“I just thought the whole thing was fabulous – what a great childhood you had!,” responded my mom when I asked her why in the world she ever decided to raise her children in Manhattan. In the 1980s. On Eighth Avenue and 53rd Street. “You got to see a side of the world other kids don’t.” Words of truth from a great mom.
While Williamsburg has spent the last decade getting a face lift, Atlantic City did the same, with developers putting up towers on the waterfront. While Brooklyn got luxurious condos, Atlantic City got luxurious hotels: the Chelsea, the Borgata, the Water Club and, tallest of them all, Harrah’s. Crime and drugs are still busy in both, but hidden a few blocks in from the unsuspecting eye, and developers are falling over themselves to draw the young and the hip to the waterfront in both locations.
“The lifestyle is so different in Texas,” my friend Rhett said to me recently, citing…
With the opening of Ikea Brooklyn on June 18, no longer is a trip to Elizabeth, N.J., a staple of New York residential life; instead, it’s a ferry or bus ride to the faded industrial port of Red Hook.
It isn’t often that New Yorkers get an intimate peek behind their neighbors’ closed doors. Even more unusual is a peek inside the intimate life of our state’s chief executive. But I digress.
As a child growing up in a 25-story filing cabinet for families and young professionals on West 53rd Street, I lived in apartment 10E. When trick-or-treating or selling my annual Christmas raffle tickets for school, I would get an intimate window into how my neighbors lived. We all have our domains, and regardless of how small they might be, they are ours. But what are we all doing behind those doors?
It’s easy to feel helpless and vulnerable during your apartment search, tired of hoofing it from place to place, and being let down almost every time. On top of that, I was skeptical of my realtor, Angel, a 50-ish Asian woman who drives a Jaguar, when she first showed me the apartment I inevitably took.
As I briefly mentioned last week, amenities and good location are hard to come by, especially at the same time and at a decent price. While looking at an apartment three (very long) blocks off the Dekalb L stop, I noticed little signs of revival in the outstretches of Bushwick—the facade of a tenement building repaired, construction workers milling about in paint-splattered overalls with ladders. A sign that the tidal wave of Williamsburgian revival will soon fall upon it. However, thus far, it hasn’t.
For three years I lived in Greenpoint, the northern Polish colony of Brooklyn. Though I wasn’t part of the first wave of gentrification, the wheels of which were long turning—fast—my indigenous neighbors didn’t necessarily seem thrilled with the influx of youthful college graduates. But, over the time I spent living there, the process completed itself. Greenpoint, close to Williamsburg and now home to hip bars, natural markets, galleries, brunch spots, fashion-forward boutiques and even a book store, became the convenient and affordable “choix de la jeunesse.”