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Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

Texas
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259 posts
68 reviews
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Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

Sorry for all the questions, but I am trying to finalize our daily itinerary for our trip to NYC the week of June 10. After reviewing the website, I know my family will definitely tour the Tenement Museum. I would like some info from anyone who has been to that museum. Which one of the tours do you recommend? Has anyone taken the Foods of the Lower East Side tour? Has anyone taken the Exploring 97 Orchard Street tour? They all sound so interesting that I am not sure which one to take. We are a family of 4 with twin teen daughters. I am assuming that on all tours of the building, we need to be prepared to climb stairs, correct? My plan is to visit Ellis Island prior to taking a tour at this museum based on reviews I read here on Trip Advisor. Any information regarding museum and places to eat in this area will be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much!

Melbourne, Australia
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1. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

I took the foods of the Lower East Side Tour - it was very good but would have been so much better if the day wasn't torrential icy cold rain and wind...

I intend to definitely do it again but in better weather

Manhattan
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2. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

Meatball shop, il laboratorio del gelato, katz's

Texas
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259 posts
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3. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

Maz1, what types of food did you get to taste on the tour? Did that tour also include visiting the apartments?

Ztaks, thanks for the recommendations. We have Katz's deli here in Houston, but I imagine the NYC one is better. Are all the places you listed on the same street as the museum, or do I need to google the addresses?

Teaneck, NJ
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for New Jersey
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4. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

You are correct that you will be climbing stairs. We (my wife and i) took two back-to-back tours of the building, Getting By and I tihnk Hard Times and we loved it. I don;'t know if your kids will like it but I'd recommend two tours if you have the time.

BTW, just as an FYI, and this will mean more to you after you've taken the tour, my late accountant, who was Jewish, grew up on the lower east side (LES) in a tenement apartment. This would have been in the 1950s. Also, my current boss, who is Chinese and in his early 40s, likewise grew up in the LES in a tenement apartment. I've talke to him about it and he loved it. The apartments all had private baths by that point and they were electrifed and had some kind of heat, and as he put it, he viewed himself as the King of the building. The neighrborhood was (and still is) densely populated and he had lots of friends and never wanted for things to do or people to play games with. All the neighbors knew everybody and everything abou everybody too. He told me that his neighborhood was full of gangs (Chinese) but that he avoided being forced to join them by telling them that he just wanted to play basketball, which as true enough anyway, so they let him alone.

You might want to get the movie Hester Street to get a feel for what it was like when it was full of Jewish imigrantts -- it's a charming and engaging movie http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hester_Street_(film) but as you'll see when you tour the museum, over the last century and a half it's had a succession of ethnic groups looking for the American dream

Melbourne, Australia
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5. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

tx- i did try to edit my post but i was a bit slow

i'm not sure if you were talking about the FreeToursByFoot, because that's the tour i took.

it did not take the tours offered inside the Tenament Museum -

the places we ate at are apparently well known ...so,

we ate at the Yonah Schimmels Knish shop, a very famous chinese dumpling shop, a doughnut shop, the pickles place and a bialy (similar to a bagel) bakery. we also stopped at a shop which stocks every conceivable type of american sweets (candy?) , all the stuff from 'the old days'

i think there probably could be more stops, but as i said, the rain was so heavy that there were a couple of places we didn't see that day.

Texas
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6. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

New Jersey, thanks so much for the info.

Texas
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259 posts
68 reviews
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7. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

Maz1, thank you so much for mentioning the free tour. I just looked at their website. I so appreciate you mentioning this option. I am traveling on a teacher's budget, and in Texas teachers aren't paid as well as teachers in other parts of the USA. Again, thanks so much for your post.

Melbourne, Australia
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8. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

you are welcome tx - check out the reviews for them - you'll see one recently from me- most people take multiple tours with this crowd and they are truly great - so enjoyable.

have fun!

Manhattan
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9. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

themeatballshop.com

http://www.laboratoriodelgelato.com/

new york
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10. Re: Tenement Museum - which tour to take?

all of the tours interios and exterior are good so take the ones that are available for your schedule book online in advance not cheap