In the Neighborhood: Your ultimate guide to New York's Chelsea
Discover this trendy New York neighborhood’s stunning riverfront views, plethora of shopping and array of cool restaurants and galleries.
By Alina Dizik | September 6, 2023
What was once Manhattan’s hip nightlife and artist mecca, now includes a little bit of everything — tucked-away cocktail bars, free museums and galleries, indie boutiques, innovative dining, scenic parks and plenty of ways to enjoy the Hudson River.
With Chelsea’s mix of buzzy restaurants, bars and all-day cafes, it’s fun to explore the neighborhood’s culinary scene. Try:
- Old World salumi made in-house at Salumeria Biellese. Be sure to save room for dessert at The Donut Pub or Sullivan Street Bakery, an outpost of the Greenwich Village original.
- Brunch at Cookshop, a farm-to-table restaurant known for its signature egg sandwich with fontina cheese, caramelized onion jam, chile, arugula and mixed greens. Prefer something sweet? Sample the popular cinnamon bun with cream cheese icing.
- Innovative craft cocktails (with a strong gin focus) at Bathtub Gin mixed with burlesque, jazz, disco nights, dark woods and the invitation to be anyone you want to be for the evening. In a nod to Prohibition, this 1920s-inspired speakeasy is a New York institution tucked behind Stone Street coffee shop.
While the High Line and Chelsea Market are must-sees when you’re in the neighborhood, art lovers can also spend time wandering through Chelsea’s many galleries. Explore:
- Some 300 art galleries located between 20th to 27th streets and Tenth and Eleventh avenues. The combo of up-and-coming artists and some of the biggest names in the business makes for an ideal New York afternoon. Be on the lookout for special exhibits or simply step into a gallery that catches your eye.
- The High Line, an elevated park built on a former rail line that stretches 1.45 miles (2.3 kilometers) for a unique perspective of the city. You’ll also find visual, performance and sound art, as well as relaxing gardens, food offerings and more.
- Artechouse NYC, located underneath the iconic Chelsea Market, for immersive and interactive art experiences with the help of giant display screens.
Retail-lovers have numerous opportunities to scout vintage goods, trendy styles and merchandise throughout this eclectic neighborhood. Browse:
- 192 Books for an interesting collection of art books, literature and international translations. The store feels like a private library and features readings, book signings and community events that draw a loyal clientele.
- Housing Works, a thrift shop adored by locals that donates proceeds to AIDS charities and sells everything from designer clothing to home decor at affordable prices.
- Artists & Fleas at Chelsea Market for unique handmade crafts, vintage clothing, artisan jewelry and antiques. New products arrive weekly from designers, creators and curators so there’s always something new to discover.
With riverfront views and art around every corner, exploring Chelsea is a truly authentic New York adventure. The area’s unique mix of outdoor spaces, one-of-a-kind galleries and inventive yet unfussy restaurants, guarantee the neighborhood’s funky roots are seen wherever you go.
Alina Dizik is a lifestyle journalist, covering travel, real estate, work trends and food. She lives in Chicago.