West 181st Street in Hudson Heights

Never heard of Hudson Heights? You’re not alone. Hudson Heights is a quaint residential neighborhood of Manhattan that, quite frankly, few people outside of the island know about. The neighborhood is located on a tall plateau overlooking the Hudson River, ranging from about West 181st Street to Fort Tryon Park, and from Fort Washington Avenue to the Henry Hudson Parkway.

The neighborhood features historic buildings, rather inexpensive restaurants, and some strange finds, as well as some of the most scenic views in the city. Notable residents have even included Lin-Manuel Miranda and Henry Kissinger. Here’s our guide to the top 10 secrets of Hudson Heights.

1. The Pumpkin House is one of Manhattan’s strangest buildings

Pumpkin House in Hudson Heights

The Pumpkin House is often considered one of the strangest buildings in Manhattan. The 1920s townhouse is cantilevered off a cliff and juts out almost over the highway. The six-bedroom brick home at 16 Chittenden Avenue was commissioned by engineer Cleveland Walcutt on land owned by James Gordon Bennett. It includes a parlor floor, a “sun-drenched” dining room, a library, and a “French country” kitchen. The balcony looks out over the Manhattan skyline, the George Washington Bridge, the Palisades, and the Mario Cuomo Bridge.

The Pumpkin House was sold for $2 million in 2019 after remaining vacant for a few years. Some people certainly think that the home looks like a pumpkin, especially around sunset. The home is situated right next to Castle Village, but still offers a bit of privacy to residents.