West Chelsea Hill
Also known as Little Odessa, West Chelsea Hill has been the destination of Eastern European immigrants since the 19th century. The fall of the Soviet Bloc countries triggered a new flood of immigrants, many of them sponsored by family members already living in the city. While it is also home to Polish, Hungarian and Latvian immigrants it is principally a Russian enclave. The influence of the Soviet immigrants have made West Chelsea Hill a quiet, insular community; the residents have a lingering distrust of authority, especially the police department, and prefer to resolve problems among themselves. To that end, the Bratva, or Russian Mafia, fills a niche in the community that would otherwise be filled be the legal authorities. The Orthodox Jewish community in Central Heights is looking to Little Odessa as the place to relocate as their neighborhood changes.
West Chelsea Hill Locations of Note
Gotham Civic Center [pg 103]
Aventine Hotel and Casino [pg 95]
Images of West Chelsea Hill
Knots of tight lipped men gathered in the dark corners of a bar for a drink.
Hard eyed old Russians playing chess in the park.
Block after block of working class apartments.
The simmering smiles of dark eyed Magyar girls working in local shops.
Food trucks featuring menus of borsht, potato soup and black bread.
Back to Downtown.