If you’re visiting New York City, deciding where to stay can be overwhelming. From five-star opulence to humble hostels, NYC has accommodation for every taste and budget. But if you’re looking for something different – something with its own unique style – look no further. Here are four of NYC’s coolest hotels.
YOTEL New York
The brainchild of Yo! Sushi boss Simon Woodroffe, YOTEL New York has made a name for itself for providing unbeatable luxury in the heart of NYC. Located in prime position in Midtown, YOTEL New York is just three blocks from Times Square and four blocks from Bryant Park. The white-on-white, glass-fronted lobby feels like a futuristic airport: guests check themselves in at the touch-screen machines, and the luggage is sorted by a robot with 60-foot hydraulic arm. Everything is slick, efficient and cutting-edge; if the Starship Enterprise were a hotel, YOTEL would be it.
In keeping with the air travel theme, rooms at YOTEL are called cabins. Premium cabins start at $152 per night, which is extraordinarily inexpensive for the location. Though the cabins are designed to be compact, they’re larger than you might think, and the bright white decor and subtle purple backlights make it seem larger still. The Green Fig restaurant on the fourth floor fuses North African, Middle Eastern and Southern European cuisine and serves up mouthwatering breakfasts, brunches and dinners.
The Henry Norman Hotel, Brooklyn
Housed in a converted 19th-century warehouse in the hipster hub of Greenpoint, Brooklyn, The Henry Norman hotel merges old industrialism with modern comforts to provide one of the best hotel experiences in the neighbourhood. One of Henry Norman’s selling points is that it doesn’t feel like a hotel; staying here feels like staying at a very nice, very stylish Airbnb. If you’re tired of impersonal hotels, the homey feel of the Henry Norman will be a big plus — and the views of the Manhattan skyline are poster-worthy.
The loft-style rooms are modern and airy, with beautiful hardwood floors, large windows, muted colour schemes, exposed brick walls and mid-century-inspired furniture. Each room has its own style, with antique furnishings and contemporary artwork from a local artist on the walls. One excellent feature is the free shuttle service: the hotel will drive you anywhere within a one-mile radius, so be sure to check out the bars and restaurants in the area.
New York’s NoMad district is one of the city’s coolest districts. Perched on the edge of Chelsea, it’s the perfect spot for visitors to be based in – away from the chaos of Midtown, but within easy reach of popular tourist spots. INNSIDE NoMad is a classy, mid-range property ideally situated within the area, and it epitomises sleek, urban New York cool – think floor-to-ceiling glass windows, brick buildings with those iconic NYC metal fire escapes, and trendy, minimalist furnishings.
The lobby is modern and impressive: light and bright, with pineapple-yellow couches, ambient lighting and fresh flowers aplenty. The lobby bar is a popular spot for a drink (most evenings it’s packed with locals sipping cocktails) and the brasserie restaurant serves classic American dishes with an innovative twist. The rooms echo the decor in the lobby: they’re sparkling white, with pops of colour from the yellow cushions and pink-accented night lights.
As far as five-star New York City hotels go, The Sherry-Netherland is definitely one of the most unassuming. When compared to the ostentatious glamour of the Mandarin-Oriental or The Plaza, The Sherry-Netherland could give lessons in stylish restraint. That’s not to say this isn’t a glitteringly elegant hotel, however; on entry, the lobby will knock you for six. Its small size is offset by sculpted marble, crystal chandeliers, hand-loomed French carpets and beautiful wall frescoes that channel the Sistine Chapel.
Doormen greet you through the revolving doors, and white-gloved bell captains usher you in the elevator – it evokes old-school New York glamour at its best, and on the corner of Fifth and 59th, it’s hard to imagine a better location. The bedrooms and suites are as stylish as you’d hope, with ornate fireplaces, unique antiques, marble baths and flat-screen TVs. They’re also much bigger than you’d expect for Manhattan, and the views — of leafy Central Park and yellow taxis — are unbeatable: this is about as quintessential NYC as it gets.
Selene Nelson is a U.K.-based journalist who is travelling the world and reporting on her experiences.
This article first appeared on JustLuxe.