Courtesy of the Jane Hotel
Downtown: The Jane
Great Value While the Jane, designed by Sean MacPherson (the Bowery Hotel, the Maritime Hotel), is romantic in theory—an old riverfront building with tiny rooms modeled after European train sleeper cars—keep in mind that a New York hotel with starting rates in the double digits comes with drawbacks. Our room during a recent stay had a 27-inch flat-screen TV, an iPod dock, and complimentary water bottled on-site, but the room was too hot, and opening the window wasn’t an option because the property is next to the roaring West Side Highway. Bathrooms are shared and coed, which won’t appeal to all travelers.
T+L TIP The location is great for Greenwich Village access, and plans for double rooms and a lobby bar are in the works.
Courtesy of The Ace Hotel
Great Value This month, Seattle-based indie hotelier Alex Calderwood is opening the first Ace on the East Coast, just north of Gotham’s Madison Square Park. Rooms have an old-school rocker sensibility (some of them come with turntables and curated vinyl collections) while referencing the nearby Garment District: instead of closets you’ll find clothing racks made from plumbing pipes.
T+L TIP Stumptown Coffee Roasters, a popular West Coast chain, is making its New York debut on the ground floor, near a new restaurant from the proprietors of the consistently mobbed Spotted Pig.
Courtesy of Stay Hotel
Great Value Vikram Chatwal’s 210-room Stay has joined the midtown scene with panache. The hotel is decorated with Murano glass chandeliers and an 18,000-gallon aquarium, and the compact slate-and-burnt-orange rooms have 42-inch plasma screens and L’Occitane amenities. There’s not much space to store luggage, so pack light.
T+L TIP Aspen Social Club, the hotel’s small-plates restaurant, becomes a raucous lounge nightly by 11 p.m. Ask for a room on the west side, which is much more peaceful.
Courtesy of The Empire Hotel
Uptown: On The Ave and the Empire Hotel
New York also has welcomed a run of renovations at existing hotels. At the Upper West Side’s On the Ave, guest rooms have been redone and come with ample windows. The revamped outdoor lounges on floors 14 and 16 offer excellent views, and foodie favorite Fatty Crab opened on the lobby level in January.
Closer to Lincoln Center is the Empire, a Roaring Twenties hot spot that’s been redone with a new pool deck, a rooftop bar, and the Center Cut steakhouse.
Courtesy of The Nu Hotel
Brooklyn: Nu Hotel
Great Value The brick-and-steel Nu Hotel has 93 minimalist-chic rooms appointed with faux-sheepskin rugs, gauzy white curtains, and Brooklyn-centric artwork. Playful touches enhance the clean aesthetic: oversize hammocks in suites, bathroom walls made of chalkboard, and rotary-dial phones in the otherwise modern lobby.
T+L TIP The hotel offers bicycles for loan.