New York City Skyline on the East River with Brooklyn Bridge at sunset.

City Escape: The Best Hotels in NYC

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With countless places to stay in the Big Apple, we breakdown our top picks

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New York is one of those global cities that is so expansive and ever-changing that it can truly never get old. If you’d like to follow in the footsteps of countless artists, poets, novelists, filmmakers, screenwriters, photographers and singers and get inspired by the Big Apple, you might be overwhelmed by the plethora of things to do and see, places to eat and drink, how long to stay and how best to travel there (to combine or not to combine with a trip to Boston?). One less thing to worry about: here are the best hotels in NYC.

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City Escape: The Best Hotels in NYC

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The Aman suite, with a large living area in neutral tones

Aman New York

A new and long-awaited addition to the luxury NYC hotels line-up, the Aman New York finally unveiled its urban sanctuary earlier this year, expanding the brand’s reach into the US for the first time. The historic Crown Building is reborn with Aman’s 83 rooms and suites, two restaurants, a wine library, jazz club, garden terrace, and a 25,000 square foot spa.

For guests wanting to extend their stay permanently, Aman New York features the first Aman-branded urban Residences. The 22 private homes include all hotel amenities and range in size from one to six bedrooms, including a five-story penthouse.

BOOK: amannewyork.com

Indoor pool

Four Seasons Downtown

The tip of Lower Manhattan, once a hotel desert, has flourished in the post 9/11 regeneration, but with just a Conrad and Ritz-Carlton in Battery Park, there’s only one place of interest to the lover of five-star luxe. With 189 rooms occupying 24 floors of an 82-storey new-build, the Four Seasons is just a block away from the haunting memorial to 9/11. It feels faster, cooler and younger than its E57th Street sister, with a red neon lit bar by Jacques Garcia and a Wolfgang Puck restaurant. The rooms look bland in comparison to the monumental lobby with its grey and oyster marble and rich wood walls, but have plenty of versatile surfaces, a bed of total perfection and a pale marble bathroom with a big freestanding bath. Most staff are warm, chic and quick, and after a scout around nearby Century 21, the famous discount designer department store, with Burberry cashmere down from $1,281 to $749, a swim in the 75ft pool-with-a-view and then 25 minutes of outstanding reflexology should return you smiling to the fray. Even if the latter does cost $145. By Daisy Finer.

BOOK: fourseasons.com 

Front entrance of The Peninsula New York

The Peninsula

Fifth Avenue buzzes with feverish energy, whatever time of year you’re in town. The Peninsula was built in a neo-classical style in 1905, it is grandly nostalgic, complete with white-gloved valets to relieve you of your shopping at the brass swivel doors. The rooms are all white and cream with dark oak furniture topped with vases of roses, looking out onto the city’s iconic skyline. On the 21st floor, a low-lit spa offers a pool, personal trainers who sculpt celebrities into Netflix-ready shape, plus, of course, treatments. Two-hour programs to scrub and tone, drain the lymphatics or an Ayurvedic massage to stimulate the pineal gland to release melatonin for guests on the red eye from London. peninsula.com

 

Loews Regency Hotel Park Avenue New York

Loews Regency

Uptown, within walking distance of Bloomingdale’s, Central Park and MoMA, the Loews is an Upper East Side classic. First opened in the 1970s and still family-owned, it is not as stylish as The Surrey or The Mark nor has the serious-old-money vibe of the The Carlyle or The Lowell – but its big draw is that, compared to those hotels, its rates can be a bargain.

Its glossy old-Manhattan solidity – with The Regency Bar & Grill, location of the famous Power Breakfasts that in the 1970s helped kick the city out of its financial doldrums – confers a sense of the kind of retro comfort that makes you want to book tickets for Radio City, eat at Sardi’s, and see an old Woody Allen. Everything is well thought out in the rooms, and it’s worth knowing that besides a spa, Julien Farel hair salon and Sant Ambroeus coffee bar, the hotel has a Merc S550 that will take you anywhere within 20 blocks, free. By Daisy Finer.

BOOK: loewshotels.com 

A light restaurant with mustard seats and greenery

The Ned NoMad

With interiors directed by the Soho House team with Stonehill Taylor, The Ned NoMad is another recent addition to the NYC hotel scene, having opened this summer. A transatlantic venture from British brand The Ned (following the success of their London hotel), the Ned NoMad occupies Manhattan’s Johnston Building, a building previously held by a different hotel called NoMad. Though NYC is buzzing with restaurants and bars, The Ned NoMad is setting itself apart as a foodie destination in its own right with a public bar and restaurant, as well as the members-only Ned’s Club, which features mezzanine and rooftop bars and a terrace restaurant.

BOOK: thened.com

The Marlton Hotel Greenwich Village New York

The Marlton, Greenwich Village

Former hangout of New York’s literary and artistic crowd, The Marlton is now described as a ‘baby grand hotel’ after a cash injection a few years back. It’s the ideal, homely retreat for those wanting to relax away from the hubbub of the Big Apple – whether that’s by an open fire, in a cosy booth of the restaurant or gazing down from the top of the never-ending spiral staircase at the heart of the building (there is a lift too, thankfully). Built in 1900, the hotel has the air of an intimate members’ club, where guests can be as sociable or as reserved as they choose. The staff, on the other hand, are unfailingly friendly, without being in your face.

It would be hard to tire of the ambience – or the Mediterranean menu and brilliant cocktail list – but when you do feel like venturing out, you’ll find Greenwich Village within easy strolling distance. Rooms at The Marlton are classic and understated with herringbone wood floors, brass fixtures and marble bathrooms. Bathtubs are vast and the Côté Bastide products lush. It sure has smartened up since Warhol’s day. By Daisy Finer.

BOOK: marltonhotel.com 

Spa reception

Equinox Hotel New York

Situated in the heart of Hudson Yards in downtown Manhattan, Equinox Hotel is well known for its luxe spa – a destination in its own right. But the chic hotel extends its wellness offering though to sumptuous rooms and suites, the cool Electric Lemon restaurant and rooftop swimming pool with an unparalleled cityscape view.

BOOK: equinox-hotels.com

Innside Nomad Hotel New York

Innside New York NoMad

NoMad – north of Madison Square Garden, bordering Chelsea – exists with the Broadway theatres, Times Square, Union Square and Greenwich Village all within a ten to 20-minute walk. It’s one of the neighbourhoods that have come to life as a result of the extraordinary number of new hotels that have opened in the city in recent years.

The Spanish hotel brand Melia’s first property in the US, this is one of the new generation of lower-priced hotels that has also transformed the lobby from somewhere with a reception desk and a few stiff chairs to a hangout space that draws laptop-toting locals as much as visitors. White on white with canary yellow accents, like the rest of the hotel, with squishy sofas, plenty of plug points, a tightly curated little shop, and a bar that spills out into a sidewalk terrace, it gives you a delicious first taste of NYC.

And once you’ve checked in – staff are all notably young, friendly, and concierge-style helpful – you’ll discover, if you’re staying on floors 16 to 20, that the rooms (313 in all) are not just flooded with natural light streaming through the floor to ceiling windows but have a knockout view of the New York skyline and Empire State Building. By Daisy Finer.

BOOK: melia.com

Crosby Street Hotel

Crosby Street Hotel

Crosby Street Hotel infuses every familiar aspect of a hotel stay with renewed delight and pleasure. After walking Soho’s charming streets, turning off of Spring and onto Crosby, guests are greeted by the hotel’s gleaming stacks of windows, nestled mid-block. The lobby is swathed in good taste – no surprise, once you learn that the fresh, contemporary decor owes to the design prowess of Kit Kemp. Somehow managing to make quirky utterly classy, every inch of the hotel room is accounted for with texture, pattern and shine.

At no point during your stay will you have that hotel feeling – Crosby Street Hotel not just makes you feel at home but makes you wish your home had some of its je ne sais quoi. Many rooms are afforded the treat of having one wall be entirely window with plush window seating. As if your senses weren’t satiated enough, meet the most preposterously inviting mini bar of all time in your room and taste the quality of food, which perhaps will take the shape of pancakes in bed, looking out onto Crosby and fashionable Soho. By Daisy Finer.

BOOK: firmdalehotels.com

The Ritz-Carlton Central Park New York

The Ritz-Carlton New York

If it’s lofty park views and old-school glamour you seek, check in the newly renovated Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park, where the legendary park is your back garden and the vibrant Midtown district is on your doorstep. The Club Lounge on two is well worth upgrading to to make your stay all-inclusive with The Ritz’s take on a self-service (a fully-staffed lounge with a full breakfast service, gourmet ‘snacks’ all day, appetisers (big enough for a meal) in the evening and wine, cocktails and drinks available all day). The rooms are made to feel like your very own chic city apartment, with pillow-soft beds, black and white photography on the walls, marble bathrooms and your favourite magazines on the coffee table. ritzcarlton.com

Featured Image: The NYC skyline (c) Getty.