Neighborhood Spotlight: Brighton Beach

The boardwalk on Brighton Beach

The boardwalk on Brighton Beach

I’ve lived on Brighton Beach for about 17 years, and what I’ve found is that it is a neighborhood like no other. They call it “Little Odessa By The Sea”, but it is nothing like the real Odessa, or like any other city in Ukraine or Russia. It is so over the top “Russian” that it’s not really Russian at all. What it is is impossible to explain, but that is the beauty of this neighborhood.

Brighton Beach goes from Ocean Parkway until West End Avenue, where Manhattan Beach starts. You can get here on the B1, B68 or using the Q or B train lines.

Brighton beach has a ton of restaurants, both on the streets and on the boardwalk. The two most popular “hotspots” are Oceana and National. Oceana is a huge restaurant that also hosts shows and performances. The food is good, but most people just go there for the experience.

Summer in Brighton Beach is amazing. The beach is a little dirty, but often you don’t notice. It’s a great place to go an catch a tan.

Brighton Beach is a neighborhood like no other, at least not in this country. When we have relatives visit from anywhere else, they love it. They can pick up their favorite Russian books, music, movies, and foods that they can’t find anywhere where they live. Most of the residents think Brighton’s nickname, “Little Odessa by the Sea” is ridiculous, and just laugh at it. For people who aren’t from this neighborhood, they are amazed. For the residents here, it’s the most convenient place to live. It’s just like their homes in their old countries (Russia & Ukraine). They get the same food, speak the same language and meet the same people.

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