Chelsea offers a mix of established co-ops, brand-new condos, and converted lofts. As long as it’s not sedate, you can find it in Chelsea: two-story condos carved out of a former YMCA building, full-floor original lofts configurable to your every whim, sweeping downtown views, exposed brick galore, and even a few modest, smaller homes at commensurate prices.
What good is transportation when you live in the middle of everything? Seriously, though, Chelsea residents enjoy easy access to the rest of Manhattan with two north-south subway lines, the 1, 2, 3 and the A, C, E. Getting to the East Side or Brooklyn is made simple by the F, M, and L trains at 14th Street. Cabs in Chelsea arrive with little more than a flick of the finger, and Uber wait times are some of the lowest in New York.
Though not known for its schools, Chelsea nonetheless offers younger residents some excellent options. Private schools like The Avenues and Corlears School welcome excellent students from all over the city, and several of Chelsea’s public campuses earn excellent ratings from parents, including PS 33 Chelsea Prep, MS 260 Clinton School for Writers and Artists, and the NYC Museum School.
As a downtown neighborhood, Chelsea is served by the aptly named Chelsea Park, on 28th Street and 10th Avenue, which features playing fields and playgrounds. Chelsea residents are, however, close to a park of a different sort: The High Line, a former elevated railway converted into a verdant, scenic strolling path that runs from lower Chelsea to Midtown. If a longer run or bike ride is in the plans, Chelsea residents often take advantage of the spacious paths and piers along the Hudson River. Chelsea Piers, on the neighborhood’s western edge, offers something you don’t often see often in Manhattan: a driving range.
Restaurants and Bars
Chelsea is basically foodie paradise, with virtually endless dining options on its streets and avenues. The crown jewel is Chelsea Market, a massive former industrial building converted into a ultramodern food hall, inside which compact eateries turn out some of the best tacos, seafood, and desserts in all of New York City. If you can’t find it somewhere in Chelsea, it’s probably not very good to eat. And if after gorging you find yourself needing an adult beverage, Chelsea’s bar options run from charmingly plain (One-Star Bar), to loud and game-filled (Pioneers) as well as posh and hidden (Bathtub Gin).
Boutiques rule in Chelsea, although there are some chain-store outposts (The Home Depot; David’s Bridal) on the northeastern side of the neighborhood, closer to Midtown. Culinary specialties and cooking tools can be procured at the aforementioned Chelsea Market, and a wide assortment of local businesses in the area means unusual and high-end items in any category will be easy to find. Perhaps most famous are Chelsea’s art galleries, which draw buyers and aficionados from all over the world. More quotidian purchases can be made at neighborhood locations of Whole Foods, Fairway, and Trader Joe’s.
Landmarks and Culture
Similar to SoHo, Chelsea enjoys a reputation as a home to artists, musicians, and creative types — or at least to their work. The Whitney Museum, opened in 2015 on Gansevoort Street, on the southwestern edge of the neighborhood, and has become sort of the anchor tenant for Chelsea’s long-thriving gallery district. The High Line is one of the most compelling outdoor attractions in the city, offering sweeping views from two stories above street level. The Upright Citizens’ Brigade Theater houses world-renowned comedy almost every night of the week, and the variety of sleek event spaces in Chelsea means that the most exciting events in New York City often happen right here.