6.5 out of 10

2 Ave, Bowery

40.7248029354508 -73.9904346214384
Great for
  • Eating Out
  • Neighborly Spirit
  • Nightlife
  • Public Transport
  • Shopping Options
Not great for
  • Parking
  • Clean & Green
  • Cost of Living
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Lack of Traffic
Who lives here?
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Tourists
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters

Reviews

4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 1/5
  • Cost of Living 2/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
2yrs+

"A mix of dirt and money"

The Bowery is sort of colorful sub-neighborhood of the East Village, so 2nd only runs through the Bowery from Houston to 5th until it turns into just the East Village. But, make no mistake, there is a lot happen on this small stretch of 5 blocks.
2nd Ave really starts in the Bowery of times past kind of mode right at Houston. There's a vacant lot, a subway station and Mars Bar right here which channels the Bowery of the early 2000's when it was a legitimate crack den kind of scary place. Mars Bar really is the scariest bar I've ever seen. I won't even go in there during the day but I like that it adds a little old time color to the now pretty yuppy area.
At 1st street there's a mix of some little bars like Urge and the famous gay bar The Cock (very clever) along with a storage center and a really cool Archive Film Center . . . along with some random shops. These couple of blocks have a very 1980's New York kind of feel. It's very urban and hip and a little bit weird.
There's a boys school at 2nd and 2nd across the street from a really cool little cemetery. I went to a concert in this cemetery and all of the graves are underground crypts so it looks like a fortresses chunk of grass. You can only go in there a few times a year so I took advantage and I had a wonderful afternoon listening to music in a graveyard. How's that for city living?
The block between 3rd and 4th has some great little bars and restaurants. Dempseys is a very fun Irish pub and next door is a very chill wine bar called . . Winebar, and next door to that is a bistro kind of restaurant called Belcourt. They all have great sidewalk seating and this is one of my favorite blocks to sit with a drink, gossip and people watch. It doesn't make a difference to me which one we patronize. I think they're all great. There's some great buildings on this block too so the atmosphere during the al fresco dine is nothing to scoff at.
The next block has a ton of great food. My favorite is Mary Ann's Mexican just at 5th, but there's also a fish and chips joint, a Moroccan place, an Irish spot, and a little bakery. 84 Second Avenue has quite a history. It is where Nellie Bly lived when she pretended to be crazy to write her 10 Days in a Madhouse. And, it is where Helen Sopolsky lived and had a tailor shop. She was beaten to death here in 1974 and her shop stayed exactly the same for over three decades. How's that for creepy? Her broken neon sign gave the title to Hughes' play "Dress Suits for Hire." Now, there's a building with a past.
Once you get past 5th, you're in East Village proper and things start cleaning up quite a bit. Not that I think the Bowery is dirty. It was just really dirty not that long ago and the new, rich residents haven't completely washed that away yet. I like it though. The Bowery has spunk.
Pros
  • Cool vibe
  • History
  • bars and restaurants
Cons
  • Still some lingering filth from the old Bowery
  • Loud and kinda dirty
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Tourists
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Trendy & Stylish

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Unranked Streets in Bowery

2 Ave

3.5/5
"A mix of dirt and money"
40.7248029354508 -73.9904346214384

Cooper Sq

3.5/5
"Cool to look at but you can't really live here"
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"What a fantastic New York block."
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