West Village – Manhattan’s Beautiful and Pristine Neighborhood Bordering Greenwich Village
What’s not to love about Manhattan’s artsy jewel of a community, the West Village? Its unofficial boundaries are from Houston to 14 Street and Sixth Avenue to the Hudson River. The West Village is an extension of Greenwich Village and has a bit more of a unassuming personality than its more boisterous counterpart, the East Village.
With Chelsea to the North and Soho to the South, Manhattan’s West Village is home to past and present celebrities, writer and artists. The West Village has a laid-back, genteel atmosphere, reminiscent of a quaint European village rich in history and charm, as well as modern conveniences. Brownstones and pre-war architecture dominant its small streets (some cobblestoned) and there’s plenty of boutique shops–from current must-have fashions to vintage and antique collectables. Residents and visitors take full advantage of its exquisite cafes, coffeehouses, bakeries and restaurants as well.
Beautiful buildings dating back to the 1700s still stand. Tourist attractions include the White Horse Tavern built in the 1800s as a hangout for longshoremen. But it was the prolific writer of the 1950s, Dylan Thomas, that put it on the map as a literary landmark. It reportedly drew other creative types in as well–Jack Kerouac, Anais Nin and Hunter Thompson were some of the literary geniuses that found solace and perhaps inspiration within its walls.
The revitalized, exciting Meat Packing District is a few blocks away with over 200 businesses that include new bars and restaurants that cater to the “up all night” crowd, as well as upscale shops. New York University is steps away, as is Washington Square Park, New York’s landmark park with the beautiful Washington Square Arch on its northern edge. West of Washington Square Park is the compact Hudson Park that sparked even more new development in the West Village in the early 2000s.
Beautiful, tree-lined Perry street between Bleecker and West Fourth has brownstones from the 1800s where tourists can take “Sex and the City” tours. One of these brownstones is featured in the popular cable series of the same name. Architecture along this street includes Italianate, Federal, Beaux-Arts, French and Romanesque Revival. Sarah Jessica Parker and hubby Matthew Broderick are reported to own a multi-million dollar town house on nearby Charles Street.
Magnolia Bakery at 401 Bleecker Street is the bakery that residents (famous patrons included) frequent and Marc Jacobs has multiple shops nearby. Celebrity spotting is a favorite past time of residents and plenty live in the West Village. Ralph Lauren, Juicy Couture, Coach and other upscale shops dot the streets as well as older establishments that are somewhat easier on the budget. For a huge selection of restaurant choices, West Fourth has everything–from modestly-priced bistros to the very upscale.
The West Village, as its close neighbors, has a colorful history where controversial artists and writers helped develop its forward-thinking reputation, and a resident and writer for the New York Times described it as “the one true American artistic and intellectual bohemia.” The difference between its past and present is affordability; the West Village is now one of Manhattan’s most expensive neighborhoods, with the highest per square foot prices as well as the highest occupancy rates for both sales and rentals.
Choices of residences include those beautiful brownstones with steps leading up to the front entrance; pre and post-war apartments and new luxury living. Superior Ink at 400 West 12th Street is a luxury condo building that was once an ink factory in the 20th Century. There’s 385 West 12th Street that has 12 three to four bedroom units, located near the Hudson River; 165 Charles Street, a 180-foot tall building with 31 apartments and a small condo building at 163 Charles Street that’s an eight-story brick and glass building.
Hudson Blue at 423 West Street is between 11th and Perry Streets, a prime West Village location and contains six condo units with terraces that face the Hudson River. Then there’s Perry West, two sleek, glassed residential apartment towers that are located at the north and south corners of Perry and West Streets. Each floor of these luxury condos houses one apartment with panoramic views of Manhattan and the Hudson River.
West Village’s residences range from renovated historical treasures to magnificent modern masterpieces. It’s no surprise why so many choose to call this beautiful Lower Manhattan neighborhood home.