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CribRater Neighborhood Guide: Upper East Side


Once known for its luxurious apartments, fine dining, and endless shopping, the Upper East Side is quickly becoming a haven for families and millennials. With its close proximity to Central Park and the East River, it’s an up and coming destination for those who enjoy the city life but not all the hustle and bustle of downtown. The Upper East Side is adding many new restaurants and craft beer bars that cater to the younger demographic. But this NYC neighborhood is still classic and chic – featuring brownstone apartments and fine designer boutiques.


Thanks to the newly added T train, transportation to and from the Upper East Side just got a lot easier.

4, 5 express line to 86th street and Lexington Ave. | 6 local line to 86th street and Lexington Ave. | NQR to 59th and Lexington Ave | T line to 86th Street or 96th Street via Second Ave.

Boundaries: East 59th Street to 96th Street; 5th Ave to FDR Drive


Like the majority of neighborhoods in New York City, living in the Upper East Side isn’t cheap. But, it depends on what you are looking for. If you’re looking to rent in a luxury building, expect to pay a pretty penny. If you’re looking to rent a studio, though, prices are comparable to other areas in the Manhattan.

Average Rent Summary (as of 2017):

1 BR $3,229

2 BR $5,499

3 BR $11,445

Keep in mind this is only an average!

Quality of Life

Thanks to its location in between Central Park and the East River, the Upper East Side has a great quality life. The Carl Schurz park, for example, is a great place to go for a walk or run along the East River or take your dog to play in the dog park.

Image of  The Mall area in Central Park, New York
Image of The Mall area in Central Park, New York

The Upper East Side has 4,180 trees

Bars and Restaurants

The Upper East Side is quickly becoming a hot spot for bars and restaurants. Thanks to its rise in renters and booming craft beer scene, it’s a coveted spot for up and coming restaurants and bars.

Best Whiskey Bar: Caledonia Scottish Pub

Best Ramen: Mei-Jin Ramen

Best Gastropub & Brunch : The Penrose

Best Italian: Tiella

Best Small Plates & Date Spot: Uva

Best Beer & Cheese: Earl’s Beer & Cheese

Best Upscale Mexican: Toloache 82

Best Craft Beer Bars: Bondurants & The Pony Bar

Best Burger: JG Melon

Best Rooftop Bar: The Met Rooftop Bar

Best Bagels: H&H Midtown Bagels East

Best Pizza (not by the slice): Nick’s Pizza


The Upper East Side is well known for its shopping – especially designer and high-end fashion. Park Avenue and Madison Ave are where you can find shops like Louis Vuitton, Prada, Gucci, Chanel, Dior, and more. Fifth Avenue is also a prime premium shopping destination.

If you’re looking or a more affordable shopping trip, take the NQR to 59th Street and Lexington, where you’ll find stores like Urban Outfitters, Bloomingdales, and Forever 21, among others.


Next time you’re looking for a new neighborhood to check out – or even rent in – don’t count out the Upper East Side! Thanks to the bars, restaurants, shopping, and Central Park, there is no shortage of things to do there!