Well, it guess it depends on who you are speaking with but let’s take a look at what you get when you purchase an apartment on the upper west side.
You got to have Park
Anywhere on the Upper west side, you are sandwiched between Central Park and Riverside Park. Chances are you are near to one or the other. In both parks, you can ride your bike, play tennis, go for a picnic, dance, and watch outdoor movies. In Riverside Park, you can see the sunset while sitting at Pier I cafe having a burger and beer. In Central Park, you go swimming in the summer and ice skating in the winter in the same place! So if greenery and a park are important to you, you will love a pad on the UWS.
The Upper west side of Manhattan has some of the best public schools including PS 87 and PS 199. PS 87 had a profile in the New York Times a few years back because they were able to raise over $1 million through the PTA and provide the principal with much needed equipment. There are several other public schools also within District 3 and the upper west that are coveted as well. If you are looking for a private school, you have many excellent choices including-Trinity, Columbia Prep, Collegiate and the Dwight School.
There are many options in the neighborhood including the B and C train on Central Park west and the 1,2,3 trains on Broadway. So if you work in midtown or downtown your commute will be reasonable. Plenty of crosstown buses that transverse Central Park west are available to help you go West-East as needed. Now thanks to Citi Bike’s expansion, you can find stations everywhere up to 110th street.
You can find everything from prewar to postwar to brand new on the Upper west side and plenty of townhouses if you want more space. Typically, you can find a 1 bedroom co-op starting in 600’s and condos start in the high 700’s for JR1 (studio converted to a 1 bedroom) Family sized apartments of at least 1000 sqft (93m2) will start at around $1.3 million for a co-op and slightly higher for a condo. If you want to find something on Central Park west, in the high 90’s to low 100’s there are some excellent values and not all are co-ops. Included among the best values are the buildings of Park West Village at 372,382,392, and 400 central park west where a 2 bedroom/2bath of 1141 sqft (106m2) will start at just under $1.8 million.
If you are searching for new, you can find a new construction condo of about 2000 sqft(186m2) for as low as $4 million and for a little more, a great view of the Hudson River. Townhouses start at just under 4 million and go up depending on the condition.
Restaurants and night life
While the upper west side is not known for the nightlife of downtown or Brooklyn, it has it’s fair share of bars especially in the low 80’s on Amsterdam avenue including Brother Jimmy’s and Dead Poet’s Society. For foodies, the only problem may be too many options including vegetarian and vegan options :Ayurveda Cafe, Peace Food Cafe as well Hampton Chutney. For the more carnivorous, you have Stella’s, Gabriella’s as well as many other choices like Carmine’s.
Whole Foods is present in Columbus Circle as well as Columbus Square (West 97th street) in addition to Trader Joe’s (W 72nd st and coming soon to W 93rd st), Fairway, Zabar’s and the Upper West side market. Plenty of choices for organic fare anywhere on the UWS.
With all of these conveniences, it’s easy to see why many people purchase on Manhattan’s upper west side and many of those purchasers stay for the long haul. Is it Manhattan’s best neighborhood? What’s your opinion?