Philadelphia Tastemakers Share How Visitors Can Best Experience the City Today


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While many visit Philadelphia for its historic landmarks, the city also has so much going on in the present day that is worth highlighting.

Most visitors come to Philadelphia with history in mind, but several Philadelphia tastemakers want them to know that there is much more the city has to offer today, writes Joseph Hernandez for AFAR.

Chef Chutatip “Nok” Suntaranon of the restaurant Kalaya, who used to run a restaurant in Bangkok, Thailand, before moving to the United States, was named Best Mid-Atlantic Chef by the James Beard Foundation in 2023.

“I started to fall in love with Philly slowly,” she said. “Philly has a lot of potential, each neighborhood is so unique. Philadelphians support small businesses and know what they want to live a good life. No matter what is going on in Philly, we thrive, we’re resilient, and we’re not cookie-cutter.”

Conrad Benner, who documents Philly’s vibrant street art scene, was not a fan of museums, however he soon fell in love with local street art.

“Philly is considered the birthplace of modern graffiti,” he said. “At any given moment, you can take a walk and see dozens of original artworks. The walls of our city tell the story of our city — starring a self-determined, gritty go-getter.”

Others like Shannon Maldonado, the fashion designer and hotelier behind the Yowie brand has also made Philly a nicer place to visit.

Read more about the many things Philadelphia has to offer in AFAR.


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