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
The Financial District
At New York City's southern tip is the Financial District: home to City Hall, the New York Stock Exchange, and Wall Street. Here day traders, financiers, and the city government and legal system hum throughout the day. The blocks emptied of the World Trade Center are no longer silent: Daniel Libeskindís Freedom Tower is going up. If business doesnít bring you to Wall Street, bring yourself for pleasure. Wonderful old mercantile offices look south onto Battery Park and Governerís Island beyond it. Battery Park City offers a newly refurbished greenway--lovely in itself--with spectacular views of the Statue of Liberty. Heading east and north bypass South Street Seaport (pure tourist trap), and linger on neighboring Water Street for a reminder of the great fishing port that New York City once was.