4.2 out of 10

West 51st St, Midtown

Ranked 20th best street in Midtown
40.76212098285 -73.9837627614064
Great for
  • Shopping Options
  • Safe & Sound
  • Eating Out
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Parks & Recreation
Not great for
  • Lack of Traffic
  • Neighborly Spirit
  • Nightlife
  • Parking
  • Peace & Quiet
Who lives here?
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Tourists


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

"Lots of suits."

West 51st in midtown is just as commercial as the rest of the streets but doesn't have the pizazz that many of them have because it lacks crowd pleasers like Rockefeller and Radio City Music Hall. The street starts its run at 5th avenue with the International Building which isn't International at all though it did house British Intelligence during WWII. Across the street is a pretty bank building that used to be the site of the three Vanderbilt mansions. This street did have quite the status back in the day but now it has a lot of delis and a lot of big media buildings like Time Warner and Associated Press. The back side of Rockefeller and Radio City are on this block so a lot of history still remains. But, places like Toots Shores have been replaced by commercial skyscrapers. Toots Shores was a big hang for the sports and literary set. Allegedly, this is the spot where Yogi Berra asked Ernest Hemingway what paper he wrote for when he was introduced to the "important writer." Apparently, it was a hoot hollering good time and was leveled for big business.
The block across 6th has more of the same in big business with buildings like Time and Life and UBS. UBS has one of the Heartland Breweries in it and for a chain I actually kind of like this place. Also, a lot of people who work at the Rock go here after work so the place is often full of funny people from 30 Rock and SNL. Weirdly placed on this block is one of the fanciest and most regarded restaurants in the city: Le Bernadin. I'm not a foodie so I found the place to be way too self important and the food a little too creative and pretentious but a lot of people love it. I always find it funny how the most shi shi restaurants in the city are always in the weirdest places . .like 51st.
There are only more offices and a couple of hotels that round out the streets run through the neighborhood. Oh, and there's a really cheesy diner with a waitstaff that creepily sings at you, so there's not a lot to do here. The sad thing is that there used to be a lot to do here but now it's really just a place that you go because of work . . . not to live.
  • A few places to eat
  • Touristy things
  • Crowded and loud during the day
  • No neighborhood feel
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Tourists

"Corporate, Alright to Pass Through"

I wouldnt recommend W 51st for children, as it might be one of the busiest streets in Manhattan. Roomate and I would go skating on the ice rink in the winter, and during christmas watch the tree lighting! The street was really chaotic, even for us. The street does have potential to create a lot of memories if you live in the area, but for a tourist I wouldn't recommend visiting this street. I mean, for a street it is a pretty ordinary, busy street. There aren't many good places to eat around W 51st, but walking a few blocks will find you at a take out or smoothie and salad bar, depending on which way you go. I have never worked on this street, but I suppose it's not an inconvenient street, food-wise, as there are places you can walk to if you have enough time for lunch.

Again, if you aren't into the corporate thing, I wouldn't visit this street unless you are passing through it. We saw an older woman get knocked down and ended up helping her back to her apartment, because people are so busy that they won't even stop to help an old lady! Little kids looked uncomfortable too. However, if you're passing through or looking for a job, or hanging out on college vacation this is an okay place.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles

"Midtown density is too much"

I worked here for 10 mths and it’s a great location but possibly the busiest area in the entire city… It’s full of tourists and workers and although it’s a central location, it’s a terrible place to work each day simply because it’s so busy!! It’s also got a pretty poor selection of foods on offer. Try Circle 75 for some fresh food (at a price) or walk down to 48th St and try Lenny’s sandwich’s.. I guess one of the attractions of working in this area is the beautiful ice rink which is open for a few months each year. It’s at the foot of the Rockefeller statue and although small, it’s a fun spot. The lighting of the Christmas tree lights is also a major highlight of the year.

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