42 Interesting New York City Nicknames

Joan Agie
Feb 16, 2024 By Joan Agie
Originally Published on Oct 24, 2022
New York City nicknames will tell you more about one of the most populous cities in the world.

The city loved by all in the United States is New York, which is frequently referred to as New York City (NYC) and popularly called Restaurant city and World's Fair city.

According to some, New York City is the world's 'financial, cultural, and media capital' and has a big impact on business, science, entertainment, technology, politics, education, tourism, art, dining, and sports. Given the diversity of its residents and the 800 languages that are spoken there, it is also known as the melting pot of the United States.

Filmmakers from all eras and genres have long found inspiration in New York City, a city with its own life and personality, and throughout the years, people have given various nicknames for this magnificent city like Big Apple, Empire city, cultural city, money town, New Amsterdam, Media city, Vacation city, Cuisine capital, Science city, World's fair city, Restaurant City, Movie-Making city, History box, Science city, movie making city, Weissman Center, and many more.

Let's have a look at several other New York city nicknames in this article.

Best New York City Nicknames

According to some historians, the term 'Empire City of the New World' refers to New York City because of its enormous population, and it first appeared in a newspaper article in 1836. Let's look at other nicknames for this super city.

  • America's City- A nickname given because it is the most popular metropolitan city in America with more than 8.5 million people therefore, America's city is a perfect name.
  • America's Leading Tourist Resort- There is no doubting New York City's influence on tourism. Every year, millions of tourists visit there for vacations to take in the ambiance, earning this nickname.
  • America's Mecca- According to the Merriam-Webster definition, a 'mecca' is a place that serves as the focal point for a particular group's interests. The moniker 'America's Mecca' merely designates the enormous city as the geographic center of the nation.
  • Cab City- In only Gotham City alone, there are 10,000 taxis. The fact that it is referred to as Cab City, as a result, does not surprise us.
  • Empire State- a nickname given to the Big Apple, thanks to George Washington who commented 'Surely this is the capital of the empire,' when he observed Manhattan's excellent location before the Battle of New York in 1776.
  • Fashion City- As the 2014 Top Global Fashion Capital, New York has been recognized as the fashion city of the world.
  • Fear City- This nickname was given to New York City during the US economic recession of the ’70s, which resulted in a severe fiscal crisis and bankruptcy when New York experienced one of the strangest, most turbulent periods in its history during this time.
  • Golden Door- New York City is sometimes referred to as the 'Golden Door' due to the high number of immigrants passing through. It alludes to how the city serves as a gateway to the rest of the country.
  • Gotham City- You may think that New York City's well-known nickname of Gotham City is derived from the famed Batman comics, but this nickname goes way back before the comic.
  • Hong Kong On The Hudson- The term 'Hong Kong on the Hudson' alludes to the significant Chinese community in New York City. Within the boundaries of the Empire city, numerous more nicknames are used to refer to different ethnic groups.
  • Knickerbocker- Early Dutch settlers who immigrated to New York City and wore a kind of pants that rolled up just below the knee gave rise to this well-known nickname. Knickerbockers, or simply 'knickers' were the abbreviated form of these pants.
  • Media City- A nickname earned by Gotham city, being home to some of the most significant newspapers, largest publishing firms, largest record labels, and most productive television studios in the world.
  • The City Of Dreams- A nickname that NYC enjoys as the city's firms provide top-notch internships in all the major industries, making it ideal for recent grads and also providing a huge opportunity for artists.
  • The City of Skyscrapers- It is not surprising that New York is known as the 'city of skyscrapers' due to the abundance of tall buildings and home to one of the highest structures in the world, including the Empire State Building and Park Avenue.
  • The City of Towers- It doesn't take much thought to understand why New York City is referred to as the City of Towers, similar to how it is the City of Skyscrapers. It is crammed with skyscrapers of every size and shape.
  • The city that never sleeps- a nickname that became famous with the 1980 release of Frank Sinatra's hit song 'Theme from New York, New York.'
  • The Metropolis- This moniker has been earned by the city for being the largest, most influential, most populated, and most international city in the United States.
  • The Money Town- A nickname earned by New York City, for being the commercial, economic, and media capital of the world, and having a significant influence on politics, industry, science, art, innovation, education, tourism, fine cuisine, and sports.

Unique New York City Nicknames

Are you aware that New York City nicknames are quite trendy in the entire US? Pick your own favorites!

  • Business Capital- We'd be shocked if one of the first pictures that spring to mind when you think of trendy businesses isn't a bustling Times Square or Wall Street therefore, this nickname is perfect for Gotham city.
  • Cuisine Capital- It is no surprise that New York City is sometimes referred to as the cuisine capital because it is a metropolis that benefits from a wide range of cultural influences and has over 10,000 restaurants serving every type of food imaginable.
  • Little Space Big City- It's not surprising that some have started referring to New York City as Little Spaces Big City, given the density of buildings within the city limits.
  • The Babylonian Bedlam- Numerous nicknames that begin with 'the' single out New York City as a city of the highest significance. The earliest depiction that we could discover is the Babylonian Bedlam.
  • The Baghdad of the Subway- This moniker is comparable to Hong Kong on the Hudson. It alludes to a different sizable ethnic minority residing in the city.
  • The Banking Center of the World- No one should be surprised that New York City is regularly referred to as the 'Banking Center of the World' given the presence of Wall Street and many of the biggest banks in the world.
  • The Big City- This moniker pretty much speaks for itself. Even though this metropolis is now far bigger than a town, calling it the Big Town makes sense.
  • The City of Light- You wouldn't have any trouble seeing if you were to wander the streets of New York City in the evening or at night because they are lit up by streetlights, large billboards, and the lights from nearby businesses. That is how the City of Light came to be known as such.
  • Rotten Apple- One particularly scathing nickname that criticizes the corruption in the city mimics this well-known moniker by referring to it as the Rotten Apple, like a sly dig at the other name 'Big Apple.'

Popular New York City Nicknames

Find out the list of the most well-known New York City nicknames given below!

  • A city of everything- It's simple to find almost anything you may want in New York City because of the dense population and the abundance of stores there therefore the nickname is appropriate.
  • Big Apple- One of the most popular nicknames given to this magnificent city, originally reported in the early 1900s, when sports journalist John J. Fitz Gerald began his horse racing column 'Around the Big Apple.'
  • Empire City- A nickname was given to the city, also known as Melting Pot, because of its abundance and diversity of resources.
  • Finance City- This nickname makes remarks about the financial significance of Gotham City globally.
  • Melting Pot- The lesser-known nickname, which describes the city's rich diversity of cultures and ethnicities.
  • NY- You've probably seen those well-known shirts that read, 'I Heart NY,' no matter where you're from. NY is simply an acronym for New York, which is frequently used to refer to both the city and the state.
  • The City of Cities- One of the biggest cities in the world, New York City functions as a huge hub for many other cities thanks to its connections around the globe. Some people call it the City of Cities.
  • The City of Islands - Within the limits of the city are several small islands, including the well-known Manhattan, and therefore, NYC is often referred to as the City of Islands because of this.

Creative New York City Nicknames

Creativity sets everything to a whole different level. Add in your own creative notes to bring out the most unique nicknames that will make your New York City friends go crazy. Or, you can simply choose one from the list provided below!

  • Coliseum City- Although there isn't exactly a clear explanation for how New York City came to be called the Coliseum City, it's simple to see how this moniker is related to other ancient civilizations. For instance, Rome was renowned for its magnificent and enormous coliseums. Perhaps that is how this name originated.
  • Concrete Jungle- Another well-known moniker for New York City is The Concrete Jungle.
  • Entertainment Capital- Due to its abundance of entertainment options in this premier fun city, including nightlife, performances, exhibits, museums, amusement parks, pool parties, and more, New York has earned the moniker 'The Entertainment Capital' also known as Vacation city.
  • New Amsterdam- New Amsterdam, is a nickname given to New York City because the Dutch colonized Manhattan Island, which later developed into an outpost of the Dutch Republic.
  • The Big Burg- Burg is described by Google as a walled, traditional town. Although NYC doesn't actually have walls, it is one of the biggest cities in the world. Therefore, it is reasonable to refer to it as the Big Burg.
  • The City so nice that they named it twice- This name was chosen since New York, the cultural city, is the name of both the state and the city. John Hendricks, a jazz vocalist, used the term for the first time in 1959, and reference to the song 'New York, New York (So Good They Named It Twice)' by Gerard Kenny released as part of the album 'Made It Thru The Rain' released in 1979.
  • The Orchestra City- NYC is home to a surprisingly large number of notable orchestras. It is also called the City of Orchestras at times.

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Written by Joan Agie

Bachelor of Science specializing in Human Anatomy

Joan Agie picture

Joan AgieBachelor of Science specializing in Human Anatomy

With 3+ years of research and content writing experience across several niches, especially on education, technology, and business topics. Joan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Human Anatomy from the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria, and has worked as a researcher and writer for organizations across Nigeria, the US, the UK, and Germany. Joan enjoys meditation, watching movies, and learning new languages in her free time.

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