Hamilton Heights

Hamilton Heights is a historic neighborhood located in South Harlem. Its cultural contributions are immense. Upper middle class whites built handsome apartments in Hamilton Heights in the late 19th Century, but gradually left as affluent black families began to flood into the neighborhood. Several major African American cultural movements began on Sugar Hill (an iconic neighborhood in the middle of Hamilton Heights) during this time. Dominicans began to move in the 70’s, and the once largely middle-class black neighborhood evolved into a Hispanic cultural hub. In 2005, the neighborhood began to gentrify rapidly, and is now composed of an eclectic mix of Hispanics, whites, and blacks. New restaurants, bars and theaters are beginning to sprout up in the area, aided by the ongoing expansion of Columbia University.
The Vibe
Elegant, scholarly, and transitional; Hamilton Heights is becoming increasingly eclectic and vibrant as Columbia University students and young professionals move into the historic brownstones and new retailers open in the area.
Bragging Rights
Home of the Sugarhill Gang.
Architecture
Impressive brownstones (some of the most immaculately restored in the city) and Beaux-Arts and Romanesque single family homes.
Best Kept Secret
Trinity Church Cemetery. This stunning cemetery was opened in 1697; some of America’s most influential people were buried there.
By Day
Young and old white-collar professionals walk to work; retirees sit on park benches; Columbia University students walk to class.
By Night
Trees sway on the relatively quiet streets; patrons gather at a local restaurant; college students wander to one of the new bars.