Last week, we talked to five families currently raising children in New York City’s many diverse and multifaceted neighborhoods about why they pick city living over the suburbs, and most of our readers agreed that they prefer an urban upbringing to the more “traditional” suburban childhood.
But once you’ve decided to raise your children in the Big Apple, it can be tough deciding which neighborhood is best for your family. Many factors come into play: What are the best schools in the area? What amenities does the building offer? Are there playgrounds nearby? How secure is the building? And the list goes on. But to make the process a little easier, we’ve rounded up 15 of the best family-friendly buildings in New York City.
An outdoor concert at Waterside Plaza, courtesy of Waterside Plaza
Waterside Plaza – 30 Waterside Plaza
Murray Hill‘s Waterside Plaza offers many events and amenities for kids throughout the year, including swimming classes at the pool, the Super Soccer Stars Program, and a state-of-the-art playground. The 1,470 apartments have stunning views of the East River. Additionally, the complex has ground-floor offices and retail spaces, as well as garages beneath a large, landscaped plaza at the south end of which is the United Nations International School.
The Regent – 45 West 60th Street
Located in the Lincoln Center area, the Regent is close in proximity to the Time Warner Center, which is a great shopping destination. This area is known for its wide array of retail stores and restaurants, including Whole Foods, J. Crew, and H&M. Within the building itself there is a custom-designed children’s playroom and extra storage space for bicycles or empty luggage.
Emerald Green – 320 West 38th Street
This Midtown West building has amenities including a common lounge, movie theater, children’s playroom, 50-foot swimming pool, and state-of-the-art fitness center. Less than a block away is one of the many Citi-Bike sharing program locations to help you and your kids explore the city while the old Prius is in the building’s electric vehicle charging station. Out of its 569 total units, Emerald Green has 150 affordable apartments.
80 Met – 80 Metropolitan Avenue
Located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, 80 Met has both indoor and outdoor activities to enjoy. With amenities such as a swimming pool, media lounge, roof terrace, refrigerated storage, and private rooftop cabanas, you won’t run out of ways to entertain the kiddies. Most units have a personal washer/dryer, and the building is within walking distance to East River State Park, home of Smorgasburg and Brooklyn Flea.
The Brompton playroom, courtesy of the Brompton
The Brompton – 205 East 85th Street
This newly constructed Yorkville building has thought of every detail to keep your family entertained. The Brompton features a large children’s playroom, private lounge, full-service spa, and membership to the adjoining Equinox Fitness Club. Residents also enjoy the personal assistant service that can help make restaurant reservations, set-up spa appointments, and even arrange child and pet care. The residence is close to the lovely Carl Schurz Park, the jogging path along the East River, public transportation, and plenty of local shops.
One Brooklyn Bridge Park – 360 Furman Street
Situated in family-centric Brooklyn Heights, One Brooklyn Bridge Park boasts many amenities that make it highly covetable. The building comes complete with a screening room, gaming room, piano virtual golf and driving range, children’s art room, and yoga studio. Plus, it has the distinction of being the only residence in the park. Traveling is also easy with access to the 4 and 5 trains just a few blocks away.
The Dillon – 425 West 53rd Street
For families looking to be centrally located in Midtown West, the Dillon offers various floor plans for whatever a family’s needs are. Over 40% of the apartments feature three or more bedrooms with spacious layouts. A bright and sunny children’s playroom is located on one of the lower floors, as is a lounge with a catering kitchen, which opens onto a garden plaza–the perfect setting to host a birthday party or family get-together.
Located on Central Park West (New York City’s backyard), the Grand Tier is a great family-friendly building. It’s monitored by a 24-hour uniformed doorman and features a large 50-foot indoor pool for both you and your kids to enjoy on a hot summer day.
Crystal Green playroom, courtesy of Crystal Green
Crystal Green – 330 West 39th Street
Built with your family needs in mind, this LEED-certified building is located in Midtown West. The luxury apartment complex comes complete with a submarine-themed children’s playroom, game room, and pool table. Apartments within Crystal Green boast Energy Star Appliances and top-of-the-line fixtures.
Philip House – 141 East 88th Street
The Philip House in Carnegie Hill has a beautifully designed interior and exterior. Its rooftop deck and club room offer expansive western skyline views. Inside the children’s playroom there is a large chalk walk and many toys to keep your kids busy. One of the highlights of the Philip House is the music practice room, which allows residents the opportunity to explore their musical talents.
With a prime location in Yorkville, this new high-rise apartment complex completes your living experience with its fantastic amenities. Besides the usual doorman, elevator, and fitness facility, the Azure also offers a children’s playroom, teen lounge with a pool and foosball table, two landscaped roof terraces, and a large community recreational center. Units, which all have floor-to-ceilings windows, range in size from 600 to 3,000 square feet and vary from studios to four-bedroom terraced units.
Textile Building – 66 Leonard Street
This Tribeca building was converted from a textile factory to include all the services and amenities one could possibly need. The building is rich with a garden courtyard, children’s area, fitness center, large media room, and on-site 50-car garage with attended parking. One of the great perks of living in the Textile Building is that it’s zoned for PS 234, one of the best K-5 public schools the city.
200 East 79th Street basketball court, courtesy of 200 East 79th Street
Located on a premium corner location in Lenox Hill, this luxury building features a classic contemporary style facade and lobby. Each residential unit offers high-end fixtures and finishes with exceptional service. To keep your kids entertained there is an all-purpose gymnasium where they can practice Ping-Pong, basketball, or ballet. And you won’t miss the action thanks to bleacher-style seating for parental observation. To boot, 200 East 79th Street is close to public transportation and Lenox Hill Hospital.
This pre-war corner building on the Upper West Side offers various layouts with new renovations while keeping its historic charm. 845 West End Avenue has a 24-hour doorman and live-in super to keep things as secure as possible, giving you peace of mind. Other amenities include a fitness room, children’s playroom, and bicycle room.
One Rector Park – 333 Rector Place
Located in Battery Park City, this new construction building is sleek and modern. Each of the units displays a different color pallet for the kitchen, bathroom, and flooring. The children’s playroom is bright and colorful and offers many activities and opportunities for interaction. One of the best features of One Rector Park is its proximity to Rector Park, the Esplanade, and 13 other parks in Battery Park City.
Know of any other buildings fit for families? Let us know in the comments.
[Related: City Kids: Why Parents Pick City Living Over the Suburbs]
Elijah Quinton is a NYC-based writer focused on local businesses, real estate and culture. He also blogs for Re/Max, and is interested in life as a Manhattan resident, contemporary New York happenings concerned with new real estate, interior design and consumer trends associated with the lifestyles of young New Yorkers. He is originally from Connecticut, and earned his degree in English and creative writing at NYU. He previously worked as a web developer and graphic designer. In his spare time, he enjoy hikes upstate, local eats and live music.
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