An Affordable Slice of Culture: Why Living on the Upper East Side is Worth It


REAL ESTATE NEWS An Affordable Slice of Culture: Why Living on the Upper East Side is Worth It

The five boroughs of New York City house more than 140 neighborhoods. But the heart of the city is Manhattan.

Sure, Manhattan is one of the most crowded Burroughs with 1.2 million people crammed into about 20 square miles, but it's worth it. Living on the upper east side especially gives you access to the best of everything.

Here's a quick guide to moving on up to the east side. 

Culture and Entertainment

New York City is a global cultural center. Many of the city's cultural icons are located in the Upper East Side of Manhattan. 

Living on the upper east side gives you easy access to 5th avenue's famous Museum Mile. This stretch of cultural attractions like the Guggenheim and Metropolitan Museum of Art are within a 20-minute walk of the Upper East Side.

These museums house some of the world's most famous masterpieces like "Cypresses" by Vincent van Gogh and "Manuel Osorio Manrique de Zuñiga" by Goya.

Take advantage of the annual Museum Mile block party each June featuring family activities, troubadours and live music. If parties aren't your thing, you have access to Central Park for a quick jog or horse and carriage ride.

Take a stroll through the Central Park Zoo home to snow leopards and grizzly bears. Children can go see animal feedings during one of the Zoo's educational programs. 


New York City won't beat most other city's when it comes to affordability. But there are pockets of places like the Upper East Side that offer decent priced housing with great architecture.

The upscale housing, restaurants, and first-class boutiques are icing on the cake for residents looking for access to premium amenities. Living on the Upper East Side is an especially good value for families looking for close proximity to some of the city's leading prep schools.

Superior Housing

The rich history of the city shows through in the architecture of the Upper East Side. 

The area has some of the city's largest supply of prewar housing. Much of the housing in the community was built during the 1930s when spacious rooms, windowed baths, working fireplaces, and high ceilings were common amenities. 

These buildings still stand offering superior housing options for new residents. Luxury housing with ample closets, libraries and maids' quarters are among the neighborhood's more upscale inventory.

If price isn't an issue, townhomes in the area offer must-have amenities like bedrooms with adjoining baths and dining rooms. Be wary of single-family townhomes as they are often the target of professional burglars. 

The townhomes that have been divided up into smaller apartments provide a more affordable solution for residents who want spacious rooms and high ceilings. 

Easy to Get Around

New York City is made up of a complex transportation network of subways and buses. But this doesn't mean every neighborhood is equally connected.

If you make a mistake of pursuing space over proximity, such as with Staten Island, you'll end up without subway access which creates a painfully long commute. Living on the Upper East Side gives you quick access to everywhere you need to go.

Besides living among the center of the city's commerce, arts, and entertainment, you can hop on the Second Avenue Subway, or Q Train to get anywhere you need along Lexington Avenue.

This is a major accomplishment for the area as the financial district proved itself to be a maze up until 2017 when the Q Train line was complete. Other public transportation like the crosstown and express buses run everywhere in the Upper East Side neighborhood.

You'll be close to the FDR in case you want to take a road trip. 

Healthcare Access

Nobody likes getting sick. But if you're going to need a doctor, the Upper East Side is where you want to be.

The community has three of the city's leading hospitals. New York Presbyterian is nationally recognized having received a top-five placement on a hospital ranking report by U.S. News and World Report.

Lenox Hill and the Hospital for Special Surgery are both highly esteemed. The Hospital for Special Surgery is best known for foot and ankle care.

Lenox Hill is a part of the Northwell Health Group. They specialize in internal medicine, cardiovascular diseases, and children's healthcare. Between the three, you have access to some of the best healthcare in the country. 

Entertainment & Restaurants

Many young professionals move to the Upper East Side for its access to the nightlife. The exclusive restaurants of the neighborhood are a stone's throw from great bars to visit after work. 

The Flora Bar in the Met Breuer or Russ and Daughters at the Jewish Museum are two examples of museum bars that provide a trendy destination after hours.

The families and professionals who move to the Upper East Side have high incomes and want prestige. The restaurants that cater to this crowd offer top-notch dining experiences from some of the best chefs in the city. 

Living on the Upper East Side

Living on the Upper East Side is a privilege. If you can find one of the pockets of affordable apartments, snag it right away.

The neighborhood has maintained its first-class status since the prewar periods and isn't likely to decline any time soon. The neighborhoods are relatively safe making them a great option for families.

The mix between families and young professionals makes the community more diverse allowing it to attract businesses that cater to a wide range of interests. For more information and tips on NYC neighborhoods, check our blog for updates.

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