Philadelphia: Rittenhouse Row and Avenue of the Arts
Check out some of Philly's swankest habitats by day and lively jazz and performance art by night.
Some of Philly's most prominent homes front Rittenhouse Square. This flat green patch sits amid the Deco-era buildings of the posh retail district bordered by Broad, 21st, Market, and Pine streets. Office workers often head to the park for lunch, sometimes with a clam pizza hot from the oven at Lombardi's (132 S. 18th St.; 215-564-5000), scion of the 100-year-old New York shop that claims to be the first American pizzeria. Perhaps no one has done more to make Rittenhouse a gastronomic destination than French-born Chef Georges Perrier. Brasserie Perrier (1619 Walnut St.; 215-568-3000) serves such Gallic fare as frisée aux lardons.
Avenue of the Arts
Broad Street gained an impressive centerpiece in 2001 when the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts (Broad and Spruce streets; 215-790-5830, www.kimmelcenter.org) opened as home to the Philadelphia Orchestra. Visit at 1 p.m. (except Mondays) for a free tour, including the glassed-in roof garden with sweeping city views. The performance season unfolds in September with Broadway shows at the Academy of Music (Broad and Locust streets; 215-893-1999), musicals at the Prince Music Theater (1412 Chestnut St. at Broad St.; 215-569-9700), and new plays at the Wilma Theater (265 S. Broad St.; 215-546-7824). Vast windows let pretheater diners survey the scene as they sup on contemporary American fare at Bliss (220 S. Broad St.; 215-731-1100). Finger-snapping live jazz goes until 2 a.m. at Zanzibar Blue (Broad and Walnut streets; 215-732-4500).
Reading Terminal Market
For an overview of Philadelphia flavors, stop at the Reading Terminal Market (12th and Arch streets; 215-922-2317). This farmers' market emporium, with more than 80 merchants, has operated in the Reading Railroad train shed since 1892. There's everything from Peking duck to spanakopita, and the Pennsylvania Dutch bakers turn out Wednesday through Saturday.