We stayed in the 2 story duplex and it was perfect. Next door is subway and a grocery store (even had Greek organic yogurt and fruit and wine). We had no car, but spent the week exploring all of Manhattan (bring comfortable shoes!). Julio was there to greet us with his beautiful family upon arrival. Reserving was a breeze, and Julio was very responsive to our FYI questions even after our arrival in NYC. Price was very reasonable considering the wonderful accommodations and convenience. While obviously not Park Central address ambience, folks were friendly and polite and helpful. Good exposure for our son to increase his awareness outside his cocooned suburbia existence.
Like a previous reviewer, we experienced extreme heat for NYC. The 2 upstairs air conditioners worked great. When it isn't extremely hot, the cross breeze in the living/kitchen area was pleasant (although I wouldn't leave windows open at night). We used the kitchen to cook, breakfast each day, the fridge was filled, etc.
Our main hobby is travel, yet this was our family’s first trip to NYC. We rank it as one of our best vacations ever too. What can one do with a 12YO boy in NYC?
Within walking distance:
- Morris-Jumel Mansion Museum at end of Sylvan Terrace street (next to town house)
(where Washington stayed for 5 weeks in Autumn of 1776 during revolution and then later came back for visit and held impressive dinner in summer of 1790 with John and Abigail Adams, their son Charles Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and Henry Knox and their wives, and the president’s grandchildren) . Took nice tour and learned about Sylvan Terrace too.
- around 145th and Broadway is nicer restaurants, and along the water is a large organic grocery store.
- Another Pizza place at about 165th and Broadway – very different climate once get next to Columbia University)
Requiring a subway trip: (we had no car)
Note: The locals were great about explaining any exceptions to the schedule (which is supposedly common on weekends, and we were there during Fleet Week/Memorial Day weekend which was really confusing). Folks who work at the subway booths were rude and clueless, the folks riding the subways our direction were great!)
- Lots of Large Rocks to Climb on
- Belvedere Castle - The view from up top was amazing
- PediCab tour
- Carousel – 2nd oldest in US still working?
- Heckscher playground – largest in City (they said US, but don’t think so). Had huge rock to slide down. Swings with seats sized for adults too!!
- Bethesda Fountain and Terrace (wonderful mosaics)
- Remote control toy sailboats
- Beautiful gardens
- street artists and musicians
Museum of Natural History (subway exit directly into Museum!) – download the iPod app to use during your visit
Rockfeller Center (see Today Show from outside for free; may have free concerts too!)
Top of the Rock Observation Deck – lots of great photos!
St Patrick’s cathedral on 5th (very beautiful inside; lots of stained glass windows)
Circle Line Boat Tour
Empire State Building (went to 102 floor and 86th floor;
United Nations Guided Tour . Were able to witness General Assembly in session!
Grand Central Station – and try the Manhattan Chowder
Metropolitan Museum of Art-> saw medieval art (some very old), armor and weapons, old Egypt including tomb and temple.
fantastic restaurant east of Central Park: Eat Restaurant (E.A.T.), 1064 Madison Avenue. elizabar.com
Spiderman Play – at Foxwood Theater – Actor who plays the MATINEE is great! Got autographs at stage door – including Spider-Man actor (Matthew James Thomas)
walked up 5th street looking through shop windows; Tiffany; (boys went to Home Depot – nicest Home Depot anywhere!) and the expensive car dealerships
Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum
Tenement Museum 108 Orchard Street, Lower East Side, New York City, NY 10002 took the Irish Outsiders tour (4th floor of building)
Lunch at Katz Deli. Very authentic lower East Side deli where Harry met Sally was filmed. Wallstreet (The wall street charging Bull, Crepes on William St.; walked through Stone Street - outdoor bar/restaurant area – nice for adults) Saw where George Washington took Oath of Office
Trinity Episcopal church – had either Hamilton’s tomb or Obit
9/11 Ground 0 World Trade Center Memorial – quite stunning
PS: Here is the history story the museum provided us on Sylvan Terrace:
Was small old row of townhouses along Sylvan Terrace which was original road to Morris-Jumel Mansion Museum. Townhouses are wood, and when New York City built subway out to them, became part of New York City and building in wood was banned due to fire hazard (so last houses built – story not completely clear). Location was because expected subway to build there (and the subway was built as expected)
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Sylvan GuestHouse.Located on a quite, historic cobble stone street is a modern styled guesthouse with its own private entrance. Built in 1882, this renovated townhouse is located on Sylvan Terrace in Manhattan's Harlem Heights area. Sylvan Terrace has been published around the world and 30,000 tourists walk this block each year to experience the allure of a one of a kind street and the Morris Jumel Mansion, where George Washington once resided. Steps away from the C train, and one stop away from the #1 and A trains, this destination is close to grocery stores, pharmacies and laundry centers. Only 20 minutes from lower Manhattan, this residence is a home away from home. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Sylvan Guest House Hotel New York City
- The Sylvan Hotel