Neighborhood Guides: Gramercy Park
In the neighborhood guide New York Living Solutions, Gramercy Park is marketed as a neighborhood which is both upscale and quaint. It is labeled the perfect neighborhood for someone who wants to live in an area that has ‘character,’ versus the rather faceless and generic Upper West and Upper East Sides of Manhattan, but who does not necessarily want the hustling, bustling, and more democratic milieu of less affluent neighborhoods in the East Village, Hell’s Kitchen, or ethnic neighborhoods. One Internet guide advertises: “Gramercy Park is one of New York’s most historic, high-end real estate, and exclusive luxury neighborhoods. Centrally located on the East Side of Manhattan, residents have the convenience of living downtown (SoHo, NoHo, and the Village are just blocks away), coupled with a sophistication generally reserved for the wealthiest uptown neighborhoods” (Gramercy Park Neighborhood Guide, New York Living Solutions). Residents are thus likely to be young, want convenience and accessibility to nightlife and various other attractions but have enough of an income so that price is not the primary factor in terms of their selection of real estate.
The neighborhood is advertised as an oasis from urban life, and filled with artists, designers, and young professionals. The guide is clearly intended for persons wishing to purchase real estate in the area who are enamored of these ‘creative’ qualities. Also, given that it is advertised that “Edith Wharton, Theodore Roosevelt and Eugene O’Neill,” were former residents the presumed audience is likely highly educated as well or aspires to seem so (Gramercy Park Neighborhood Guide, New York Living Solutions).
Another attraction is the proximity of Gramercy Park. However, even this is promoted with an exclusive appeal: it is noted that this urban locale is private and has “no amusements, swing sets, snack shops or any other intrusions on its rusticity” which is presumed to be more important than people actually enjoying the park area itself (Gramercy Park Neighborhood Guide, New York Living Solutions). Finally, the area is lauded for its charm with “pre and post-war buildings, including beautiful 19th century townhouses and Victorian brownstones” which reveals “the true elegance of the neighborhood” (Gramercy Park Neighborhood Guide, New York Living Solutions).
However, even ordinary tourist guides laud the area’s luxurious appeal, such as nyc.com which lists the ‘must see’ attractions as the high-priced Gramercy Tavern with its menu of “roasted sweetbreads, the chilled lobster and the…