The culture of Hell’s Kitchen has evolved from a crime ridden Mafioso ambiance, to a residential haven for young and old actors alike. Throughout the mid 1900’s an irish american gang was based out of this western sect of Manhattan, hens the gangs name “The Westies.” This gang was known for their deeply violent reputation, and for their close ties with perhaps one of the most famous irish mafias let alone mafias of all time; The Gambino crime family. Despite the immense power these organizations had, in 1986 everything came to a head when the RICO (Racketeer Influence and Corrupt Organizations Act) was put into place, imprisoning the majority of these gangs and mafias. This immensely changed the culture of Hell’s Kitchen and brought to light the geographically ideal place it was for young actors and actresses to reside while working in the neighboring theatre district. This broadway-like aura of Hell’s Kitchen has attracted aspiring and A list celebrities alike. Amongst these celebrities are James Deane, Sylvester Stallone, Madonna, Jerry Seinfeld, and Larry David.
Instead of gang violence and racketeering, today’s gentrification of Hell’s Kitchen has brought about beautiful restaurants, an abundance of local stores, and even a community garden. As actors and actresses are busy at work in the theaters at night, by day they took the time to construct a colorful garden in a vacant rubble ridden lot. It has become a favorite attraction for its residents, and marks the immense transformation Hell’s Kitchen has undergone over the past century.