Though not as expansive as the nearby Metropolitan Museum of Art or Museum of Modern Art, the halls of the Frick Collection invite you into the grandeur of a New York of yesteryear.
Once the mansion of Henry Clay Frick during the early 20th century, to this day, much of the house is kept in the same condition as when the steel magnate lived there.
The museum's 16 galleries are filled with old master paintings by European artists, including Jean-Honoré Fragonard's masterpiece, "The Progress of Love," Johannes Vermeer's "Mistress and Maid," and Piero della Francesca's "St. John the Evangelist." The collection also includes small bronzes and other major works of sculpture, 18th century French furniture and porcelains, and Oriental rugs.
In addition to various exhibits, the museum also hosts concerts twice a month, featuring the debuts of European artists.
After getting transported into this world of grandiose wealth and privilege, for an insightful contrast, head downtown to the Lower East Side Tenement Museum. A tour through one of New York's tenements - modeled after how the actual families that lived in them - will give you a peek into how the other half lived during the time Frick was building his valuable art collection. It's one you won't soon forget.