With a myriad of new openings arriving into the city in 2017, there’s no time like the present to book a trip to Philadelphia, the birthplace of America.
Visitors in 2017 will be able to enjoy a number of new experiences opening in Philadelphia including a day trip of the city on the new Total Philly Tour, a cultural visit to the new Museum of the American Revolution and an immersive and educational experience with the latest Virtual Reality demonstration at the Franklin Institution.
Launch of Total Philly Tour in April
The ‘Total Philly Tour’ takes visitors through the city’s hotspots and hidden gems. Participants can relish in tasting the delicious food at Jewish delis and the famous Italian Market – the oldest and largest everyday open-air market in America – before paying homage to the unmissable sights within the historic district. This tour also includes a glimpse of public art and stunning mosaics in the Bella Vista neighbourhood and Magic Gardens. To top it all off, the tour comes to a close with a local beer expert, who will guide visitors through the booming local bar and pub scene, showcasing the city’s regional breweries and microbrews. The tour costs from £93 ($119) per person and starts from outside New Image Art & Framing (601 South 9th Street) at 10am, finishing at 7pm. Strictly over 21s and maximum group size of 12 people. For more information, visit www.urbanadventures.com/Philadelphia-tour-total-philly-tour.
Museum of the American Revolution Opened in April
Firmly marking 2017 as a year to celebrate Philadelphia’s colourful past, the state-of-the-art Museum of the American Revolution opened its doors to the public in April. Taking visitors on a journey through the remarkable story of America’s founding, the stunning building features four floors of permanent and temporary exhibition galleries. Aptly located in the historic heart of the city, the museum is just two blocks from Independence Hall and across the street from Carpenter’s Hall, where the Constitutional Congress first met. Original artefacts, immersive settings and dynamic theatres instills visitors of all ages with a profound understanding of, and interest in, the outbreak of conflict and ensuing new nation. For more information, visit www.amrevmuseum.org/.
New Foodie Hotspots
Enjoy a taste of the city in one of several new restaurants opening in Philadelphia. For a vintage dining experience, Chef Michael Schulson has opened ‘Harp & Crown,’ a trendy new foodie hotspot close to Dilworth Park and Philadelphia’s City Hall. Combining charm and luxury with modern sensibility and functionality, the restaurant showcases seasonal ingredients in a menu of global cuisines, as well as a comprehensive cocktail menu at the 32-seat bar. What is more, the space has been transformed to include a two-lane bowling alley in the basement, where revellers can enjoy drinks, pizza and charcuterie between strikes. For more information, visit http://harpcrown.com/. Crowdfunded by more than 1,500 people and named as one of the best new restaurants in America by GQ magazine, the Rooster Soup Co. converts unused food into meals and services for the people who need it most. Co-owned by James Beard Award winner Michael Salomonov, the restaurant serves soup, salads and sandwiches and 100% of the profits generated by the luncheonette go to Broad Street Ministry’s Hospitality Collaborative, which aims to support vulnerable residents of Philadelphia. For more information, visit www.roostersoupcompany.com. Diners looking to experience a taste of Israel should head to Sansom Street, where new all-vegan falafel shop Goldie serves made-to-order falafel sandwiches, shawarma-spiced fries and vegan tehina shakes. For more information, visit www.goldiefalafel.com.
Franklin Institute Launches Virtual Reality Experience
As one of America’s oldest and most beloved museums, the Franklin Institute has been delighting visitors old and young since it was founded in 1824. Despite its age, this science museum on North 21st Street has long been paving the way for innovative displays of information and the latest new Virtual Reality initiative is no exception. Opening to visitors in 2017, the VR demonstration spaces will allow visitors to try out an HTC Vice or Oculus Rift and be transported through outer space, encounter a blue whale, explore the human body, tour the solar system and even take a peek inside a brain! For more information, visit https://www.fi.edu/.
Terracotta Warriors of the First Emperor at The Franklin Institute
From 30 September 2017 to 4 March 2018, The Franklin Institute will welcome 300 artefacts from one of the most significant archaeological discoveries of modern times, China’s Terracotta Warriors. Discovered in 1974, the collection of over 8,000 terracotta sculptures depict the armies of the first Emperor of China and date back to around 209 BC. Crafted with precise detail and buried with the first Emperor in his tomb, each statue holds a unique facial expression and many are still in pristine condition. In a one-of-a-kind exhibition, ‘Terracotta Warriors of the First Emperor’ will welcome 10 real figures from China and take visitors on a journey through the story of the production method of the warriors and how the statues were ultimately discovered. Tickets cost from approx. £15 ($20) for adults and £11 ($15) for children. For more information, visit www.fi.edu/exhibit/terracotta-warriors.
Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia
Spanning three blocks in Philadelphia’s Market East neighbourhood and only a short walk from Reading Terminal Market, Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia will be the largest cohesive retail project in downtown Philadelphia when it opens in 2018. The impressive redevelopment of the former Gallery Mall will include nearly 800,000 square foot of retail, dining and entertainment space, with many designer outlet brands set to open – a perfect match for Philadelphia’s offering of tax-free shopping! For more information, visit www.fashionoutletsphiladelphia.com.
For more information on Philadelphia, visit the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website, www.discoverPHL.co.uk.