AROUND TOWN A Look At Greenwich Village

By TJ Johnson

Counterculture movement, artist haven, and Bohemian capital. These phrases have been used to describe Greenwich Village at one point or another. While there is still no shortage of art, off-Broadway plays, and jazz clubs, Greenwich Village has become ranked as one of the highest price-per-square-foot areas in New York City.

The good news is, you definitely get what you pay for. Take a walk around Greenwich Village’s tree-lined streets and take in all the beauty the neighborhood has to offer. With several buildings being protected by historic designation, you will not have to worry about buying your dream co-op overlooking Washington Square Park and having a 40-story building obstructing your view five years later. So now that worry is out of the way, you can enjoy walking around your neighborhood taking in all that it has to offer.

One of my favorite spots and I’m sure many people’s favorite, is Washington Square Park. After finding a seat on a bench in the park, just sit back and experience all the vibrant energy of everybody who enters the park. From dog walkers, skateboarders, and the squirrels causing a ruckus, to visitors taking pictures of the famous arch, there is plenty to see.

Naturally, taking in all this beauty and people-watching is work. And one must refuel at some point during the day. One of my favorites places is Il Mulino New York, located on 86 West 3rd Street. This is their flagship restaurant and has stood the test of time for over 30 years. It has continuously been one of the top-rated restaurants in the elite-dining scene. Serving classic Italian food with authentic preparations from Abruzzo, Italy, this is a must in Greenwich Village.

Another original restaurant that opened in Greenwich Village in 2000 is a restaurant called Blue Hill. Hidden three steps below street level, the restaurant occupies a landmark “speakeasy” just off of Washington Square Park. Owning a small farm in Upstate New York myself, I can relate to Blue Hill’s farm-to-table local food sourcing vibe. Dan Barber is one of the most amazing chefs. He creates a menu that coincides with whatever is at peak harvest on his farm in Westchester. Whatever the season may be, your taste buds will surely thank you after a meal here.

If you are looking for a laid-back atmosphere with great food, then head to North Square Restaurant. Their approach to seasonal American food inspired by world traditions and local ingredients makes a fun, delicious menu. Nothing beats heading over to North Square on a Sunday and enjoying their Jazz Brunch in the lounge.

Looking for more entertainment and things to do at night? One of my favorite places to go in Greenwich Village is the Comedy Cellar! Founded in 1982 and voted the best comedy club in NYC, you will see some of the best, famous comedians, as well as up and coming talent.

Music time! If you are looking to hear some Jazz, you must swing by the Smalls Jazz Club and the Mezzrow Jazz Club. Featuring live jazz bands and jam sessions with great cocktails, they provide the quintessential jazz dive atmosphere that focuses on finding emerging stars. If you’re looking to see some legendary jazz musicians take stage, then you should check out the Blue Note Jazz Club located on 131 West 3rd Street.

If you’re looking to rent in Greenwich Village, you can find studio apartments ranging from $1,900 to $3,500, and one bedrooms from $2,700 to $5,000. Looking for a 2 bedroom? They start at $4,000 and can go up to $12,000 per month. Prices are dependent on location, interior finish, and the building itself. If you are looking to purchase, on average you can find a one bedroom for $1 to $3 million, whereas two-bedroom apartments can range from $1.8 to $5 million. Again, these prices will vary based on square footage and interior finish.

Looking for that prewar co-op in Greenwich Village? Then you should definitely take a look at the beautiful, prewar co-ops on Fifth Avenue, such as 1 Fifth Avenue. This building overlooks Washington Square Park and is also where Keith Richards owns a beautiful co-op currently for sale. Perhaps you are looking for something new and trendy? Well, there’s a beautiful new condo building on 21 East 12 Street, or you could travel a bit West and check out The Greenwich Lane. It is a series of five apartment buildings and five townhouses at the former site of the St. Vincent’s Hospital. The buildings have several luxury condominiums and each has unique differences and various styles with a private outdoor space.

Thelonious “TJ” Johnson is a licensed broker with Brown Harris Stevens, recently has teamed up with Ogden Starr, and enjoys sharing his tips on his favorite city. If you are looking for a residence in NoHo—or anywhere else throughout Manhattan—contact him for any of your buying or selling needs. Visit

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