DUMBO is a lot of things at once: industrial and beautiful; gritty and glamorous; compact and a window on the world. Both sides of the coin bring a little bit of everything to someone living in the neighborhood, too. On every block you'll find street art, galleries, independently-owned restaurants, and some of the city's coolest public spaces. Here's just a few of the best.
Low Budget: Los Papi's. Simply need all the pork and yellow rice $6 can buy? This little place has it. Like a lot of Caribbean steam table places, you've got your standard Protein + Bean + Rice Combo, but Los Papi's also has a fairly traditional Cuban sandwich that'll knock your socks right off. Made with their own pernil, it's just about as big as a big guy's forearm.
via River Café
No Budget: River Café. This is a classic for a reason, and not just in DUMBO—it's a New York favorite. Whether it's for a wedding, graduation, anniversary, or a very fancy birthday, you're in store for some delicious seafood, classic cocktails, and one of the best views of your life, a running theme in this roundup.
Classic: Brooklyn Bridge Park. There are quite a few parks in the neighborhood, but the grandaddy of them all is BBP. There's sports, a vintage carousel, ice cream, movie nights, and of course, that view. With the East River in the foreground, take a panorama from Lady Liberty to the south to the UN to the north and you've captured most of New York's infrastructure and daytime population in one fell swoop.
via Kieren Aris on Flickr
Underrated: The Manhattan Bridge. Being so close to its more famous cousin, the Manhattan Bridge doesn't get enough love. Walking toward the river in almost every direction will at some point lend a view of the bridge as it crests a hill down the street in front of you, or just a slice as it peeks between towering condos and warehouses. Some vantage points are breathtaking, most will take you by surprise.
via POWERHOUSE ARENA
Inside: POWERHOUSE ARENA. A self-described "laboratory for creative thought," this space is home to world-famous powerHouse Books and a plethora of festivals, shows, and speaker events. At once a gallery, boutique and events space, people come from all around to revel in the arts amidst legends in every discipline.
via NYCDOT on Flickr
Outside: Murals and Street Art. Having spent the past several years cultivating its art scene, DUMBO is a natural exhibition space for street artists, native or visiting. This only scratches the surface, but for starters, find Shepard Fairey's Lotus Woman at the York St. F stop; Yuko Shimizu & Coby Kennedy's octopus mural on the Jay St. BQE Underpass, DALeast on the Pearl St. BQE Underpass, and South African icon Faith47 opposite him on the same underpass.
For Sitting: Literally DUMBO. As far as people watching goes, it doesn't get much better than the Archway Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass. Sit here on a weekday and you'll catch 20-something tech and arts workers enjoying food stands and picnic tables on their lunch breaks; any other time, catch the live music, lights shows, art installations, tree lighting ceremonies—everything—in one of the coolest architectural spots in the city.
For Action: Pier 5. We mentioned Brooklyn Bridge Park above, but the new Pier 5 could stand to have its own item in this list. Head down to enjoy three soccer fields, picnics with pre-installed grills and umbrellas, fishing, a playground, Ample Hills ice cream, and, as is par for the course, that incredible view. It's peaceful, exciting, beautiful, urban—DUMBO in a nutshell.
If you're ready to take living to the next level, Be First at 60 Water. Your new place in the DUMBO luxury building will put your friends' apartments to shame, situated steps away from Brooklyn Bridge Park in the epicenter of Brooklyn's flourishing arts and culture community, and just packed with the world-class amenities you're ready to indulge in.
Enjoy the neighborhood's distinct character, a stunning roof deck, washer-dryers in unit, solid oak flooring, European fixtures and finishes, Caesarstone countertops, preinstalled solar shades and tons of closet space. Before heading over to scope it out, check out any unit's actual views and 3-D layouts with Two Trees' virtual touring technology—then it's time to make your move.
This post is a sponsored collaboration between Two Trees Management and Gothamist staff.