A Quick Overview
While Park 79 Hotel is set in the heart of Manhattan’s the Upper West Side, we advise our guests to explore all the interesting neighborhoods. One of our favorites is MORNINGSIDE HEIGHTS. This vibrant neighborhood is known as “Harlem South,” “the Upper Upper West Side” and “Academic Acropolis.” Geographical boundaries are: East/Morningside Park, West/Riverside Park and the Hudson River, South/110th Street, North—Harlem/125th Street. And at its center, south to north: Broadway. New York’s major subway and bus lines serve the boundaries and the heart of Morningside Heights, including the terrific bus link to LaGuardia Airport for one MetroCard swipe, the #106. Upper Fifth Avenue on the East Side boasts Museum Mile. Morningside Heights, is unique in and of itself. Ice Age remnants are present in the granite outcroppings of the area, subway tracks emerge to street level before 125thStreet. The American Revolutionary War saw the Battle of Harlem Heights fought here, September 16, 1776. King George II founded Kings College in 1754, now the fifth oldest in America and known as: Columbia University. Writers, composers, artists and entertainers chose Morningside Heights as home and inspiration in their crafts. Visitors are enticed with these highlights of urban beauty and the dynamics of the area’s institutions of higher learning. In the mix are the religious institutes, a major music conservatory, architectural wonders, soul-pleasing urban parks and gardens and restaurants. Historical markers remembering the famous and their accomplishments add to the experience. Morningside Heights is a permanent home these days to young families and a long-established community, often reflecting the “Academic Acropolis.” College students from every country and little kids just starting their ABC’s are everywhere. Musicians and religious leaders gain their knowledge here. Craftspeople and artists, visiting school groups and tourists love the vibrations of Morningside Heights. May brings graduations and moving out; August sees the new and returning students do the reverse. Irish pubs are great for camaraderie, watching soccer, making out! Head north and love all that Harlem offers. From late November through March, Columbia University twinkles its bare trees in winter lights, and it can be stunning. Head over to Amsterdam Avenue and find even more dining choices, hang-out pubs, fast food from across the world.
Broadway is the link, and the world’s visitors are delighted to find this oasis of architectural gems, beautiful gardens, lawns, statuary and a youthful population that has come here from everywhere. A quick Google search will show free or moderately priced performances of every type on these campuses. Join a street chess game with an unknown expert or a discussion that catches your attention, or just sit back and rest on campus. This list, we hope, opens some planning ideas:
- Columbia University
- Barnard College
- Bank Street School of Education
- Manhattan School of Music
- Union Theological Seminary
- Jewish Theological Seminary
- Riverside Church Stroll Riverside Park,
enjoy the Hudson River
- Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine Gardens and sculpture in the Cathedral Close
Dine, drink, eat, snack, indulge. Even the street food in Morningside Heights can be terrific! Tom’s Restaurant is known by every Seinfeld fan. Cuisine of every country is offered on Amsterdam Avenue and Broadway and the side streets. Some terrific neighborhood eateries. The fresh food markets burst with nature’s colors outside, unending treats inside. Travel a bit north to Harlem and find Soul Food. Return to Park 79 Hotel very satisfied, very tired. Great day!