This all mostly becomes irrelevant after Freshman year (as you will be much happier living off campus and be paying much less for--usually--better conditions, and you probably won’t care for the meal plan after having to indulge in it every day for the first year), but NYU Freshman dorms are nice as far as college dorms go. Without comparison as far as their locations, mostly basic, sometimes with wonderful views, but mostly what you’d expect of a college dorm room: repetitive furnishing, bland walls awaiting posters and photos. The newer dorms are shinier and apartment style, especially, do resemble a clean, minimal, dorm like apartment. RAs keep a (relative) close eye for incoming students, ensuring that not too many leap off of Bobst (the library) or transfer, though inevitably, some will.
Dining options are quite extensive, but not necessarily always appealing. Most of the Freshmen dorms have a dining hall or food options attached, though my Freshman dorm, Brittany hall, lacked it (as well as air conditioning or a kitchen! But it did have a ghost or two, so I suppose that made up for things).
The infamous Bobst library is not known for its aesthetic appeal--it sits in an ugly, heavy, brown-red building with dark, long stripes of windows down the sides. The inside feels oppressive and depressing, and during midterms and finals time gets extremely, extremely crowded. I prefer the lower levels of the library, which are newer and with less of a foreboding atmosphere. It’s a good resource as far as research goes, and Bobst has extensive online collections with nearly every major research center. Though their own selection seems a bit confused...copies of occasional obscure forgotten texts, yes, but lacking in seemingly basic novels.
Alternative study centers include some of the upper floors of Kimmel, the supposed student life activity center. Floors nine and seven have lounge/study areas by the open windows, which do present a rather gorgeous bird’s eye view of Washington Square Park and up. There are study lounges in Silver, the main CAS academic classroom building, and peppered elsewhere in the department buildings. I’d advise finding a nice department and nestling there, rather than vying for a spot in the already unpleasant Bobst. (The NYU Law School is especially nice, if intimidating). The school certainly lacks that grand, traditional campus appeal, but its scattered resources are, more or less, apt for most student needs.