Must-See Upper West Side
by nycgo.com staff, 12/02/2014
Sara Mearns as Odette in the New York City Ballet Swan Lake production. Photo: Paul Kolnik • American Museum of Natural History. Photo: D. Finnin/AMNH
If you've seen a leafy, residential Manhattan neighborhood depicted on TV or in the movies, there's a decent chance it was the Upper West Side. It's where Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks lived in You've Got Mail, where Jerry made his home on Seinfeld (and in real life) and where Liz Lemon lived on 30 Rock. Chuck Bass owned a hotel there on Gossip Girl. Gary Greengrass—who runs appetizing emporium Barney Greengrass, a neighborhood mainstay for more than a century—feels You've Got Mail summed up what he loves about the neighborhood's vibe.
"It tried to highlight some of the neighborhood businesses. Some of them are still around, and some of them aren't—that was a good illustration of what the neighborhood truly is, and how it was back in the day." Greengrass laments the closings of some longstanding businesses—an unavoidable reality—but still loves the local flavor and the fact the area attracts people from around the world and across all generations.
The Upper West Side—bracketed by Central Park and Riverside Park, and distinguished by regal, two-towered apartment buildings along Central Park West—is a place where you can frequently see families pushing strollers, walking dogs and, on weekends, settling in for brunch at mainstays like Sarabeth's.
Of course, it's not all residential. There's culture, in the form of the American Museum of Natural History, the Beacon Theatre and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. And plenty of shopping, eating and nightlife as well. Read on for details about what to see and do.
Where It Is: The Upper West Side extends from Central Park West to the Hudson River, and from 59th to 110th Streets (though most of the sights are below 96th Street).
How to Get There: Take the 1, 2 or 3 trains to various stops along Broadway, or the A, B, C or D trains to various stops along Central Park West.