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Uploaded on Jul 9, 2009
Today David Hill with New York Habitat http://www.nyhabitat.com is going to show you a fascinating New York neighborhood, Chinatown. Chinatown is located on the East Side of Lower Manhattan. Let's discover makes this area so special.
Chatham Square: What better place to start our tour of Chinatown than in Chatham Square. Once a large open air market in the early 1800's, it became a center for tattoo parlors, flophouses, and saloons in the mid 1800's, but today has turned into a major intersection in Chinatown. You'll find the Kimlau Memorial Arch dedicated to Chinese Americans in the name of freedom and democracy.
Chinatown's History and Landmarks: On Mott Street, just a few blocks away from Chatam Square, is where in 1858 the Cantonese businessman, Ah Ken, became the first Chinese to immigrate to Chinatown. He eventually opened a successful cigar shop and from that point on, a steady stream of Chinese started settling in the area. When the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 was enacted the Chinese population in this small neighborhood exploded. Today Chinatown's population is estimated around 100,000.
The MoCA: You may have heard of New York's famous museum, the MoMA, but while you're in Chinatown, be sure to visit the MoCA, the Museum of Chinese in America. At the museum, you'll learn more about the history and culture of Chinese America.
Columbus Park: Columbus Park is the largest park in Chinatown and it is a meeting place for locals. If you're a morning person, wander around Columbus Park and you'll get to see locals gathering for Tai Chi. While passing by during the afternoon, you'll find fortune tellers and people playing table games. Moreover, many festivals and outdoor events are organized there every summer.
Mahayana Buddhist Temple: A visit to Chinatown wouldn't be complete if you don't go to The Mahayana Buddhist temple. Inside you'll find the largest Statue of Buddha rests there seated on a lotus flower. Don't miss it, public services are held on weekends!
Edward Mooney Townhouse: Speaking of townhouses, did you know that the oldest townhouse in Manhattan is found in Chinatown? It's located at the corner of Bowery and Pell St. Built in 1785 it's been a tavern, a store, a hotel and today it is a bank.
Shopping scene: So we've looked at some of the rich history and culture of Chinatown. Now it's time to get down to shopping. Chinatown remains one of the best areas in New York City to find deals on jewelry, purses, bags, hats, tee shirts... the list goes on. So sharpen your bargaining skills and head over to Canal Street for some true Chinatown shopping. Chances are, you won't leave empty handed. And beyond the designer knock-offs, you'll also find Asian styled products. Many boutiques throughout Chinatown offer authentic clothes at affordable prices. In addition, you'll find art and antique stores that offer typical furniture from China.
I hope you've enjoyed our tour of Chinatown. Of course, there's a lot more to see and do here. If I've missed any of you're favorite Chinatown secrets, be sure to share them by leaving a comment below. If you're planning a trip to New York, do yourself a favor, skip the boring hotel and rent a furnished apartment through New York Habitat. Hopefully this video has given you an introduction to New York City's Chinatown and you will consider joining us in an apartment in Chinatown soon.
Tags New York Habitat City Video tour of Chinatown Chatham Square MOCA Columbus Park blog Mahayana Buddhist Temple Edward Mooney Townhouse vacation rental furnished apartment Bed & Breakfast accommodation NY NYC