Sandwiched between the Brooklyn
Bridge and the Manhattan Bridge, this tiny waterfront neighborhood began as an industrial area in the 19th century. Local lore says that when artists moved into the neglected Victorian factories in the late '70s, they dubbed the area Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass, or DUMBO,
as counter-branding to thwart potential developers. Today, the renovated factories have transformed into apartments and lofts, many retaining original timber beams and red brick walls. In addition to the historic digs and cobblestone streets, residents list short commutes to Manhattan as a major draw, with 10-minute subway rides to the Lower East Side and 20-minute rides to Midtown.
Encircled by parks and bike paths, DUMBO offers grassy lawns and sweeping views of the East River. The area remains home to many art galleries, as well as St. Ann's Warehouse, a performing arts venue. The restaurant scene tends toward chic eateries and cafes, in addition to several old-timers such as Juliana's, a popular pizzeria.