Tag Archives: Family

Tour of the Remnants of Penn Station

BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Vintage McKim Mead White Train Station Credit Wikimedia Commons Library of Congress

Penn Station is the mais intercity railroad station and has a great story! Come explore with us the Tour of the Remnants of Penn Station!

BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Vintage McKim Mead White Train Station Credit Wikimedia Commons Library of Congress
Penn Station Vintage McKim Mead White Train Station – Credit: Wikimedia Commons Library of Congress

As they say “While Grand Central Terminal is majestic, for some reason Penn Station is worn down, ugly and universally hated.” But, the old beating heart and beautiful rich history of the station is still alive and worth sharing!

To start, people don’t keep track, but New York Penn Station is the “main intercity railroad station in New York City and the busiest in the Western Hemisphere, serving more than 630,000 passengers per weekday as of 2018.” (Source: Wikipedia).

Amazing, right?

That said, there are two things most commuters don’t realize about Penn.

First, there used to be a gorgeous Beaux Arts station that was demolished in the mid-60’s. Second: Parts of that old station can still be found today. They’ve just been buried under the arena that landed on top of them.

BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Vintage Aerial View 1910s Credit Wikimedia Commons Library of Congress
Penn Station Vintage Aerial View 1910s – Credit: Wikimedia Commons Library of Congress

On the tour of “The Remnants of Penn Station”, you’ll be taken back inside this central transportation hub to discuss the past, present and future plans for the structure. Although Amtrak only acknowledges one remnant remaining, tour participants will learn about station history and discover remnants of the McKim, Mead & White building located in plain sight.

In addition, tours will continue to be supported by photographic presentations of the station by renown photographers Norman McGrath, Peter Moore, and Aaron Rose. Along with the work of railroad aficionados Alexander Hatos, an employee of Pennsylvania Railroad and Ron Ziel, a railroad historian.

BOOK NOW!


TOUR HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Get a comprehensive history of the past, present and future of Penn Station
  • See over a dozen indoor and outdoor old-station remnants hidden in plain sight
  • Learn insider navigation tips for one of the most cramped and complicated transit hubs in North America
  • See never-before-seen old station photos from the collections of three photographers who photo documented Penn’s life and demolition
  • Each guest will also receive a framable, reproduction ticket of the first commuter ride into Pennsylvania Station from 1910

DETAILS:
Price: $35 per person.
What to know: The tour is 2 hours long; please consult with the MTA for weekend subway schedules and routing changes. No cancellations or refunds.
What to bring: Comfortable walking shoes
Ticket Confirmation: After you book this experience, you will receive a confirmation email from our partner confirming you are attending the tour!

BOOK NOW!


Lastly, take a look at what the revamping of Penn Station looks like below!

It’s said that this renovation has been approved and will cost around $1.6 billion and that the new Moynihan Train Hall will have countless attractions and amenities. It’s estimated to be done by the end of 2020.

Let’s wait and see!

BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Renovation Moynihan Train Hall 2 Credit Governor Cuomo
BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Renovation Moynihan Train Hall Credit Governor Cuomo
BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Renovation Exterior View Credit Governor Cuomo
BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Renovation Moynihan Train Hall 5 Credit Governor Cuomo
BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Renovation Moynihan Train Hall 4 Credit Governor Cuomo
BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Renovation Moynihan Train Hall 3 Credit Governor Cuomo
BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Renovation Empire Station Complex 33rd Street Credit Governor Cuomo
BTSNYC Experiences On Going Tour Of The Remnants Of Penn Station Renovation Skylight Ceiling Credit Governor Cuomo
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To organize a private tour for your team or a special group of clients, contact our experts to learn more about our Corporate Tours & Experiences.
Moreover, if you enjoy this type of tour, be sure to check out these other tours: The Secrets Of Central Park Walking Tour and Underground New York Subway Tour, where we shot a pretty cool video!

Photo Credit: All renderings via office of the Governor Cuomo and via Wikimedia Commons, Library of Congress

The Forgotten East​: A Mystic Pop-Up Adventure Through Ancient China

Culture Music Forgotten East Pop Up Exhibition Ancient China The Silk Market

Chinatown, in downtown New York, is the home of a new pop-up exhibit! The Forgotten East​ is a mystic pop-up adventure that will take you through a journey back to ancient China.

Culture Music Forgotten East Pop Up Exhibition Ancient China Treasure Desert
Courtesy of The Forgotten East

You might remember from your History class back in school the story of the famous Silk Road that connected the regions of “East Asia and Southeast Asia with East Africa, West Asia and Southern Europe”. (source Wikipedia) If you don’t…let me refresh you memory!

It built the relationship between the East and the West from 206 B.C. to 220 A.D.

It’s well-known that the route was immensely prosperous from the silk trade along the way. But, other items were also traded in different time periods like glassware, spices, perfumes, nephrite, jade, other crafts and so much more.

It is also said that not only objects were traded, but there was an immense cultural exchange. Religions like Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Zoroastrianism, etc were spread, but most prominently was Buddhism due to the monasteries found along the journey. They ended up being homes to foreigners that were introduced to this new religion and practices.

What ended up happening is that many of these foreigners, because of the vast influence of different schools, “mixed and matched” beliefs, resulting in syncretism. What is that? Well, it’s the “attempted reconciliation or union of different or opposing principles, practices, or parties, as in philosophy or religion”. (source Dictionary.com)

Now that you’ve refreshed your mind, let me get into the exhibition!

The journey is divided into 4 specific room called The Mountain, The Desert, The Cave and The Market. The artist behind it all is the young and talented, Masa Ma.

Culture Music Forgotten East Pop Up Exhibition Ancient China Masa Ma Artist
The artist, Masa Ma. ©Behind the Scenes NYC

She explains the idea behind it: “I wanted to represent not only the main street of ancient China, but also wanted to bring back the memories, relaxation and the beautiful natural society in ancient times, where industrialization does not exist.”

After all, we all know how crazy it can be to live in a city like New York and other big cities, right? She wanted to remind her audience that it’s time to slow down and enjoy their life in the river of history.


1st room: The Mountain

Culture Music Forgotten East Pop Up Exhibition Ancient China Mountain Bird Poem

This room is beautifully painted and shows an Eastern mountain in a Chinese landscape. In addition, you can walk through some small installations as a continuation of these mountains with a happy surprise when a strong vapor is released to replicate the mountain’s mist. Pretty cool!

It’s also curious and interesting to see on one of the walls, a beautifully written Chinese poem that talks about nature.


2nd Room: The Cave

Culture Music Forgotten East Pop Up Exhibition Ancient China The Cave

When you enter this room, your eyes just can stop looking everywhere. It’s a translation of the Mogao Caves. It is also known as the Caves of the Thousand Buddhas uniting 492 temples located in Gansu province, China. It was used by Buddhists to warship their Gods and practice their endless meditations, as well as welcome foreigners that journeyed through the Silk Road.

Since the cave was the home to some of the most amazing Buddhist art up to 1,000-years old, Masa Ma created small Buddhist sculptures that were placed throughout the room.

Curiously, the holes on the cave’s walls were designed with a mirror, as a reminder to us not to destroy nature and be mindful of our actions.


3rd Room: The Desert

Culture Music Forgotten East Pop Up Exhibition Ancient China Dead End
©Behind the Scenes NYC

Throughout the exploration of this room, you’ll find a beautiful treasure trunk with jewelry, china, silk and other treasures inside (even skulls were found there, back in the day!). Treasures were actually left behind by the ones that passed through and experienced the brutal desert climate.

The fun thing of this room is to play around with the jewelry and take that Instagram-worthy shot! It’s the most explorative place throughout our adventure.


4th Room: The Market

Culture Music Forgotten East Pop Up Exhibition Ancient China The Market
Courtesy of The Forgotten East

Finally, you reach our destination! The Eastern Market was where the magic happened. Travelers and adventurers exchanged good and fostered this fast-growing economy, in such a distant time in history from us.

This last room had some delicious surprises for you to enjoy at the end of the journey with your friends/family.


“​The Forgotten East is not only an exhibit about eastern culture, but it is a journey that represents travelers and adventurers’ courage to conquer challenges and reach their final destination to the western world,” as states Fengyuan Zhong, another artist of the exhibit.

The pop-up exhibition will run daily through July 28th, 2019.

If you enjoyed, you might want to take a look at other exhibits like the Color Factory,  or you might want to explore  museum I love: The Cloister, that is part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Tickets (HERE):
Adults: $25
Kids (2-15 years-old): $15

Hours:
Monday – Friday: 11am – 9pm
Saturday: 10am – 9pm
Sunday: 10am – 8pm

Location: 310 Canal Street

Culture Music Forgotten East Pop Up Exhibition Ancient China Treasure
©Behind the Scenes NYC

Photo Credit: ©Behind the Scenes NYC

Find All 19 Murals Painted By Kobra in New York

Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Tolerance

It’s practically unanimous the feeling and respect people have for Eduardo Kobra. His murals brings so much creativity and life, so I decided to compile and share with you all 19 murals painted by Kobra in New York City, so you have visit them yourself!

Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Tolerance
Tolerance (Madre Teresa & Mahatma Ghandi) – 130 10th Avenue

Last year I had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing the Brazilian artist, Eduardo Kobra, better known as only Kobra. In addition, I was part of a small group that walked around New York City with him to learn, from his own words, what his murals are all about, the inspirations and stories! Priceless, for sure!

For years, Kobra has been a growing legend when the topic is: street art and graffiti.

In New York City alone he currently has 19 breathtaking murals, where in Brazil, he’s painted over 500! But, his work doesn’t stop there. He’s been traveling the four corners of the globe for years now and leaving his mark at every spot.

Amazingly, Kobra is self-taught and collects inspirations from big names like: Banksy, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring (1958-1990), Diego Rivera and the 1970’s group of New York street artists.

Read more about his work!

His recent project in New York, named Colors of Liberty, took place and was finalized by the end of 2018. The idea behind it was to portray and pay homage to great personalities that have and still are fighting against violence, with the goal of spreading peace.

Some of these names are: “the Indian activist Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948), the Holocaust victim Anne Frank (1929-1945), the Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai (1997-), and the German scientist Albert Einstein (1879-1955), among other examples like Mother Teresa, Andy Warhol, Michael Jackson, Amy Winehouse, Frida Kahlo, etc.

His style is certainly one of a kind. The geometrical colors of his murals are distinct and unmistakable, having become his trademark.

He’s painted in countries such as Spain, Italy, Norway, England, Malawi, India, Japan, United Arab Emirates, and several North American cities besides, of course, around Brazil.

Brazilians L-O-V-E New York and when they come across one of Kobra’s murals, the reaction is always the same: they feel SO proud and happy to have a Brazilian artist beautifying the streets of one of the most important cities on our planet. Well, I do think it’s one of the most amazing places on Earth, if you read my story.

That said, I decided to compile and share with you all the current 19 art works around the city with all the names and addresses. This way, you can visit them yourself and be sure to take that Instagram-worthy shot to share with your friends!


Kobra’s Murals in New York City:

Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Liberty
Liberty – 519 Broome Street
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York The Braves of 9/11
The Braves of 9/11 – 780 3rd Avenue
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York The Braves of 9/11 Fireman 2018 Celebration
Fireman 2018 celebration in front of The Braves of 9/11 mural – 780 3rd Avenue
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York SoulPhia
SoulPhia – 16 Clarkson Street
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York War is Hell
Kobra finishing up War is Hell – 219 Bedford Avenue
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Black or White Michael Jackson
Black or White (Michael Jackson) – 180 1st Avenue
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Walk This Way Run D.M.C.
Walk This Way Run-D.M.C. – Corner of 12th Street and 191 Avenue A
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Genial É Andar de Bike Fernanda Paronetto
Genial é Andar de Bike – 776 3rd Avenue
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Stop Wars
Stop Wars – 391 West Street & Christopher Street
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Clube 27
Clube 27 – 36 Rivington Street
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Christ the Redeemer
Christ the Redeemer – 833 Dekalb Avenue
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Mount Rushmore
Mount Rushmore – 10th Avenue and 22nd Street (Andy Warhol, Frida Kahlo, Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat)
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Ellis Immigrants
Ellis Immigrants – 16 Clarkson Street
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York American Dreamers Boy with Balloon
American Dreamers – 14 Watts Street
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Frida Kahlo
Frida Kahlo – 360 Prospect Place
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York We Love NYC
We Love NY – 212 8th Avenue
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Tolerance CloseUp
Tolerance (Madre Teresa & Mahatma Ghandi) – 130 10th Avenue
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Stop Guns
Stop Guns – 231 Eldridge Street
Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Roy Lichenstein Peace Through Liberty
Roy Lichtenstein: Peace Through Liberty – 221 East 44th Street

Here is the full list:

  • Liberty – 519 Broome Street
  • The Braves of 9/11 – 780 3rd Avenue
  • SoulPhia – 16 Clarkson Street
  • War is Hell – 219 Bedford Avenue
  • Black or White (Michael Jackson) – 180 1st Avenue
  • Walk This Way Run-D.M.C. – Corner of 12th Street and 191 Avenue A
  • Genial é Andar de Bike – 776 3rd Avenue
  • Stop Wars – 391 West Street & Christopher Street
  • Clube 27 – 36 Rivington Street
  • Christ the Redeemer – 833 Dekalb Avenue
  • Mount Rushmore – 10th Avenue and 22nd Street
  • Ellis Immigrants – 16 Clarkson Street
  • American Dreamers – 14 Watts Street
  • Frida Kahlo – 360 Prospect Place
  • We Love NY – 212 8th Avenue
  • Tolerance (Madre Teresa & Mahatma Ghandi) – 130 10th Avenue, Manhattan
  • Stop Guns – 231 Eldridge Street
  • Roy Lichtenstein: Peace Through Liberty – 221 East 44th Street

You can also find an older work from Kobra located in the neighborhood of Williamsburg, in Brooklyn of Warhol and Basquiat. 162 North 9th Street & Bedford Avenue.

Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Warhol Basquiat Williamsburg
Warhol and Basquiat – 162 North 9th Street & Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn

Sadly, the very famous iconic kiss mural that could be seen from the High Line is now gone!

I have not been able to find the reason why, as many other people too, but it’s such a huge loss t to the city. Now an ugly, sad grey paint covers it and no explanation was giving…

Eduardo Kobra currently lives in São Paulo, where his atelier is located, with his wife, Andressa, and baby boy, Pedro.

www.eduardokobra.com

Kobra Mural Grafitti New York Kobra Tour


Photo Credit: ©Behind the Scenes NYC and Courtesy of Kobra Studio

Indoor Extreme Sports: The Adrenaline Rush You Never Imagined

Fitness Health Indoor Extreme Sports New York Sanatorium

Indoor Extreme Sports is one of the coolest indoor experiences in New York City! It will make your adrenaline rush in a way you never thought possible! Come see what I’m talking about!

Fitness Health Indoor Extreme Sports New York Clock

Wondering about what to do during the winter months especially when the weather doesn’t invite you to be outdoor? A couple of weeks ago, in the middle of a snow storm, I got to experience one of the most amazing indoor adventures ever!

Indoor Extreme Sports (IES) opened over 14 years ago when Chris Fermoselle felt the need to give New Yorkers a unique, innovative indoor experiences. Starting with only Paintball back then, they now have two locations – Long Island City and Staten Island – that offers more than 8 extreme indoor experiences that includes Lasertag, Archery Tag, Escape the Room, Virtual Reality, Arcade, Axe Throwing Lounge and Rock Climbing.

Being closer to home, I visited the LIC site and started my adventure with one activity I didn’t even know existed…Axe Throwing!

Fitness Health Indoor Extreme Sports New York Axe Throw

If you are wondering about how extreme the activities are, I must say they are pretty intense, but is important for me to share that I always felt safe and supported by all Indoor staff. They were all very dedicated, took the time to explain every activity in detail and gave me the space for questions and concerns.

Axe Throwing is the latest addition at Indoor Extreme Sports. In a bar-type lounge, there are 4 ranges where, after 10-15 minutes of instructions about safety and technique, you can start throwing your “axes”.

The best part is that there are different game modalities and axe sizes that can guarantee you hours of entertainment and competition. It is open for individual practice up to 12 people. And if axes are not your thing, in the same range you can change to arrow shooting.

IFitness Health Indoor Extreme Sports New York Bow and Arrowf you got excited about the archery, IES also has a 5,000sqft field where you can experience Archery Tag with real bows and safe arrows for the world’s first safe archery battle.

Archery Tag is best described as the game of dodgeball with a twist!

The twist is that they use safe foam-based arrow and protective equipment to play the game which allow up to 10 simultaneously players of mostly all ages to experience and participate in this fun, addictive, fast paced style game. No Archery experience necessary!

Now, lets me continue telling you about the other games!

The next activity on line was LaserTag. If you have never heard of that before, Lasertag is where two teams play each other and attempt to ‘’tag’’ each other out using air powered laser tag replica M4 Rifles. The idea is to shoot and “eliminate” the opposing team player wearing a Tactical Molle Vest.

Indoor Extreme Sports is equipped with the most advance software in the world today that tracks real time stats like your kills, deaths, ammo count, points, and more.

With more than 15,000 sqft of available space, there are three battlefields you can play in, “The Arena”, “Zombie” and “Black Ops”. Each of them allows different team sizes, starting with a minimum of 3×3 up to 12×12 players and modality games.

Expect fast paced nonstop action on all of the fields and become immersed with sound effects and real time stats that will have you thinking that you are really part of a video game! Plus, you could encounter some real-life zombies!!!

Fitness Health Indoor Extreme Sports New York Paintball Girl

I also got to experience Paintball/Reball. In this type of paintball the balls are made of rubber instead of paint so they do not explode but they still hurt the same as a normal Paintball. The best part is that you get UNLIMITED AMMO for each of your games as the balls are all reusable.

They provide you with a Paintball Gun, Mask, Ammo Belt, and unlimited ammo. The same as LaserTag, you have various game modalities and it can be played by teams up to 10×10 players.

Fitness Health Indoor Extreme Sports New York Virtual Reality

If you are a fan of video games, IES offers a full immersive Virtual Reality Lounge where you can play multiple live games, both individually or in teams.

Plus, they have two Project Cars that represent the most realistic driving simulation where you would be able get the latest most realistic car racing experience from Go-Karts to F1 Race Cars.

They have it all and no License or Insurance required! Just a warning, you might get dizzy during the game, so be aware of medical issues when you book this activity.

Even though I wasn’t able to experience The Augmented Rock Climbing Wall because in only at the Staten Island site, you can play VR games on a giant rock wall!

WHAT? Yes, you climb and play giant interactive games on a wall for a full hour while doing the funniest work-out ever!

At the same time, if you are more of a traditional video gamer, you can enjoy all classic Arcade Games like air Hockey and more!

IES also has joined the trendy of Escape Rooms, and they have 3 different rooms called “The Sanatorium, Zombie Experience and The Order”.

Fitness Health Indoor Extreme Sports New York Sanatorium Survival

I don’t want to spoil the activity but if you chose the Sanatorium Room, expect to have an hour-long adrenaline packed experience where you will be handcuffed, shackled, and locked inside of the asylum as the mad man’s clock begins to tick while you try to find the clues, live the story and escape the room – or risk becoming a patient there for all eternity!

After more than 3 hours at Indoor Extreme Sports, I can fully recommend this indoor activity not only for winter times but throughout the whole year.

Age and previous experience is not an issue and all members of your family and friends will be equally able to enjoy all their activities.

Also, IES offers the options of multiple activities packages with more convenient prices and is fully equipped to host Birthday parties, company retreats, non-profit events and bachelor(ette) parties among others.

Finally if you enjoy this type of activity, we have a few more to recommend! Try Brooklyn Boulders, that mixed adventure with technology, the famous Renzo Gracie Fight Academy to learn some Jiu Jitsu and Muay Thai techniques and the hottest fitness classes in New York!

Hours: Please check their website since each location has different hours.

Locations:
47-11 Van Dam Street, Long Island City
501 Industry Rd, Staten Island

http://indoorextremesports.com


Text Credit: Written by our contributor Magdalena Concha
Photo Credit: Courtesy of IES

Pescatore Restaurant: Italian Memories Made in New York

Dining Pescatore Restaurant Manhattan Façade

Pescatore Restaurant is an Italian eatery and wine bar that will make your tastebuds as happy as they can get, so be sure to add it to your dining options!

Dining Pescatore Restaurant Manhattan Façade
Dining Pescatore Restaurant Manhattan Pizza Slices
Dining Pescatore Restaurant Manhattan Pizza
Dining Pescatore Restaurant Manhattan Pasta
Dining Pescatore Restaurant Manhattan Full Table
Dining Pescatore Restaurant Manhattan Fettucine
Dining Pescatore Restaurant Manhattan Tables
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Pescatore is a beautiful and elegant Italian restaurant and wine bar located on 2nd Avenue, in Manhattan. It’s always a good idea, for lunch or dinner.

I have been there many times in the evening and once in the afternoon. The menu is pretty similar. The differences are basically the price – a little more expensive for dinner and on the pre-fixe menu they offer for lunch. But, you will find high quality no matter the time. They have great specials for dinner, as well.

Let’s get started with the flatbread – always!!! It’s amazing! But they have lots of good options for appetizers such as bruschettas made with fig compote, ricotta, pine nuts and pomegranate glaze, and meatballs, called Polpette. So, delicious, and it’s served with garlic bread.

Now let’s talk about about the pastas. I do love all the options.

They have a large selection of Spaghetti, Pappardelle, Ravioli, Fettuccine… accompanied by different, rich sauces. For me, the Spaghetti Carbonara is the best. Now, for lunch they serve the regular dish, but for dinner they make it their signature dish, mixing the pasta with all ingredients in a parmesan wheel. Rise your hand if you love cheese like me! Oh, they also have gluten-free and whole wheat pasta.

The main course is a difficult choice if it’s your first time eating there. Under the Secondi part on the menu you’ll find different meat options like chicken, beef, fish and if you like seafood the Scampi di Gamberi is a winner.  The shrimps served with saffron risotto and green beans. Mouth watering, right?

Italian desserts are always welcome. The Chocolate Pizza served with Nutella, hazelnuts, bananas and salted caramel gelato, is one of the desserts you must try.  If you prefer, you can order a Tartufo or maybe a Gelato…it’s up to you. Finally, pair any of your choices with a wine: perfection!

Pescatore unites people with different styles and from countless parts of the globe. You will see many UN workers there, friends catching up, couples during date nights…it’s definitely a place to make happy memories.

We want to hear about the memories you’ve made at Pescatore so please tag us and share your moments with us!

If you’re celebrating a special occasion and need helping organizing a bigger dinner, or for any corporate requests, contact our experts.

Hours:
Daily: 12pm – 11pm
Happy Hour: 12pm – 7pm

Location: 955 2nd Avenue

www.pescatorerestaurant.com


Text by our Contributor: Rafaela Azevedo
Photo Credit
: Courtesy of Pescatore

Most Different Museum in New York Of All Times: Museum of Illusions

Entertainment Culture Music Museum of Illusions Fernanda Paronetto

I recently visited maybe the most different museum in New York of all times, the Museum of Illusions! The eye-tricking illusions were super fun and extremely curious!

When we think about museums, most people immediately think about the big, famous ones like the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET), MoMA, the Whitney and so many others. If you’ve been with us for a while, some other off-the-beaten-track museums might also come to your mind!

But, a few weeks back, I found one maybe the most different museum in New York of all times: the Museum of Illusions.

Originally from Zagreb, Croatia, they are quite famous is other corners of the world, like in Austria and Slovenia. On September 20th, they finally landed in town and are creating quite a buzz, after all, optical illusions are quite fun to experience, don’t you agree?

That same week, I met with René Gjoni, the CEO of the museum, that was super kind to walk me through the all the installments and illusions. After that, I just HAD to go back and get it on camera for your guys to see!

“Visitors can learn a lot about vision, perception, the human brain and science through our attractive and fun exhibits. In that way, they also learn why our eyes see things that our brain does not understand.”

This fantastic interactive museum, located one of 14th Street’s busy corners, offers over 70 different activities visitors can experience. They are all based on science, math, biology and phycology, but in real life, they are extremely fun and curious! Many are quite simple after we find how they work but, I have to agree that creating them can be certainly challenging.

I passed through absolutely all the illusion and love them all, but the ones that I probably enjoyed the most were:

  • Rotated Room – Are you ready to radically change your view of the world? How about for 90 degrees? In this room you can walk on the ceiling. Your imagination is the limit!
  • Tricky Stick – This exhibit plays with your sense of space. The human brain will automatically suppose that the stick will not fit through the hole;
  • Moving Picture – As you move, the image seems to swivel and follow you. Three-dimensional paintings when viewed from the front initially give the impression of viewing a painted flat surface that shows a perspective view;
  • Swap Noses – You can switch different parts of your faces if both of you, at the same me, move up and down;
  • True Mirror –  We might think we see ourselves in traditional mirrors, but although they appear to show us how we look, in fact they reflect images that are sign significantly altered by being backwards. Step towards the True Mirror, which enables us to see ourselves as others see us!
  • Tilted Room – Try to walk slowly in the ‘Tilted Room’. Can you do it well? It may feel wobbly and difficult to walk in here.

In addition, there are a few exclusive illusions that are only seen in New York City:

  • Thermal Grill – The thermal grill illusion is a sensory illusion. When someone presses a hand against the grill, he or she experiences the illusion of burning heat;
  • Following Eyes – The following eyes are an optical illusion in which the perception of hollow concave eyes look like normal convex eyes. If you stare at them and walk left and right – they seem to follow you around;
  • Zoetrope – A zoetrope is a device that produces the illusion of motion from a rapid succession of static pictures.  This variation uses a rapidly flashing strobe light to illuminate the models, producing an illusion of motion.

So, I can say it’s a place to visit with kids, friends of all ages, family! It’s really entertaining, fun and that will give you countless reasons to laugh! And, you’ll be able to take some of the coolest pictures, and share them on all your Social Channels for your friends to see! I guarantee, it’s will go viral!

Have fun in the Museum of Illusions and share your experience with us: #BehindTheScenesNYC and #MuseumOfIllusionsNewYork!

Oh! And don’t forget to subscribe to our channel, like the video and help spread the love for our gorgeous New York City!


Tickets:
$19 Adults
$17 Students with valid ID (age 14-22), Senior citizens (age 62+) with valid ID, Military Personnel
$15 Children (6-13 age)
$53 Family Ticket Package (two adults & two children)
Children under age of 6 are free
*Group Rates Available*

Hours: Monday – Sunday: 9am – 10pm

Location: 77 8th Avenue – located on the corner of 8th Avenue and 14th Street

https://museumofillusions.us


Videography: Renata Meirelles
Photography
: Renata Meirelles & Courtesy of Kenroy Lumsden
Beauty
Leila Soldeira
Styling
Camilla Adão

How To Enjoy NYC With Kids, Outdoors!

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists How To Enjoy NYC With Kids Outdoors Hudson River

Yes, New York is a great city for kids, so don’t worry! See below how to enjoy NYC with kids, outdoors seamlessly and have tons of fun and stories to tell!

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists How To Enjoy NYC With Kids Outdoors Hudson River
© Behind the Scenes NYC

Don’t believe people that say differently. The city is full of amazing attractions and activities for kids of all ages and we will show you what we mean!

Before we became parents, we spent countless weekends in New York City, staying out late, enjoying nice dinners, and partying at the best bars and nightclubs.

After our son was born, we realized that traveling to the Big Apple needed to change. We replaced our original itinerary with activities that were fun for the whole family.

Despite the skyscrapers, congested traffic and throngs of tourists, New York City has secluded pockets that give the kids room to play. It is possible to enjoy the great outdoors in Manhattan.


Park It

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists How To Enjoy NYC With Kids Outdoors Central Park
Central Park [Photo Credit: Courtesy of The 2 Idiots Travel Blog]
At 840 acres, Central Park is the hub for outdoor-loving families. You can rent bicycles and explore the paved trails, enjoy rides on the carousel, and try horseback riding through the park’s highlights.

This is not a just a stop for tourists – the entire park is also teaming with New Yorkers who appreciate the best of New York’s great outdoors!

We love Sheep Meadow, near the famed Tavern on the Green restaurant. It’s great for kids because of its wide open space (15 acres), kite flying, room to play catch, and loads of families.

Shop a local market and bring a picnic, or let experts cater one for you, and make a full day of sitting under the trees; the museums will still be there tomorrow. Even in the winter, you can use the park for ice skating, cross country skiing and sledding.

You can also visit waterfront parks along the Hudson and the East River, providing great views, cool breezes and lots of fresh air. We love Hudson River Park for its play areas with water features on hot, summer days.

Our son can spend hours playing in the splash park, and you’ll find mini golf and sports fields and courts for older kids to get their play on.


See the City from the Water

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists How To Enjoy NYC With Kids Outdoors Statue of Liberty
© Behind the Scenes NYC

Surrounded by water – Manhattan is an island, after all – spend time on the rivers. Kayak rentals are available for the families with older kids, and you can set sail on leisure ships for an hour or two of sightseeing.

There are also some pretty cool jet ski rides up and down the Hudson, as well as around the entire island!

The Staten Island Ferry is a great way to see New York’s skyline from the Hudson – and it’s FREE!

Or, if you want to splurge, you can charter a private cruise on a small sailboat.

You can also catch the ferry to the Statue of Liberty. She stands on an island that is a national park. No need to climb to the top, just enjoy the views while your toddler plays. (This is also another great picnic spot!).

If you’ve never been to Ellis Island, it’s also a great spot, with some pretty exclusive tours.

If you’re willing to travel further, cross into New Jersey to Liberty State Park and you’ll find even more space to enjoy. Playgrounds, a boardwalk with viewfinders, and picnic tables all overlook Manhattan.


Enjoy Outdoor Attractions

Curiosities Our Bucket Lists How To Enjoy NYC With Kids Outdoors Highline
Walking the Highline [Photo Credit: Courtesy of The 2 Idiots Travel Blog]
Many of New York’s best attractions will get you outdoors, such as the Central Park Zoo and the New York Botanical Garden. The Gardens offer special activities and event for young kids and is a special treat – NY Botanical Garden and the Brooklyn Botanical Garden.

Or, grab your stroller and take a walk along the High Line, which stretches over a mile on an old rail line. You can take a trip to Roosevelt Island with a ride on the Roosevelt Tram providing a fun ride and cool views before you take in the skyline from the East River-based island.

Even grabbing a bite under the sun is easy to do in New York. Take advantage of the many restaurants that have rooftop dining or secret patios. You’ll be surprised how much of the city can be enjoyed in the open air. Try Birreria, the rooftop of Eataly’s grocery and market or ‘wichcraft for sandwiches, both in the Flatiron District.

And, because New York’s diverse neighborhoods offer safe playgrounds for the kids whho live close by, seek out AirBnBs or boutique hotels near a small park. It makes for a good start to your day to grab coffee and muffins for breakfast in a nearby park, as well as a relaxing end to a long day of sightseeing.

When you leave New York and download all of your photos, we bet you’ll be surprised by how many of them were taken outdoors and away from crowds. You might not even think they were taken in the city!

Oh! Wait! You’re they type that doesn’t take pictures, but always regret it after?

You might want a professional photographer that will seamlessly be with you during the day, capturing the most amazing, spontaneous moments! You’ll not even notice!

Have fun and be sure to tell your other friends how to enjoy NYC with kids! We are sure you’ll be back for more!


Our Contributors:

AJ Ratani and Natasha Sandhir traveled around the world with their son Aarav. Visiting 31 countries and 6 continents as a family, they documented their year-long travel and trips on their family travel blog. Visit their website for more tips and also follow the couple on their Instagram account.


Photo Credits: Courtesy of The 2 Idiots Travel Blog and © Behind the Scenes NYC

SportsHosts: Experience Live Sports With Free Local Hosts

BTSNYC Tours Experiences On Going SportsHosts

One of the best things about traveling is the chance to connect with locals, but it’s often really hard to meet them! Come experience live sports with free local hosts by SportsHosts!

SportsHosts has made that not only really easy, but really fun – by connecting visitors with local fans to experience live sports together.

There couldn’t be a better city to do all of that in, than New York City, right? With SportsHosts, meeting locals is accessible to anyone, and FREE to use! Can you believe it?

Sure everyone can buy a ticket and go watch a game. But, only watching with a passionate local fan as a host will give you a real understanding of the culture, the players, the rules and what to look for during the game.

BOOK NOW!


How it works?

You can scroll through the different upcoming games and hosts that are available on the website, get in touch with them, ask your questions, and purchase your tickets with your seats right next to your host!

There are plenty of spots for pre-game drinks around stadiums, but who better than a local fan can suggest the best places to meet up?

So, once you walk into the stadium you will realize there is more to going to a game than just the on-field action. Soak it all in, and ask your host, she/he will be the best to explain what is happening, and what to look for.

Once the game starts, be ready to cheer (A LOT!), this is an immersion as a local fan! Just fill your lungs and let it all out!

Take a look below for further details, but don’t hesitante to contact us!

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Connect and hangout with genuine locals, not tour guides;
  • Experience American sports right here, in the heart on NYC;
  • Get a real understanding or the rules, players, culture and the game;
  • Be part of the community! There aren’t many faster way to belong to a community than cheering for the same team and high fiving other fans!

DETAILS:

  • Price: Free to use the platform and connect, tickets prices vary per sport and game.
  • What to bring: Wearing team color is advised, if the games are played outside, dress for the weather.
  • What to know: This is NOT a tour, and all hosts are volunteers. Your host is having you to share her/his pride for their team, and learning about different cultures. Date: all year long.
  • Ticket Confirmation: Once you have been accepted to join your host on the website, you purchase your tickets directly online. We supply you with a link to make sure you are sitting right next to your host during the game. Don’t worry!

So, what are you waiting for?

As we said, New York is the home of some of the most entertaining games on Earth. Plus, there is really no better way to experience this, than with a true local!

You can also contact us to help you out with your entire New York trip or even organize a corporate/team experience at an upcoming game.

Have fun!

BOOK NOW!

www.sportshosts.com

VR World NYC: A Virtual Reality Experience

Culture Music VR World NYC

As we wake up each day, Virtual Reality is becoming more and more parts of our daily lives, and obviously, our future! Come explore what VR World NYC is all about!

As we wake up each day, Virtual Reality, or VR as we most commonly say, is becoming more and more parts of our daily lives, and obviously, our future!

Today I’m sharing with you my experience at VR World NYC. They are the biggest virtual reality center on this side of the globe with 2 floors and over 50 games, films and experiences for you to try!

The video above shows you some of the ones I have the most fun with, but I do have to say, they are all quite entertaining. You can definitely spend several hours there, since there is just so much to see.

So, what is Virtual Reality?

In a very simples way, it’s an interactive technology that is computer generated and creates experiences that are not possible in the real world, using many of our senses.

And, in the middle of New York’s chaotic 34th Street, you’d never expect to find a place like this. It’s not only super amusing for kids and I’m sure all adults will love it too! I certainly had a great time!

Oh! It’s also a great spot to host a party! There are several cool spaces for groups from 20 and over 400! So be sure to contact them for more details. You can also contact us to help you out or even organize a corporate/team experience.


One of the highlights: Moveo

You can me inside this one in the video! It’s the first 360º free-rotation VR simulator. You go through fully immersive 3D worlds, flying through space and you experience the gravitational pull of objects nearby.

Exclusive to VR World NYC, MOVEO is harnessing cutting edge technology to create a truly immersive experience.

The simulator is the first of its kind to use independent three axis rotation, connecting the human experience with a responsive audial, visual and physical environment.

I also really enjoyed the experiences on the 2nd floor, once specifically that I was rock climbing in Thailand. It was just SO real. My legs literally got numb by virtually climbing up a cliff and looking down!

It’s crazy how you literally feel everything as if you were actually there!

As I said above, it’s a great place for kids! But, if you’re coming to New York City with kids, but you’re not sure if it’s a good idea, take a look to see all the infinite reasons why NYC is great for kids!


More information:

  • All visitors are required to purchase tickets for entry
  • Payments by credit/debit cards only
  • No outside food, drinks or strollers
  • Children under 7 not permitted including infants
  • 14 years old and under require adult supervision

Prices:
2 hour Pass: $39
All day Pass: $59
Moveo Pass: $25 

Hours: 7 days a week!
Monday: 12pm – 9pm
Tuesday: 12pm – 10pm
Wednesday & Thursday: 12pm – 10pm
Friday: 12pm – 11pm
Saturday: 10am – 11pm
Sunday: 10am – 9pm

Location: 4 East 34th Street

https://vrworldnyc.com


Videography & Photography: Renata Meirelles
Beauty
Leila Soldeira
Styling
Camilla Adão

Learning Some Beats With STOMP!

Entertainment Culture Music Learning Some Beats With Stomp NYC

If you haven’t heard about Stomp, it’s about time! Founded in the UK, back in 1991, today they are world famous, creating the most impressive percussion acts with unexpected objects and body parts! Get ready to feel your bones shake!

I absolutely L-O-V-E Stomp!

If you haven’t heard about them, they are an Off Broadway show, that was founded in the Brighton, United Kingdom in 1991 by Steve McNicholas and Luke Cresswell. Today they are world famous and attract audiences that come from all over the globe.

Their show takes place in a great spot in the trendy East Village and are always super full, when not, totally sold out!

In short, they are “a unique combination of percussion, movement and visual comedy”. And, their comedy acts are truly hilarious!

The most amazing thing is that there is absolutely no dialogue throughout the entire show, but these guys are experts in getting you crackin’ in your seat!

They literally create some of the most astounding and impressive percussion acts, using countless unexpected objects and body parts.

“Matchboxes, brooms, garbage cans, Zippo lighters and more fill the stage with energizing beats at STOMP, the inventive and invigorating stage show that’s dance, music and theatrical performance blended together in one electrifying rhythm.”

We spoke to, and learned some beats with 3 of their NYC performers: Desmond Howard, Jasmine Joyner and Simeon Weedall.

Plus, I couldn’t forget to thank our dear friend, Marivaldo dos Santos, that was the one that set this video shooting up for us! Marivaldo is also part of the super talented NYC performers, since the early days, when it all started! You guys HAVE to see him in action!

So, before you watch, be sure to subscribe to our channel, turn on the notifications and come explore New York with me!

Entertainment Culture Music Learning Some Beats With Stomp NYC Trash Cans
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Stomp

Buy your tickets:

  • Online
  • By Phone: (800) 982-2787
  • In Person: At address below

Take a look at the seating chart!

PLEASE NOTE: Children must be at least 4 years old to attend STOMP and everyone must have a ticket. The age minimum is enforced and no child under the age of 4 will be admitted.

Box Office Hours:

Monday: 1pm – 6pm
Tuesday – Friday: 1pm – 8pm
Saturday: 12pm – 8pm
Sunday: 12pm – 5:30pm

Performance Schedule:

Monday: Dark
Tuesday: 8pm
Wednesday: 8pm
Thursday: 8pm
Friday: 8pm
Saturday: 3pm & 8pm
Sunday: 2pm & 5:30pm

Location: Orpheum Theatre Box Office – 126 Second Avenue

https://stomponline.com

Entertainment Culture Music Learning Some Beats With Stomp NYC Fernanda Paronetto
Our Founder, Fê Paronetto, trying out a few moves! Check out the video to see how well she did – or not! LOL!

Videography & Photography: Renata Meirelles 
Beauty
Leila Soldeira
Styling
Camilla Adão

All the images used on this website are the property of BTSNYC or used with proper credit.
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