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“A Feel Good Place”

New Britain Museum of American Art
Ranked #1 of 16 things to do in New Britain
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Acknowledged as the first museum in the world dedicated solely to collecting American art, the NBMAA is renowned for its preeminent collection spanning three centuries of American history. The award-winning Chase Family Building, which opened in 2006 to critical and public acclaim, features 15 spacious galleries which showcase the permanent collection and upwards of 25 special exhibitions a year featuring American masters, emerging artists and private collections. Education and community outreach programs for all ages include docent-led school and adult tours, teacher services, studio classes and vacation programs, Art Happy Hour gallery talks, lectures, symposia, concerts, film, monthly First Friday jazz evenings, quarterly Museum After Dark parties for young professionals, and the annual Juneteenth celebration. Enjoy Café on the Park for a light lunch prepared by “Best Caterer in Connecticut” Jordan Caterers. Visit the Museum Shop for unique gifts. Drop by the “ArtLab” learning gallery with your little ones. Gems not to be missed include Thomas Hart Benton’s murals “The Arts of Life in America,” “The Cycle of Terror and Tragedy, September 11, 2001” by Graydon Parrish,” and Dale Chihuly’s “Blue and Beyond Blue” spectacular chandelier. Called “a destination for art lovers everywhere,” “first-class,” “a full-size, transparent temple of art, mixing New York ambience with Yankee ingenuity and all-American beauty,” the NBMAA is not to be missed.
Useful Information: Food available for purchase, Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Wheelchair access
Reviewed March 14, 2013

Located on a lovely street with well kept early 1900's houses, one feels good immediately upon parking in front of the museum. There is a public park behind the museum so the site is like an oasis within the city. There were lots of people strolling through the park on the Sunday afternoon of our visit. We saw the Toulouse Lautrec special exhibit which is not to be missed. The building itself is very natural light filled with oversized windows in the foyer and cafe and staircase to the second floor. The colored paper cup art on the wall of the staircase is something to marvel at. A visit to this museum will make you feel good long after you have left.
The soup and the sandwich we ate in the cafe was better than most in the Hartford/New Britain area. Once your order has been placed, you seat yourself at a table to admire the outdoors and your food and drink is brought to your table.
I have nothing negative to report.

Thank queenofthebeach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"permanent collection"
in 18 reviews
"walnut hill park"
in 29 reviews
"new wing"
in 6 reviews
"special exhibit"
in 10 reviews
"visiting exhibits"
in 4 reviews
"the hudson river school"
in 8 reviews
"very nice gift shop"
in 4 reviews
"a real gem"
in 5 reviews
"ample free parking"
in 4 reviews
"free pass"
in 3 reviews
"worth the trip"
in 10 reviews
"great collection"
in 8 reviews
"landscape paintings"
in 3 reviews
"central connecticut"
in 6 reviews
"colonial period"
in 3 reviews
"toulouse lautrec"
in 10 reviews
"small city"
in 3 reviews
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216 - 220 of 301 reviews

Reviewed March 7, 2013

Small, intimate, displays change frequently. Well worth a visit to anyone coming to the area. Maybe a half hour from Hartford.

Thank trixie5736
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 27, 2013

The New Britain Museum of American Art held an after hours event that I attended. It was fabulous! I wish other museums would adopt this concept of making what can be considered a 'stuffy' topic of art into a wide reaching pleasurable experience to draw in many more people.

For a reasonable fee we walked the museum viewing various forms of art while sipping wine or beer. There were stations where the wine and beer was available (free of charge) as well as a variety of snacking foods. They had hired a belly dancer; magician and palm reader for the evening as well as two DJ's for music. The palm reader was a no show for some reason but I never missed her because the rest of the evening was so filled with excitement and fun.

The upstairs DJ played more contemporary rock while the downstairs DJ was pumping out pounding techno music with lights sparkling/flashing around the room. I opted for the downstairs DJ for quite some time and loved it...only came upstairs because I was exhausted from dancing so much.

We met fun and interesting people all over the museum. My group decided to take a few pictures (posing as models) against a wall upstairs and that turned out to be a magnet for other people who wanted to pose as well. I took the shots; collected email addresses and sent the pictures out to virtual strangers the next day. I've never experienced such a spontaneous and fun loving group of people before and I have to think it's at least in part due to the museum and the artistic/open minded type of personality it attracts.

We finished our evening with a gourmet cupcake from a vendor outside, narrowly edging out a vendor selling gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. It was nice to have two delicious options right outside the door.

It was a fantastic evening and I look forward to the next Museum After Dark event!

Thank ELockwood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2013

Such an absolute delight. You are surprised on every floor and the work is eye-opening. I don't know what I expected - but I know that I really liked the visit and have been back once already - we're taking friends next weekend.

Thank PhilipConnecticut
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 7, 2013

A lovely museum adjacent to Walnut Hill Park with a surpirsingly good collection of art. Many visiting exhibits are a good reason to return periodically.

Thank mainelovers1970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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