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NYC & COMPANY HIGHLIGHTS HARLEM DURING BLACK HISTORY MONTH WITH DESTINATION: HARLEM

—New Program Features Culture, Dining and Nightlife Itineraries across Harlem to Boost Travel During Black History Month—

—Aloft Harlem Gives Visitors and New Yorkers another Reason to Head Uptown—

New York City (February 4, 2011) — This winter, NYC & Company, New York City’s tourism, marketing, and partnership organization, encourages New Yorkers and visitors alike to visit Harlem. Today, NYC & Company CEO George Fertitta joined Richard Gorsky from RCG Longview, Congressman Charles Rangel, Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert Steel and Borough President Scott Stringer to announce the grand opening of the Aloft Harlem hotel and highlight NYC & Company’s latest promotional campaign, Destination: Harlem. Aloft Harlem is the first new hotel to open in the neighborhood since 1967 and is located in close vicinity to many of Harlem’s most popular attractions. Destination: Harlem runs from February 1 to 28 and highlights special events at cultural institutions throughout west, central and east Harlem. Coinciding with Black History Month, the campaign features new ways to explore the neighborhood with itineraries that list dining, culture and nightlight venues.

“As the epicenter of African-American culture for more than a century, Harlem is a historic and dynamic destination,” said George Fertitta, CEO of NYC & Company. “Destination: Harlem showcases some of the best culture, restaurants and entertainment in New York City and now visitors have the opportunity to stay in Harlem and experience more of what this iconic neighborhood has to offer.”

On February 1 visit the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture as it celebrates the birthday of the great American writer Langston Hughes. The evening’s tribute begins at 7pm, costs $10 and includes readings, music and special performances. After the show visit Londel’s Supper Club for food made from scratch with a southern flair or Yatenga French Bistro & Bar for a four-course, prix-fixe dinner for $24. For more information, visit nypl.org, londelsrestaurant.com and yatengabistro.com.

On February 8 head to the Dwyer Cultural Center for an inspirational gospel concert featuring the “Prince of Harlem,” vocalist and saxophonist Lonnie Youngblood. The first set begins at 7pm, followed by a 9pm set. The show costs $15 for reserved seating; $10 for simulcast seating. After the concert enjoy fried chicken from the renowned Melba’s or take your date to the 5 and Diamond for the weekday house special, steak frites and a glass of wine for $20. For more information, visit dwyercc.org, melsbasrestaurant.com and 5anddiamondrestaurant.com.

On February 12 at 7:30pm enjoy Cabaret Chocolat at the Harlem Stage. Singer-performer Tamar-kali presents her newest multidisciplinary piece, incorporating dance, song, burlesque, humor and showmanship—all for $25. When the show ends, stop at Miss Maude’s Spoonbread Too for “Miss Maude’s Sampler” and enjoy shrimp, short ribs and chicken before dancing the night away at Shrine World Music Venue. For more information, visit harlemstage.org, spoonbreadinc.com and shrinenyc.com.

On February 19 listen to Nuyorican poetry legends Miguel Algarin, Jesús Papoleto Melendez, Nancy Mercado, Willie Perdomo and Frank Perez share their work during Speak Up! at El Museo del Barrio, 7pm–9pm. After the free program visit Gran Piatto d’Oro for Italian cuisine or go straight to FB Lounge for a late-night drink. For more information, visit elmuseo.org, granpiattorestaurant.com or fondaboricua.com.

On February 23 catch a new crop of singers, rappers, comedians and dancers at Amateur Night at the famed Apollo Theater, starting 7:30pm. Afterward head for dinner at Sylvia’s Soul Food Restaurant or Amy Ruth’s for authentic soul food and end your night listening to jazz at the famed Lenox Lounge. For more information, visit apollotheater.org, sylviasrestaurant.com, amyruthsharlem.com and lenoxlounge.com.

On February 28 don’t miss The Apollo Legacy: Jazz! at the Museum of the City of New York. The National Jazz Museum All-Stars pay tribute to celebrated jazz legends, including Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday, at 7pm. General admission is $5, and ticket holders also will be able to view the museum’s exhibit Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing: How the Apollo Theater Shaped American Entertainment, before and after the show. Enjoy Peruvian cuisine afterward at Ceviche Tapas Bar or head over to Ricardo Steakhouse for a New York strip. For more information, visit mcny.org, cevichenyc.com and ricardosteakhouse.com.

Steps away from several of the cultural institutions, restaurants and nightlife venues featured in Destination: Harlem, is the newly opened Aloft Harlem. Located at the corner of Frederick Douglass Boulevard and 124th Street, the hotel has 124 loft-like guest rooms and as part of a mixed-use project includes 44 contemporary Apex condominium residences. Aloft is also home to re:mix lounge and destination w xyz bar. For more information, visit alofthotels.com.

For more about Destination: Harlem and great restaurant and nightlife suggestions in Harlem, visit nycgo.com/harlem.

Additional NYC & Company promotions taking place this winter include the first-ever Broadway Week, NYC Restaurant Week, the Off-Broadway promotion On the House and many more. The winter initiatives are designed to encourage tourism growth across the five boroughs in the lead-up to achieve Mayor Bloomberg’s goal to attract 50 million visitors annually to New York City by 2012. For more information, visit nycgo.com.

NYC & Company is the official marketing, tourism and partnership organization for the City of New York, dedicated to maximizing travel and tourism opportunities throughout the five boroughs, building economic prosperity and spreading the positive image of New York City worldwide. For more information, visit nycgo.com.

For more press inquiries, please contact Emily Mayrath at 212.484.1270 or emayrath@nycgo.com.