Past Famous New Yorkers on the Upper West Side

Past Famous New Yorkers on the Upper West Side

Many of the past famous New Yorkers lived on the Upper West Side. And many of them lived in the same buildings!

The list of past famous people on the Upper West Side is long. But I’ve selected the historical Upper West Siders I find most interesting, and I hope you do too.

Famous New Yorkers Who Lived on the UWS

The Dakota, 1 West 72nd Street

John Lennon

This is probably the first famous name you’ll think of when it comes to the Dakota on Central Park West.  The former Beatle lived here from 1973 to 1980, when he unfortunately met his death outside the building at the hands of Mark David Chapman.  Yoko Ono still maintains a residence at this famed co-op today (check).

Jack Palance

Jack Palance was an award winning actor known for portraying the villain.  Some of his films included City Slickers, Panic in the Streets, and Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

Leonard Bernstein

Composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein lived in a 4 bedroom, 4 bathroom apartment on the Dakota’s second floor, which would later sell for $21 million.

Famous New Yorkers

Famous New Yorkers


The Ansonia

Babe Ruth

The Ansonia was the location of the slugger’s first NYC apartment once he was traded from the Red Sox to the Yankees.  This was when the Ansonia was still a residential hotel.  The Ansonia has a naughty past, and apparently the Babe was a big part of that.

Igor Stravinksy

The famous Russian composer, conductor and pianist was proud to call the Ansonia home.

Jack Dempsey

The boxing champ would sometimes have breakfast with Babe Ruth.

Famous New Yorkers

Famous New Yorkers


The San Remo

Steve Jobs

The late tech-guru briefly owned a penthouse at the San Remo, but never actually lived in it.

Rita Hayworth

The actress and dancer spent her last days here.

Eddie Cantor

The musical comedian lived in the south tower triplex which Demi Moore and Bruce Willis bought in 1990.

Famous New Yorkers

Famous New Yorkers


The Majestic

Milton Berle

The late comedian and actor found his home here on Central Park West, embodying his famous quote,
“Money can’t buy you happiness, but it helps you look for it in a lot more places.”

Fred Astaire

The legendary dance-king has a studio in his name near his former home ( Fred Astaire Studios has a location at 174 West 72nd Street).

Zero Mostel

This old-time comedian and actor was best known for his role of Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof.

Walter Winchell

A newspaper and radio gossip commentator, and boy did he have his hands full with the next ones on our list ..

Meyer Lansky, Lucky Luciano, Frank Costello and Vincent “The Chin” Gigante

That’s right, the mob.

Famous New Yorkers

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Mike Mishkin

Mike Mishkin

Blogger & Native Upper West Sider
Mike is a native Upper West Sider. He's lived in the Lincoln Center area, Morningside Heights, and pretty much everywhere in between. You can frequently find him eating through the many great restaurants on the Upper West Side or awkwardly taking iPhone photos for @ilovetheupperwestside.
Mike Mishkin

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