New York City is the birthplace of the American Mafia, and for more than 150 years gangsters have left their mark on the Big Apple. If you’re interested in visiting some of the old mafia haunts in NYC keep reading because we’ll cover former hangouts, homes, and even a few places where wise guys got whacked.
Visiting New York City? If you haven’t decided where to stay (yet) check out our helpful guide on Where to Stay in New York City (The best neighborhoods for first timers +2 to avoid). Don’t have time? Here’s our favorite hotel in NYC, hands down.
Famous Mafia Sites in New York City
Infamous Mafia Assassination Sites in New York City
Umberto’s Clam House (Joe Gallo)
Anyone who’s watched Martin Scorcese’s 2019 film, The Irishman, is likely familiar with Umberto’s Clam Shop. It’s the restaurant where Frank Sheeran (Roberto De Niro) shoots Crazy Joe Gallo (Sebastian Maniscalco).
Although Gallo’s murder isn’t an open-and-shut case, the film does portray a semblance of the truth. Gallo, who was a caporegime of the Colombo crime family, was infamously shot on his birthday at Umberto’s in 1972.
As one of the most famous mafia sites in New York City, Umberto’s Clam House is often full of tourists. However, the original site of Umberto’s is at 129 Mulberry Street, where Ristorante Da Gennaro now sits in its place.
Spark’s Steakhouse (Paul Castellano)
Sparks is famous New York City steakhouse, but we’re not here to talk about the filet mignon. In 1985 gunfire erupted as Paul Castellano, boss of the Gambino crime family, was assassinated entering the restaurant.
The mafia hit was ordered by none other than John Gotti, who was scheming to replace Castellano as boss. Gotti watched the hit from across the street and drove by to inspect the lifeless bodies before leaving.
Address: 210 E 46th St, New York, NY 10017
Columbus Circle (Joe Colombo)
Columbus Circle sits just outside the southwest corner of Central Park, and at first glance it looks like any old bustling intersection. Thousands of chipper tourists and locals help mask the circle’s bloody past.
On June 28, 1971 Joe Colombo, head of the Colombo crime family, `was shot by a lone gunman at the second annual Italian Unity Day at Columbus Circle. Colombo slipped into a coma for seven years before eventually passing in 1978.
Fun fact: Joe Colombo had a hand in the making of the 1972 cult-classic, The Godfather. Colombo gave his blessing to film the mafia movie in New York City, but he made them remove the word mafia from the scrips.
Park Central Hotel (Albert Anastasia)
The Park Central Hotel looks like a hotel you’d see in a movie, with a bright marquee leading to a busy street teeming with taxis.
It’s also one of the most famous mafia sites in New York City because in 1957 Albert Anastasia, founder and boss of the Gambino crime family and Murder, Inc. was shot to death while at the hotel’s barber shop.
When the shots erupted the confused Anastasia lunged at his attackers reflection in the mirror. The hit has become one of the most infamous in the history of the mafia, being featured in television, movies, books and music.
Address: 870 7th Ave, New York, NY 10019
Rao’s (Albert Circelli)
Rao’s is a 10-table restaurant in Harlem that’s long been the most exclusive restaurant in NYC. Since opening in 1896 it’s been a hotbed for the rich and powerful in New York City, including those in the mafia.
In 2003 the restaurant was the scene of a murder, spurred by an argument that could’ve been out of a movie. Actress Rena Strober was singing at the restaurant when a patron, Albert Circelli, criticized her performance.
Louis Barone, an associate of the Lucchese crime family, told him to shut up and when the Circelli didn’t Barone shot him in the back. Moral of the story? Treat everyone with respect.
Address: 455 E 114th St, New York, NY 10029
Former Homes of Mafia Leaders in New York City
The Majestic Apartment Building
The Majestic was home to Charles “Lucky” Luciano, who’s been dubbed the father of organized crime. Luciano founded what would become the Genovese crime family. His protégé Frank Costello also lived at The Majestic.
In addition, Meyer Lansky had an apartment at The Majestic, helping cement the building as one of the most important mafia sites in New York City. And I haven’t even talked about the assassination attempt.
Indeed, in 1957 Vito Genovese and Vincent “The Chin” Gigante carried out an assassination attempt on Costello in the lobby! The bullet grazed Costello’s skull, but it was enough to persuade him into an early retirement.
Address: 115 Central Park West, New York, NY 10023
John Gotti’s Howard Beach Home
If you ever find yourself in Howard Beach you’ll have the unique opportunity to visit the former home of the Teflon Don, John Gotti. The 2,500 square food home is valued a little south of one million dollars and is one of the most famous mafia sites in New York City.
It’s more than an hour away from Manhattan in a quiet and residential neighborhood. If you decide to visit be respectful of the homeowners, nobody wants strangers hanging around their front yard.
Address: 160-11 85th St, Queens, NY 11414
Al Capone’s Brooklyn Townhouse
Al Capone is commonly associated with Chicago, but the notorious mafia boss was born and raised in New York City.It wasn’t until his of crime caught up with him he was forced to buy a one way ticket to the Windy City.
If you want to visit Scarface’s childhood home make a beeline for 21 Garfield Place in Park Slope. The townhouse was last sold in 2021 for a whopping 2.5 million which is a hefty chunk of change, even for a mob boss.
Fun fact: Capone got his infamous facial scars at a bar in Coney Island (which no longer exists).
Address: 21 Garfield Pl, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Lefty Ruggiero’s Apartment at Knickerbocker Village
Knickerbocker Village is a housing development that deserves its own article (it housed a $40 million smuggling ring AND two Soviet Union spies) but we’re here to talk about the New York City mafia.
The apartment complex was home to Benjamin “Lefty” Ruggiero, played by Al Pacino in the the 1997 film Donnie Brasco. Like the movie portrays, Lefty was the unwitting mentor to undercover FBI agent Joe Pistone.
By showing Pistone the intricacies of the Bonanno crime family the FBI was able to convict more than 100 mobsters.
Address: 10-12 Monroe St, New York, NY 10002
Vincent “the Chin” Gigante’s Home & Hangout
Nicknamed “The Oddfather” and “The Enigma in a Bathrome,” Vincent the Chin Gigante toyed with law enforcement for years. He would stroll up and down Sullivan Street in a bathrobe, acting like he suffered from insanity.
He made Anthony “Fat Tony” Salerno the front boss to keep the authorities off his back. Meanwhile, he was calling shots behind the scenes and secretly the most powerful mobster in the country.
Two of the most important mafia sites in New York City are within walking distance from each other. Gigante’s house is at 225 Sullivan St. and the Triangle Boys Social Club where he conducted business was at 208 Sullivan St.
Addresses: 225 Sullivan St & 208 Sullivan St, New York, NY 10012
Famous Mafia Hangouts in New York City
Fat Tony Salerno’s East Harlem Hangout
While Vincent Gigante feigned insanity, Fat Tony Salerno was the front boss of the Genovese family. He led from the Palma Boys Social Club in Harlem, where he would hangout, have meetings and do all the things that gangsters do.
The club no longer exists, but Martin Scorcese was able to recreate it in 2020 for his film The Irishman, in its former location! It’s been vacant ever since, but is still one of the most famous mafia hangouts in New York City.
Address: 416 E 115th St, New York, NY 10029
The Ravenite, John Gotti’s Stomping Ground
247 Mulberry Street is home to a men’s clothing store, but it was once one of the most important mafia sites in New York City. It used to be The Ravenite Social Club, the headquarters of the Gambino crime family.
It was here that Aniello Dellacroce took a young John Gotti under his wing. John Gotti’s demise also began at the club, when the FBI bugged it and was able to gather incriminating evidence against the Gambino boss.
Address: 247 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10012
Roy Demeo’s Gemini Lounge
Few gangsters have as much blood on their hands as Roy Demeo. It’s believed that his crew was responsible for as many as 200 murders. In fact, a lot of them happened at The Gemini Lounge in Flatlands, Brooklyn.
Ironically the former lounge is now a church, and at first glance you’d never assume it was one of the bloodiest mafia hangouts in New York City.
Address: 4021 Flatlands Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11234
Famous NYC Mafia Spots (Post Summary)
- Umberto’s Clam House
- Spark’s Steakhouse
- Columbus Circle
- Park Central Hotel
- The Majestic Apartment Building
- John Gotti’s Howard Beach Home
- Al Capone’s Brooklyn Townhouse
- Lefty Ruggiero’s Apartment at Knickerbocker Village
- Vincent “the Chin” Gigante’s Home & Hangout
- Fat Tony Salerno’s East Harlem Hangout
- The Ravenite, John Gotti’s Stomping Ground
- Roy Demeo’s Gemini Lounge
New York City Mafia Sites (Map)
And there you have it, folks! A roundup of famous mafia hangouts and sites in New York City. I hope you found the article helpful. Let me know if there’s any famous sites I missed!
Until next time, cheers.