Where's the best place in Manhattan to gawk at celebrities and hundreds of pounds of beef chuck roast? The Meatpacking District, of course, where you can find meat distribution plants side-by-side with some of the most exclusive nightclubs and swankiest restaurants in New York City. While only a few of the 250 slaughterhouses and packing plants from the 1900s remain in the area, the Meatpacking District retains its name, despite being officially dubbed Gansevoort Market. The market, established in the late 1880s, was named after General Peter Gansevoort, grandfather of Herman Melville.
Today, the area's 20 square-block radius is one of NYC's hottest 24/7 scenes. Cobblestone streets lead star struck pedestrians to famous restaurants, Spice Market, specializing in Asian cuisine and Malaysian and Burmese décor, and French bistro Pastis. The luxurious and trendy Hotel Gansevoort is another highlight of the area, with a lush rooftop garden and a 45-foot outdoor heated pool, complete with underwater music. For some hot nightlife – if you're lucky enough to get in – Cielo is an small nightclub always featuring the latest and greatest DJs, spinning jams around the club's sunken dance floor.
For years, the old elevated railway running through the district has been a dilapidated eyesore. The structure saw massive renovations, transforming it into America's first overhead park, called the High Line. Section 1 of the park opened to the public in June 2009 and runs between 10th and 11th Avenues from Gansevoort Street to 20th Street. With hot clubs and unusual parks, the Meatpacking District's name does it little justice.
- • Meatpacking District on Wikipedia: www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meatpacking_District,_Manhattan
- • Blog on the Meatpacking District: www.meatpackingdistrict.com