Located only 20 minutes from Manhattan, Forest Hills
is a town that was home to the U.S. Open for over 70 years. The West Side Tennis Club
, an exclusive and very historic club, is still there, as is Forest Hills Tennis Stadium where the U.S. Open was played until 1978. Forest Hills can be reached via subway, bus, and Long Island Railroad, as well as several main highways. Within Forest Hills, there are several sections that once belonged to single individuals and were subsequently sold off with covenants and restrictions, allowing the area to retain the charm and attraction that were originally intended. One of these sections is known as Forest Hills Gardens
, a classic privately-owned community featuring a number of beautiful and unique homes, many in the Tudor style, as well as Colonial. The streets are privately maintained, and the general public may not park there unless visiting a resident.
Here is a view of theCommunity House and The Church-in-The-Gardens
. Cord Meyer, another section that is named after the company that developed the homes, features many Colonial as well as other styles. There is also the Van-Court community which was formed in 1923 by the Vandeveers, and the Forest Hills Court Co. Here again there are restrictions on modifications to exteriors.
Forest Hills has several major stores including The Gap, Banana Republic, and Ann Taylor Loft and Shake Shack to name a few. Most of these stores are located on Continental Avenue and Austin Street, which are the main streets. If you are interested, you can find some area statistics at the Public Library-FH branch. Forest Hills borders on Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, site of the 1939-40 and 1964-65 World's Fairs. Today it is home to the U.S. Open Tennis Tournament, and Citi Field, where the world famous NY Mets play.
In addition, there is a great selection of restaurants, including Agora, Danny Brown Wine Bar & Kitchen, Cabana, 5 Burro Cafe, and Norita--and an equally great selection of nightlife.
Forest Hills Gardens has been home to some famous people as follows:
- Pia Zadora Movie Star. Lived on Middlemay Circle and attended Our Lady Queen of Martyrs School.
- Burt Bacharach Famous composer. Lived at 150 Burns Street.
- Grosvenor Atterbury Famous Architect. Lived on Markwood Road. Official architect of Forest Hills Gardens.
- Geraldine FerraroCongresswoman. Live on Deepdene Place. First woman candidate for office of Vice President.
- Dale CarnegieFamous speaker/author.Lived at 27 Wendover Road. Author of the book "How to Win Friends and Influence People".
- James Hal KempOrchestra leader. Lived at 53 Continental Ave.
- John KlieglInventor of the Klieglight Stage lighting. Lived on Wendover Road.
- James KriegsmanWell Known Photographer. Lived on Greenway South and Continental Ave.
- Alrick Man, Jr. Captain of the U.S. Davis Cup Team. Lived in 4 Dartmouth Street.
- Thelma Ritter Actress. Lived at 65 Greenway South. Appeared in "Miracle on 34th Street", and "Rear Window".
Although perhaps not as renowned as Forest Hills, its neighbor to the west, Kew Gardens boasts a great diversity of housing and cultures, coupled with verdant park areas, modern amenities and convenient access to Manhattan, Brooklyn and Long Island. The quiet urban area (pop. 25,000) consists of a mix of mid-level apartment houses (both rental and co-ops), smaller attached one-, two- and three-family houses on the eastern borders of Richmond Hill, Briarwood and Jamaica, and more spacious, single-family homes in the English and Tudor styles near Forest Park, a large preserve with walking, biking and horseback riding paths.
Kew Gardens is conveniently located adjacent to the Kew Gardens Interchange, which links numerous highways, including the Grand Central Parkway, the Van Wyck Expressway and the Jackie Robinson Parkway. The community is also served by the LIRR and the Union Turnpike express subway station (E and F lines).
The commercial center of Kew Gardens is Lefferts Boulevard between Austin Street and Metropolitan Avenue, alongside a strip on Metropolitan Avenue and a smaller area on Queens Boulevard opposite Queens Borough Hall and the County Courthouse. A local landmark is the Kew Gardens Cinemas, which showcases independent and international films as well as first-run popular features.
The local public school is PS 99, which offers special programs for gifted students. Private educational institutions include Yeshiva Tifereth Moshe, Bais Yaakov of Queens, and Yeshiva Shaar Hatorah.
The ethnic diversity of Kew Gardens is apparent in the variety of dining options--from Russian, Chinese, Italian, Indian, Portuguese, Uzbek and Caribbean restaurants to German and Kosher delis, friendly pubs and diners and European and Arab minimarkets. Mom and Pop stores still dominate the neighborhood. Many airlines personnel also call Kew Gardens home due to its proximity to both JFK and LaGuardia Airports.
Kew Gardens residents enjoy the best of both worlds--quiet, tree-lined streets with easy access to transportation, shopping, schools and dining.
Rego Park was first developed in the 1920s by the REal GOod Development Company. It is bordered to the north/northeast by Flushing Meadows Corona Park and Elmhurst, the east and south by Forest Hills and the west by Middle Village. Today, Rego Park is best characterized as diverse in terms of population, religion, culture and cuisine, and types of homes.
In addition to numerous pre- and post-war apartment buildings--both rentals and co-ops--and multi-family residences, the Rego Park Crescents is a community of houses with a pleasant mix of contemporary and Colonial or Tudor-style homes located along five tree-lined semicircular-shaped roads, emanating from Alderton Street, between Woodhaven Boulevard and the Long Island Rail Road overpass. There is quick and easy transportation to Manhattan (five miles away) by subway at the 63rd Drive station--R and M trains--local and express buses, and major roads and highways (Queens and Woodhaven Boulevards and the Long Island Expressway).
Rego Park is served by five public elementary schools and two junior high schools. There are also three parochial schools in the area (two Catholic, one Lutheran), as well as several private institutions and a high-volume Queens Public Library branch, where you can find out more information on area statistics and history.
Residents may attend several churches, synagogues and even an Indian temple. Neighborhood landmarks include the Lost Battalion Hall Recreation Center on Queens Boulevard and the Rego Park Jewish Center, recently named a National Historic Landmark.
The restaurant scene runs the gamut of cuisines from old-style Jewish delis to authentic Uzbek and Tajik establishments to Asian, European and North and South American fare, primarily along the main business thoroughfares of Queens and Woodhaven Boulevards and 63rd Drive. Some neighborhood favorites include Ben's Best Kosher Delicatessen, London Lennie's, Barosa, Knish Nosh and the Shalamar Diner.
Aside from its residential offerings, Rego Park is also noted for two major shopping centers--one on Queens Boulevard and 63rd Drive (Sears, Marshall's, Old Navy, Bed Bath & Beyond) and the Rego Center, located at Junction Boulevard and the Long Island Expressway (Kohl's, Century 21, Costco, Pier I, Panera Bread). The Queens Center Mall, with over 100 retailers, is just several blocks to the west at the intersection of Queens and Woodhaven Boulevards.