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Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

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New York
posts: 17
reviews: 2
Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

I am planning to take a short trip to Milwaukee. I would arrive at the airport on a January day, take a rental or hotel shuttle to Hilton by West Michigan street, attend to a concert at Riverside, head back to hotel and then take a flight back home to NYC next day.

First of all I just wanted to know what I would encounter during this trip? Is it totally safe around the venue? I see that it looks like a very nice town from google street view, but I really cannot tell since we also have pretty cool nice looking towns in NYC and NJ but it is actually a make up to cover the crap that's going on in the area. Also google maps show pretty classy places around there. Any feedback or suggestions would be extremely appreciated. I also wouldn't mind taking a walk in the area to see some restaurants, etc..

I may extend my stay in a way as to arrive Saturday morning and leave Sunday night, so I may have a day and half around town, if there is anything to see that's notable, please feel free to share, otherwise I will just arrive and leave next morning.

Thanks in advance to all.

Milwaukee, WI
posts: 104
reviews: 4
1. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

The downtown area is perfectly safe. Are you talking about the Hilton City Center at 5th and Wisconsin/Michigan, or the new Hilton Garden Inn at Broadway/Michigan?

I like the part of downtown where the Hilton Garden Inn is better than where the other Hilton is. Both are close to the Riverside Theater.

New York
posts: 17
reviews: 2
2. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

Thanks for the feedback.

I am considering Hampton Inn & Suites Milwaukee Downtown since it is right next to the venue, and seem to have decent prices.

The other hotels in the immediate area are Courtyard Milwaukee Downtown and Mariott Residence Inn Milwaukee Downtown.

I called Hampton Inn & Suites and a very helpful lovely lady told me they don't have shuttle but the taxi should not cost more than $25 from the airport, or if I happened to rent a car, there is a municipal parking lot that costs $14/day til next noon. That is also pretty cool.

As for doing stuff in the area, what would your commend? Keep in mind I won't have a lot of time, and it will probably be pretty cold out, right? Checking the average temps, it is showing well below freezing marks, near 10's and low 20's, that is crazy.. :) I guess I have to ask for some indoor areas, like museums? Famous spots? etc?

Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
posts: 8,883
reviews: 59
3. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

I agree that safety should not be an issue for you although it seems no American city is 100% safe anymore. You might encounter an occasional pan handler, but that's less likely with the cold weather in January.

You can easily walk from the Hilton to the Riverside. There is a restaurant/ bar called Mo's Irish Pub that is directly across the street from the Riverside. It might be a good choice for a pre show dinner or drink. http://mosirishpub.com/milwaukee/index.html

If it's really cold you can walk inside most of the way from the HIlton to the Riverside. You can enter the skywalk system and Grand Avenue Mall from the Boston store at 4th and Wisconsin, one block east of the Hilton. If you want to go upscale for dinner try the Capitol Grille at 4th and Wisconsin.

The inside walk will be closed after the concert.

You could visit the Milwaukee Public Museum, the Milwaukee Art Museum and/or the Harley Davidson Museum fairly close to the Hilton.

Check out some of those places and see if they might be of interest. The Art museum has a Rembrandt exhibit that closes on January 13th. The Public Museum has a Pirate exhibit that has been getting a lot of publicity.

If you plan to stay downtown I would just take a shuttle to and from the airport. It's probably cheaper than the cost of parking at the Hilton.

Edited: 4:42 pm, December 26, 2012
New York
posts: 17
reviews: 2
4. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

Thanks, that's a lot of info, now I want to stay more than a day! :) If we go, it will be last weekend of January, so looks like we will miss the Rembrandt.

I will certainly check these out, now that we saw the brutal weather, I have to convince my wife.. Thanks again for all the info. If the cab is really just $25, for two people it will end up costing less than the shuttle (we were told that shuttle is around $12-$15 per person, and not to mention we probably have to wait for it).

On the other hand, Las Vegas hotel said cab should not be a lot more than $7 that their shuttle charges, I ended up paying $28.. ouch.

WI
Destination Expert
for Wisconsin, Colorado Springs
posts: 4,916
reviews: 101
5. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

the third week of January typically is the most brutal each year temperature wise for us here in Wisconsin.

Feel the tropics by visiting "The Domes" (Mitchell Park Conservatory). It's not right where your lodging is so you'd need a cab. Discovery World is a great fun hands on museum that's interesting for all ages, not just kids. Milwaukee Public Museum is fantastic you could spend a lot of time there. Again you'd need a ride to get there. Lakefront Brewery has a fantastically fun tour.

New York
posts: 17
reviews: 2
6. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

hatchpal4u, it looks like Public Museum is less than a mile away, around 3000feet from the hotel, and the Discovery World is around 4500 feet.

I am guessing you are considering the brutal weather when you suggest getting a cab to these places?

Milwaukee
Destination Expert
for Milwaukee
posts: 8,883
reviews: 59
7. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

Our posts crossed. I see you are now looking at alternative accommodations in addition to the Hilton. If you can swing the Marriott Residence Inn I would recommend that from the ones you have listed. It is directly across the street from the Riverside and it is connected to the skywalk system so you can walk a few blocks without going outside.

The Milwaukee Art Museum is worth a visit just for the architecture even without the special exhibit. The permanent exhibits are nothing like the Met in New York or other major museums, but there are many interesting pieces.

The Harley Davidson Museum is recommended even if you are not a motorcycle fan. Pretty much every city has an art museum, history and science museum, etc, but the Harley Davidson museum is unique.

$25 sounds on the low side to me for a taxi from the airport, but I may be wrong. I'm not sure how you can find out exactly.

Also you should know that if you are going to rely on taxis to get around you can not flag a taxi on the streets of Milwaukee like you do in NYC and other cities. So, it's best to have the phone numbers of taxis to call when you need one. They do sit outside the major hotels and you won't wait but a few minutes for a taxi downtown when you call, but if you are at a restaurant or museum you would definitely need to call to get one. And of course taxis are always waiting at the airport.

If the weather cooperates you may be able to do more walking than riding in taxis.

WI
Destination Expert
for Wisconsin, Colorado Springs
posts: 4,916
reviews: 101
8. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

Between being a bit of a walk and being cold it's hard to know who's up for it so I just put cab to be safe. For the Domes you'd definitely need a cab but it would be well worth a visit there too, if you get the chance. It's a unique feature of Milwaukee, one I never tire of and particularly nice to visit in the dead of winter. Walking sure makes it make affordable if you're up for it.

New York
posts: 17
reviews: 2
9. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

Thanks!

We just spotted this funny image and thought it was a big coincidence (or a sign)

https:/…

I am ready to go, and I would assume the regular airlines should be pretty much used to the weather up there and be prepared, I really don't want to get stranded up there. If I go I am definitely going to see the museum, looks like it is pretty similar to our Natural History museum, even it has a similar evolution of skulls display.

Thanks for the big point on letting me know that we cannot just hail a cab on the street, I would have just done it and look like an idiot with his arm up on the side of the street! What an embarrassment that would have been.

My wife is now OK with the cold, but I still have to convince her to take AirTran, she seems to despise them. I don't see any other airline serving the area, other than charter services contracted by bigger airlines.

Edited: 10:39 am, December 27, 2012
WI
Destination Expert
for Wisconsin, Colorado Springs
posts: 4,916
reviews: 101
10. Re: Safety question for Milwaukee trip, and things to do?

We fly Frontier and like it ok....not sure if they have one NY to Milwaukee or not.

funny about the image you shared, that was posted after a good portion of the state was getting buried in a snowstorm the other week!

My favorites at the Milwaukee Public Museum were the butterfly (live) exhibit as it featured larger butterflies. Also the Streets of Old Milwaukee are great to tour as well as the European Village. Three hours there and we barely scratched the surface, you can easily spend a day there exploring!

Edited: 12:25 pm, December 27, 2012