All Access Tour at Madison Square Garden

Apparently being someone in the mood for tours, we ended up on another one, this time at Madison Square Gardens for their All Access Tour. Madison Square Gardens is a place with a long rich history with New York, home to the New York Knicks (Knickerbockers), and the New York Rangers. It’s also played host to a lot of great concerts and performances throughout the years, including the famous Marilyn Monroe, “Happy Birthday Mr President” song.

Madison Square Garden Ice Rink

The first part of the tour brings us to one of the handful of restaurants for exclusive (i.e. corporate) members where they forced us to watch a video about the history of Madison Square Garden, considering it’s past all the way up to the current incarnation of the venue. This video truly disappointed me particularly since our tour only lasted about forty minutes and the video took up a good fifteen of them. I wouldn’t mind so much if it was a free tour, but considering that it cost US$17 each, it totally wasn’t worth it. I expect a pretty decent tour guide, enthusiastic about it, instead getting a guide that looked like Stephen Merchant (both disappointing not him and not particularly funny) that took us around, gave us the short spiel about an area, and then stood there far too long in awkward silence. We at least got to sit rinkside watching one of the ice hockey games that school kids play before the main players hit the ice for the evening.

Based on our experience, I’d have to recommend people avoid this tour, and instead, simply pay for a ticket to see something worthwhile inside the venue instead. It’ll give you pretty much the same experience, and I’m sure that you can find a video about the history of the square on youtube or something.