On January 10, 1999, the cable-watchers were invited into the home of Tony Soprano (James Gandolfini) and the mob-run world in which he lived. HBO’s hit series The Sopranos ran for six successful seasons and became one of the most beloved and critically acclaimed shows of all time. Show creator David Chase chose to use as many real-life locations as possible to depict Tony’s dueling home and business lives accurately. In the show, viewers are immersed in Tony’s underbelly world as we’re taken into seedy backrooms, desolate dump sites, and dark alleyways. Here, we revisit 10 iconic locations that appear throughout the series, in honor of the 25th anniversary of The Sopranos’ debut.
In New York City, there are many ways you can mark the 25th anniversary. Order an “authentic Sopranos-inspired Italian sandwich” from the official Satriale’s pop-up on the delivery app Postmates and enjoy the meal while you scroll 25 clips from every episode on the official Sopranos Tiktok. HBO Max has released exclusive content you can stream including 15 deleted scenes (three of which have never been released) and five hours of behind-the-scenes featurette content.
1. The Lincoln Tunnel and More Opening Credit Locations
The iconic opening scene of The Sopranos follows Tony on his route from New York City to his home in the suburbs of New Jersey. The journey starts inside the Lincoln Tunnel. Once Tony emerges on the other side of the Hudson River, the viewer is shown shots of the Manhattan skyline and landmarks like the Empire State Building and Twin Towers. As Tony cruises down the New Jersey Turnpike, we catch glimpses of a plane taking off from Newark Liberty International Airport, the Pulaski Skyway, the Statue of Liberty, Pizzaland, the giant Muffler Man, and Satriale’s through swirls of smoke from his cigar. Finally, as the last notes of the theme song play, Tony pulls into his driveway.
2. The Soprano Home
The house used as the Soprano residence in the show is a 5,600-square-foot brick McMansion in North Caldwell, New Jersey. Built in 1987, the home was put up for sale by the original owners in 2019 for a whopping $3.4 million. In the pilot episode, we meet Tony’s family in the kitchen – daughter Meadow (Jamie-Lynn Sigler), son Anthony Jr. aka AJ (Robert Iler), and wife Carmela (Edie Falco) – as Tony watches the ducks in the pool. Show creator David Chase told The New York Times that this crucial scene made the pool a necessary feature of the location they chose. Later in the episode, the inciting incident of the show, Tony’s first panic attack, happens right next to the pool. According to The New York Times, interior scenes of the pilot episode were shot inside the home on Aspen Drive as were exterior scenes throughout the series. After the pilot, interiors were shot on soundstages at Silvercup Studios built to resemble the real home’s interiors.
3. Livia’s House
In addition to Tony’s home, in the pilot and throughout the series we see the home of his mother, Livia. The structure used for exterior shots in the show is a modest white home built in the 1920s. It’s located at 55 Gould Street in Verona, New Jersey, a short drive but worlds away from Tony’s mansion on the hill. Aside from the removal of a chain link fence that production would put up for shooting, the house looks largely the same.
4. Silvercup Studios
Most of the interior scenes in locations that frequently appear in the show were shot on soundstages at Silvercup Studios in Long Island City. These locations include Dr. Melfi’s (Lorraine Braco) office, the back room of the Bada Bing, and the interiors of the Soprano home. The rooftop of Silvercup Studios even appears in the show during season 4 when the location stands in for a cafe where Johnny Sack (Vincent Curatola) enjoys an espresso. Other shows set in New York City that have been filmed at Silvercup Studios include Succession, Mr. Robot, Only Murders in the Building, The Deuce, and more.
5. Centanni’s Meat Market and Satriale’s Porkstore
The pilot episode of The Sopranos was shot in the summer of 1997, almost two years before it aired on HBO in the winter of 1999. As is typical with many series, not everything from the pilot episode stayed the same once the show got picked up. One change was the pork store location. In the pilot, we’re introduced to some of Tony’s crew – Christopher Moltisanti (Michael Imperioli), Paulie Walnuts (Tony Sirico), Sil (Steven Van Zand), and Big Pussy (Vincent Pastore) – outside of Centanni’s Meat Market. Centanni’s is a real store that is still in operation in Elizabeth, New Jersey, and looks the same as it did more than 25 years ago.
For the rest of the series, the gang meets outside Satriale’s. Satriale’s is a fictional store created for the show. Scenes at the fictional business were shot at 101 Kearny Ave in Kearny, New Jersey, a vacant building used exclusively for filming purposes. The building was torn down in 2007. Before the wrecking crew came in, however, the owner came up with the idea to sell bricks from the facade as souvenirs to fans of the show. Satriale’s was resurrected in Paterson, New Jersey for an appearance in the Sopranos movie, The Many Saints of Newark, starring James Gandolfini’s son, Michael Gandolfini as a young Tony Soprano.
6. Bucco’s Vesuvio and Nuovo Vesuvio
The restaurant of Tony’s childhood friend Arthur Bucco (John Ventimigli) is another location that changes throughout the series. In the pilot, the exterior of 91 Elizabeth Avenue in Elizabeth, New Jersey stood in for Artie’s restaurant. At the time of filming, this was a restaurant called Manolo’s. This building is still a restaurant today but under a different name, Del Porto. Artie’s restaurant “mysteriously” catches fire in the pilot episode and he opens up a new location in the second season. For later seasons of the show, a Queens restaurant called Punta Dura was used as a filming location, along with Silvercup Studios. That restaurant is now an event space called Anemos. In the show, both Tony and Carm, the mob crew, and the Soprano family frequent Vesuvio.
7. The Bada Bing
Another popular hangout for Tony and his crew is the strip club, The Bada Bing. Front-of-house scenes were shot at Satin Dolls strip club off Route 17 in Lodi, New Jersey. The back room, however, was constructed on a soundstage at Silvercup Studios. This is one of the stops on the Sopranos Sites Tour offered by On Location Tours. Untapped New York Insiders can save 15% off tickets to the tour with a member-exclusive promo code found on the private Insiders Facebook group.
8. Holsten’s Ice Cream Parlor
The infamous final shot of the series was filmed at Holsten’s, an ice cream parlor and chocolate shop in Bloomfield, New Jersey. In the show, we see Meadow trying to parallel park across the street as the neon Holsten’s sign shines in the background. Carm, Tony, and AJ wait inside at a booth and Tony selects Don’t Stop Belivin’ from the vintage Crosley jukebox on the table.
Opened in 1939 as Strubbe’s Ice Cream Parlor, Holsten’s still serves up old-fashioned treats like egg creams and business has been bolstered by its Soprano’s fame. You can sit and enjoy a meal at the same booth as the Sopranos, but not for long! Holsten’s announced on Instagram that they are auctioning off the booth in preparation for upgrades to the restaurant. As of writing this update on March 1st, there are over 180 bids and the price is above $60,000. The booth became a makeshift memorial when actor James Gandolfini died in 2013. The Many Saints of Newark returned to shoot scenes at Holsten’s for the movie.
9. The Pine Barrens
One of the most memorable, and funniest, episodes of the series, “The Pine Barrens,” wasn’t shot in the forests of New Jersey. Scenes from this episode when Paulie and Christopher get lost in the woods chasing down “the Russian” were actually shot in New York, at Harriman State Park. Show creator David Chase told The Ringer that production wanted to shoot at a park in West Orange, New Jersy, but a local politician didn’t want the show to shoot in his county because he felt it poorly portrayed Italian-Americans. That politician ironically was later imprisoned for corruption.
10. Nichols Great Kills Marina
The pilot episode of the series introduces viewers to Tony’s boat, The Stugots. The back of the boat and life preserver ring note the boat’s location as Belmar, New Jersey, a coastal town on the Jersey Shore, but the boat was actually docked at Nichols Great Kills Marina on Staten Island. Three different boats were used to portray The Stugots and The Stugots II throughout the series. In the summer of 2023, the pilot episode boat went up for sale.
Next, check out 10 Infamous Mob Hangouts in NYC