The last time Jacinda Ardern worked in New York she was a bit like the green apple in the Big Apple.

She did a stint as a volunteer in a soup kitchen - which is a far cry of what she'll be experiencing here this week.

Siren-wailing motorcades will ferry her around Manhattan and she'll be flanked by American Secret Service agents talking into their cuffs.


Ardern will be the guest speaker at a number of events, she'll be rubbing shoulders with her old mates, the new breed of leaders, French President Emmanuel Macron and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, although she'd do well to steer clear of him when she bumps into The Don, given Trump in Asia last year mistook her as Trudeau's better half.

But in reality, there's no chance of that happening this week.

Ardern's become a star on the international stage and freely acknowledges she's achieved that by being unusual, incredibly young to be a leader and a new mother to boot, only the second woman in history to give birth while in office. It's that star status that's seen the international media clamouring for an audience with her.

The PM's office tells us hundreds of invitations have had to be turned down because she's in the city that never sleeps for politics, rather than to perform for the cameras. There will be a couple of occasions where she'll get to play to the audience though, two television chat shows beaming out to around seven million viewers. And there'll be an interview with the doyen of performers, CNN's Christiane Amanpour.

These will be more serious appearances than John Key's outing on the Late Show with David Letterman back in 2009 where he charmed the audience reading his top 10 list about New Zealand after our high ranking as the most desirable place in the world to visit. He invited the show's host to the country saying he'd pick him up at the airport, concluding that we're unlike the rest of the world, we still like Americans.

Key got a lot of flak for that appearance but all of those there at the time saw him as a good, Kiwi joker. It certainly didn't do this country any harm at all.

And neither will Ardern, who has a similar charm, although is much more earnest and calculated in what she'll say.

And away from the glare of the television cameras, she'll meet early Wednesday morning with thespian royalty Anne Hathaway, who's a UN Goodwill Ambassador and an advocate for gender equality, so they're bound to have a lot in common.


So for Ardern it's a jam packed week but unlike other leaders who're in town to go out on it at night, she'll be at home at the apartment with partner Clarke Gayford and baby Neve.
For her that's combining business with pleasure.