Apartment City: "10 NYC Neighborhoods That Changed the Most This Decade"

Dec 29th 2009 15 Comments

I can tell you by personal experience that there have been obvious changes in some of my fav neighborhoods over the last few years…
A few years ago, when I hauled myself back into the dating scene, I used to meet 1st dates in quaint Brazilian resty’s located in Alphabet City. Partly bc the resty’s had authentic food, but mostly bc it shuffled my date & I out of commercial E. Village traffic.

Now, if I stop by any of my former spots, they are filled with suits on match.com datessooo NOT joking.

One night a gf & I had stopped by a former fav spot for an early dinner. We walked in and literally half the resty was filled with Finance Guys who were shooting down caipirinhas & mint mojitos like tap water.

And…we just happened to have been seated next to one couple, who definitely met online. How could I tell?


GUY: “It’s great to finally meet you.”
GAL: “Me too.”

GUY: “Wow. You look just as
amazing in person.”
GAL: “Thank you. You look…….nice


(BTW, in this particular resty, the tables are placed so close together that you can actually tell the time by looking at the person’s watch next to you. I know this bc I did it myself. Whatevz!)

I heard GUY also say to his date:

GUY: “Yea, I love this place. I like going to spots no one knows about.”

Dude, if YOU are here EVERYONE knows about it!

Pssshaw. I kid. Ok, no I don’t.

Anywho, Midtown East hasn’t changed too much besides having a few shops close and now re-open as pet stores. There are more specialty pet shops in my area than there are Duane Reades! Midtown Pups couldn’t be happier about this change.

I, however, NEED my Duane Reade – a.k.a. my lifeline. 😉

10 NYC Neighborhoods That Changed the Most This Decade
by Izzy Grinspan
source: from www.racked.com here

It’s hard to crown a winner: Williamsburg has undergone full reconstructive surgery since 1999, but the Meatpacking District is also a strong contender. (Remember when the trannies threw eggs at Samantha’s window on Sex and the City? That episode first aired in August of 2000.) So instead of ranking them, we’re just going to let the experts make their cases for the title of most altered neighborhood of the Aughts. If you’re home and bored this Christmas Eve, do let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Madison Avenue: “Madison Avenue is quite sad with all the for-rent signs and empty storefronts—all of which transpired in the last year and half!”—Alexis Maybank, founder, Gilt Groupe

The Bowery/the LES: “The Bowery and the Lower East Side are growing and changing the fastest.”—John Bartlett

Soho: “I feel that Soho has changed the most for retail shopping. It’s almost entirely big brands. Soho feels a bit like a shopping mall now…just a teensy scoochy bit.”—Toni Hacker, designer, Hayden-Harnett

Eighth Street: “Eighth Street was always tacky and vibrant and kind of fabulous. Now most of the shop-fronts are for rent.”—Simon Doonan, creative director, Barneys

source: Berk2804/Flickr

Williamsburg: “Ten ago the big highlight used to be buying second-hand clothes for $2 a pound on Driggs. Now you can get a vibrator for $200.”—Marsha Brady, creative director, American Apparel


The Meatpacking District: “Where else can you find luxury co-mingling with the scent of rotting flesh? The meatpacking district! Only in New York will we pay top dollar to live and play in a neighborhood that still houses functional meat packing plants. Not so bad in the winter, but in the summer, that smell wafting by Alexander McQueen is not exactly the next new fragrance. Wow. And ladies, watch your heels. Mind the blood—slippery when wet.”—Andy Salzer, designer, Yoko Devereaux

source: Jay Woodsworth/Flickr

South Brooklyn: “I’m cheating a bit since it’s not just one neighborhood, but Brooklyn. At the beginning of the decade I lived in Boerum Hill, and Butter on Atlantic Avenue was pretty much the only game in town. These days I’m back in Manhattan but some of my favorite stores are there: Dear Fieldbinder, Bird, Erie Basin. If there’s any truth to the rumors of a Barneys Co-op opening up on Atlantic Avenue, I won’t be at all surprised.”—Kim France, editor, Lucky

Bleecker Street: “Marc Jacobs was the sole pioneer of Bleecker Street, but I like to think that we, being a few blocks away, contributed to the growth of one of the city’s chicest shopping neighborhoods.”—Cynthia Rowley

Dahlings…have any of your fav neighborhoods changed?

City kissies,

p.s. – special SHOUT-OUT to Sasha from Little Pink Book PR for listing Midtown Girl in her “Top 10 To Follow in 2010” post here!!

Heart you tons, Sasha!! XOXO

15 Comments to “Apartment City: "10 NYC Neighborhoods That Changed the Most This Decade"”

  1. Secretia says:

    That was so interesting about all the neighborhoods.
    Also yes, the people who are dating from first time online matches, they are obvious sometimes.

  2. otin says:

    Being that I never paid enough attention, I never remembered where the separate parts of the city were. I knew that the village was in lower Manhattan, but areas like Little Italy and China town, I could never remember where they were. I remember we used to go to the San Genaro(I guess that is how it is spelled) every year! MMM! Italian sausage sandwiches! haha!

  3. Sherrie says:

    I love reading your blog. It makes me want to come visit NYC. If I ever do I will be sure to get tips from you. 🙂

  4. sarah says:

    Ugh. So true about Madison. It's depressing.

  5. Shop N' Chomp says:

    What a cool list! Congrats Amy!!! 😀 I love reading about different cities. For us, I think one of the biggest changes has been downtown.

  6. Cafe Fashionista says:

    OMG, I absolutely adore this post, Amy – especially the quotes about each location! Williamsburg is one of my favorite places in the world – so hipster yet cute at the very same time. And both Bleecker and Chelsea…j'adore! Everything about NYC is gorg!!

    As for the gray boots. Two words…Charlotte. Russe. That little shop has such fabulous footwear!! 🙂

  7. fashion herald says:

    I love this "overheard," accidentally listening in on others conversations is always entertaining!

    And I'd vote for Williamsburg, since we moved north to Greenpoint four years ago, the Burg seems to have a new store/bar up every weekend when we walk up to shop.

  8. WendyB says:

    Good eavesdropping! Keep it up!

  9. kpeach says:

    I know Madison is a downer xx

  10. Hanako66 says:

    this post is brutal…i want to go so bad!!!!!

  11. Glendy says:

    OMG darling, they missed out on one of the most notorious boroughs in all NYC that literally came up from the ashes, think deserted junk yards, burnt buildings, it looked like a bomb had been detonated there, THE BRONX! To be specific the south Bronx, I don't know if you are familiar with Grand Master Flash – the Jungle, that's exactly what it looked like when I grew up, my family had just moved to the states and it was the only affordable place in NYC. I'm always shocked everyone misses to mention it or maybe reporters are still scared to go there but from first experience I can tell you it has changed sooo much. I can't believe Parkchester and other places of great housing and new buildings came from an area that was almost burnt to the ground.

    Much love always,

  12. Couture Cookie says:

    Oh God… I lived on the west side for a couple of years before moving to the East Village, but I swear the EV has changed dramatically in only the 5 years I've been here. 2nd Ave is like Little SoHo these days… very sad.

  13. Elizabeth Marie says:

    SAVING THIS POST for reference 🙂

  14. Chessa! says:

    omg…SoHo is like a strip mall now. I can't even bear the thought of going there on a Sunday without having a bit of a panic attack. I go during the week sometimes to meet the hubs for lunch since he works down there and it's like a completely different neighborhood. You are so right about the LES…it used to be a bunch of small, cool places and now it's still cool but everyone knows about it…plus, there are so many wannabe hipsters down there…and sometimes it's SO dirty down there. It's kind of gross. I do love the little thrift shops and vintage stores down there though…
    And I LOVE the west village but also on the weekends it sometimes looks like disney land with the lines around the corner for magnolia bakery. And please, I LOVE Marc Jacobs but how many MJ stores do we need down there?? They recently closed my favorite bookshop bc they couldn't afford the rent anymore:(

  15. Sasha says:

    Now that I live here, this post makes so much sense! 🙂

    Sasha xx.

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