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Madison Square Garden

New York, NY

Home of the New York Rangers

4.6

3.0

Madison Square Garden (map it)
4 Pennsylvania Plaza
New York, NY 10001


New York Rangers website

Madison Square Garden website

Year Opened: 1968

Capacity: 18,006

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Welcome to Rangertown

Madison Square Garden as we know it today opened in 1968. It has undergone many renovations since it opened at that time. The most recent renovations came from 2011-2013. At a cost of 1 billion dollars, the renovations included larger entrances, concourses, and new seats. Madison Square Garden is the home of the New York Rangers and the New York Knicks as well as certain St. John’s men’s basketball games. The renovations really amplified the great atmosphere of Madison Square Garden. The Garden is such a clean and great place to watch sports. As soon as you walk in you know that you’re in for a great experience. There have been talks about moving the Garden to expand Penn Station, but nothing has materialized so far.

The owners of the Rangers have done a great job over the years. They not only put in additions to the Garden, but they put out a solid product year after year. The fans of the Rangers are so passionate and demand a winner and the owners have given them that in the last few years. There are many unique places to sit at a Rangers game. One of the most unique is the Chase Bridge which sits high above the ice and offers a very good view. Madison Square Garden is simply everything a hockey fan can want when going to see a game.

4.6

What is FANFARE?

The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Atmosphere
  • Neighborhood
  • Fans
  • Access
  • Return on Investment
  • Extras

Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".

Food & Beverage    5

Madison Square Garden has something for everyone when it comes to food. The food is not only plentiful, but it is top notch as well. Madison Square Garden doesn't just have upscale gourmet food, it also has the standard stadium fare. Popcorn, peanuts, hot dogs, sausages, and pretzels can all be found in large quantities.

If you're looking for more upscale food, the Garden is the place to be. Madison Square Garden offers sushi, nachos, tacos, and much more. One of the more unique places is the Lobster Shrimp Roll by Aquagrill. Madison Square Garden has something for every appetite. There are salads and gluten free options for those looking to eat healthier. There are bars and restaurants attached to Madison Square Garden at street level.

With the abundant food at MSG, there also needs to be a wide selection of drinks. Madison Square Garden definitely has that. Madison Square Garden sells Coca-Cola products, so you won't be finding any Pepsi here. As far as alcoholic beverages go, Madison Square Garden has a large variety. There is a wide variety of beer. There are the usual staples like Bud Light, but MSG also serves Heineken, Stella Artois, and a selection of craft beer. There are also areas to get wine and mixed drinks.

Atmosphere    5

When you enter Madison Square Garden you can feel that you are in a special place. Because of this, the Rangers don't need to add a ton of bells and whistles to the Garden. Madison Square Garden is an arena that is just loaded with tradition. You don't get the title "The World's Most Famous Arena" for nothing. Just walking around the arena you will notice the many big events that happened at MSG, from basketball to hockey to huge concerts.

The Rangers do a great job with their presentation during the game. Whenever a celebrity or famous athlete is in the building, they will point that out and give the fans a chance to applaud them. The Rangers also have a superb pre-game video that is projected onto the ice. It chronicles that tradition and history of the New York Rangers. When you are in Madison Square Garden, you know you're in one of the best places to watch a hockey game.

Neighborhood    5

Madison Square Garden is in the heart of Manhattan. Anything you want to do before or after a game is close to Madison Square Garden. If you want to watch a movie, see a play, go to a restaurant, or go to a museum, you can get there quickly from MSG. Right below Madison Square Garden is New York Penn Station. Here you can get a quick bite to eat from a plethora of options. There is also a large amount of security in and around Madison Square Garden so you should feel very safe and comfortable walking around the area.

Fans    5

The New York Rangers are one of the NHL's original six franchises. This is a very exclusive club. The fans know this and truly are some of the best in the NHL. Ranger fans are immensely passionate and knowledgeable about their team. It isn't uncommon to see multiple generations of Ranger fans in a group. This is a franchise that has a long and illustrious history in New York City.

The fans at Madison Square Garden may give some opposing fans a hard time, but it is all in good taste. The biggest fan rivalries of Ranger fans are the Flyers and Islanders. The fans are very respectful and welcoming at the Garden. One thing you will notice about Ranger fans is the "Potvin Sucks" chant during a lull in play. This is an homage to a former New York Islanders defenseman. Be prepared for a sea of blue when you get to Madison Square Garden.

Access    4

Madison Square Garden is a very easy venue to get to. However, the mere fact that this arena is in the heart of New York City makes it a bit difficult to get to by car. The best means of getting to the Garden is by taking public transportation. Amtrak, NJ Transit, Long Island Railroad and the New York Subway all use New York Penn Station as a major hub. Penn Station is just beneath MSG so when you get off the train, simply walk up to street level and Madison Square Garden will be right there.

The concourse is wide and very easy to navigate. Along the concourse you can see various moments from the history of Madison Square Garden. The bathrooms are also very nice and spacious and the lines generally don't get too long. Security can make the lines to get into MSG long though, so get there early.

There are a few parking lots close to MSG, but it is definitely better to take public transportation. Again, for fans coming from outside of the New York metro area, Amtrak is the best way to go.

Return on Investment    4

New York City isn't known for having cheap prices for anything. The New York Rangers are no exception. Prices are high at Madison Square Garden, but they aren't ridiculous. However, the experience that you pay for at Madison Square Garden is one that is truly memorable. The uptick is price is definitely worth seeing the mecca that is Madison Square Garden. If you go see a lesser opponent then you may get a discount on ticket prices. Be prepared to pay a premium when the Rangers take on the Flyers, Bruins, and Islanders.

Extras    4

A first star goes to the beautiful on ice presentation that the Rangers offer. The video that they play before the game is truly great to watch. The history and storied tradition of the Rangers is something that is unique to hockey.

A second star goes to the HD video board that the Rangers have. The video board displays all the relevant information and is crystal clear.

A third star goes to the history of Madison Square Garden. The retired numbers alone tell the story of a remarkable franchise and arena.

A final star goes to the fact that the Rangers offer free WiFi, which is very fast. It is great that the Rangers make this available to sports fans.

Final Thoughts

Madison Square Garden is a mecca of not just hockey, but sports in general. If you have not gone to see a game here, then make it a priority to do so. Madison Square Garden is an amazing venue at which to watch a hockey game, and the Rangers do a great job of amplifying that atmosphere. "The World's Most Famous Arena" does not disappoint.

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Crowd Reviews

The World's Most Famous Arena

Total Score: 3.86

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 5
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 3
  • Extras: 3

Originally built in 1968, Madison Square Garden is steeped in history and tradition. The venue has
hosted shows, concerts, famous boxing matches, NBA Finals, and Stanley Cup Playoffs while serving as the home of the New York Rangers and New York Knicks.

Located on top of Penn Station, "The Garden" sits right in the heart of Manhattan. The stadium holds 18,200 people for hockey games - most of which are diehard Ranger fans.

The Rangers have been around since 1926 and were one of the "Original Six" NHL teams. However, being a Ranger fan has been quite a challenge. The team stresses "Ranger Pride," but the franchise has only won two Stanley Cups in the last 70 years.

The "Blueshirts" are approaching 2,500 victories as a franchise, and the theme of the "New York Legacy" is still alive.

In summer 2011, The Garden underwent a series of renovations that will take three offseasons and cost nearly $850 million. It's one of the older arenas in the league, so these renovations are much needed. The first step was brand new first-level seating which was completed before opening night.

The next stages of construction will further add to the appeal of the legendary Madison Square Garden.

Madison Square Garden, Home of the New York Rangers

Total Score: 4.14

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 5
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 5
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 3
  • Extras: 4

Madison Square Garden is a legendary arena. It has been host to the New York Rangers, Knicks, Democratic National Convention, Republican National Convention, legendary concerts and boxing events and so much more. There have been several versions of the Garden around the island of Manhattan. The current edition was opened February 11th, 1968 and was built on top of Pennsylvania ("Penn") Station.

Transportation to the Garden is relatively easy depending on where you come from. MSG is located between 31st and 33rd streets and 7th and 8th avenues. If you choose to drive to the Garden from Long Island or Queens, the Queens Midtown tunnel will let you out on 34th street where there is plenty of parking nearby. The Lincoln Tunnel coming from New Jersey empties onto 34th street. Parking for a Rangers game usually costs about $40 for the night.

As you make your way through the concourse there is a steady bustle of enthusiastic, stereotypical New Yorkers. These Rangers fans, most of whom are diehards, make their way inside. If you have "Club" seats, there are entries from 31st and 33rd streets. This separate entry allows you an express route into the building and access to the Play by Play sports bar and restaurant, as well as The Club, a higher end restaurant. Here, you can dine before heading upstairs to your seats.

If you're fortunate enough to have skybox seats, there is a private elevator outside the Play by Play restaurant. An attendant waits to double check your ticket before heading upstairs. Once you head up the private elevator, there is a balcony area and attendant to escort you to your box. The boxes are stocked with a full bar (beers, vodkas, rums, cordials, etc.), as well as your own buffet-style finger food selection consisting of hot dogs, waffle fries, chicken fingers, cookies, and M&M's. Each suite has its own bathroom and two TV's. Views from the skybox are excellent. There is no worry of fans standing up in front of you, and no play along the boards missed. If you have the ability to experience a skybox, it's an excellent experience.

The Mecca

Total Score: 4.43

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 5
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 5
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 4

It doesn't get much better than basketball at Madison Square Garden, but hockey will do as well. The location is amazing, and the fans are insanely passionate about their team.

The World's Most Famous Arena

Total Score: 4.29

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 5
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 5
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 3
  • Extras: 4

They call Madison Square Garden “The World’s Most Famous Arena” and that description is an apt one. Whereas New York’s other professional sporting venues are scattered throughout the five boroughs, Madison Square Garden is located right in the nexus of the universe, on top of one of the country’s busiest train stations and less than eight blocks from Times Square.

The Garden is a busy place with more events each year than any other arena in the country, yet the longest-standing tenant is the New York Rangers hockey club. The current Garden is actually the fourth such building to bear the name (and the second not to actually be located at Madison Square, the small park at the intersection of Broadway, Fifth Avenue and 23rd St.) The Rangers have called the third Garden, and now the current Garden home since 1926.

Built in 1968, Madison Square Garden is now the oldest arena in the NHL, nipping nearby Nassau Coliseum by four years. Yet the Garden has the look and feel of a newer building. The Cablevision company, which owns the arena, the Rangers, and the Knicks, has invested a fortune into the building, with the last round of major renovations set to proceed over the summer of 2013. Over the past two off-seasons, the seats and concourses have been modernized and the amenities at the Garden are indistinguishable from a newer building.

went pre-upgrade

Total Score: 4.00

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 5
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 3

an ok place from what i remember ...game again was a blowout ...Rangers 6-1 Avalanche (if you read my other reviews i have alot of them)

brilliant atmosphere though and easy to get to...food and drink was good from what i remember ...was my first ever night in the states so the jetlag was setting in late in the 3rd.

Blue Shirts on Broadway

Total Score: 4.43

  • Food & Beverage: 5
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 4
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 5

The New York Rangers began play in 1926 and immediately called Madison Square Garden home. However, they were not the first hockey club to play there, as the expansion New York Americans spent their inaugural season in 1925-26 at the Garden, the year it was opened. Located on 8th Avenue between 49th and 50th Streets, this modern venue was the third to bear the now iconic name, despite being two miles away from the actual Madison Square. The first Garden opened in 1879 right above Madison Square and a newer venue was constructed in the same location in 1890, where it stood for 35 years.

Finally, Garden President Tex Rickard, seeking larger audiences, built a new Garden and allowed the Americans to become the first hockey club to play there. He had promised them that no other hockey team would be allowed to use the facility, but after seeing the success the Amerks had, he petitioned the NHL for a new franchise and was granted one in April 1926. The team became known as Tex’s Rangers and they soon eclipsed the Americans as the city’s hockey team, becoming the Broadway Blueshirts in the process. The Americans eventually folded in 1942, perhaps cursing the Rangers in the process as they went 54 years between Stanley Cups.

Despite being home to two teams for much of its existence, MSG was actually poorly designed for hockey, with terrible sight lines and obstructed views throughout much of the balcony. The arena was also poorly ventilated and in those days smoking was allowed, so there was often a haze in the upper portions. By 1964, it was clear a new venue was needed, and so construction began above Penn Station, which had removed its surface structure to allow the fourth Garden to be built. It was a challenge to create an entirely new arena above an active railroad station, but it succeeded brilliantly and MSG became known as the “World’s Most Famous Arena,” hosting the Rangers and New York Knicks, as well as hundreds of other events every year. Of course, with all that use the Garden aged quickly, and there was a renovation in the early 1990s, but by 2010, it was in dire need of a more thorough overhaul.

Beginning in 2011, MSG began a 3-year, billion dollar makeover that is being referred to as a "Transformation." The Transformation was self-funded by MSG, a publicly traded company, and it has certainly changed every aspect of the venue. The Garden was shut down for three consecutive off-seasons (2011, 2012, 2013), with construction continuing behind-the-scenes during the NHL and NBA campaigns. The finishing touches were applied during the third and final phase of construction, which took place during the summer months in 2013 and the grand re-opening took place in October with a Knicks pre-season game.

The World's Most Famous Arena

Total Score: 4.43

  • Food & Beverage: 5
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 5
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 4

The original Madison Square Garden opened in New York City in 1879 but was demolished 11 years later. The second incarnation of Madison Square Garden opened in 1890. The third version was built in 1925. The current Madison Square Garden opened in 1968. Since the opening in 1968 it has seen a few renovations, the most recent coming from 2011-2013. At a cost of 1 billion dollars, the renovations included larger entrances, concourses, and new seats. Madison Square Garden is the home of the New York Rangers and the New York Knicks as well as certain St. John’s men’s basketball games.

Most recently, MSG underwent renovations that took place over 3 summers, from 2011 to 2013. The renovations included larger entrances with interactive kiosks, larger concourses, and new lighting and LED video systems with HDTV. The renovations also included additional walkways, as well as new dining options. The loge 100 and 200 level were combined to create the lower bowl. The 300 and 400 levels were combined to create the upper bowl. The Chase Bridges were completed for the 2013-2014 season. There have been talks to move Madison Square Garden to make room for an expansion of Penn Station. There is no timetable for the arena to be moved at the moment. Overall, the price tag for these renovations was 1 billion dollars.

The World's Most Famous Arena

Total Score: 4.43

  • Food & Beverage: 5
  • Atmosphere 4
  • Neighborhood: 5
  • Fans: 5
  • Access: 4
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 4

The original Madison Square Garden opened in New York City in 1879 but was demolished 11 years later. The second incarnation of Madison Square Garden opened in 1890. The third version was built in 1925. The current Madison Square Garden opened in 1968. Since the opening in 1968 it has seen a few renovations, the most recent coming from 2011-2013. At a cost of 1 billion dollars, the renovations included larger entrances, concourses, and new seats. Madison Square Garden is the home of the New York Rangers and the New York Knicks as well as certain St. John’s men’s basketball games.

Most recently, MSG underwent renovations that took place over 3 summers, from 2011 to 2013. The renovations included larger entrances with interactive kiosks, larger concourses, and new lighting and LED video systems with HDTV. The renovations also included additional walkways, as well as new dining options. The loge 100 and 200 level were combined to create the lower bowl. The 300 and 400 levels were combined to create the upper bowl. The Chase Bridges were completed for the 2013-2014 season. There have been talks to move Madison Square Garden to make room for an expansion of Penn Station. There is no timetable for the arena to be moved at the moment. Overall, the price tag for these renovations was 1 billion dollars. The team has seen a great run of success in recent years. The ownership puts out a perennial contender and provides a great backdrop to watch hockey.

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