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Things to Do in New York City - page 5

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Saks Fifth Avenue Flagship
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Arguably the most luxurious department store in the city, Saks Fifth Avenue is the result of a partnership between two powerful New York City department store families: the Saks’ and Gimbel Brothers. In September 1924, Horace Saks and Bernard Gimbel opened this famous chain’s flagship store in Midtown Manhattan, next door to St. Patrick’s Cathedral and across the street from the site that would become, in 1939, Rockefeller Center.

Saks’ flagship building occupies an entire city block and is decorated in the Art Deco style, inspired by the 1925 Paris Exposition. The store’s layout is divided into a series of high-end specialty shops, each highlighting individual designers of clothing, accessories and home wares. The 8th floor shoe department, 10022-SHOE, is a fantasy-inducing collection of the world’s greatest luxury shoe designers, and is named with the zip code of the surrounding neighborhood.

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Chelsea Market
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Built in the former home of the National Biscuit Company (where the Oreo was born), this Chelsea landmark was opened in 1997 as a multi-purpose market and business complex. A foodie haven, the Market is home to some of the most sought-after treats in New York City (including Jacques Torres Chocolate), as well as a handful of acclaimed restaurants (like sushi hotspot Morimoto), and the studios and offices of the Food Network.

Gently redesigned by Vandeberg Architects, Chelsea Market today features a splashy shopping arcade, but still incorporates much of the vintage ductwork, tiling, and signboards of the original National Biscuit Company. The 1890s version of the structure was divided into two major buildings connected by a pedestrian walkway; that walkway, which runs through the building on its 10th Avenue side, is now a portion of the High Line, a mile-long elevated greenway that repurposes an old stretch of the New York Central Railroad.

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Fraunces Tavern Museum
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Fraunces Tavern is a national historic landmark, museum, and restaurant in New York City, famous for being the place where George Washington bid farewell to his troops at the end of the American Revolution. Since 1904, the building has been owned by the Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York Inc., who claim it is Manhattan’s oldest surviving building. It is part of the New York Freedom Trail and the American Whiskey Trail. The museum’s mission is to create appreciation for New York City history as it relates to Colonial America, the Revolutionary War, and the Early Republic.

Through the varied exhibitions of art and artifacts relating to the museum’s historic site, the museum aims to create this appreciation through educating the public. Different exhibits include the ‘Long Room,’ the site of General George Washington’s farewell to his officers at the end of the Revolution. The room is a recreation of an 18th century public dining room.

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National Museum of the American Indian–New York
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Located in the heart of lower Manhattan near the Staten Island Ferry and Wall Street, The National Museum of the American Indian is home to one of the largest collections of Native American art and artifacts in the world. Travelers who venture to this destination will find more than 800,000 unique items on display, which detail the history, culture and traditions of America’s native people. And while a majority—close to 70 percent—of the museum’s collection is from the U.S., visitors will find plenty of items from Central and South America, as well as the Caribbean.

Travelers can wander the galleries, which are jam-packed with pieces that detail the unique experiences of a variety of tribes, wander past photography displays, or settle in for one of the occasional movies or audio tours that’s on offer at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York.

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More Things to Do in New York City

Eleven Tears Memorial

Eleven Tears Memorial

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In the lobby of the American Express headquarters at the World Financial Center in New York City, the company has created a memorial honoring the eleven American Express employees who were killed in the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. The memorial was designed by lower Manhattan artist Ken Smith. The foundation of the memorial is composed around a black granite reflecting pool with eleven sides. A 600-lb piece of Brazilian quartz is shaped like a tear and carved with eleven sides. The quartz is suspended over the granite reflecting pool by eleven thin cables. Inscribed in the sides of the granite pool are the names of the victims who died in the attack, along with five words or phrases describing each person. “Tear drops” of water fall gently from the ceiling into the pool below, and a nearby plaque offers more personal details on each of the victims.

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General Grant National Memorial

General Grant National Memorial

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Paying tribute to Civil War hero and former president General Ulysses S. Grant and his wife Julia, the General Grant Memorial is the largest tomb in North America. General Grant is commended for his role in ending the bloodiest war in American history, with his words “let us have peace” immortalized in the structure.

The large granite and marble mausoleum is surrounded by seventeen intricate, Gaudi-inspired benches designed by Chilean artist Pedro Silva. The structure itself takes after classical inspiration with Doric columns and an Ionic colonnade. It bears resemblance to some of the ancient monuments of Rome. The interior, however, was inspired by the Tomb of Napoleon at Les Invalides in Paris.

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Time Warner Center

Time Warner Center

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New York City Garment District

New York City Garment District

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Also known as the Fashion District, New York’s Garment District is located in Manhattan between Fifth and Ninth Avenues and 34th and 42nd Streets. It gets its name due to the high concentration of show rooms, fashion brands, wholesale outlets and production spaces. Along with being a mecca for fabric and apparel, the Garment District is also worthwhile as shoppers can find everything from designer pieces to budget buys and sample sales.

Start your tour of the area at the Garment District Kiosk at 39th and Seventh Avenue to pick up maps, brochures and coupons that will help you navigate the many fashionable spaces. If you can only go to one shop in the area, make it Mood Fabrics which encompasses three floors of designer textiles. Visitors also enjoy walking the Fashion Hall of Fame from 38th to 40th along Seventh Avenue.

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Wollman Rink

Wollman Rink

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Open from November through March, the Wollman Rink is an outdoor ice-skating rink in Central Park. Accessible from the south entrance of West 59th Street and 6th Avenue, the rink offers open skating as well as lessons. For New Yorkers and visitors, skating on the rink is a tradition that symbolizes the magic and romance of the winter holidays. In fact the scenic rink, with its park and Manhattan skyline backdrop, has been featured in various movies, including “Serendipity” and “Love Story.”

During the summer months, the rink turns into the Victorian Gardens.

The rink is open Monday & Tuesday from 10am to 2:30pm, Wednesday & Thursday from 10am to 10pm, Friday & Saturday from 10am to 11pm, Sunday 10am to 9pm and Thanksgiving 10am to 7pm. Prices are $11 Monday through Thursday and $17 Friday through Sunday for adults, $6 every day for childen 11 and under, and $5 Monday through Thursday and $9 Friday through Sunday for seniors.

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Museum of Jewish Heritage

Museum of Jewish Heritage

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Located at 36 Battery Place in Lower Manhattan’s Battery Park City, the Museum of Jewish Heritage is a living memorial to those who lost their lives in the Holocaust. Opened in 1997, the mission of the museum is “to educate people of all ages and backgrounds about the broad tapestry of Jewish life in the 20th and 21st centuries—before, during, and after the Holocaust.” In their collection, the Museum of Jewish Heritage showcases over 25,000 items that are used to tell the story of Jewish history. The permanent Core Exhibition features multiple perspectives on Jewish history, life and culture through artifacts, audio testimonials, photographs and films that are separated into three sections: “Jewish Life A Century Ago,” “The War Against the Jews” and “Jewish Renewal.” Not only is the exhibition itself impressive, but also the six-sided building it resides in, which is symbolic of the Star of David as well as the six million Jews who lost their lives during the Holocaust.

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Cafe Wha?

Cafe Wha?

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Located at 115 MacDougal Street in Greenwich Village, Cafe Wha? is a historic bar known for being the career birthplace of many well-known musicians and comedians. Open since the 1950s, some artists who consider Cafe Wha? a home include Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Bruce Springsteen, Woody Allen, Lenny Bruce, Bill Crosby and Peter, Paul & Mary, to name a few. Although it’s gone through many changes over the years, you can expect high energy music in an informal atmosphere every night of the week. In 1987, the Cafe Wha? House Band was employed, and are now known throughout the world and regularly feature celebrity guest performers. You can hear them live Wednesday through Sunday, playing everything from Motown to Reggae to Alternative Rock and more. On Monday nights you’ll hear Brazooka, a Brazilian dance band incorporating elements of Jazz and Samba, while Tuesdays are a mix of soul, R&B and Funk with Disfunktion.
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New York Penn Station

New York Penn Station

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New York City is no stranger to the everyday hustle and bustle, and Penn Station, the city’s largest intercity train station, is no exception. Constructed in the early 20th century, it was designed in a Beaux-Arts style inspired by the Gare d’Orsay in Paris. It was once considered one of the most important architectural sites in New York. Unfortunately due to low utilization it was demolished in the 1950s. It was restored and reconstructed to its current station in 1969.

Today it is operated by Amtrak and serves more than 600,000 passengers daily — that’s more than any other transit station in North America. It brings in daily commuters from the surrounding areas of Long Island and New Jersey and is well-connected with the New York City Subway system. Often crowded, the multi-level underground station is one of the busiest spots in Manhattan.

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42nd Street New York City

42nd Street New York City

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Times Square is one of New York City’s most-visited landmarks and no street encapsulates all this destination has to offer quite like 42nd Street. It represents the heart of the Big Apple and the ultimate success to actors and actresses looking to make it on stage. But this busy spot has more to offer travelers than just live entertainment.

In addition to being the center of the theater district and a Times Square thoroughfare, this iconic stretch of street that runs from east to west is also home to several of the city’s most impressive sites. First-time visitors to this east coast city can check out the stunning Grand Central Station, Bryan Park’s urban Oasis, the United Nation’s Headquarters and the New York City Public Library without ever leaving 42nd Street! Since this is the main artery of one of America’s favorite cities, travelers will find it not only easy to access, but also easy to navigate, since literally all subway lines lead to 42th Street.

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The Jewish Museum

The Jewish Museum

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Morris-Jumel Mansion

Morris-Jumel Mansion

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This iconic whitewashed house in Manhattan’s Washington Heights neighborhood was built in 1765 and is officially the oldest home in the borough. Now a museum dedicated to the city—and the nation’ —colorful past, the Morris-Jumel Mansion once served as the headquarters for the American Revolution. In addition to exploring the galleries, which are filled with historic artifacts and photographs, travelers can enjoy the expansive gardens, which are tended by local volunteers, and even relax during warmer months with live music performances in the stunning outdoor setting.

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