South Harlem, just above Central Park, is home to great food and rich history | am New York

By Patrick McGovern

Harriet Tubman Memorial Statue

South Harlem is home to the Harriet Tubman Memorial Statue. (Photo: Jeremy Bales)

The notion that uptown is a destination for the young and fashionable is becoming more common thanks to the dynamic neighborhood of South Harlem.

Situated just above Central Park and extending from 110th Street to 125th Street, South Harlem, also called SoHa, has a rich history and boasts an impressive array of new restaurants, bars and residences with all the amenities found in their downtown counterparts.

“I love the vibe up here,” said Donna Kreeger, 55, a sales broker with Citi Habitats and a South Harlem resident of nine years. “There’s such a mix of things to enjoy. It has a positive energy and really feels like a community.”

The area was always a vibrant place, but not for the same reasons.

In the early 20th century, SoHa served as a backdrop to some of the most important works of art produced in that time period.

In Minton’s Playhouse at 201 W. 118th St. — now known as Minton’s — jam sessions featuring jazz greats such as Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker and Thelonious Monk were the driving force behind the creation of Bebop in the 1940s.

The neighborhood also played a vital role in the Harlem Renaissance, the cultural and artistic movement featuring African American writers, poets, musicians and artists between the end of World War I and the mid-1930s.

It also possesses one of the most distinguished architectural histories in the city.

Read more: South Harlem, just above Central Park, is home to great food and rich history | am New York


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