Why NYC is the greatest city in the world

Los Angeles? Chicago? London? Fuhgeddaboudit! We’ve compiled 50 facts that prove New York City’s civic superiority, and asked some of our favorite New Yorkers to chime in.

Photograph: Aurelie Joly

New York, we love you, and even though you may bring us down sometimes, there’s no place we’d rather be. (This is Time Out New York, after all.) Our colleagues at Time Out London will try to convince readers this week that their city is better, but we’re not buying it—do they have the Empire State Building, or Central Park, or New York–style pizza? No? We rest our case. Read on for 50 reasons why we think NYC is the greatest city in the world, along with reasons from some of our favorite New Yorkers (including Emma Straub, Dave Hill, Bridget Everett and Garrett Oliver).—Edited by Amy Plitt

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50 reasons why NYC is the greatest city in the world

From the grid and the skyline to New Yorkers' long life expectancy, here are 50 facts that prove living in NYC is better than living anywhere else. Narrowing down to 50 the reasons we love New York City was a difficult task—inevitably, some of the things that make Gotham great were left out. But here you’ll find a curated list of facts that prove NYC’s civic superiority, spanning everything from our superlative pizza and our expansive arts and culture scene to our place in history as an incubator of innovation, be it architectural, technological or sartorial. Written by Sarah Bruning, Andrew Frisicano, Ethan LaCroix, Tim Lowery, Marley Lynch, Amy Plitt, Jenna Scherer, Jonathan Shannon and Allison Williams Because we have the most iconic skyline New York may not be the birthplace of the skyscraper—Chicago holds that distinction—or even home to the world’s craziest super tall buildings. No matter: When people talk about skylines, we bet that midtown Manhattan—home to the cloud-piercing spires of the Empire State and Chrysler Buildings—is what they’re imagining. Other noteworthy structures, including the Woolworth Building and the Twin Towers (whose absence is being filled by  the rising One World Trade Center), helped cement Manhattan’s skyscraper supremacy throughout the 20th century. And not only do we have an entire institution—the Skyscraper Museum—devoted to tall towers, but Gotham is also the birthplace of the word skyscraper. Take that, Chicago. Because of Manhatt

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Editor's letter: Why NYC is the greatest city in the world

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Why notable New Yorkers think NYC is the greatest city

We asked some of our favorite New Yorkers, including Mayor Bloomberg, to tell us why they think NYC is the greatest city in the world. We’ve listed our reasons why NYC is the greatest city in the world, but we also wanted tried-and-true New Yorkers to weigh in. Find out why some of the city’s most noteworthy names—including Mayor Bloomberg, author Emma Straub, cabaret star Bridget Everett, and Brooklyn Brewery brewmaster Garrett Oliver—love New York City above all others. Notable New Yorkers in video You might also like What notable New Yorkers love about the holidays in NYC We asked a few of our favorite New Yorkers to tell us the one thing they’re most looking forward to this holiday season. What do you love about the holidays in New York? (For us, it’s the abundance of holiday decorations on pretty much every corner.) We asked a few of our favorite noteworthy New Yorkers—including NBC anchor Brian Williams, MTA chairman Joe Lhota, and Broad City creators Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson—for their holiday picks. RECOMMENDED: Christmas in New York guide You might also like Christmas in New York 2012 Celebrate the holidays in festive style with things to do in New York this Christmas, including ice-skating, Christmas shows and shopping. It's the most wonderful time of the year—and by "it" we mean Christmas in New York. Even the most tourist-averse New Yorkers have to admit that NYC at Christmas is a pretty spectacular sight, with Christmas trees, department-st

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Photos: 50 reasons why NYC is the greatest city in the world (slide show)

Flip through Time Out’s list of facts that prove why NYC is better than every other city out there, all in one handy slide show. Our slide show of the 50 reasons why we think NYC is the greatest city in the world is a handy reminder of why New York is unforgettable—thanks to the Empire State Building, the subway and other only-in-NYC icons. Take a spin through these New York photos, and if you think we left anything out, tweet at @TimeOutNewYork with the hashtag #NYCIsTheGreatest to sound off on why you think NYC is the greatest city in the world. You might also like New York attractions: The 50 best sights and attractions in NYC We sorted through the city's museums, parks and historic sites, and have chosen the very best New York attractions to help you prioritize your sightseeing in NYC. Whether you're entertaining out-of-town guests or simply want to revisit iconic NYC spots, make sightseeing easier by consulting Time Out’s definitive guide to New York’s best sights and top attractions. We've compiled our favorite sights in the city, featuring the best parks, museums, culture spots and historical venues. Sights like the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty are perennial favorites, but we’ve also highlighted newcomers and lesser-known New York attractions such as the Brooklyn Flea and BLDG 92.—Edited by Amy Plitt 50 best New York attractions in video See more New York videos > Free attractions in New York Brooklyn Heights and Brooklyn Promenade

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New York photos: readers' pictures of NYC (slide show)

Time Out partnered with Samsung to find fantastic pictures of NYC, as captured by New Yorkers. Here are 101 of our favorite New York photos. In a photo-heavy battle of New York versus London, there’s no contest (to us, at least). Readers were asked to capture photos of New York as part of Time Out and Samsung’s Share Your Now competition—and in our opinion, the pictures of NYC are quite captivating, not merely focussing on the skyline and iconic attractions like the Statue of Liberty, but on commonly missed details at ground level and their fellow New Yorkers. Check out 101 of our favorite reader-submitted photos in the slide show above, and for even more, visit timeout.com/shareyournow. You might also like Top 50 New York photographs From daguerreotypes to digital, we round up iconic depictions of NYC moments high and low. See more in Art Related Best photography galleries in New York City These galleries are renowned for showing the best work by photographers both established and up-and-coming. Click through to see what's on view now. International Center of Photography The International Center of Photography boasts two floors of exhibition space, as well as a library housing thousands of biographical and photographic files. Aperture Gallery Located in the headquarters of the Aperture Foundation, the Apeture Gallery hosts free artist’s lectures, panel discussions and book signings along with exhibitions. Pace/MacGill Part of Pace Gallery, Pace/MacGill, focuses on pho

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Why NYC is the best city in the world to raise kids

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More of the best of New York City

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New York attractions: The 50 best sights and attractions in NYC

We sorted through the city's museums, parks and historic sites, and have chosen the very best New York attractions to help you prioritize your sightseeing in NYC. Whether you're entertaining out-of-town guests or simply want to revisit iconic NYC spots, make sightseeing easier by consulting Time Out’s definitive guide to New York’s best sights and top attractions. We've compiled our favorite sights in the city, featuring the best parks, museums, culture spots and historical venues. Sights like the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty are perennial favorites, but we’ve also highlighted newcomers and lesser-known New York attractions such as the Brooklyn Flea and BLDG 92.—Edited by Amy Plitt 50 best New York attractions in video See more New York videos > Free attractions in New York Brooklyn Heights and Brooklyn Promenade It’s easy to forget that you’re standing atop the hectic Brooklyn-Queens Expressway while strolling along this esplanade, which opened in 1950. But the thoroughfare is inextricably linked to the Promenade’s existence: Community opposition to the BQE—which was originally intended to cut through Brooklyn Heights—led city planner Robert Moses to reroute the highway along the waterfront. He also proposed building a park atop the road to block noise. Stroll, run or make out along its ⅓-mile length, pausing to appreciate postcard-ready views of lower Manhattan, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Statue of Liberty; then check out some of the 19th-centur

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Music

100 best NYC songs

The greatest tunes about Gotham. Hear them all and watch exclusive performances. Edited by Steve Smith and Sharon Steel For as long as there’s been a New York City, Gotham has inspired odes to its majesty and danger, its punk vitality and all-embracing spirit. Love it or hate it, if you’re a musician living here, sooner or later you’re going to write about it.It was in that spirit that we set about assembling our list of the 100 best NYC songs. Our jury of New York-proud experts—TONY Music staffers Sophie Harris, Marley Lynch, Hank Shteamer and Steve Smith; features editor Sharon Steel; Theater associate editor and cabaret maven Adam Feldman; Nightlife editor Bruce Tantum; and freelance hip-hop expert Jesse Serwer—combined longtime New Yorkers and more recent arrivals drawn here by the city’s ineffable allure. For more than a month, we searched far and wide for well-worn anthems and deserving obscurities alike.One fundamental rule—a song had to be specifically and explicitly about some aspect of NYC, be it good, bad or ugly—led to some startling omissions: Whither Patti Smith, Blondie and Talking Heads? Weeks of heated deliberation and occasionally heartbreaking cuts followed as we parsed lyrics and contexts; even seeming no-brainers like “Positively 4th Street” got voted off the island as we pondered relative merits to wrestle out a ranking.The result is a fascinating, illuminating and (we’re sure) potentially infuriating tally of the 100 best songs about the city we call ho

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Movies

New York movies: The 100 best films set in New York City

From King Kong's spire down to the scummiest subway tunnel, TONY ranks the definitive list of the 100 best New York movies: crime dramas, romantic comedies, documentaries and more. Paradise and prison, bustling metropolis and the loneliest place on earth: New York City has a cinematic identity that infuses all walks of life. Even as we write our own narratives in this most famous of locations, we walk alongside fictional characters (and sometimes real ones, too, if we’re lucky).In selecting the 100 most essential New York movies, we kept the city’s boldness in mind. TONY Film staffers David Fear, Joshua Rothkopf and Keith Uhlich teamed up with movie experts Stephen Garrett and Alison Willmore to gather titles from all genres and eras—the widely known and the obscure—in pursuit of a complete picture of NYC on film.Our only parameter: The movie had to be set in New York City, not Metropolis (sorry, Superman fans), Oz (ditto, you Wiz diehards), nor anywhere else. Dive in, jostle politely, find your seat or ride standing: Please tell us what we’ve missed. It’s a big town.—Joshua Rothkopf, senior Film writer C.H.U.D. (1984) More funny than scary, this schlock-horror Z flick articulates a primal NYC fear harbored by anyone who’s ever peered down a sewer grate: Who (or what) is living below? Not the homeless, not alligators, but cannibalistic humanoid underground dwellers. As the poster of a shimmering Manhattan skyline warned, “They’re not staying down there, anymore!”—Joshu

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Things to do

101 things to do in New York: Your essential guide to Gotham

Discover what every local needs to tick off their NYC checklist in our roundup of the coolest and most quintessential things to do in New York. Photos: 100 best New York restaurants Here they are: 101 classic, fun and decidedly New Yorky activities, carefully compiled with both seasoned Gothamites and first-time visitors in mind. We scoured the city to find the sightseeing staples, tried-and-true New York eats, big New York museums and best parks in NYC that everyone should hit up at least once—and threw in a few buzzyworthy on-the-fringe things to do in New York for good measure, too. Enjoy!  Get a panoramic view of the city atop the Empire State Building We know. It’s touristy. Really touristy. But trust us, the sights atop this essential pice of NYC’s skyline are something every Gothamite should witness. During your visit, pay special attention to the lobby, restored in 2009 to its original Art Deco design. High-speed elevators shoot visitors up 1,050 feet to the 86th-floor observatory, where you can either peer out at the city from the comfort of a glass-enclosed pavilion or brave the elements on the open-air decks. A ticket to the 102nd Floor Observatory is an additional $17. And daily from 8am 10pm, the New York Skyride takes visitors on a motion-picture tour over, through and below the city streets ($29; seniors, students and children 6–12 $19). Explore Central Park In a city where open space comes at a premium, anything that encompasses hundred of acres of

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Restaurants

100 best New York restaurants

From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Where are you eating tonight? With hot new venues opening each week, it’s tough to keep track of the best New York restaurants—the impeccable landmarks that never disappoint, the divey honky tonks serving life-changing brisket, and the sexy upstarts everyone who’s anyone is clamoring to try. Whether you’re craving an artful tasting menu, a soul-satisfying platter of crackling fried chicken or simply a great bloody steak, there’s a New York restaurant that will satisfy. Here are the best of them: The 100 places that Time Out New York’s food editors can’t do without. Did we miss your favorite New York restaurant? Join the conversation in the comments. New American restaurants The best New York restaurants that explore the dynamic and malleable cuisine known as "New American" are some of the most beloved in town. BBQ & Soul food restaurants The best New York restaurants that feature low-and-slow–cooked meats and down-home staples satisfy our cravings for classic American comfort food. Best pizza restaurants Some of the best New York restaurants put sauce, cheese and twirled dough at a premium. But of all the pizzerias in NYC only a few contenders made our list. Jewish Delicatessens Some of the best New York restaurants are classic Jewish delis—places where you can still get a pastrami sandwich, smoked fish or a bow

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Bars

50 best New York bars

From dives to cocktail dens and craft-brew havens to wine haunts, here are the best New York bars to visit right this second. New York City is a nightlife capital, with some of the bars in the country clustered around bustling neighborhoods like the East Village and Williamsburg. Whether you favor craft brews or serious cocktails; a beer-and-shot special or a transporting glass of wine, NYC has a game-changing bar to slake your thirst. To narrow down the options, we’ve compiled this list of the 50 best bars in New York City right now. From hot new barrooms to tried-and-true staples in every neighborhood, these are the kind of places that beg you to stick around for another round. Did we miss your favorite New York bar? Join the conversation in the comments. Best Upper East Side bars Best Midtown East bars Best Midtown West bars Best Gramercy/Flatiron bars Best Chelsea bars Best East Village bars Best West Village bars Best Soho bars Best Chinatown/Little Italy bars Best Tribeca bars Best Williamsburg bars Best Greenpoint bars Best Bushwick bars Best Park Slope bars Best Carroll Gardens bars Best Cobble Hill bars Best Boerum Hill bars Best Red Hook bars Best Long Island City bars Best Astoria bars You might also like 100 best New York restaurants From unimpeachable classics to buzzy newcomers courting the food-world cognoscenti, these are the 100 best New York restaurants you need to know about right now. Where are you eating tonight? With hot new

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Best New York books to impress New Yorkers

The New York books—novels, biographies, histories, photo books and more—that will earn the most cred with culturally savvy city dwellers. If the contents of a bookshelf say a lot about their owner, it follows that any selection of New York books on the city’s many shelves will say as much about their respective New Yorkers. Sure, all denizens may have curated their collections to cover the bases in case parents or pals judge their taste in literature, but what about scoring points with a local in urban development or a native who pines for the grit of the ’70s? Here, TONY does the work for you; what follow are nine culturally enlightened New York books, bound to earn you cred from city dwellers from all walks of life. The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York by Robert Caro Twentieth-century developer Moses is the man responsible for much of the NYC infrastructure we all know today. This urban-planning potentate rigged the city for his own pleasure, ignoring elected government bodies at his leisure. (He was particularly fond of building expressways through neighborhoods and encouraging urban sprawl via the promotion of highways.) This mammoth Pulitzer winner by Robert Caro—who recently published Lyndon Johnson: The Passage of Power—is altogether worthy but daunting; your guests may not even be strong enough to pick it up off the shelf. They’ll have to assume, however, that you understand the city—and Moses’s contentious relationship with its people, physical for

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Comments

6 comments
Justin T
Justin T

I love NY but I think London is the world's capital. It's the most diverse, fluid, open, cosmopolitain city with over 2 millennia of history. A quick Google around on the internet may convince you too!

John Leonard
John Leonard

I agree. I've never been somewhere so beguiling. I visited NYC in 2012 with my wife. In 2013 we had to go back. We'd been yearning to return. We arrived in the evening, tired, and my wife went to bed. But I just had to take a walk down to Times Square. Upon leaving the hotel I felt drawn to touch one of the buildings and say to myself 'I'm Back'.

needarest
needarest

Nothing much to say - Been a New Yorker all my life. As a matter of fact this fact goes back for generations. Enjoy the cultural aspects of the city - excellent restaurants, some decent plays, bright lights, some museum walks - HOWEVER - been noticing the filth & garbage more & more. Don't like walking blocks & blocks to get somewhere. It's very difficult finding a parking space. It's has become much too crowded & uncomfortable@ this point. It's is & always will be - the Only salvation from suburbia (land of the dead & the dumb). However, I'm definitely ready for more congenial climate, atmosphere, year-round easy-to-get to fun, palm trees, etc. I just want to kick back & rest - Cannot do that in NYC. Tired, or so tired of it all! Time for a major permanent change.

Janna
Janna

i've grown attached to Soho throughout the years, and watched it grow. i would have to say that this neighborhood greatly adds to what makes NYC great. it has seemingly everything. i read a really engaging review on it recently here: (http://newconstructionmanhattan.com/blog/2013/03/what-is-it-about-soho), and while new york has a lot of amazing neighborhoods, there's just something about Soho.

ed robinson
ed robinson

I hope 1(one) is the best since this is super