Image of buildings near Columbia University with flowers in the foreground Spring is graduation season at NYC’s colleges and universities!

Springtime in New York City is a time of renewal, of springing forth from the stagnation of the cold winter months to the rebirth of gardens and parks, warm weather and outdoor activities. New Yorkers love getting out and about, whether it’s a stroll through Central Park, taking in an outdoor concert, browsing the offerings at a street fair, or dining al fresco with friends. And the month of May adds graduation festivities to the mix! New York City’s prestigious colleges and universities span all five boroughs, from technical schools and those specialized in specific trades to Ivy League universities, those known for their sports teams and everything in between. It’s here you’ll find FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology), Cooper Union, NYU, Fordham University in Manhattan and the Bronx, St. John’s University in Queens, Brooklyn Law School and the College of Staten Island. As you can imagine, graduation time is a busy time in NYC! If you are a friend or family of a graduate you’re probably planning your trip to NYC for graduation ceremonies but also want to make the most of your time here and fit in some sight seeing while you’re in town. New York Habitat’s agents can help you find a furnished rental apartment that is the perfect combination of proximity to a NYC college or university and convenience to some of the best spring activities and attractions to take in while you’re in town!

Furnished Apartments are a Great Family Option

Image of NY-17172 on the Upper West Side with Central Park views from the living room Rent this apartment with Central Park views in spring

Just in time for spring, New York Habitat has fresh new additions to our apartment inventory. Is a fully equipped kitchen to prepare family meals on your wish list? What about outdoor space for enjoying the gorgeous spring weather in the company of family or friends? Do the kids each want their own bedroom? We have apartments to suit every scenario. When you’re heading to NYC with the family in tow for graduation day, why cram into a hotel room or split up the family between hotel rooms when you can all spread out and enjoy a spacious furnished apartment together? If you’re attending graduation ceremonies Uptown at Columbia University or City College, this 3 bedroom/2 bath apartment on the Upper West Side can sleep five people in style. Enjoy hotel-like luxuries of doorman service and elevator while also enjoying a Central Park view right from your living room! Three spacious bedrooms allow everyone to have their privacy in a homey environment while multiple couches in the living room create a relaxing space to congregate and spend quality time together. Head to the park for a family picnic or plan a memorable graduation dinner at one of the Upper West Side’s swanky restaurants.

Things to See & Do in Manhattan

Image of the Manhattan skyline near Chelsea at night The views by the Hudson River are spectacular night and day

Graduation time is always a combination of reflection on the past and all we’ve come through as well as looking forward with optimism and excitement about all that lies ahead. So we thought we would have some fun combining things to do outdoors in the spring with places to see and stay at that incorporate NYC’s past and present (along with a bit of spring, of course)! If you haven’t been to New York City before or just haven’t visited recently, you’ll want to check out the ever-evolving High Line Park. There’s always a new art installation to happen upon or a novel food vendor tempting your taste buds as you stroll through this elevated park built on former freight rail tracks. It’s a fitting tribute to NYC’s past, present and future as abandoned railroad tracks and a little creativity birthed a whole new life to this area of the city. Now trendy apartments, hotels and bars line the route as you walk, mixed with old tenement buildings and industrial spaces of the past and freshly planted flowers and trees breathing new life into the city. Catch a memorable sunset over the Hudson River from here at the end of a perfect spring day. If you’re looking for some family activities for the active bunch, head to nearby Chelsea Piers sports complex where there’s sure to be an activity for everyone from golf to rock climbing and ice skating just to name a few. The Bowlmor bowling alley is a great spot for a family party with its festive vibe, complete with blacklights, video walls and arcade games—fun for the whole family!

Image of living room of NY-17169 in Chelsea with bright spring-colored decor This Chelsea apartment is all decked out for spring!

If you’re in love with the thought of the Chelsea area, you may want to snag this 1 bedroom apartment in Chelsea while it’s available. Tastefully decorated with hints of bright spring colors and overlooking an inner building courtyard, you can enjoy views of spring greenery right from your window. Prepare meals at home in the modern kitchen that opens to the living room and features granite countertops and stainless steel appliances. After dinner you can work off your meal at the on-site gym or head to the rooftop and take in the stunning city views. This apartment has a primo location for getting acquainted with some of the best NYC attractions, located just a half a block from the High Line and the Hudson River. Rent a bike and explore Hudson River Park, stroll through the cobblestoned streets of the nearby Meatpacking District and do some shopping or hit a hip new eatery then browse the art galleries of Chelsea on your way home.

Things to See & Do in Brooklyn

Image of a cherry blossom tree in a park Spring is cherry blossom season so head to one of NYC’s spectacular parks and catch a view

From the Hudson River to the East River, Manhattan is full of things to do in spring. Why not venture to the other side of the East River and discover Brooklyn. Home to a variety of academic institutions including Brooklyn Law School, Brooklyn College and Pratt Institute among many others, it’s also home to some of New York City’s most beautiful, sprawling green spaces, which make it a prime spot for spending spring graduation season in NYC.

Image of all white living room decor of NY-16812 in Clinton Hill Brooklyn Modern and classic mix in this Clinton Hill 3 bedroom with terrace

This airy 3 bedroom apartment in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn is a convenient option to rent for family coming for an extended stay around graduation or even for new graduates to share with roommates as a starter apartment. Located near Brooklyn’s famous Pratt Institute in a classic Brooklyn brownstone, this apartment is a mix of old and new. The monochromatic white living room is accented with original details like the exposed brick walls, adding an urban Brooklyn vibe. Sink into the couch in the living room in front of the large flat screen TV and enjoy a relaxing afternoon nestled in your new neighborhood. Prepare meals at home with ingredients from one of the local farmer’s markets. The open kitchen is perfect for entertaining your guests as they lounge in the living room space. Barstools at the countertop offer a casual option for dining in addition to the dining table for four. Two bedrooms with queen size beds and individual flat screen TV’s occupy the same floor while the third bedroom with double bed is up the wooden staircase on the upper level of the apartment. From here you can access a divine outdoor terrace space with wrap-around seating and views so you can soak in the sun and all the splendor of spring in New York City!

What better way to celebrate spring than to immerse yourself in the beautiful plants and flowers of Brooklyn Botanic Garden? Adult admission is just $15, seniors and students get a discount at $8 and children under 12 years old enter free. Here you can dine at the Yellow Magnolia Cafe (named after a Magnolia flower developed at the BBG) that sources its ingredients from local farms and boasts views overlooking the garden’s Lily Pool Terrace. The annual Cherry Blossom Festival each spring is one of the most famous events here and a local favorite! The Brooklyn Botanic Garden also hosts educational activities for kids and families and classes for adults. Another must do in the spring in Brooklyn is spending a day exploring Prospect Park. This 585-acre park offers boating, fishing and horseback riding, hiking and jogging trails, and even a zoo for the kids and the young at heart. Equipped with BBQ and picnic areas, it’s the perfect place to spend a gorgeous spring day dining al fresco with the family.

Weekend Activities

Image of the Brooklyn Bridge and the East River with Brooklyn in the background Discover all that Brooklyn has to offer in the springtime!

Whether you’re spending a weekend in Brooklyn or staying elsewhere and want to check out Brooklyn, it’s as simple as a subway ride or a scenic walk from the City Hall area over the Brooklyn Bridge from Manhattan. Spend a day shopping and meandering the cobblestone streets of DUMBO then head to Brooklyn Bridge Park for a waterfront stroll with a spectacular skyline view of NYC. If you’re craving some great New York pizza check out Fornino Pizza at Pier 6, Brooklyn Bridge Park then head to Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory located right in the center of the park at the old fire-boat house where you can pick up delicious small-batch ice cream made in-house.

Image of living room of NY-17156 in DUMBO Brooklyn Live a little of Brooklyn’s past and present in this DUMBO apartment

If you just can’t get enough of DUMBO or the view, consider staying a little longer and renting this gorgeous furnished 1 bedroom loft-style apartment right in trendy DUMBO! Located in what was once a 19th-century manufacturing building reminiscent of the area’s past, it’s now converted into a luxury residential building in one of Brooklyn’s hippest areas, complete with gym and rooftop deck. The interior of the apartment combines modern amenities with industrial-chic decor, hardwood floors and classic details from the building’s past including high ceilings and large windows to make the most of all that springtime sun! Pillow-covered cozy couches and greenery warm the space while urban design elements like the industrial lamps, workman’s desk and rugged coffee table incorporate touches of the building’s history into its current story. After all, New Yorkers are pros at taking urban industrial spaces, adding modern touches like the sleek furniture and amenities like washer/dryer and creating the perfect mix of urban chic living.

Tips from the Locals

Image of Coney Island amusement park rides and boardwalk Coney Island is a timeless NYC treasure!

Bringing to mind some more of New York City’s famous past, Coney Island‘s 2017 season is already open! Head to this famous beach for a bit of nostalgia, the smell of the boardwalk’s tasty treats or the thrills of the world famous amusement park from days gone by complete with brand new upgrades and blasts from the past like the iconic Coney Island Cyclone roller coaster! If you’re the active sort or even just an avid spectator, there’s also the Brooklyn Half Marathon that runs from Brooklyn Museum to Coney Island on May 20th. NYC beaches officially open May 27th so trade the sidewalk for some sand and relax a little in the big city. Bike Month also runs through the entire month of May so grab a friend and explore NYC on two wheels for something a little different!

Discover why spring is such a great time to visit New York City—school is out, the weather is great and the crowds haven’t arrived yet! Browse more apartment options on our website or let one of our experienced agents find something tailored to your specific needs and make your next trip to NYC a one-of-a-kind experience! We’re launching on Instagram so you can peek inside more of our unique apartment rentals and don’t forget to tag us in pics from your NYC vacation with New York Habitat!

Related apartment rental posts from New York Habitat:
  1. Spring’s the Season for Flower Power in NYC
  2. Wham, BAM! – Brooklyn Academy Delivers A Solid Spring Season
  3. The Best Springtime Activities in NYC: #3 Cherry Blossom Season
  4. In NYC, Fall Festival Season Yields a Harvest of Book Events
  5. Spring Vacation Rentals visit New York City’s Parks


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