Living in the Chinatown neighborhood of Manhattan

Affordable and hard-to-find describe many Chinatown apartments for rent. Most of the apartments are rented exclusively by word-of-mouth, and are never advertised. However, there are exceptions and apartments in rental buildings such as the Clinton Street Apartments, or the West 60 Apartments, often include much-desired features like hardwood floors, high ceilings, and newly renovated kitchens.


Available space in this area can be found in older walk-up buildings and in buildings converted into modest lofts, and you can also find moderately-priced apartments, from studios to two-bedroom rentals. Most are within easy walking distances to several parks, plenty of public transportation, shops and an exciting nightlife.


Manhattan's Chinatown is the largest in the United States; its two square miles located on the island's lower east side, loosely bounded by Kenmore and Delancey Streets on the east, and Broadway to the west. However, these boundaries have been expanding, particularly in recent years, overtaking parts of what traditionally wasLittle Italy. Although , for obvious reasons, a favored destination for Chinese immigrants, in recent years the neighborhood has become home to other ethnic groups as well, and continues to grow rapidly.


Living here means you are a step away from a thriving street life, but except for an occasional Pagoda style phone booth, quaintness is often replaced by a crowded selection of shops featuring native fruits and vegetables, low-cost clothing and housewares, herbal apothecaries, fine crafts, and unusual paper goods.


Unassuming storefront restaurants offer a treasure-trove of delectable Chinese food inside. To mention just a sampling: Dim Sum Go Go, Joe's Shanghai, Oriental Garden, Tasty Dumpling, Vegetarian Dim Sum House, and Ten Ren Tea and Ginseng, which is a lovely spot for residents who are tea lovers. Ten Ren's flagship store is at 75 Mott Street.


The most bustling commercial streets of Chinatown include Pell, Doyers, and Bayard, with their narrow walks and open-air markets. Canal Street, between Broadway and Mulberry Street, is crammed full of tiny stalls selling knock-off designer goods, bamboo plants, Chinese lanterns, and exclusive varieties of tea. The largest park is Columbus Park, often a site for men playing games of checkers and children enjoying the playground in the south end.


See the neighborhood from the perspective of a special guided tour arranged through the Museum of Chinese in the Americas' (MoCA). Experience Chinese walking tours given every Saturday, or just explore the neighborhood if you are looking at Chinatown real estate and discover for yourself the charms of this neighborhood.

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