Down by the New York Harbor waterfront, this neighborhood has transformed itself from being a major port region to a quiet industrial spot for artists and residents.
Red Hook’s origins date back to 1636, it was one of the first Dutch settlements in Brooklyn. The neighborhood was called Roode Hoek, after the red clay soil and the hook shape of its peninsular location.
Over decades, the settlement developed into one of the busiest ports in the 1850s. In 1993, the area was developed to become a settled neighborhood. Visitors can take a peek at Red Hook’s past with a visit to the Waterfront Museum. Located on a historic barge, this museum offers the history of New York’s waterfront scene from the past to the present.
Red Hook also offers many areas to walk, bike or run around the waterfront. Spanning from Bay Ridge to Greenpoint, the Brooklyn Greenway Initiative provides visitors a place to walk/run/bike along a 14 mile track. At the Louis Valentino Pier, visitors can take a stroll along the waterfront to catch a view of the Statue of Liberty.
Right along the waterfront, art lovers and enthusiasts can find a selection of art galleries/spaces with exhibitions from local artists. As Brooklyn’s largest artist coalition, Brooklyn Waterfront Artists Coalition (BWAC) offers a non-profit space to showcase newer artists. Located in a Civil-War era warehouse, art lovers can enjoy the outdoor sculpture exhibits and a varieties of art from traditional to modern styles. Serving as a center for research and experimentation in contemporary culture, Pioneer Works houses curated pieces. The space offers a collaborative home for artists, musicians, scientists and educators.
Shoppers on Crosby Street can find SoHo style shopping without the crowds of New York City. As destinations for cutting edge pieces, Opening Ceremony and Reformation offer curated trendy items for fashion lovers alike. Find some unique gifts by heading down the artisan shops of Van Brunt St. At Foxy & Winston, stationery enthusiasts can find custom silkscreen printed cards. The shop also offers trinkets and other goods. Find a perfect piece of vintage-style jewelry at Erie Basin, this shop offers a variety of styles curated from the Victorian era to Art Deco.
Seafood enthusiasts can rejoice at the variety of nautical fare in Red Hook. Savor some crab and lobster year-round at Brooklyn Crab and Red Hook Lobster Pound. Both locations offer a variety of seafood dishes in a nautical style settings. Not a fan of seafood? Head down to Fort Alliance and experience the city’s best Pina Colada. Or visit Defonte’s for a classic Italian sandwich.