Actor-entrepreneur Robert De Niro opened this hotel in 2008, but the corner building, erected on an empty parking lot, looks as if it’s been there since the turn of the century—the truth hidden by its hand-distressed brick façade. Inside, a hushed gentleman’s lair awaits; tufted leather sofas, stately potted palms, and exotic objets fill the lobby and Drawing Room, whose centerpiece is a positively baronial wood-burning fireplace. Adjacent is a lush enclosed courtyard. The hotel’s most distinctive feature, however, may be the lofty level of craftsmanship—fine hand-loomed Tibetan rugs, reclaimed oak floors, ceramic Moroccan tiled baths—that ribbons throughout the public spaces and the 88 individually decorated rooms and 13 suites. A visit to the guests-only Shibui Spa, with its traditional tatami mats, shoji screens, soaking tub, and showstopping pool canopied by 250-year-old beams from a Japanese farmhouse, will make you feel like you’ve escaped to an exclusive Kyoto.