“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” The phrase might be a little crude, especially referring to The Pierre, but in this case, nothing seems more fitting. Sure, they might have recently spruced up the Rotunda and newly-added Perrine, but the old-world charm shines through. The classic, five-star hotel sits right on the southeastern edge of Central Park, on Fifth Avenue and 61st Street. While it might not have the grandest lobby or the showiest decor, the understated elegance in its 1930s bones is hard to resist. And when I trundled in off the subway, burdened with over-sized Uniqlo and Flying Tiger plastic bags in my elbow creases, the staff didn’t turn up their noses or act surprised when I asked where check-in was. During the speedy process, they implored me to take chocolates (milk and dark) and promptly handed me the keys to my room, adding, “You’ll have a great view of Central Park in the snow.” Before you make it to your room to scope out that view, white-gloved attendants ride the elevator up with you, pressing the button to your floor, lest you soil your delicate hands. Opened in 1930, none of the decor really feels new or modern or fresh, but that’s part of the allure. The hallways are tastefully lined with cream and gold trimming, with a total of 189 rooms, 49 of which are suites. There isn’t a spa in the hotel, but there is a 24-hour fitness center along with 24-hour laundry and car services. The room I was given was outfitted with a king-size bed with a golden,
Billing itself as New York’s most boldly lavish hotel, the Mark seems to know just how to sum things up perfectly, and who are we to argue? Maybe it’s the in-room dining manned by Jean-Georges, or perhaps it’s the stunning Jacques Grange-designed rooms and suites…either way, this magical Upper East Side gem is a Central Park–centric destination for the books
A hidden place within the elegant avenues of New York's Upper East Side is currently in the spotlight. The Lowell Hotel is a serene establishment that is tucked away within a residential block and surrounded by some of the top fashion stores in the world. This 74-room hotel is 17 floors full of creature comforts, refined artwork and posh furnishings, and is consistently named one of the best hotels in the world. The minute you walk into the lobby of the Lowell Hotel you are immediately hit with the smell of fresh orchids and hydrangeas. The enticing scent only gets better with the complimentary hot chocolate and cookies offered to guests while checking in (best way to beat off the New York winter chills). The Italian marble lobby is currently under renovation but is still quite extravagant, with no expense spared by the current owners. This boutique hotel has been decorated by famed interior designer, Michael Smith. He is best known for decorating the Obama’s private residences in the White House and being BFF’s with the family. When you get up to your private residence, be thankful you don’t have to deal with the typical flimsy hotel key card; you actually get an wrought iron key to unlock your oasis. One also may luck out and get one of the few rooms with an actual wood burning fireplace, a rarity in NYC. Just make sure to call down to the front desk to have them light it, while you are lounging in your sitting room, drinking fresh made Keurig coffee and wrapped in your c
Few hotels embody luxury and style as effortlessly as this East Side institution, which evokes a first-class experience of pre-war Art Deco elegance that is cozy and classy, with minimal pretension. Since the 1940s, the Carlyle has been a preferred spot for dignitaries, celebrities and politicians. President John F. Kennedy slept there (or rather, didn’t, with Marilyn Monroe), as did Sinatra, Princess Diana and Broadway legend Elaine Stritch. Part of the attraction is location: tucked away on East 76th and Madison Avenue, far from the chaos of midtown Manhattan. Most of the rooms are decorated in a tasteful Louis XIV style, but if you are lucky (i.e., rich) enough to score a deluxe tower room (around $1,300 a night), you will be treated to romantic views of Central Park, plus a small but handy kitchenette. Repeat guests and those who rent suites and above will be surprised by monogrammed pillows. The overall vibe, whatever your price point: the cool midcentury elegance of Mad Men. For a formal but relaxed dining experience, you could try the Carlyle Restaurant downstairs. If you like cabaret, the world-class Café Carlyle features singers Tuesdays through Sundays, ranging from beloved Broadway divas to longtime guest Woody Allen blowing on his clarinet. Before or after dinner, you must get a drink in the Bemelmans Bar. The place takes its name from the children’s book author Ludwig Bemelmans (he created Madeleine), who covered the bar’s walls in his playful drawings (an elep
Sure, the Loews brings it big with the business amenities like complimentary shoeshines, 24-hour business centers for insomniacs, and a giant, contemporary conference room. But the real reason it cracked this list is the famous Loews Power Breakfast. This relic of the 70s is straight out of the Wolf of Wall Street; it’s quite possible you’re eating an Eggs Benedict next to some of the biggest heavy hitters in the corporate world. Get your elevator pitch ready.
Converted from an office building in 1998, this slender 21-story hotel commands sweeping vistas from floor-to-ceiling windows—but the immeditate surroundings (a featureless stretch of York Avenue) are less than picturesque. Part of the Amsterdam Hospitality group, it is one of six New York properties, including the Marcel at Gramercy. Rooms: 197.
The Surrey is a slice of English charm situated less than one block east of Central Park. It’s so serenely secluded, in fact, that you’ll likely never want to leave its privacy. Instead, savor afternoon tea with a side of celebrity sightings while gazing upon the park from afar. Life could be worse.
This Upper East Side hotel is located just 10 minutes’ walk from the Gracie Mansion and boasts free Wi-Fi. The 77th Street underground station is 15 minutes’ walk away. Each room at the Gracie Inn Hotel/Bed and Breakfast features a flat-screen TV and full kitchen. Select penthouse suites offer an outdoor terrace with city views. They are decorated in soft, cosy decor. Guests can enjoy concierge services at the Gracie Inn Hotel. Laundry facilities and a business centre are also available. The building is equipped with an elevator. Afternoon tea is also served daily. Both Central Park and the Metropolitan Museum are 1 mile from the hotel. Times Square is 35 minutes’ underground journey.
Located on the Upper East Side area of Manhattan, this fully furnished New York City apartment offers a flat-screen TV with cable channels and a full kitchen. Central Park is less than 1 mile away. Free Wi-Fi and modern décor are included in the apartment at Guddenheim Apartment – A Dinosaurhaus Apartment. Air-conditioning is also provided. A fully equipped kitchen offers a hob along with a microwave and refrigerator. A small dining area is also available. The Dinosaurhaus Apartment – Guggenheim Apartment is 15 minutes’ walk from the 77th Street underground station. Times Square is 30 minutes’ ride via underground journey.
Purpose-built as a hotel in the early 1900s, the ten-story Wales is a comfortable, convenient choice for a culture jaunt due to its proximity to Museum Mile. Tucked in the quietly affluent Carnegie Hill neighborhood just above Madison Avenue’s prime retail stretch, it’s also well placed for a posh shopping spree. Standard double rooms are small, but high ceilings, large windows and an unfussy contemporary-classic style prevent them from seeming cramped; about half of the accommodation consists of suites. All quarters have recently been redecorated with designer wallpaper, sleek new bathrooms and HD TVs. Higher-floor rooms on the east side have Central Park views, but all guests can enjoy them on the large roof terrace. Two on-site restaurants (Italian spot Paola’s and mini-chain Sarabeth’s) provide meals and snacks. Rooms: 89.
Salvatoria Kitchen and Bar
For a taste of authentic Salvadoran cuisine in Astoria, look no further than Salvatoria Kitchen and Bar. Pupusas are the thing to order here, whether you go for chicharron (pork), revuelta (cheese, refried beans and pork) or queso con jalapeno ($3). They’re served with a vinegary coleslaw and spicy tomato salsa, per tradition. The menu offers much more than pupusas, though. Start with a fresh ceviche with seafood, clams and shrimp ($19) or salchipapas, a popular Latin American street food of sliced hot dogs and fries ($8). For your main course, try the grilled shrimp with rice and salad ($19), a seafood combination with creole sauce ($32) or steak topped with two sunny side-up eggs and served with fries ($17). Wash it all down with a Central American beer ($6) or glass of sangria ($8), and save room for an empanada dusted with powdered sugar ($3).
Venue says: “Salvatoria Kitchen and Bar is the only Salvadorian restaurant in Astoria. A must-try is our classic Pupusas that have variety fillings.”