When I first rolled into New York City on a Greyhound from the Martha's
Vineyard ferry terminal back in 1981, I never dreamed I would spend at least
the next 26 years of my life here. I was crashing on the floor of my former
college roommate's studio apartment in the far West Village and I hoped, as
I meandered about those maze-like streets, that downtown Manhattan would someday be my home. After protracted periods of life on the Upper East and West sides, I finally settled in Greenwich Village with my family of five. With an office in Soho, downtown is pretty much my full-time stomping ground.
Mornings are perfect at Balthazar in Soho, where the locals meet for blazing hot coffee, bread, and pastries baked at the Balthazar Bakery next door. Farther west on 12th Street, the new Cafe Cluny has a quiet neighborhood feel and plenty of free newspapers to peruse while ... [more]
Andy Arons, Gourmet Garage
Yorkville is the slightly lackluster residential neighborhood, formerly of the working class. At this point with Manhattan real estate what it is, the working class bus themselves in from the outer boroughs and neighboring states. The area runs from 79th to 96th Street east of Third Avenue. Here you will find the practical and mundane: high-rise housing, dry cleaners, supermarkets, drug stores, and video rental shops. You will also find the little gem: Gracie Mansion, the official home of the mayor of New York--though not our current mayor who maintains his own larger jewel further southwest.