling daily. Among those are best-sellers rocky road (labeled “Sex, Drugs and Rocky Road”), vanilla, cheesecake, mascarpone with cherries, and caramel.

A small 8-ounce serving is sizable, so come hungry. A small is $7 and a medium (12 ounces) is $8.75. Toppings — which include whipped cream, raspberry jelly, graham cracker crumbs, espresso crumble and chocolate crumble — are $1 each.

Spot Dessert Bar
13 St. Mark's Place
Sunday to Wednesday noon to 12 a.m.
Thursday to Saturday noon to 1 a.m.
If you want something more exotic, there’s Spot Dessert Bar on St. Marks Place, right next door to NYU territory. Spot specializes in Asian-American dessert fusion, with treats like Green-Tea Tiramisu, Thai Tea Crème Brulee and — the bestseller — Chocolate Green-Tea Lava Cake.

“I’ve been here a million times and I’ve never been disappointed,” said Christyna Kay, an East Village resident who has been coming to Spot for years. Though her favorite dessert changes all the time, her current suggestion is the Smoked Coconut Cheesecake. “It’s great because it’s not overly sweet,” she said.

Museums Open Late

Though a short train ride may be required for some of these spots, these art-centric institutions are worth checking out when they're open late:

The Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn
Wednesday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Thursday  11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Friday to Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Brooklyn Museum is open until 10 p.m. each Thursday and student admission is $8. The Prospect Heights museum is renowned for its Egyptian collection and contemporary art shows.

The first Saturday of every month, the museum is open from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. for free. First Saturday activities include music showcases, dance workshops, films and artist and curator panels. Tickets (which are also free) are sometimes required for these events, so check the museum’s website or sign up for the First Saturday email list.

The New Museum of Art
235 Bowery

Wednesday  11 a.m.  to 6 p.m.
Thursday  11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday to Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Lower East Side's New Museum of Art on Bowery and Prince Street is home to the latest in contemporary art. The New Museum is open until 9 p.m. on Thursdays and admission is free after 7 p.m.

The Morgan Library & Museum
29 E. 36th St.
Tuesday to Thursday 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Friday 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Morgan Library & Museum, which displays rare books, art and manuscripts, is open for free from 7 to 9 p.m. on Fridays. Highlights of the collection include original copies of Mozart’s Symphony in D Major and a July 5, 1845 journal entry written by Henry David Thoreau. It's a straight shot up on the 6 train to reach the library at 36th Street and Madison Avenue.

Poetry Past Midnight
Nuyorican Poets Cafe
236 E. Third St.
Saturday to Wednesday 7 p.m. to 12 a.m.
Thursday and Friday 7 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Slam Poetry nights are Fridays at 10 p.m. at Nuyorican Poets Café on East Third Street between Avenues B and C. Admission is $10 and — as one of the most popular events at Nuyorican — the suggested arrival time is 9:15 p.m. Though poets submit their work beforehand in order to read in the slam sessions, anyone can read their poetry during “The Open Room,” which usually starts right after at 12:30 a.m. Various events happen nightly at the Nuyorican, so check out their calendar.

For more information on places that offer student discounts for everything from museums to Broadway musicals, visit StudentRush.org. For details on underage-friendly concert venues, click here, and to read about cultural events at locations farther away including Lincoln Center, visit the NYU Back-To-School Students Guide