Named for Robert Murray, a shipping tycoon who built his home on what was then a steep hill, Murray Hill is a quiet residential neighborhood bounded by 34th Street, 40th Street, the F.D.R. Drive, and Fifth Avenue.
With brownstones lining area side street, Murray Hill was largely settled as a wealthy and upper-middle-class enclave, a more sedate alternative to lavish Fifth Avenue. In 1882, Financier J.P. Morgan effectively put Murray Hill on the map when he built his Madison Avenue free-standing brownstone -- now part of the Morgan Library and Museum.
Today, Murray Hill is a predominately young neighborhood, home to 20- and 30-year-old professionals who are drawn to more affordable rents and home prices in comparison to surrounding areas.
As the main commercial thoroughfare, Third Avenue is lined with an array of causal bars and restaurants. Second Avenue, though less populated by foot traffic, also features mom-and-pop-type restaurants, along with Fairway supermarket and a multiplex cinema.
Dubbed "Curry Hill," the western section of Murray Hill, along Lexington and Park avenues, is a popular destination for Indian and South Asian cuisine. Here, cabs can often be found idling by the curb as drivers step into their favorite spots, which range from vegan kosher Indian restaurants, to kebab houses and all-you-can-eat buffets.
A mixed-use neighborhood, Murray Hill is home to brownstones and office towers, as well as newer luxury apartment buildings, including Manhattan Place, at 630 First Avenue, a 35-story building offering spectacular views of the East River; and The Horizon, a 44-story tower built in 1987 at 415 East 37th Street.
The area is in close proximity to many premier shopping destinations, including Lord & Taylor, a popular department store at 424 Fifth Avenue. Centrally located, Murray Hill provides an easy commute via the 6 train running along Park Avenue, with stations at 28th and 33rd streets. In addition, Murray Hill is a short walk to Grand Central Terminal. Many Murray Hill residents work in nearby Midtown East and enjoy a quick walk to and from the office.