Neighborhood spotlight: Greenwich Village


Jean Christophe Benoist

Kendal Neel

Nestled deep in the heart of Manhattan lays the frenetic, historical epicenter of the Big Apple known as Greenwich Village. Since the early 1960s, this trendy Lower West Side neighborhood has served as a hub for an eclectic mix of residents and visitors. From soulful jazz crooners to Avante-Garde street artists, Greenwich never fails to please and promises a little something for everyone.

Once recognized as the soul of the New York City jazz scene, Greenwich continues to honor its musical roots through well-preserved speakeasies and jazz clubs alike. Music lovers searching for an authentic jazz club experience can look no further than Blue Note located on West 3rd Street. Often heralded as the “jazz capital of the world,” Blue Note draws in big-name talents such as McCoy Tyner and Dee Dee Bridgewater while also paving the way for hot, new jazz artists like Phony PPL. Visitors 21 and over can enjoy a cold drink as they take in the classy atmosphere and noir-like ambiance.

For anyone looking for the true New York City culinary experience, Bleecker Street Pizza is a staple for every city-goer. University sophomore Nick Hovagim said “Bleecker Street Pizza is hands-down the best pizza in the city! Their Margherita slice is to die for.” With a star-studded line-up of customers featuring names like Kendall and Kylie Jenner and Julia Roberts, it is no wonder this pizza shop is voted as one of the best every year.

Jean Christophe Benoist
Jean Christophe Benoist

Anyone on the hunt for a quiet, more intimate setting should be sure to check out Via Carota on Grove Street. Known for its cozy and rustic atmosphere, this Italian trattoria can make anyone feel at home. Labeled as traditional Italian comfort food, Greenwich neighborhood residents rave about their famous vegetable bread soup and grilled pears. Via Carota is the perfect restaurant for any occasion whether it’s a first date or a quiet outing with friends. Plus it is only a two-block walk from Washington Square Park so diners can finish off the night chatting by the fountain or humming along to the quiet tunes of park performers.

Greenwich Village is home to a diverse array of talented artists, and there is no shortage of things to be inspired by. Many artists, writers, and musicians can be found at the Whitney Museum of Art located between the Village and the Meatpacking District. Opened in 1914 by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, the museum began as a place for young artists to discuss and display their work. It later became the center of the 1960’s counterculture movement and now continues to be a safe space for artists of all mediums to express themselves freely. Anyone in need of some artistic inspiration should spend a day at the museum immersed in the paint-filled halls and corridors.

Since Greenwich Village is located so close to New York University, the neighborhood offers plenty of hidden study spots. Among the most popular is Think Coffee on Mercer Street. With enough outlets to keep your laptop charged for more than a few all-night study sessions, Think Coffee is there to help every student through the stress of the school year. University sophomore Veronica Reyes said, “Think Coffee is my favorite study spot in the city, my exams went so well last year because I had a quiet place to focus and learn.” Coffee enthusiasts from around the area recommend Think Coffee’s iconic cold brew to get through those long study sessions.

Much like New York City in its entirety, Greenwich Village is a neighborhood teeming with vibrant life and artistic individuality. Anyone can find a home among the streets of Greenwich. No matter who they are or where they come from, a trip to the Village is sure to make every day, even the worst ones, a little brighter.