If you’re new to Greenwich Village, and you’re walking along admiring its townhouses and co-ops, the spot where West Fourth Street crosses West Tenth Street might cause you to scratch your head a little. Even the Village’s most modern luxury condos get a bit of European charm from the meandering, tree-lined streets, leftovers from the 19th century, when Greenwich Village was new development, started up before the city’s grid plan.
More Washington Square Park, which is having its green spaces freshened up, is the heart of Central Greenwich Village. The north side of the park is lined with landmark townhouses; the park itself sports an iconic arch designed by Stanford White. Lower Fifth Avenue is a strip known as “The Gold Coast,” home to magnificent prewar co-ops with many bedrooms, grand lobbies, high ceilings, and often doormen in livery. Famous residents of Greenwich Village attracted by the landmark homes and apartments include former first daughter Barbara Bush, musician Steve Earle and actress Uma Thurman. Home to New York University and its 50,000 students, Greenwich Village has historically nurtured writers and artists, whether they were famous or just trying to make rent. The Cedar Tavern on University Place, for instance, is an offshot of the Greenwich Village bar that entertained painter Mark Rothko and beat writer Jack Kerouac. Further west, in an area sometimes distinguished as simply the “West Village,” is an area of legendary jazz spots and magical little shops with all varieties of clothing and books for sale. Because the Village’s bedrock is shallow, townhouses and even rental apartment buildings are low, so the neighborhood offers plenty of bright blue sky to add to its legendary charm. Less
The Village has changed
dramatically in the 37 years I've lived there. 8th was our shopping street, with a butcher, jeweller, grocer, haberdasher and shoe stores galore. Koppers chocolate factory was a neighbor on Waverly Pl and NYU wasn't the dominant presence it is today.
Local tips and information for going out in the Greenwich Village from The Corcoran Group. Explore dining, shopping and nightlife.All Greenwich Village tips