Apartment rentals New York with Roosevelt Island Apartments

Roosevelt Island Transformed by New Apartment Buildings and Stores

Luxury rental apartments in Roosevelt Island are on the riseIt's no secret that Roosevelt Island has always been Manhattan's stepchild. The 2-mile long island sits right across from the Upper East Side in the East River, but no one has ever confused the two. The Brutalist-style apartment complexes and limited retail and dining options couldn’t stand in starker contrast to the Upper East Side’s glamorous pre-war apartment buildings and high culture. But changes are happening as we speak. A joint venture between Related Companies and Hudson Companies is building a totally new neighborhood on Roosevelt Island called Riverwalk. Plus, Hudson Cos. recently took over the 100,000 square foot retail corridor from the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation, a state agency that developed and manages the Island, and New York City’s best known chain stores are already moving in. What this means for Manhattan apartment renters is simple: luxury apartments on Roosevelt Island are a steal right now.

Roosevelt Rising: Heard About the Roosevelt Island Population Boom?

When most people begin looking for a luxury apartment rental in Manhattan, several districts tend to come to mind immediately. There's the sought-after high-gloss, high-culture vibe that comes with SoHo apartment listings, the famed luxury of Upper East Side rental listings, and the perpetually trendy East Village and its apartments for rent. But there's one New York City area of rapid growth and expansion that twenty years ago wouldn't have been on anyone's apartment-hunting list: Roosevelt Island. Once saddled with the less-than-flattering nickname "Welfare Island," this former backwater in the middle of the East River is an afterthought no longer, as a boom of new construction condos and luxury rentals on Roosevelt Island suggests. But here's the biggest sign of Roosevelt Island's rising prosperity: People are actually moving there. Quickly and in serious numbers. Seriously.

Main Street, Out Of Exile: Roosevelt Island, Home To New York City's Dullest Retail Strip, Heading For Long-Awaited Makeover

Roosevelt Island Main Street Apartments

There's a scene in the otherwise not-so-good horror flick Dark Water that packs a solid laugh for New York City real estate watchers. Well, several scenes if you're the sort who finds the idea of haunted bathtubs amusing, but the one we're thinking of is when John C. Reilly's real estate agent proudly describes a Roosevelt Island apartment building (spoiler alert: it's haunted) to Jennifer Connelly as featuring "brutalist school" design. Which, as much as we love newer Roosevelt Island rental developments like Manhattan Park, is certainly a fair enough way to describe the East Berlin-style retail strip (above) that runs down the center of Roosevelt Island. While the community's quiet, city-within-a-city vibe is a big part of what makes Roosevelt Island apartments appealing, no one will mourn the passing of those identical, charmless facades. The good news, of course, is that those facades are indeed on their way out -- Roosevelt Island Operating Company is soliciting bids for a company to give that drab main street a long-overdue makeover that could make this loveliest of non-Manhattan Manhattan neighborhoods that much more appealing.