Chelsea Gallery District, Chelsea
New York City , New York
Concierge.com's insider take:
There's no better place to survey the most buzzed-about names in contemporary art than in west Chelsea. On Saturdays, these blocks crawl with curious onlookers and art investors on the prowl for the next Jeff Koons. Though some critics carp about Chelsea's increasing predictability (yes, that's another Warhol), there's still plenty of cutting-edge fare on display. The area is home to 230 venues, from the not-for-profit, contemporary gallery CUE Art Foundation (511 W. 25th St.; 212-206-3583; www.cueartfoundation.org) to blue-chip dealers such as PaceWildenstein (545 W. 22nd St. and 534 W. 25th St.; 212-989-4258; www.pacewildenstein.com) and the Gagosian Gallery (555 W. 24th St. and 522 W. 21st St.; 212-741-1111; www.gagosian.com). When planning your stroll, keep in mind that galleries often keep limited hours or are open by appointment only; www.chelseaartgalleries.com provides a good overview of the area. Art critic Merrily Kerr runs excellent tours of the neighborhood, taking you to a range of galleries and helping to put the pieces into context with what's going on in the larger art world.
Puzzling over video installations and abstract paintings is bound to leave you hungry—luckily, the district happens to be flanked by Tenth Avenue's excellent swath of restaurants, like Cookshop's locally sourced American cuisine (156 Tenth Ave.; 212-924-4440; www.cookshopny.com). After lunch, wander above it all on the High Line, a former elevated train line that has been converted into a park overlooking the city and the Hudson River.