PHILADELPHIA -- The "Manet and the Sea" exhibition, showing through
May 31 at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, is a perfect excuse to
spend a couple of days touring this historic city.
The exhibition, which moves on to the Van Gogh Museum in
Amsterdam in June, is the first to explore the marine paintings of
Edouard Manet (1832-1883) and his contemporaries.
Manet, best known for his portraits and still-lifes, began
painting the sea and seascapes in an era that saw the emergence of
beach vacations among France's affluent inlanders.
The exhibition, which hosts nearly 100 paintings, drawings and
watercolors -- 42 by Manet -- and includes works by Monet and
Renoir, explores the connections among these artists and addresses
the development of seaside tourism and its contribution to the
popularity of French marine painting during this period.
Ask for an audio headset on the way in and visit the gift shop
on the way out. Posters of the painters' works can be purchased for
$16; $42 framed. I bought a framed print of Manet's "On the Beach
at Boulogne" for $36, about as much as I paid for two children's
T-shirts in the historic Bourse, now a retail mall and food court,
Packages that include an overnight for two and VIP tickets are
available at these hotels:
• Best Western Center City, $135 with parking; (215) 568-8300;
• Courtyard Philadelphia Downtown, $159 weekends; (215)
• Doubletree Hotel Philadelphia, $189 weekdays, $199 weekends;
includes breakfast for two and parking; (215) 893-1600, www.doubletree.com.
• Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia, $340 weekends with parking;
(215) 963-1500, www.fourseasons.com.
• The Latham Hotel, $169 weekdays or weekends; includes
breakfast for two; (215) 563-7474, www.lathamhotel.com.
• Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, $179 weekends; (215) 625-2900,
• Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel; $185 weekdays, $215 weekends;
includes choice of free parking, breakfast for two or upgrade;
(215) 735-6000; www.radisson.com/philadelphiapa.
• Ritz-Carlton, Philadelphia; $329 weekdays, $299 weekends, plus
parking; (215) 523-8000; www.ritzcarlton.com/hotels/philadelphia.
For more information on the Philadelphia Museum of Art, visit www.philamuseum.org.
To contact Destinations editor Margaret Myre, send e-mail to