Travelrific® Travel Journal

A blog for travel enthusiasts. Listen to our podcasts on the blogroll at Travelrific® Radio. Visit our Wanderful Places® Travel Shop for travel-inspired merchandise!

Archive for new york

An Exceptional Sense of Place

By Linda Tancs

Frederic Church, a major Hudson River School painter, had talents beyond the brush. A self-taught architect and landscape designer, he indulged his influences from world travels in the design and construction of a Victorian villa with Middle Eastern accents and named it Olana after a fortress-treasure house in ancient Greater Persia. Its 250-acre naturalistic landscape is one of Church’s great works of art and is one of the most intact artist-designed landscapes in the United States. Because it was created in the area of the birthplace of the Hudson River School arts movement, it possesses an exceptional sense of place—not to mention enviable views of the Hudson River valley. This year marks the 50th anniversary of Olana’s opening to the public, which includes the seasonal, popular guided house tour and year-round, self-guided landscape tours.

Advertisements

Paulding’s Folly

By Linda Tancs

New York City mayor William Paulding constructed a Gothic Revival mansion in the 1800s overlooking the Hudson River in Tarrytown, New York. Unusual in the post-Colonial era, it sported fanciful turrets and an asymmetrical design that earned it the moniker “Paulding’s Folly.” Its second owner, merchant George Merritt, doubled down you might say by adding to the fanciful Gothic structure and naming it Lyndenhurst after the abundance of Linden trees on the property. Railroad tycoon Jay Gould was the third owner of the estate who, like other wealthy patrons of his day commissioning the construction of mansions along the bluffs of the river from New York City to Albany, used the property as a country retreat. Known today as Lyndhurst, the art, furnishings and antiques remain intact and reflect the character of its three owners, and its grounds survive as an outstanding example of 19th century landscape design.

The Richest Man’s House

By Linda Tancs

In his day, philanthropist and oil magnate John D. Rockefeller was the richest man in America. He built a hilltop paradise in New York’s Hudson Valley and named it Kykuit, a Dutch word meaning “lookout.” The stately mansion and its grounds are aptly named, overlooking the Hudson River and affording views of New York City 25 miles to the south. The classic tour is perfect for first-time visitors to this expansive, historic estate that was home to four generations of the Rockefeller family. The visit includes the main floor of the house complete with its fine furnishings and art, the subterranean art galleries, the Inner Garden and West Terrace (with spectacular views of the Hudson River and the outdoor sculpture collection) and the Coach Barn with its collection of antique carriages and classic automobiles.

Jazz in Queens

By Linda Tancs

Jazz great Louis Armstrong was born in one of the poorest sections of New Orleans. He was rich and famous enough to live anywhere, yet, true to his roots, chose a modest house for himself and his wife for the remainder of their lives in Corona, Queens. No one else has lived there since. Now a National Historic Landmark and a New York City landmark, the Louis Armstrong House Museum is shown only through guided 40-minute historic house tours that start every hour on the hour. The tour offers glimpses into his life and legacy, including audio clips from Louis’s homemade recordings and snippets of him practicing his trumpet, enjoying a meal or talking with his friends. The museum is located in the northern part of Queens, New York City, close to LaGuardia Airport.

The Residents of Green-Wood

By Linda Tancs

Composer Leonard Bernstein. Artist Louis Comfort Tiffany. Politician Boss Tweed. Newspaper magnate Horace Greeley. They’re just some of over 500,000 permanent residents of Green-Wood, one of the first rural cemeteries in America. Founded in 1838 and now a National Historic Landmark, its 478 acres include hills, valleys, glacial ponds and paths. In addition to its famous occupants, the site has Revolutionary War roots, the Battle of Long Island having been fought along what is now its grounds. It also boasts one of the largest outdoor collections of statuary and mausoleums. Located at 5th Avenue and 25th Street in Brooklyn, New York, admission is always free. Take the trolley or a guided or self-guided tour.

The Hudson River School

By Linda Tancs

The Hudson River School was an American art movement of the 19th century, a group of New York City-based landscape painters that emerged about 1850 under the influence of the English émigré Thomas Cole. Cole’s artistry was inspired by the Catskill region, a place he visited for the first time in 1825 on a sketching trip. His home, Cedar Grove, is a National Historic Site located in the beautiful Hudson Valley in the Village of Catskill, New York, right near the Rip Van Winkle Bridge. Open May through October, his home and studios offer sweeping views of the Catskill Mountains.

Food and Drink in Brooklyn

By Linda Tancs

Ever consider the art—and science—of food and drink? You’ll find thought-provoking answers and engaging exhibits at the Museum of Food and Drink in Brooklyn, New York. At the facility’s inaugural design studio and gallery space located in the heart of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, you can participate in cooking classes, guided tastings, hands-on workshops, science demonstrations, discussions and seminars. Now there’s plenty of food for thought.

%d bloggers like this: