Once the epicenter of New York City's gay dining, nightlife, and shopping scene, Chelsea is still home to plenty of gay New Yorkers, but it's a much more diverse neighborhood than it was in the 1990s, when a dozen gay bars and even more stores and restaurants lined 8th and 9th Avenues. The so-called "scene" is more scattered now, though the area still has a large concentration of excellent restaurants.
It long ago usurped SoHo as the epicenter of New York contemporary art galleries, and there are literally hundreds along the streets here (often several in one building). The area has attracted art enthusiasts for many years, but the 2009 opening of the High Line above 10th Avenue gave new life to this part of the city.
The Highline also catalyzed new development (though Google had established its beachhead long before that) and quickly turned the area into one of the city's most popular destinations for tourists and, increasingly, tech workers. The numbers of tourists surged again with the 2015 arrival of the Whitney Museum of American Art, which firmly established the area as a major art hub and destination.