My goal for Custom NYC Tours has always been to help visitors & locals navigate the city, and to discover the hidden treasures of the Big Apple. With that mind, I partner with Local Expeditions for two tours very personal to me.
Forest Hills, Queens
I grew up in Queens, and hope to draw more visitors to this oft-ignored borough. In particular, New York City has few more beautiful neighborhoods than Queens’ own Forest Hills Gardens. Planned on the model of the garden communities of England, on most days it feels like a place out of time.
It is such an exclusive community that it is one of the few NYC neighborhoods where only residents are allowed to park on the street.
It is also a neighborhood steeped in history. Its namesake park was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted Jr, whose father created Central Park, among other historical landscapes. Its gorgeous train station was once home to a rally by Theodore Roosevelt. Its famed West Side Tennis Club was once home to the US Open and housed concerts from stars like The Beatles, Bob Dylan, and The Who. Forest Hills is the birthplace of a lot of talent– Paul Simon & Art Garfunkel, the Ramones, Billy Eichner, Carroll O’Connor, the fictional Spider-Man, & more.
This walking tour is for those who love unique residential architecture and nature hidden in a large urban area. The tour also involves a visit to Eddie's Sweet Shop, an old-fashioned ice cream parlour that opened in 1909.
Victorian Flatbush, Brooklyn
Brooklyn is the borough I currently call home, and specifically the historic area of Flatbush.
Flatbush was one of the original 6 towns of Brooklyn, having been settled by the Dutch in 1651. But its most beautiful treasure is the Victorian Flatbush subsection, developed in the early 1900s. Several small historic districts, mansions, and a church dating back to 1654 are some of the highlights you will see on this tour in Central Brooklyn.
We start down at Newkirk Plaza, which boasts of being the oldest open-air shopping mall in the country. This is the gateway to Victorian Flatbush, and its many sub-neighborhoods (Ditmas Park, Prospect Park South, the historic Albemarle-Kenmore Terraces, & more!). You will see gorgeous homes and mansions in styles ranging from Victorian to colonial revival to neo-Tudor. You will see the Flatbush Reformed Dutch Church, founded in 1654, and the newly revived Kings Theater. This tour discusses the history of the neighborhood, good and bad, and how gentrification is affecting Brooklyn.
The tour will conclude with a walk up to nearby Prospect Park.
This walking tour is for those who looking to discover another side of Brooklyn. Easy for all-ages. This will be a relaxing stroll through mostly tree-lined streets.
Interested in learning more, or joining one of these tours. Contact me today!