The tenement neighborhood known as Hell's Kitchen features low scale well-priced ethnic restaurants, trendy bars, and independent shops inhabited by blue-collar workers. Arguably the most popular destination for tourists, this is the land of skyscrapers and theater, tenements and pure energy.
Carnegie Hall and Rockefeller Center sit on its eastern edge; to the west, In the middle is Times Square, that most gaudy of New York City spectacles, replete with over-the-top signs, screaming crowds below the MTV studios, scam artists and card sharks running sidewalk games, over-the-top commerce, insane crowds, and, of course, lots and lots of theater.
This area is the home of some of the most prestigious private clubs such as the Harvard Club, Yacht Club and fabulous hotels on 44th street between 5th and 6th avenue. The area is not just for tourists is a place where locals hangout for lunch or after work visiting some great restaurants.
While this area has lost its former seediness, this is still New York City--so watch your wallet, especially in crowds. Otherwise, Times Square is quite safe most of the time, though it can feel a bit quiet at 2 am.