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Upper West Side

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The Upper West Side (including Morningside Heights) covers a large area in upper Manhattan bounded by 59th Street on the south, 125th Street on the north, the Hudson River on the west, and Central Park and Morningside Park on the east. The area encompasses four distinct Manhattan neighborhoods -- the Upper West Side, Morningside Heights, Bloomingdale, and Manhattan Valley -- and includes one of its finest parks, Riverside Park, which runs along the river all the way from 59th Street to 125th Street.

Often called the city's quintessential neighborhood, the area includes delightful residential streets, the twin-towered facades of the old apartment hotels on Central Park West and Riverside Drive, two of the city's best-known markets (Zabar's and Fairway), one of its major museums (the American Museum of Natural History), an Ivy League university (Columbia University), and the Neo-Gothic Cathedral of St. John the Divine and Riverside Church. The area is an architectural historian's delight with many of its buildings (especially in Morningside Heights) built before the Second World War and quite a few built before the First World War, though the area is changing with the construction of large condominium buildings south of 110th Street. The Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, running from 62nd Street to 66th Street, contains the Metropolitan Opera; the David H. Koch Theater, home of the New York City Ballet; Avery Fisher Hall, the home of the New York Philharmonic; the Juilliard School; and the New York Public Library's Library for the Performing Arts, among other institutions.

Understand[edit]

Map of Manhattan/Upper West Side

From west to east, the Upper West Side is oriented along Riverside Drive, West End Avenue (which is called 11th Avenue south of 59th St.), Amsterdam Avenue (called 10th Avenue south of 59th St.), Columbus Avenue (9th Avenue), and Central Park West (8th Avenue). All these avenues change from numbers to names north of 59th Street. The 66-block stretch of Broadway forms the backbone of the Upper West Side and lies diagonally across the avenues; it begins at its juncture with Central Park West at Columbus Circle (59th Street), crosses Columbus Avenue at Lincoln Square (65th Street), crosses Amsterdam Ave. at Verdi Square (72nd Street), and then merges with West End at Straus Square (aka Bloomingdale Square, at 107th Street).

Get in[edit]

Upper West Side Map

By subway[edit]

The primary subway service to the Upper West Side is the 1 local train and the 2 and 3 express trains, which run under Broadway. All three lines stop at 72nd St. and 96th St., with the 1 also stopping at 59th St. (Columbus Circle), 66th St. (Lincoln Center), 79th St., 86th St., 103rd St., 110th St., 116th St. (Columbia University), and 125th St. The 1 line continues north along Broadway, while the 2 and 3 lines branch east north of the 96th St. stop and head into Central Harlem.

Also serving the neighborhood are the A, B, C, and D lines, which run under Central Park West (called 8th Av. north and south of Central Park), although the A and D express lines usually stop only at 59th St. (Columbus Circle) and 125th St.(at St. Nicholas Av.), except after midnight, when the A goes local for a few hours. The B (weekdays only) and C local lines stop at 59th St., 72nd St., 81st St. (Museum of Natural History), 86th St., 96th St., 103rd St., 110 St., 116th St., and 125 St.

By bus[edit]

Numerous bus routes serve this neighborhood, including:

  • M5, on Riverside Drive north of 72 St. and Broadway south of that street
  • M104 on Broadway
  • M7 and M11, which go uptown (north) on Amsterdam Av. and downtown (south) on Columbus Av.
  • M10 on Central Park West.
  • M4 on Broadway coming from the north to 110th Street, then crosstown to 5th Avenue.

There are also crosstown buses on 65th/66th Sts., 72nd St. (the M72, which uses the 66th St. transverse through Central Park), 79th St., 86th St., 96th St., 106th St. (to and from East 116th St.), and 125th St.

On foot or by bicycle[edit]

A walk or bike ride to the Upper West Side is a very pleasant way to get in in good weather, whether going through Central Park from the Upper East Side or heading north from the Theater District. The Hudson River Greenway provides easy access through Riverside Park to Upper and Lower Manhattan. A project is afoot to extend the Citibike bike sharing system, which now stops at 61st Street, into the rest of Manhattan in 2015.

See[edit]

Landmarks[edit]

  • Ansonia (Formerly the Ansonia Hotel), 2109 Broadway (Between 73rd and 74th Sts.). This pretty 17-story Beaux Arts building was completed in 1904 and designed to be New York City's first air conditioned hotel. It was a residential hotel, and housed a number of very famous people, including the Hall of Fame baseball player, Babe Ruth; the Italian tenor, Enrico Caruso; the modernist composer, Igor Stravinsky; the Italian conductor of the NBC Symphony, Arturo Toscanini; and writers Theodore Dreiser and Isaac Bashevis Singer. The building is now a condominium.
  • 1 Apthorp, 2211 Broadway and 390 West End Avenue (79th-78th Streets, Broadway to West End), +1 212 799-2211. A beautiful early 20th-century high-rise luxury apartment building, taking up the entire square block between 78th and 79th Sts. between Broadway and West End Avenue. Its companion, the Belnord, takes up the square block between 86th and 87th Sts. between Broadway and Amsterdam. Both buildings were completed in 1908, at a time when the Upper West Side was still full of wide open spaces.
  • 2 Central Savings Bank building, 2112 Broadway (Occupies the block between 73rd and 74th Sts. between Broadway and Amsterdam). This building, currently occupied by Apple Bank for Savings, is a notable Italianate palazzo whose stone facades and metal-barred windows are meant to ooze a sense of security.
  • 3 Dakota Building, 1 West 72nd St (at Central Park West). This massive apartment building has been (and is!) home to many celebrities. Probably best known was the former Beatle John Lennon, who was gunned down outside the building on December 8th, 1980 by a crazed fan named Mark Chapman. Lennon had been living at the Dakota with his second wife, Yoko Ono, who still resides in the building. A memorial to the former Beatle exists nearby in Central Park. The building has become a popular place of pilgrimage for many who admire Lennon.
  • 4 Time Warner Center, 10 Columbus Circle (Broadway and 59th Street; Subway: ABCD1 trains to Columbus Circle), +1 212 823-6300. Mon-Sat: 10AM-9PM; Sun: 11AM-7PM. Has the Mandarin Oriental Hotel for dining, drinks, and Chihuly chandeliers. It also has a small, ultra-high-end mall with luxury shops and Botero sculptures. In the basement is a large Whole Foods Market, and there is seating for eating their prepared food and salad bar items (cheaper than eating in a restaurant). Or better yet, on nicer days, pick up a prepared meal to go and venture across the street to Columbus Circle or Sheep's Meadow in Central Park for a nice outdoor meal.
  • 5 The San Remo, 145 and 146 Central Park West. The historic building with the distinctive, iconic twin towers and a star-studded housing cooperative board. Built in 1930 in a vaguely art-deco style to the design of Emery Roth, the San Remo actually has two separate addresses, lobbies and sets of shafts, each for a half of the building topped with a tower.

Museums[edit]

A Barosaurus rears over the Museum of Natural History entry hall
  • 7 American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West between 77th and 81st Streets (entire block) (Subway: B (weekdays only) or C to 81st Street-Museum of Natural History), +1 212 313-7278. Mon-Sun: 10AM-5:45PM (Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas). Holding a remarkably large collection, each of the 5 floors of this massive building has expansive and well-designed exhibits devoted to astronomy, biology, geology, anthropology, climatology, and paleontology. You will want to allow a full day if you hope to see the entirety of the museum. Some of the highlights are the Rose Center for Earth and Space on the northeast corner of the building, which contains a seven-story glass cube holding the Hayden Planetarium, a huge sphere suspended above the exhibit halls below and holding a "cosmic pathway" exhibit; the numerous habitat diorama halls on the first, second and third floors, with recreations of African, Asian, North American, and ocean plants and animals, including a full-size model of a Blue Whale suspended above the Ocean Life Hall; a Hall of Minerals and Gems, which contains many rare and beautiful specimens, including the largest star sapphire in the world and a chunk of a massive meteorite; extensive anthropology halls on the first, second, and third floors, with exhibits devoted to people of Asia, Africa, Central America, the Pacific, and Native Americans; and the natural history halls on the fourth floor, with one of the largest collections of dinosaur skeletons in the world. Pay-what-you-wish (suggested admission $22 adults, $17 seniors/students, $12.50 children); special exhibitions cost extra.
  • 8 New York Historical Society, 170 Central Park West (at 77th Street). Tu-Su 10AM-6PM. Americana including Audubon’s watercolors of birds. $10.
  • 9 Nicholas Roerich Museum, 319 W. 107th St., +1 212 864-7704. Tu-Su 2PM-5PM.

Churches and cathedrals[edit]

  • 10 Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine, 1047 Amsterdam Ave (at 112th Street). The world's largest neo-Gothic cathedral, the place has been a work in progress for over a century! The campus also attracts many songbirds in season.
  • 11 Riverside Church, Riverside Av. and 122 St. (just south of Grant's Tomb). A large and historically important Protestant church and center of progressive social activism. Also neo-Gothic.

Institutions of learning[edit]

Alma Mater, Columbia University
  • 12 Columbia University (centered around Broadway and 116 St). A famous Ivy League college that has existed since British colonial times, when it was called King's College.
  • 13 Barnard College (across Broadway to the west). One of the Seven Sisters colleges, and is affiliated with Columbia University.
  • 14 Teacher's College, 120th Street (between Broadway and Amsterdam). Affiliated with Columbia, Teacher's College is an architectural gem with its block length Beaux Arts and neo-Gothic façades.
  • 15 Juilliard School of Dance, Drama, and Music, 65th St (between Amsterdam and Columbus). One of the foremost conservatories of those disciplines in the United States.
  • 16 The Mannes College of Music, 85th St (between Amsterdam and Columbus). The New School's classical conservatory of music.
  • 17 Manhattan School of Music (122nd St. and Broadway). Another conservatory of music.
  • 18 Fordham College at Lincoln Center, 60th St (between Columbus and Amsterdam). A branch of Fordham University.

Monuments[edit]

Grant's Tomb
  • 19 Grant's Tomb (General Grant National Memorial), Riverside Drive and 122nd Street (Subway: 1 to 125th St.), +1 212 666-1640. Daily 9AM-5PM. General Ulysses S. Grant and his wife are buried in this imposing mausoleum, the largest tomb in North America. If you come when it is closed, you can still see the impressive facade, but coming during open hours gives you the opportunity to view the murals, the tomb itself and various documentation inside. Across Riverside Drive, there is an viewpoint to look across the Hudson River, a museum, gift shop and restrooms. Grant's Tomb on Wikipedia Grant's Tomb (Q1025105) on Wikidata
  • 20 Shinran Shonin, 331-332 Riverside Dr (between 105th and 106th Streets). Staring pensively across Riverside Drive at the children playing in the park is the statue of Shinran Shonin, a 13th century Buddhist reformer. In another life, the statue stood in Hiroshima and witnessed the devastation caused by the bomb. His New York home is between two Riverside Drive buildings right next to the New York Buddhist Center.
  • 21 Soldiers and Sailors Monument, Riverside Drive at 89th Street. A memorial to the Civil War dead (though, in typical New York fashion, it wasn't constructed till 1902, almost 40 years after the Civil War ended!).

Do[edit]

Performances[edit]

  • 1 Beacon Theatre, 2124 Broadway (between 74th and 75th Sts), +1 212-465-6500, e-mail: . Box Office hours: Monday - Saturday: 11AM - 7PM; if an event starts before 1PM, the Box Office will open 1 hour before event start time; if an event starts after 6:30PM, Box Office will remain open 30 minutes after event start time. Sunday: Closed, except that if an event takes place on Sunday, the Box Office will open at 12PM or 90 minutes before the event start time (whichever is earlier) and remain open 30 minutes after event start time for Will Call and tickets sales for the evening's event only.. This is a major music performance venue for big-time solo acts and groups, and many, many famous artists have performed there, including The Rolling Stones, Jerry Garcia, Aerosmith, Michael Jackson, James Taylor, Radiohead, Queen and the Allman Brothers. Prices are not cheap, and tickets sometimes sell out well in advance.
  • 2 Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, between West 62nd and 66th Streets and Columbus and Amsterdam Avenues (Subway: 1 to 66th St or walkable from ABCD trains at 59th St. NB: Rose Hall venues are in the Time Warner Center, Broadway at 60th St). The world's largest cultural complex, where you can see theater, symphonies, ballet, opera, movies, art exhibits or just wander the architecturally beautiful buildings. The buildings are modern, and even have modern chandeliers. There are two opera companies, and the famous Juilliard School of Music is also here. Also part of the complex is the New York Public Library's Library for the Performing Arts, containing circulating and non-circulating collections in music, drama, and dance, as well as special collections of priceless documents that scholars from around the world come to look at.
    • Metropolitan Opera. Confusingly referred to simply as "the Met" (together with the Metropolitan Museum of Art), the premier opera company in New York has been housed at Lincoln Center since 1966, behind five soaring glass arches in the east facade, and within a vast white travertine-clad building. Two Marc Chagall murals grace the foyer. The hall has wonderful acoustics, and its ceiling is lined with gold leaf and chandeliers.
    • Walter Reade Theater. The home of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, the premier film society in the United States. The theater itself is a good place to catch the latest trends in cinema from all over the world with annual showcases from Africa, Spain, France, Italy, Israel, and Asia. The film society organizes the annual New York Film Festival in early October, one of the country's best film festivals, with great films from around the world accompanied by interesting discussions, lectures, and panels. Be advised that tickets usually sell out at least a month in advance.
    • David H. Koch Theater. The home of the New York City Ballet. The Nutcracker staged by the Ballet every December is a holiday classic, popular with New Yorkers and tourists alike.
  • 3 Merkin Concert Hall, 129 W. 67th St. (between Amsterdam and Broadway), +1 212-501-3330, e-mail: . Box office hours: Sun–Thu: 12–7PM; Fri: 12–3PM; Sat: the Box Office opens one hour prior to curtain time. Important and fairly prestigious venue for classical music, much of it contemporary, and various other kinds of performances. The hall seats about 250 people and has good acoustics for chamber music. This hall is near Lincoln Center but is not part of it; instead, it is part of the Kaufman Music Center, which also runs music schools for children.
  • 4 Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway (just south of 95th St.), +1 212-864-5400. Box Office hours: Tues - Sun 1PM - 6PM, open two hours prior to performances and events.. Symphony Space used to be the Symphony movie theater back in the 1970s, and it still occasionally screens films, but it is more often used, nowadays, as a performance venue. The offerings are eclectic, and though ticket prices have crept up, there are quite a few inexpensive shows, especially at the Leonard Nimoy Thalia, another former movie theater around the corner on 95 St. between Broadway and West End Ave.
  • 5 Miller Theater, 2960 Broadway (116th Street and Broadway), +1 212-854-7799, e-mail: . Miller Theater is Columbia University's main performing arts venue and is well known for its classical music performances.

Parks and walks[edit]

Part of the immense interior of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine
  • Riverside Park, west of Riverside Drive. While nearby Central Park is justly famous and finds its way onto a "must see" list for most visitors to New York, Riverside Park also has its charms, as its riverfront location provides pleasant views of New Jersey and sometimes breezes off the river. Summer brings al fresco movies, plays and music to Riverside Park.
  • Morningside Heights Walking Tour. Morningside Heights remained relatively bucolic till the turn of the 20th century because of its relative inaccessibility, and most of the existing apartment buildings were constructed between about 1900 and 1910. The buildings survive because elevators were being introduced then, and consequently most of the buildings are ten- to twelve-story apartment blocks rather than smaller townhouses or single family homes. Juliet balconies, details on the facades, and grand lobbies make this neighborhood a great place to explore the local architecture. The Cathedral of St. John's the Divine and 115 buildings in the area bounded by Riverside Drive, Amsterdam Avenue, 110th Street and 119th Street are designated as landmark buildings by the New York City Landmarks Preservation committee. On the border between Morningside Heights and Harlem is Morningside Park, once the murder capital of Manhattan in the 1970s but now a peaceful, beautiful space of greenery with some plunging hillsides.

Cinemas[edit]

  • 6 Lincoln Square 13 Cinema, 1998 Broadway (Subway: 1 to 66th St.), +1 212 336-5020. First showings begin around noon, last showings begin around 11PM. A multiplex two blocks from Lincoln Center, showing major, first-run films on 13 screens. It also contains an IMAX cinema showing mainstream feature films. $12-$16.

Buy[edit]

Central Savings Bank building at 73rd St. between Broadway and Amsterdam

The neighborhood, especially the Morningside Heights area, is home to several excellent bookstores.

  • 1 Bank Street Bookstore, 2780 Broadway (at 112th Street), +1 212 678-1654. Associated with the Bank Street College, a leading teacher education school, this is one of the best places to buy books, educational toys, and other educational material in the world. The helpful staff will patiently produce the perfect gift for any kid.
  • 2 Book Culture, 536 W 112th St (between Broadway and Amsterdam), +1 212 865-1588. Formerly known as Labyrinth Books, Book Culture is a scholarly bookstore, worth browsing for the books on science and the liberal arts. The sale tables on the second floor are full of bargains that will delight any booklover. They also have a branch at Broadway at 114th Street.
  • 3 Columbia University Bookstore, 2922 Broadway (at 115th Street), +1 212 854-4131. Run by Barnes and Noble, this is the best place in the neighborhood to pick up travel guides for anywhere as well as Columbia University branded gifts.
  • 4 Barnes and Noble, 2289 Broadway (at 82nd St), +1 212 362-8835. A large Barnes and Noble bookstore in the neighborhood.
  • 5 Westsider Rare and Used Books, 2246 Broadway (between 80th and 81st), +1 212 362-0706. Specializing in used books.

Eat[edit]

Budget[edit]

  • 1 Absolute Bagels, 2788 Broadway (between 107 & 108th Sts), +1 212 932-2052. Daily 6AM-9PM. A true New York bagel shop with a fanatical following, often ranking among the very best bagels in the city. There's usually a long line out the door, but it tends to move quickly. Lots of spread and sandwich options are available.
  • 2 Amir's Falafel, 2911-A Broadway (at 114th St), +1 212 749-7500. Good and inexpensive falafel, shwarma, kebabs, and other standard middle eastern fare.
  • 3 Ayurveda Cafe, 706 Amsterdam Ave (at 94th St.), +1 212 932-2400. Eat in and take out lunch and dinner. The restaurant/cafe serves a daily fixed menu ideal for vegans, vegetarians and celiacs. Exceptionally friendly and warm, while light and charming.
  • 4 Chirping Chicken, 355 Amsterdam Ave, +1 212 787-6631.
  • 5 El Malecon, 764 Amsterdam Ave (between 97th and 98th Sts.), +1 212 864-5648. A Dominican restaurant known as one of the best places for pollo a la brasa (rotisserie chicken) in Manhattan. They also serve a number of daily specials for lunch and dinner.
  • Flor de Mayo, 2651 Broadway (Between 100th and 101st Sts), +1 212-663-5521. Mon - Sun: 12 Noon - 12 Midnight. This is a Peruvian-Chinese restaurant, owned and staffed by Peruvian immigrants of Chinese descent. However, because there are way more Dominicans than Peruvians in the area, they have catered to the Criollo taste. They have long been known in the neighborhood for reliably tasty pollo a la brasa (rotisserie chicken), served with a delicious garlic sauce (if they don't automatically bring it for you, ask for it). More recently, they added a section of specifically Peruvian dishes, which are well worth your trying if you are not in the mood for the chicken. Their Chinese dishes are in a style similar to the American-Chinese restaurants of the 1970s - perfectly acceptable, though perhaps a bit oily. They have another location at 484 Amsterdam Ave, between 83rd and 84th Sts, which some people prefer. 1/2 pollo a la brasa with rice and salad: $8.50; the great majority of other mains are in the teens, except for most of the seafood and some of the steak dishes, which cost more.
  • 6 Gray's Papaya, 2090 Broadway (between 72nd St & 73rd St), +1 212 799-0243. One of the best hot dog joints in Manhattan (the "Recession Special" is a popular favorite), Gray's also serves up some excellent tropical drinks.
  • 7 The Heights, 2867 Broadway (at 111th Street), +1 212 866-7035. Tex-Mex. The bar is the best part. A rooftop terrace is open on warm days for al fresco dining.
  • 8 Jerusalem Restaurant, 2715 Broadway (between 103rd and 104th Sts.), +1 212 865-2295. 11:00AM-11:50PM daily. Serves very tasty shawarma and falafel, and also very worthwhile spinach pies and grape leaves. The place is a little hole-in-the-wall, but you're there for the food. They also do a brisk takeout business and deliver in the area. Appetizers: $4.95-5.50, $6.95 for two; vegetarian sandwiches: $4.95-6.50; meat sandwiches: $6.95; wraps: $6.50-7.50; lunch platters: $8.95; vegetarian platters: $7.95-9.95; meat platters: $11.95-13.95.
  • 9 Koronet Pizza, 2848 Broadway (east side of Broadway between 110th & 111th Streets), +1 212-222-1566. 9AM-2AM. A very good pizza parlor serving the Columbia University area. They specialize in large pies and large slices, amongst the largest in the city. Jumbo Slice: $4.00; Regular Slice: $2.75.
  • 10 Le Monde, 2885 Broadway (at 112th St), +1 212 531-3939. Faux French food but a great international beer selection and good burgers.
  • 11 Metro Diner, 2641 Broadway (at 100th St), +1 212 866-0800. Has everything you could look for in a diner breakfast menu.
  • 12 The Mill, 2895 Broadway (at 113th St), +1 212 666-7653. Started life as a diner many years ago but when the owner started adding a few of his native Korean dishes, they caught on and now it is an excellent Korean restaurant.
  • 13 Massawa, 1239 Amsterdam Ave (at 121st Street), +1 212 663-0505. One of the oldest Ethopian (Eritrean) restaurants in the city with a no frills decor but good food and service.
  • 14 Ollie's To Go, 2425 Broadway (at 89th St), +1 212 877-2298. Workday Chinese. Fast and cheap lunch or dinner, but don't expect anything close to average Chinatown quality.
  • 15 Peacefood Cafe, 460 Amsterdam Avenue (at 82nd Street; Subway: 1 at 79th Street), +1 212 362-2266. Vegan food only
Tom's Restaurant
  • 16 Tom's Restaurant, 2880 Broadway (NE corner of Broadway and 112th Street), +1 212-864-6137, e-mail: . Sun-Wed: 6AM-1:30AM; Thu-Sat: 24 hours. The restaurant from the comedy series Seinfeld. This place is a shrine for many TV pilgrims; for the locals, just a diner.

Street food[edit]

  • Halal Cart, 116th and Broadway. Good chicken, veggies, lamb with rice combos for lunch. Coffee and bagels in the mornings.
  • Italian Ice Lady, 110th and Broadway. Late Spring to early Fall only. Cheap ices $0.75-$1.50.
  • Fruit Stands, 110th and Broadway, and 112th and Broadway. Spring to Fall only.
  • The Taco Stand, 96th and Broadway. A popular stand with good tacos. Nights only.

Mid-range[edit]

  • 17 Barney Greengrass, 541 Amsterdam Ave (east side of Amsterdam between 86th & 87th Streets), +1 212-724-4707. Tu-Su 8:30AM-6PM. Barney Greengrass has been known as the "Sturgeon King" for a very long time, having opened his original store in 1908. The smoked fish that this establishment is known for is not cheap: Smoked fish platters in the restaurant range from $28-58, not counting the "deluxe platter for two," which will set you back $95. You can save some money by having eggs with a side of smoked fish; that'll still cost you between $14.50 and $20.75, but you won't regret it. This place is a real New York institution, and the only place in Manhattan that is generally considered to rival it for what's traditionally called Jewish "appetizing" (that is, pareve products that are neither meat nor milk but include fish) is Russ & Daughters on the Lower East Side.
  • 18 Kefi, 505 Columbus Ave (between 84th and 85th Sts.), +1 212 873-0200. Lunch M-F 12PM–3PM; Brunch Sa-Su 11AM–3PM; Dinner Su-Th 5PM–10PM, F-Sa 5PM–11PM. A high-quality and very popular Greek restaurant (not a diner in any sense). Reservations strongly suggested, especially for dinner. $30-35/person for a full dinner.
  • 19 Indus Valley, 2636 Broadway (at 100th St.), +1 212 222-9222. A classy Northern Indian restaurant that serves excellent food. Their lunch special is a bargain; dinner is a little more, but still a fine value.
  • 20 Isabella's, 359 Columbus Avenue (at 77th Street), +1 212 724-2100. Su 10AM-10PM, M Tu 11:30AM-10PM, W Th 11:30AM-10:30PM, F 11:30AM-11PM, Sa 10AM-11PM. Reliable, market-fresh offerings and a staple brunch menu. $10 - $28.
  • 21 Pio Pio, 702 Amsterdam Ave (at 94th Street), +1 212 665-3000. A Manhattan outpost of a very popular upscale Peruvian chain. Serves great rotisserie chicken, and tends to be very loud due to the large crowds of locals that come here.
  • 22 Salumeria Rosi, 283 Amsterdam Ave (between 73rd and 74th Sts), +1 212 877-4800. The cuisine of this restaurant is based on excellent salumi (cured meats), and the other ingredients are fresh and high-quality. The "small" selection of salumi is quite substantial, and the salads are large and quite good. The antipasti, while tasty, are rather small, so they're worth getting but can add up more quickly. Good cheeses, too. The front of the shop is a counter that sells salumi and cheeses to take out. Informal atmosphere, serious cuisine, and good service. It isn't cheap, but it is a very good value, especially for the neighborhood. Salads: $12-16; soups: $13-15; antipasti: $11-15; pasta: $16-17; meat: $15-18; cheese: $12-14; wine: $12-20; tastes of salumi: $8.
  • 23 Sookk, 2686 Broadway (between 102nd and 103rd Streets), +1 212 870-0253. A cozy Thai restaurant with great traditional and fusion.
  • 24 Turkuaz, 2637 Broadway (at 100th St.), +1 212 665-9541. Popular for its Turkish food. It can get a little crazy with crowds and belly dancing at times, but many regulars think it's well worth it.

Splurge[edit]

  • 25 Atlantic Grill, 49 West 64th Street (64th Street at Broadway), +1 212 787-4663. Su 11AM-10PM, M 11:30AM-10PM, Tu-Th 11:30AM-11PM, F 11:30AM-12AM, Sa 11:30AM-11PM. Seafood; sushi, oysters and simply grilled fish a la carte. Prix fixe lunch: $28, Prix fixe dinner: $48.
  • 26 Masa, 10 Columbus Circle (in the Time Warner Center), +1 212 823-9800. Probably the most expensive restaurant in New York, so go only if money is no object. Those who have been there strongly recommend that you sit at the sushi bar in order to have the best experience. Reservations necessary.
  • 27 Ocean Grill, 384 Columbus Avenue (at 78th Street), +1 212 579-2300. Su 10:30AM-10PM, M - Th 12PM-10PM, F 12PM-10:30PM, Sa 11:30AM-10:30PM. Directly across the street from the Museum of Natural History. A fabulous seafood restaurant with fresh sushi, raw bar selections and simply grilled fish.
  • 28 Per Se, 10 Columbus Circle (in the Time Warner Center), +1 212 823-9335. The New York outpost of Chef Thomas Keller of the French Laundry in Yountville, which is in the Napa Valley of California. Chef Keller is one of the most famous and highly praised chefs in the United States. It used to be necessary to call months in advance for reservations, but due to the recession, same-day reservations may be worth attempting.
  • 29 Sapphire Indian, 1845 Broadway (between 60th and 61st Streets, near the Lincoln Center), +1 212 245-4444. Excellent unadventurous North Indian food served by knowledgeable waiters in this upscale restaurant. A bit pricey, but you will get a fair value.

Markets[edit]

Lox for sale at Zabar's
  • 30 Citarella, 2135 Broadway (corner of 75th St.), +1 212-874-0383. Mon-Sat: 7AM to 11PM; Sun: 9AM-9PM. Started out as a fish market, then added an increasingly large meat section. They also sell some prepared items. Can be pricey.
  • 31 Fairway, 2127 Broadway (between 74th and 75th Sts), +1 212 595-1888. Probably the best-known supermarket in New York, Fairway sells a wide variety of specialty and prepared items, in addition to usual supermarket fare, and has large produce sections. Lots of good values to be had, but watch out for elbows and aggressive shopping cart drivers at peak times.
  • 32 Milano Market, 2892 Broadway (between 112th and 113th Sts.), +1 212 665-9500. Italian products with a good deli, reasonable cheeses, and a good selection of international beers.
  • 33 Schatzie's, 2665 Broadway (between 101st and 102nd Sts.), +1 212-410-1555. Totally friendly, great meats, great butchers, order by phone, and cheaper than Citarella. And they will cook dinner for you if you like.
  • 34 Westside Supermarket, 2840 Broadway (at 110th St), +1 212 222-3367. An old neighborhood establishment gone upscale. Amazing choice of prepared foods and good fruits and vegetables. The cheese section is outstanding, as also are the meats and fish.
  • 35 Zabar's, 2245 Broadway (NW Corner of Broadway and 80th Street), +1 212 787-2000, e-mail: . M-F: 8AM-7:30PM; Sat. 8AM-8PM; Sun: 9AM-6PM. A very well-known store in New York, with an enormous selection of delicious (and often expensive) foods. Foodstuffs (cheeses, olives, smoked fish, prepared foods, breads, etc.) are sold on the first floor. The second floor is where you will find all sorts of devices related to cooking and food processing at price points ranging from inexpensive bargains to very expensive luxury items. As with Fairway, do not go the day before Thanksgiving, and think carefully before going on a busy weekend. They also have a small cafe at the corner of 80th St. that has quite decent offerings (for example, frozen yogurt and sandwiches with some the good products sold in their store) and is not expensive.

Drink[edit]

Riverside Church
  • 1 Abbey Pub, 237 W 105th St (off Broadway), +1 212 222-8713. An old style pub popular with Columbia University students.
  • 2 Amsterdam Ale House, 340 Amsterdam Ave #1 (at 76th St), +1 212 362-7260. Local pub specializing in microbrews.
  • 3 Cotton Club, 666 W 125th St (Subway: 1 to 125th St), +1 212 663-7980, toll-free: +1-888-640-7980. The world famous Cotton Club of Harlem's present incarnation near Columbia University is that of a dance club/dinner club. Swing dancing is on Monday nights (8:30PM-midnight, $25), with a 13-piece swing band! Friday nights at 8:30PM are taken over by Latin Dance ($20) with a live 14-piece band playing merengue and bachata, appropriately for Dominican-heavy West Harlem. Th 8PM and Sa 9PM are jazz/dinner and dancing nights ($55) for a southern cooking buffet and swing band, while Sa-Su have gospel brunches at noon and 2:30PM ($45).
  • 4 Dive Bar, 732 Amsterdam Ave (corner of 96 St.), +1 212 749-4358. One of the few bars with any type of scene during the week. Good whiskey selection, good bartenders.
  • 5 Dublin House, 225 W 79th St (north side of 79th Street between Broadway & Amsterdam), +1 212 874-9528, e-mail: . Daily 8AM-4AM. Neighborhood bar.
  • 6 George Keeleys, 485 Amsterdam Ave (between 83rd and 84th Sts.), +1 212 873-0251. Excellent beer selection
  • 7 Smoke Jazz Club and Lounge, 2751 Broadway (between 105th and 106th Sts.), +1 212 864-6662. Live jazz seven days a week. Performers often jam late into the night so go for the late set if you can.

Cafes[edit]

The Upper West Side has many idiosyncratic cafes, some of long standing in the neighborhood. Of course, there is no shortage of Starbucks in the area, but for something different try one of the following:

  • 8 Cafe Lalo, 201 W 83rd St (between Amsterdam Avenue and Broadway), +1 212 496-6031. Around in the neighborhood for almost twenty years, Cafe Lalo is packed with a mostly young crowd until late in the night. Excellent cakes and pastries, coffee and tea in many varieties, and digestifs. Featured in You've Got Mail.
  • 9 Max Cafe, 1262 Amsterdam Ave (between 122nd and 123rd Streets), +1 212 531-1210. A laid back place for coffee, tea, sandwiches, and free wireless in the Columbia University neighborhood.
  • 10 Oren's, 2882 Broadway (between 112th and 113th Streets), +1 212 749-8779. A local chain with good coffee and excellent teas.
  • 11 Alice's Tea Cup, 102 W 73rd St (at Columbus Ave), +1 212 799-3006. Good tea selection, excellent scones and an Alice in Wonderland theme. Very popular with families with daughters
  • 12 Levain's Bakery, 167 W 74th St (at Amsterdam Ave), +1 212 874-6080. Bakery best known for their big, dense cookies.
  • 13 Crumbs, 775 Columbus Avenue (between 97th and 100th Streets), +1 917 410-5896. Bakery specializing in cupcakes, including the Oreo cupcake and the Hostess cupcake cupcake
  • 14 Magnolia, 200 Columbus Ave (at 69th St), +1 212 724-8101. Part of the cupcake bakery chain

Sleep[edit]

YMCA, near Central Park
Empire Hotel, near Lincoln Center

Budget[edit]

Mid-range[edit]

Splurge[edit]

  • 15 Excelsior Hotel, 45 West 81st St (between Central Park West and Columbus Avenue; near the American Museum of Natural History), +1 212 362-9200. A luxury four-star French-motifed hotel.
  • 16 Lucerne Hotel, 201 West 79th St. (at Amsterdam Ave), +1 212 875-1000. An upscale boutique hotel fully restored and recently recognized as a landmark building.
  • 17 Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 80 Columbus Circle (60th Street and Broadway; in the Time Warner Building), +1 212 805-8800. The hotel has a spa, upscale dining at Asiate, amazing views, and a fitness center on the premises.
  • 18 NYLO New York City, 2178 Broadway (at 78th street), toll-free: +1-800-509-7598. The rooms are larger than in most Manhattan hotels, with a modern design. $200-$250.
  • 19 Trump International Hotel Towers, 1 Central Park West, toll-free: +1-888-448-7867. An elegant 52-story hotel designed by noted architects Philip Johnson and Costas Kondylis.

Connect[edit]

Low Library, Columbia University
  • Columbia University. Free open wireless service in the neighborhood (best on campus).
  • New York Public Library. The NYPL branch libraries at Morningside Heights (114th and Broadway); Bloomingdale (100th Street between Columbus and Amsterdam); St Agnes (Amsterdam Avenue and 81st Street); Riverside (Amsterdam Avenue at 65th Street); and the Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center (Amsterdam Av. between 64th and 65th Sts.) all have computer terminals for public use (library membership is not necessary).

Go next[edit]

Other than visiting Central Park, obvious places to go next are the Theater District and the Village, easily reachable via all subway lines that run through the Upper West side; and the Upper East Side, for visits to the Metropolitan Museum and any number of other museums along 5th Avenue. In addition, Harlem is easily walkable from the northern reaches of the Upper West Side, and well worth exploring.

Routes through Upper West Side
BronxHarlem and Upper Manhattan  N NYCS-bull-trans-1.svgNYCS-bull-trans-2.svgNYCS-bull-trans-3.svg S  Theater DistrictFinancial District
Harlem and Upper Manhattan  N NYCS-bull-trans-A.svgNYCS-bull-trans-C.svg S  Theater DistrictFinancial District
BronxHarlem and Upper Manhattan  N NYCS-bull-trans-B.svgNYCS-bull-trans-D.svg S  Theater DistrictMidtown



This district travel guide to Upper West Side is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.