There are a lot of things to love about this rambunctious city, including the many secret spectacles hidden in plain sight.
New York is infamous for its underground oddities, sequestered speakeasies, and tucked-away treasures. Unfortunately, not all of them are public, and some no longer exist (RIP 5 Pointz).
In an attempt to consolidate the laundry lists out there and filter the public from the private and the secret from the not-so-secret (yes, everyone already knows about the Whispering Gallery in Grand Central), we’ve put together this shortlist of 9 secret spots you can most certainly visit on your next day off. Read more »
Back when everyone was gushing about “Friends,” a few killjoys liked to grouse that Monica Geller’s NYC apartment was unrealistically big for a pair of young, underemployed 20-somethings. But their living situation was easily explained by the fact that: 1) the place was handed down from Monica’s grandmother and: 2) it was make believe, people.
Remember how Monica dated Tom Selleck? That wasn’t real, either.
Besides, Hollywood specializes in creating fantasies, and if they can trick the rest of the country into thinking regular folks can afford a swinging pad with a huge living room and skyline views, then let there be blissful ignorance.
Here are five TV shows that featured our favorite fake Big Apple apartments on TV:
Luckily for Monica, her grandmother picked out the spacious 2-bedroom apartment with a killer balcony years earlier, when rent control kept things sane. As a result, Monica, who at one time had just $127 in the bank, only had to cook up $200 a month for this place, located at the corner of Grove and Bedford in Greenwich Village. (Some say it’d actually cost about $5k a month today.) Even then she needed a roomie to make it work.
The sad truth is that finding a good New York apartment is difficult. But, hey, this is New. York. City. The center of everything, where everyone wants to be. There’s a reason that apartments are hard to find.
Before you start looking, take time to identify the three most important things you need in your new apartment. Just three. Anything else is a bonus.
Here’s a collection of some of the weirdest, wildest, and creepiest roommate stories from around the web. All of them have been paraphrased from the originals in order to keep things nice and tidy. There is, of course, no way to verify the legitimacy of any of these stories (since many of them are user-submitted on sites like Jezebel and Reddit), but some of them are so strange they couldn’t have been made up.
1. Creepy Creeper (YouTube user: Joe Cummings)
Judge for yourself whether this is the craziest “roommate” you’ve ever seen. Ever felt like there’s a creepy creeper in the room with you? Suspicious that your roommate is eating your food when you’re not there?
Most of the time those are simply that: feelings and suspicions. But sometimes they’re not. Now we’re not saying you should set up a nanny cam every time you’re worried, but check out what this guy found when he did just that:
10. Habitat 67 – Montreal, Canada (1967)
Created for the International and Universal Exposition held in Montreal, Quebec, Canada in 1967 (considered by some to be the most successful World’s Fair of all time), Habitat was designed by Israeli-Canadian architect Moshe Safdie. What started out as a master’s thesis in architecture at McGill University was built as a pavilion for Expo 67. The architectural marvel contains 354 identifcal concrete units that are just arranged and stacked differently. Each unit has its own private terrace, up to 90 square meters in size.Read more »
Anyone who’s lived outside of Manhattan knows the deal: there are dozens of basement dwellings up for rent any day of the week in the five boroughs. Known as ADUs (accessory dwelling units), they’re nearly all based out of row houses and condos in outer boroughs, particularly in low-rent neighborhoods. You won’t be able to find them on all the major sites, however, because these spaces are, and always have been, illegal. Even with all the standard requirements — two exits, windows, proper ventilation, running hot water, etc — these units are illegal because they are more than 50% below ground.
If you’ve ever lived in your parents’ basement, it’s not hard to see why the city has outlawed these dwellings for decades. Most landlords don’t bother keeping their basements furnished or in any state of repair, and they don’t have to because basement renters won’t complain. They’re caught in the catch-22 of NYC apartment rentals: they can’t report irresponsible landlords, and they won’t report them because basements are so cheap.
Anyone who has ever embarked on the search for their perfect New York City apartment can tell you, it’s not easy. It can be extremely frustrating and, at times, you may even feel hopelessly discouraged. But, before you experience some long-awaited relief on move-in day, there are a few simple steps you can take to reduce the stress caused by New York real estate.
We all wish brokers are apartment genies. You tell them what you want, and they make it so – in exchange for a giant fee. However, that’s not always the case. We’ve all heard horror stories of bait and switches, deposit thieves and greedy management companies. I have lived through all of these things and survived.
My roommate and I just spent the last month looking for a two bedroom apartment in Williamsburg for no more than $2,000 a month. Over the weeks, we amassed the numbers of dozens of brokers and even grew to know them personally. But as each one of them learned our requirements, their reactions ranged from telling us we will never ever find that — “not even in Bushwick!” — to outright laughing in our faces.
So where am I now? An adorable $1,900 two-bedroom apartment in the heart of Williamsburg. Here are three tips to help you also find your perfect apartment. Read more »
“There are those gems of apartments we see and just know it’s the one. Location. Check. Price is right. Check. Apartment is big AND has character. Check.”
And then it just slips right through your fingers.