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Every time I visit Chicago, I love taking one of the tours offered by the Chicago Architecture Foundation. These tours are excellent, run by enthusiasts, and take different forms. There are walking tours, an excellent riverboat tour, and several other options, as well. By far, it's the single best sightseeing tour of Chicago I've ever had.

Is there a New York City equivalent? I am having zero luck after a year, on and off, of searching. Short of buying a camera strap and a tour book, is there some sort of official architecture society tour that a sightseer or recent transplant could take of New York City? So far, I've found found food tours -- which, while awesome, aren't quite what I'm looking for.

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Hey @Aarthi, welcome to our SE site ;) To clarify, it has to be run by an architectural society or foundation of some sort, not just some random tour company? –  Mark Mayo Jun 30 '12 at 2:37
    
@MarkMayo Yes, that would be preferred! Or, at least, run/designed by professionals. :) –  Aarthi Jun 30 '12 at 14:47
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There's at least a couple of options, actually.

  • aplusnyc - they run art and architecture tours by design professionals - "a member of Guiding Architects, an international network for architectural guided tours by professionals."

  • Around Manhattan Official NYC Architecture Tour - "an educational around-Manhattan architecture tour, hosted by architects and members of the American Institute of Architects New York Chapter (AIANY)." - by yacht, nonetheless!

    Finally, there's a handy thread on Lonely Planet about this - a couple of years back, to be fair, but with a few more handy links that might serve as back up options, including self-guided tours.

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It's not a tour per se, but Open House NYC is an annual event during which tons of sites of architectural and historic interest all over NY open their doors for tours, events, lectures, or simple visits. They also hold other events on occasion throughout the year, such as an architectural boat tour around Manhattan.

This years Open House is scheduled for October 6th and 7th of 2012. It promises to be pretty awesome.

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