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Soho Grand to Unveil New Suites (Loaded with iMacs and iPads) Next Week

July 20, 2010 at 2:39 PM | by | ()

With so many new hotels opening up in NYC these days, we wonder what the older, once hot hotels are doing to compete with this brash new generation of hotels who take rooftop parties, flat-screen TVs and wireless internet access for granted. Every so often we will be checking in on these old stalwarts to see what they're doing to stay relevant in a fiercely competitive market. For now, we're simply calling this feature Where Are They Now?

When the Soho Grand came on the scene in 1996, it marked the start of luxury boutique hotels in downtown New York. It's success, which included the opening of sister hotel, The Tribeca Grand, lasted for several very good years but inevitably, new hotels started to crowd downtown (i.e. 60 Thompson, Gansevoort, Thor, Maritime, Bowery, etc.) and give visitors tons of new options for their trips.

Now with proper hotel chains like Hyatt, Wyndham and InterContinental opening boutique brands all over lower Manhattan, coupled with a renewed interest in Midtown and Uptown, the Soho Grand is no longer the "only place to stay" in New York. But perhaps their new suites will reinvigorate visitors.

Opening next week, Soho Grand will unveil 10 new suites from interior designer, Bill Sofield (word is he's fashion designer Tom Ford's go-to interior design man.) Sofield sought to bring a residential luxury feel to the suites while keeping the industrial influence of Soho's artists community.

Each loft-like suite measures over 800-sq. ft. (bigger than most NYC apartments) with separate living and sleeping quarters, custom furnishings including a table crafted from recycled newspapers, high-end fixtures like bronze penny tiled shower floors, wall coverings from famed New Yorker illustrator, Saul Steinberg and side tables inspired by artist Jasper Johns.

Also found in the suites are hardwood floors, deep soaking tubs and the absolute latest in high-tech hotel amenities such as wall-mounted flat-screen TVs, Sony Dream Machine iPod dock & speakers, 27-inch iMacs on the desks and pre-loaded iPads with GrandLife's custom-curated downtown City Guide.

Even better, the suites are located on a private floor, the 16th, accessible only with exclusive key cards. And where there are suites, there are always killer views. These suites promise views of the NYC skyline from the Hudson River up to the Empire State Building.

So you already know that suites + views in NYC = a lot of money. BUT let's point out something here--these huge new suites complete with city views, sick furnishings, iMacs and iPads are $700 a night. This is an introductory rate for July.

Regular rooms over at the new Chatwal Hotel in Times Square, opening August 1, are going for $556 a night as an introductory rate. The size of that room is 300-sq.ft. and there are no iMacs or iPads. (You do get free WiFi.) Their biggest suite, aside from the penthouse, is 500-sq.ft and a whopping $960 a night.

In the first round of New v. Old NYC Hotels, we have to say that Old wins out. You still got it, Soho Grand!

Stayed at the Soho Grand recently? Did you think it was better in the days of Y2K or worse? Tell us how your stay went!

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