Philadelphia’s 9th Street Italian Market

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One of America’s oldest and largest open air markets is located right in the city of Philadelphia. The Italian Market runs about 10 blocks on 9th street and because it’s so large, you can find just about anything there. Tons of vendors crowd the streets selling everything from fresh vegetables, meat, fish, spices, bakeries and more. Gourmet shops and delicious restaurants are located in between vendors or not far from them to stop by on your day out in the market.

The market has a strong Italian heritage, but over time endless options of food that have been added have transformed it into a very diverse market for everyone to find something they’ll love. Along with all the fresh produce at the market, various types of food are offered from Vietnamese, Mexican food, Korean barbecue, Chinese cuisines, and of course, Pat’s and Geno’s cheese steaks are in the same area for an authentic Philly cheese steak. Whatever you may choose to pick up from Philadelphia’s Italian Market, you will not leave disappointed.

Residents of Judd Builders’ community, Siena Place have the convenience of visiting The Italian Market in just a short trip to be able to experience the many different flavors throughout it.


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Dinner Party Tips

Group Of Friends Enjoying Outdoor Evening Drinks Party

Whether you want to plan a party for the holidays, a birthday or just a get together to catch up with friends, it’s important to know the basic steps to party planning for you to stay organized and at least have an idea of where to begin your planning. Here is the guideline to hosting a successful dinner party:

1. Invitations are on the top of the list when it comes to party planning. Not everyone uses invitations with today’s technology, but they’re a great way to set a more formal tone for your dinner party if that’s what you want or simply just to make sure everyone gets the invite and for R.S.V.P purposes. Make sure your guests get their invitations no more than a week before the party so that you can plan accordingly.

2. Table setting can increase the attractiveness of your home as well as the meal itself. Low flowers are great for centerpieces to add a little something extra to the table. Candles, cocktail napkins and striped straws are also good little touches that will make a big difference. Set your table early so that it’s out of the way and if you realize your table isn’t big enough, get a folded table and cover it with a nice table cloth for the night; no one will even notice the difference.

3. Assigned seating isn’t for everyone, but it could help the process of sitting down once the food is ready quicker. It can also help the flow of conversation run smoother if people that have similar interests, or people that already know each other, sit together. Make place cards to go with the setting.

4. Music is an easy way to create a better atmosphere for your party. It prevents awkward silences and is nice background noise, kept at a low level. Create your own mix of music or throw on a radio station, depending on the occasion.

5. Hors d’oeuvres will give something for your guests to nibble on while they wait for the actual meal. A cheese plate, vegetables and bread are all great to place sporadically around the living and dining area to keep people from gathering in one spot.

6. For dinner, make sure you have asked your guests ahead of time if they have any allergies to make sure you don’t run into any problems at the party itself. Also, make the food you are comfortable with. This will make the process quicker and not to mention smoother if you’re making dishes you’ve already made before.

7. When it comes to drinks, wine and one signature cocktail is a good way to keep it simple, along with some choices of soda. If you have a favorite drink or if anyone offers to bring anything, add it to the list and place them in a separate area with glasses and ice as a small drink station for the party.

These are all helpful dinner party tips that a lot of hosts may overlook when planning a party. Keeping them in mind will keep you on track and organized so that your party is enjoyable for all of your guests, and yourself as well.

 


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Hot Spots for Authentic Philly Cheese Steaks

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Everyone’s familiar with the Philly cheese steak, they have a history, have become an icon and even a tourist draw for the City of Philadelphia. For those who are lucky enough to have unlimited access to the famous Philly cheese steaks as residents in the city, here are places that are the most highly recommended for the best cheese steaks:

1. Number one on the list from visitphilly.com is John’s Roast Pork. They serve the finest, most authentic cheese steaks, located in South Philly. This crowd favorites secret is a crisp seeded roll to add some crunch to the juicy cheese steak. John’s Roast Pork received a James Beard Award for America’s Classics thanks to their popular sandwiches. Don’t forget to try their signature roast pork sandwich with rubbed and roasted pork simmered in its own gravy along with provolone cheese and sauteed spinach (if you’d like). Address: 14 Snyder Avenue.

2. Tony Luke’s is another South Philadelphia favorite to order and pick up an authentic Philly cheese steak from the street side window. Nothing on their menu will disappoint you, and it is all worth trying to get the real and full Philly experience. Address: 39 E. Oregon Avenue.

3. Pat’s King of Steaks is an original Philadelphia cheese steak spot. They weren’t wrong in calling it Pat’s King of Steaks, for its founder, Pat Olivieri, invented the steak sandwich in 1930. The family owned store in Philly has grown a lot since then, with recognition all over the world drawing everyone to try a Philly cheese steak. Address: 9th Street & Passyunk Avenue.

4. Geno’s Steaks is located right across the street from Pat’s as their competitor for more than 4 decades. Both stores are open 24/7 to satisfy any random cheese steak craving you may have at any time. Geno’s has been keeping up, serving amazing cheese steaks to all its loyal customers. Address: 1219 S. 9th Street.

5. At Jim’s Steaks, it’s not uncommon for there to be a long line of people out the door waiting to taste one of their memorable sandwiches. Get there at a good time to make sure you actually get a hold of a quality Jim’s cheese steak. Address: 400 South Street.

 

Judd Builders’ community Siena Place is located at the heart of Philadelphia’s most famous cheese steak spots. It’s a great treat to enjoy with your family whenever you please to experience the true taste of Philadelphia. 

 

 

 

 


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Winter Activities in Philadelphia

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Philadelphia offers various winter activities to choose from whether you want to stay inside or enjoy the outdoors. There’s a lot to get you off your feet and out of your house. Here’s a list of some events and places that are up and running along with some that are coming soon:

1. A classic winter event that everyone enjoys is ice skating. In Philadelphia, the most popular spots are the Blue Cross RiverRink and The Rothman Ice Rink at Dilworth Park. Overlooking the Delaware, Blue Cross RiverRink includes a lodge and winter garden containing a heated tent, holiday trees, fire pits and comfortable seating through March 6th.  The Rothman Ice Rink at Dilworth Park is a skating spot located right next to City Hall to experience beautiful skyline views. They’ve also added a new heated tent to use in between rounds to warm up or enjoy food and drinks offered inside.

2. One View Observation Deck is now open for anyone interested in a top notch spot to overlook the entire city of Philadelphia. At the 57th floor of Liberty Place, the One View Observation Deck offers panoramic views of Philadelphia’s skyline and surroundings.

3. The 2016 Philadelphia Flower Show will take place from March 5th to March 13th. It’s the oldest and largest flower show with amazing floral designs, demonstrations, gardening workshops, live entertainment and much more to add to the excitement!

 


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Best Nightlife in Philadelphia

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Not only is Philadelphia always buzzing with people and things to d during the day, but there’s plenty of action going on at night too. From bowling to bars to music venues, there’s a lot to choose where to spend a night off. Here are some of Philadelphia’s Nightlife Winners:

1. People love North Bowl because it’s a great place to hangout with some friends, bowl and maybe have a drink if you wanted to. It’s a relaxing environment without all the loudness and chaos that some other nightlife spots in Philadelphia may have. It is the ultimate hangout with retro benches from bowling alleys in the 50’s, a bar and a glass surrounded area that oversees the lanes from the lounge.

2. Iron Hill Brewery and Restaurant produces their own handcrafted beer along with delicious food served in a comfortable and friendly atmosphere. A great place for a fun night out with friends to try a few different drinks and a high quality meal.

3. Doobies Bar is a corner neighborhood dive bar that offers good drinks, food and fun games to play. They have 10 drafts, a late night menu, outdoor seating, as well as a different brewery sponsored quizzo game each week!

4. The best live music venue goes to The Legendary Dobbs. Located on South Street, it is one of the few Philadelphia clubs that has been preforming original music for 25 years. This is the perfect place to hangout and experience great music with friends or family.

5. The Fenix Bar was given the title of the best happy hour in 2014. This place has a very relaxing atmosphere with its plush chairs, booths and couches as well as a black lit bar that service cocktails with high quality ingredients.

Philadelphia’s best nightlife is all located near Judd Builder’s community Siena Place, where anyone has access to a great night out with friends or family!


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Hidden Gem Restaurants in The Philadelphia Area

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Philadelphia is an area known for its spectacular restaurants with exceptional food and service. Aside from the larger, more well-known spots, there are a lot of hidden gems in the Philadelphia area worth finding to experience great food, atmospheres and cultures for yourself.

1. A BYOB hidden on an East Falls corner is Fiorino located at 3572 Indian Queen Ln. (215-843-1500). Here they serve excellent Northern Italian meals for lunch and dinner including pasta e fagiole, tagliatelle bolognese and veal saltimboca.

2. Spring Mill Cafe is a French BYOB that consists of multiple dining rooms for everyone to enjoy lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. This restaurant has a relaxing and causal atmosphere to enjoy other people’s company and the assortment of delicious appetizers, soups, salads, entrees, cheeses and desserts it has to offer. Located at 164 Barren Hill Rd, Conshohocken (610-828-2550).

3. Cafe Ynez brings you right to Mexico City with bold flavors in tacos, burritos and rotisserie chicken, which is served from 8 or 9 a.m. through 8 or 9 p.m. every day. This newer BYOB is located at 2025 Washington Ave. (215-278-7579).

4. Marrakesh gives you an authentic Moroccan experience in dimly-lit, incense-scented rooms where guests enjoy a three course meal of the owners homeland, even in the same way they do (without utensils). Belly dancers add to the true Moroccan experience. It’s hard to find and if you didn’t know to look for it you may never be able to find this unique spot located at 517 S. Leithgow St. (215-925-5929).

5. McGillin’s Old Ale house is the place to go for Shepherd’s pie, German Sausage and great beer. Located in a busy area, this restaurant is still tucked away at 1310 Drury St. (215-735-5562).

All of these unique and delicious restaurants are located in the Philadelphia area, nearby Judd Builders’ community, Siena Place. There are so many places to choose from for a nice night out with friends and family, even ones you would have never known to look for that could end up being the best!

 

 


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Philadelphia’s 10-Year Tax Abatement Program

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Philadelphia’s tax abatement has benefited not only current and new homeowners, but also the city and its finances. It creates jobs, encourages development, attracts new homeowners, benefits owners of existing properties and more. Some may be wondering, what is Philadelphia’s 10-year tax abatement exactly?

The tax abatement simply put means that if you make improvements to a piece of real estate in Philadelphia, you won’t have to pay the additional taxes the improvement causes until 10 years later. For example, if you own a home in Philadelphia that is currently valued at $150,000 and you want to redo your kitchen, which will increase the value of your home. After it’s finished, the city’s assessors come to the conclusion that your home is now worth $25,000 more, for a total value of $175,000.

With the tax abatement, the additional $25,000 value is not taxed until 10 years after the recalculation; therefore, you would be taxed as if your home was still worth $150,000 for another 10 years.

This can be extremely beneficial for new construction. A structure is seen as an improvement to a property. So, someone who owns newly built and abated property will only be taxed on the value of the land for the first ten years after the property has been built. This results in a significant tax break, considering the owner would only be paying 10-20% of what their tax bill would be without the abatement.

 

 


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First Craft Brewery in South Philly

 

new brewery in west passyunk

 

A new brewery will be opening in West Passyunk as South Philadelphia’s first craft brewery! Twin brothers Sean and Andrew Arsenault, owners of Brewery ARS, had been searching for a home to start their business at, and sought after a neighborhood area for it to be apart of. It was funded by a successful Kickstarter campaign, where they were able to raise $30,000 and now that they have found the perfect spot for their brewery, it could open as early as may if everything runs smoothly.

From mixing ingredients in their row home kitchen in Philly, to attending one of the most prestigious brewing schools in the world, to even traveling the world, the twins did whatever it took to be able to gather the skills to open up their own brewery one day. Their philosophy at Brewery ARS is to create high quality beer using only high quality raw materials along with important traditional brewing methods and time. Be on the look out for the exciting opening of Brewery ARS and be one of its first customers!


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