Guidebook: Harlem's Heartbeat

Getting there: American, Continental, Delta and United fly nonstop from LAX to New York. America West, American Trans Air, National and Spirit fly direct (at least one stop but no change of planes). Restricted round-trip fares begin at $268.

Getting around: From John F. Kennedy International Airport, take an A (uptown) subway to 125th Street. From LaGuardia Airport, take the M60 bus. From midtown, cab fare is $15-$20.Where to stay: Harlem Flophouse, 242 W. 123rd St., New York, NY 10027; (212) 662-0678, Boutique hotel in renovated brownstone. Singles $65 per night, doubles $90.

Park View Hotel, 55 Central Park North, New York, NY 10026; (212) 369-3340, fax (212) 369-3046, Funky, modern lodging with private and dorm-style rooms. Doubles from $65.

Urban Jem Guest House, 2005 Fifth Ave., New York, NY 10035; (212) 831-6029, fax (212) 831- 6940, In an 1878 brownstone. Doubles with shared bath from $105, with private bath from $120.Where to eat: Flavored With One Love, 1941 Madison Ave.; (212) 426-4446. Good Guyanese food. Entrees $5-$9.

Pan Pan, 500 Lenox Ave.; (212) 926-4900. Coffee shop serving breakfast and lunch; dishes starting at $5.

Settepani Bakery, 196 Lenox Ave.; (917) 492-4806. Coffee, cappuccino, espresso; Italian breads and pastries from $2.

The Tea Salon @ the Brownstone, 2032 Fifth Ave.; (212) 864-1455. Menu changes daily; reservations required for dinner. Vegetarian dishes served. Dinner entrees start at $11.

Tour companies: A La Carte Tours, 1270 Fifth Ave.; (212) 828-7360,

Harlem Heritage Tours, 230 W. 116th St., Suite 5C; (212) 280-7888,

Harlem Spirituals, 690 8th Ave.; (800) 660-2166 or (212) 391-0900,

Our Harlem Tours, 1 W. 125th St., Suite 215; (212) 369-4241, e-mail

For more information: Harlem Assn. for Travel and Tourism (inside a building marked Harlem Tourism Center and Harlem Gift Shop), 2224 8th Ave., New York, NY 10026; (212) 749-5700,

New York State Department of Economic Development, Division of Tourism, P.O. Box 2603, Albany, NY 12220-0603; (800) 456-8369 or (518) 474-4116,

Guidebooks "Touring Historic Harlem" by Andrew S. Dolkart and Gretchen S. Sorin (New York Landmarks Conservancy, 1998) and "Stepping Out: Nine Walks Through New York City's Gay and Lesbian Past" by Daniel Hurewitz (Owl Books, 1997).