One of five New York City boroughs, Manhattan has numerous neighborhoods that still retain a distinct personality. Many of them pride themselves on catering to a particular social niche or type of Big Apple resident; the Upper East Side is just your cup if tea if you’re craving a little luxury (or a classy cup of tea). After all, it’s often said to hold the most individual wealth in the entire world!
Manhattan is basically on a grid, with Avenues running vertically and Streets running horizontally. Fifth Avenue runs along the east perimeter of Central Park, which begins at 59th Street and continues to 110th Street. The Upper East Side is the area between the park and the East River, from 59th to 96th.
Shoppers will be in heaven; the UES has Michael Kors, Oscar de la Renta, Dolce & Gabbana, Calvin Klein, Barneys, Jimmy Choo, Vera Wang, Roberto Cavalli, and dozens of other designer shops. If you prefer paintbrushes over high-heels, there are nine museums on ‘Museum Mile,’ the stretch of Fifth Avenue from 82nd Street to 105th Street – these include the Guggenheim, the Jewish Museum, and (of course) the world-famous Metropolitan Museum of Art (otherwise known as ‘The Met.’) A great time to visit them is during the annual Museum Mile Festival in June.
Any fans of The Devil Wears Prada, Uptown Girls, the Nanny Diaries, Bride Wars, or Sex and the City 2 will see some familiar streets, as will lovers of Breakfast at Tiffany’s (57th Street and 5th Avenue for Tiffany’s, East 71st Street for the townhouse).
To get to the Upper East Side, you can easily use New York City’s extensive subway system: the 4/5/6 train goes up Lexington Avenue, but only take the 6 if you have time to stop at every stop (otherwise wait to catch the 4 or 5, which are express). Alternatively, you can take the F train from elsewhere and transfer to the 4/5/6 at Lexington Avenue/63rd Street.