Upper East Side
Historically Manhattan’s most exclusive – and expensive – neighbourhood, the Upper East Side stretches north from 59th Street to Spanish Harlem, and east from Fifth to FDR Drive. It has New York’s biggest concentration of townhouses, alongside elegant, fully serviced prewar heritage buildings, their distinctive architectural style the work of Rosario Candela in the 1920s. Most homes are co-ops rather than condos, and each has its own financial and social criteria for residents – as a result, price points vary widely. Expect to pay between $2m and $3m for a two- to three-bedroom apartment on 1st or 2nd Avenue, and at least $5m on Park or Fifth Avenue. The finest full-floor co-ops in prime locations sell for close to $100m.
Upper West Side
Head across Central Park to the Upper West Side to find a more welcoming environment for buyers. Properties here are slightly less grand and less exclusive than on the Upper East Side – it’s a more manageable scale. Of course, there are landmark buildings – the Dakota on West 72nd Street, for example – but as a rule, comparable properties priced at $3m on the Upper East Side will sell for between $2m and $2.5m on the Upper West Side. Both areas are popular for the easy access they provide to well-regarded schools.