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DOWNTOWN VISITORS CENTER

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DOWNTOWN VISITORS CENTER Powered By Docstoc
					                             WELCOME TO ALBANY, NY

                   SITE OF ERIN AND HERMAN’S WEDDING (:

                      WE HOPE YOU HAVE A GREAT TIME!!


DOWNTOWN VISITORS’ CENTER
www.albany.org 434 0405

The center, located at Quackenbush Square (Broadway at the foot of Clinton Avenue) is
home to the Henry Hudson Planetarium. It traces the history of Albany with orientation
films, hands-on-exhibits and permanent installations which include models of old Albany
and a tribute to the battleship, USS Albany. It is a treasure trove of tourist information.
Hours: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.

ALBANY RIVERFRONT PARK @ THE CORNING PRESERVE

If you feel like jogging or taking a long walk (or short for that matter) along the Hudson
River, both the Crowne Plaza and 74 State are walking distance from a pedestrian bridge
(the Hudson River Way Pedestrian Bridge) located on Broadway that will take you
directly to the park. Ask for directions at the front desk.

WASHINGTON PARK

Washington Park, a short drive away or about 1 mile walk, is a picturesque 90 acre park
in the center of Albany. Frederick Law Olmstead, famous for his design of many of the
country’s most famous parks, including Central Park in NYC, was a hired as a consultant
shortly before work began on the park in 1870. Engineers who actually designed the park
(Bogart & Cuyler) worked with Olmstead on Prospect Park in Brooklyn. Many events
are held in Washington Park. There is a summer playhouse which offers a musical that
runs for 6 weeks. This year, the production was “High School Musical”. In May, the
park is filled with beautiful tulips, reflecting Albany’s Dutch heritage and there is a
weekend event called the “Tulip Festival”, complete with coronation of a queen.

ROCKEFELLER EMPIRE STATE PLAZA

You may want take a walk around the plaza, the inspiration of Governor Nelson
Rockefeller. In 1959, when Rockefeller was first governor, Princess Beatrix of Holland
came to Albany. Governor Rockefeller took her on a tour of the city and felt
embarrassed. It was then that the idea of building the plaza was born. Many low rent
homes were taken down in order to have space to build the plaza, built in the 1960’s at
great cost to the taxpayers! It’s an interesting place to see and is a good place to take a
walk. There is a theater called “The Egg”, easy to pick out because of its distinctive
shape. The Corning Tower (Erastus Corning was mayor of Albany from 1943 through
1984) is the tallest building between NYC and Montreal. There is an observation deck on
the top if you would like to see a great view of Albany and surrounding area. On the far
side of the plaza, across Madison Avenue, is the NYS MUSEUM www.nysm.nysed.gov.
It is really a great museum. The permanent exhibits are excellent, for example, a
wonderful section on the Adirondacks. Currently there is an extensive exhibit about the
Dutch in Albany, dating back to 1609 when Henry Hudson made his appearance on our
shores. At the top of the museum, 4th floor, there is a carousel. It was built in the early
1900’s in western NYS. The horses, interestingly enough, were probably produced
earlier than that in the 1890’s. The attractive carousel takes you back in time and you can
ride on it too!

ALBANY INSTITUTE OF HISTORY AND ART This is a fine art museum, which is
walking distance from the two hotels. www.albanyinstitute.org

THE CAPITOL. The seat of NYS government, the Capitol, is an imposing building
visible from both hotels. There are tours Mondays through Saturdays. For more
information: www.ogs.state.ny.us/visiting/cultural/tourscapitol.html

MALLS. There are three that you might like. You would need to drive to the malls.
         Colonie Center www.shopatcoloniecenter.com This mall has the ONLY LLBean
in NYS! Also, there is a great Macy’s, plus of course zillions of other stores and movies.
         Crossgates Mall www.shopcrossgates.com Big, nice mall, Banana Republic,
Gap, Williams Sonoma, movies, nice sporting goods store called Dick’s, some good
restaurants.
         Stuyvesant Plaza www.stuyvesantplaza.com This mall is a little different in that
it is outdoors (you walk outside to get from one store to the other). There are some great
restaurants (Provence, Creo) and interesting boutique-type stores, also some chains:
Talbots, Cold Water Creek. It’s actually one of the area’s favorite malls.

JACK’S OYSTER HOUSE Jack’s is a very old and well established restaurant in
Albany, right down State Street from both hotels. Politicians have been meeting there for
decades. The ambience, food and service are excellent. Has recently gotten a little
pricier! Jack’s has been a Mitchell family favorite for decades!! It is there that Erin
literally rubbed shoulders with JFK, Jr, as they passed on a stairway!

A couple of other restaurants downtown that you might enjoy: The Victory Café & The
Pump House. There is a Starbucks at the corner of State and Pearl.

Destinations an Hour or Less:
       Saratoga Springs (about 45 minutes north) is a very picturesque small city with
great shops on Broadway and many nice restaurants. If you haven’t been there, you
might want to take a peak at the famous Saratoga Raceway.
       Williamstown, MA (about an hour east) is the home of Williams College, the
Williams College Art Gallery and the Clark Art Institute. The Clark is an especially
amazing museum. www.clarkart.edu.