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New York City Travel Guide

  • Photo: (c) Littleny/Dreamstime

East Village

The concept of "La Bohème meets hipsters in vintage clothing," better known as the musical Rent, pegged the East Village as a community of artists, activists, and other social dissenters—and this is still the essential vibe here, although the neighborhood has become more upscale in recent years. These days, for example, St. Marks Place evokes less of the gritty, counterculture scene it once had in

favor of a pastiche of students, well-earning postgrads, and Japanese expats.

East of 1st Avenue is Alphabet City, once the city’s seedy drug haunt but now an ever more gentrified neighborhood. There is still a young, artistic vibe in and around Tompkins Square Park.

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