Now, this may seem snooty not to allow us to take pictures of the public spaces but we kind of liked that the hotel put the guest first. Also, we had just come directly from the Sheraton New York in Midtown where the lobby was a den of businessmen sporting conference nametags, clutching Starbucks coffee cups and fiddling with their Blackberries. The Greenwich Hotel felt like a quiet mansion in the countryside compared with this scene. We didn't want our sad little camera flash disturbing it.
And that's probably exactly what Robert DeNiro was trying to do with this hotel.
We saw a variety of room types all of which look different from the other, including the bathrooms. These are spacious rooms by Manhattan standards and all have a sort of plush seating arrangement in addition to the bed. Amenities include flat-screen TVs, complimentary mini-bar snacks, free WiFi and Kiki de Montparnasse condoms in the bath. All of the amenities in your room are complimentary with the exception of alcohol. And with rooms now at a sensible $475 for a courtyard room (down from $725 a night) the price point is even more reasonable.
The Bowery or The Greenwich?
In fact, what sort of spurred our request to tour the hotel was a question from a reader who wanted to know which was a better hotel--The Bowery Hotel or The Greenwich Hotel. Both were $475 a night for the reader's requested dates. We've stayed at the Bowery and we ate at their Gemma restaurant again the other week. The Bowery is happening and there is great people-watching to be had right out front. (In case you didn't know it, the 90s are back judging by the latest fashions the PYTs were rocking.)
But the Greenwich is so quiet and private and very adult. You can't even book an appointment at the Shibui spa unless you are staying at the hotel. If you do want a lively scene during your stay, you could eat downstairs at the adjacent, Locanda Verde, where guests get priority reservations. Then retreat back to the saftey of your rooms. It's really like jetting off to someone's rustic Tuscan estate for a few nights. (Darn you DeNiro for making us feel that way.)
However, it might be too quiet for some folks. Hushed tones are spoken at the front desk and in the drawing rooms. The hallways are bathed in warm light but we wouldn't dare start up a conversation until we were safe inside our rooms. Still, wouldn't you want to tell your friends you spent the night in DeNiro's "house?" Definitely yes.