Charming and historically important, Cobble Hill consists of about 40-square blocks filled with tree-lined streets, quaint mom and pop businesses and enchanting turn of the century architecture. Bordered by Atlantic Avenue on the North, Cobble Hill shares borders with Brooklyn Heights, Carroll Gardens, and Boerum Hill. Lovely, historic brownstones with modern upgrades and a half-acre park make the neighborhood a sought-after and aesthetically pleasing place to call home.
The majority of the neighborhood’s buildings consist of antiqued four-story brownstone or brick townhouses from the 19th Century. New construction or alterations to existing buildings within the historic district must be approved by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, giving the area an everlasting semblance of the past.
Until the 1970s, Cobble Hill was known as "South Brooklyn", because it was South of Atlantic Avenue, the southern boundary of the areas now known as Brooklyn Heights and Downtown Brooklyn. The Brooklyn-Queens Expressway separates Cobble Hill from Red Hook, though condos and row houses along the periphery are sometimes called “Cobble Hill West.”
Cobble Hill is historically Italian, with several charming, family owned shops on the two commercial main streets—Smith Street and Court Street. Old-fashioned Italian bakeries and butcheries, such as Staubitz Meat Market on Court Street, stylishly combine with trendy boutiques and newer upscale delis. Due to the large number of bars and restaurants that emerged during the late 90’s, Northern Smith Street has come to be known as Brooklyn's "Restaurant Row."
Following a time when residents mostly relied on Brooklyn Heights, the area’s closest neighbor, for activities and dining, the emergence of new eateries and nightlife venues in the past two decades has given Cobble Hill it’s own unique personality with a wide range of events and activities. Brooklyn’s first and only Trader Joe’s location opened on the corner of Court St. and Atlantic Avenue. Residents can catch a movie at Cobble Hill Cinema down the block, and enjoy their morning coffee at Café Pedlar, an artisanal coffee shop that uses organic milk from Ithaca and roasted coffee beans from Stumptown Coffee Roasters in Red Hook. Barney’s Co-op on Atlantic Ave. offers the best from well-known upscale designers, and Brownstone Treasures on Court St. has antique furniture and vintage memorabilia at reasonable prices.
Perhaps the area’s quintessential draw, the recently redesigned Cobble Hill Park has a formal, geometric pattern, which utilizes 19th-century period materials such as blue stone and cast iron as well as herringbone-patterned brick walkways. The rose garden and surrounding lawn makes the layout—which won the Art Commission's 1988 Annual Award for Excellence in Design and the Parks Council's first Philip Winslow Award for Public Projects in 1990—a perfect spot for outdoor summer music concerts and the annual Halloween parade.