Nina Garcia is currently the Creative Director of Marie Claire magazine. Previously, she was the Fashion Director at Marie Claire for four years and Elle magazine for 17 years.  A 20-year veteran of the fashion industry, Nina is one of the world's leading experts in fashion and one of the most influential editors, having worked with the most seminal photographers, models and designers in the world.  With long-standing relationships with designers, ranging from Michael Kors and Alexander Wang to Miuccia Prada and Tom Ford, to Stella McCartney, Hedi Slimane and Raf Simons, Nina is both an advocate of early talent, as well as a supporter of historic and established fashion. Her award-winning work in the publishing industry has helped  position Marie Claire as one of the leading fashion books in the world, in addition to strengthening its relationships with luxury advertisers and brands.

As the inimitable judge on Lifetime's "Project Runway," Nina is a style ambassador for multiple brands and advisor to several companies. Nina has appeared on multiple shows, both scripted and unscripted and is a regular contributor to various shows as a style expert, including "Good Morning America" and "The Today Show."

The award-winning author of four books, Nina currently has an online show (Decoding Style) on AOL and will be launching several projects this year. Nina is originally from Barranquilla, Colombia and was educated in Boston University as well as the Fashion Institute of Technology. Nina has a strong online presence, reaching millions of supporters on her Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Tumblr and Tencent across the globe. Visit NinaGarcia.com for more information.

Q&A

What is New York’s best hidden treasure?
The reading room at the Met is divine. The Studiolo from the Ducal Palace in Gubbio transports you right into the 15th century, and the woodwork is simply superb.

Can you describe New York’s best cultural experience?
Eating! There is no better—or tastier—way to experience culture in New York City than through the wonderfully varied cuisines.

Where do you go to escape the city for a day?
I love to hop on the train in Grand Central and visit Dia Beacon in upstate New York, which is the old Nabisco factory that has been turned into a modern art museum. There are incredible pieces by Richard Serra, Dan Flavin, and many, many others.

What is New York City’s best book store?
The Strand. It houses the city’s finest collection of used, rare and out-of-print books. Make sure you set enough time aside to explore everything that The Strand’s shelves have to offer.

What is the best place to watch the sunset in New York?
Battery Park. The sunset is stunning anywhere over the Hudson, but Battery Park is the most serene of places. You can see the sunset over the Statue of Liberty and be completely amazed by the watercolor effect that happens when the sun fades past New Jersey.

In your opinion, where is the best place to take a first date in New York?
If you are looking for something a little more traditional, go to Il Buco on Bond Street. They are a local favorite and one of the best places for Italian food--the romantic, rustic interior makes you feel like you are in Tuscany.

Where is the best place to get a cocktail in New York City?
Bemelmans Bar at The Carlyle is by far the best place for cocktails in the city. I love to enjoy the bar’s amazing art deco interior while sipping on an expertly made Manhattan and listening to Loston Harris’ beautiful jazz performances.

What do you consider to be Manhattan’s best walking trail?
Central Park. Getting lost in the park is one of my favorite things to do—you never know what you’ll discover!

Where do you recommend taking kids?
The Natural History Museum. Not only is this one of the best educational experiences for the kids, but they also have an amazing toy store. After you’re finished at the Museum, go across to Shake Shack for the best burgers in the city.

Describe a perfect scenic drive.
Going to Upstate New York in the autumn so that you can see the seasons change is a must. The colors of the landscape are breathtaking.

What is your favorite early morning activity in New York?
The city moves so fast that taking it slow in the morning is truly a treat. I like to begin by sipping a cappuccino, reading The New York Times, and checking my Twitter feed.

When you want to listen to music or hear a concert, where do you like to go?
The Rose Bar at Gramercy Park Hotel. The space is one of the most intimate that you will find in NYC.

Which museum do you enjoy the most?
The Guggenheim. I’m always happily surprised by their special exhibitions, and I love to walk down the Frank Lloyd Wright spiral. It is such a different way to see art.

What is your favorite NYC neighborhood stroll?
Along the Chelsea Piers—you can do some shopping at Comme des Garçons, visit the market, and see all of the galleries in one neighborhood!