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
Geographically, "Lower Manhattan" encompasses everything south of Midtown. We use this term, for simplicity's sake, to include the southern tip of the island from Battery Park City, the Financial District, and the South Street Seaport. Coming north on the west side are Tribeca, Soho, Greenwich Village, the Meatpacking District, Chelsea, and the Garment District. On the east side are Chinatown, Noho or NoLita, Union Square, the Flatiron, Gramercy, and Murray Hill. Each neighborhood is a world unto itself--so explore them further here and on foot.