It’s not exactly a simple task to look for the best hotels in New York City. Why? because there are a tonne of options—705, to be precise. Even the best efforts at selection are accompanied by an abundance of options. To remain in midtown? That area alone has 114 hotels, which is fantastic. Think about spending a lot on a five-star hotel. Choose from more than 122! Do you prefer a boutique? Fantastic—Manhattan boasts 76 independently run hotels with fewer than 200 rooms.
We at New York Feature therefore made the decision to compile a shortlist of places to stay in the Big Apple. Some are brand-new establishments, while others are historic haute haunts. Some are located in hip, non-touristy areas, while others are in the centre of everything. Some are good for the scene, while others are perfect for remaining completely unseen. However, what do they all have in common? All of them are quite cool.
The top hotels in New York City without further ado.
The Carlyle, Upper East Side
The Carlyle is so closely associated with the spirit of New York that if it were to ever close, the city would lose an iconic part of itself. Princess Diana stayed there during her official visit in the 1980s, and her son Prince William and Kate Middleton returned there two decades later. The “New York White House” was known as a result of John F. Kennedy’s many stays there. Jackie stayed there for three months following his murder. The most well-known pub in the area is still Bemelmans, which has the name of Madeline creator Ludwig Bemelmans, who painted paintings on its walls. There are books, a documentary, and even a clothing brand around it.
By the way, it doesn’t imply it’s antiquated or stuffy; the Carlyle’s interiors by Thierry Despont and Tony Chi combine old-world elegance with contemporary design.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim, The Frick, and Central Park are all close by, so you’re only a few minutes’ walk from the city’s top cultural and recreational attractions.
The Mark, Upper East Side
The Mark’s exterior is certainly familiar to you. Why? Because it frequently appears in the background of paparazzi images taken of celebrities leaving its lobby for events like the Met Gala, including Lady Gaga and Kendall Jenner.
Its interior is as spectacular; the foyer features striking black and white stripes created by Jacques Grange, who previously worked on the Princess of Monaco’s and Yves Saint Laurent’s interiors. The Mark’s elegant calling card is that colour combination, which is displayed on everything from their pedicab to their hotdog cart to their designer swimsuit. Bonus: The Mark by Jean-Georges, the establishment’s restaurant, is exquisite. Specify the black truffle dressing on your cheeseburger.
Similar to The Carlyle, it is adjacent to numerous important museums and is only a half-block from Central Park, which some suites even have a large view of.
Fasano Fifth Avenue (Upper East Side)
Warm beige, clean whites, and views of Central Park’s lush landscape give the Fasano Fifth Avenue’s hotel suites, which were designed by Thierry Despont, an impression of understated grandeur. The Fasano only has suites and duplexes, so many visitors use it as a fancy pied-a-terre, staying there for weeks at a time. They are less concerned with making an overt stylistic statement. They would rather you feel comfortable.
If you want a quieter, more private hospitality experience, here is the place to set up shop. With just a few rooms, there is little opportunity for interaction with other visitors at The Fasano, which also serves as a private member’s club. The food is delicious and elevated without being stuffy, and the front desk staff will remember your name. You’ll also feel in the midst of it all thanks to the proximity to Central Park and the Upper East Side’s major attractions.
The Baccarat, Midtown
Perhaps it should go without saying that a hotel built by the renowned crystal firm will be costly. More than 15,000 Baccarat pieces, from chandeliers to glassware, adorn its mirrored corridors, and its Grand Salon, created by Gilles & Boissier, resembles a space in an opulent European palace. Visitors who want to explore New York’s top attractions will love the location, which is close to the MoMA, Broadway theatres, and Rockefeller Center.
The Mercer, SoHo
The Mercer is located in the centre of SoHo and is housed in a Romanesque Revival building on Mercer Street. After opening in 1997, the hotel quickly gained notoriety among the It-crowd of the then-emerging neighbourhood. In fact, the hotel’s minimalist Christian Liaigre furnishings are so fashionable that Calvin Klein and Rupert Murdoch later hired the architect for their own private projects.
The Mercer has maintained its coolness for close to 25 years and continues to host a variety of famous guests, including Kaia Gerber and Kylie Jenner (as would be expected when your sister hotel is the Chateau Marmont). Oh, and did we also mention that suite 208 was where Jay Z and Kanye West recorded “Watch the Throne”?
The Wythe, Williamsburg
The Wythe is located in a former barrel and rope factory, a nod to the neighborhood’s industrial past in Brooklyn. The rooms are decorated with custom toile wallpaper designed by Dan Funderburg, and modern, vibrant art is shown in many of the public areas, so it doesn’t feel cold or concrete. The New York Times gave their restaurant, Le Crocodile, three stars, so you should probably order room service.
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