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We're coming to expect good things from the Pod Hotels restaurants. After April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman (of The Breslin and The John Dory Oyster Bar at the Ace Hotel New York) opened Salvation Taco at Pod 39, the bar was raised. We wondered what dining concept the original Pod Hotel on 51st Street would come up with to match. We liked the cafe just fine but wanted something more.
The answer is the soon-to-open Pop @ Pod a new craft beer gastropub off the hotel's lobby that shared an aesthetic with the original Pop Burger in the Meatpacking District.
Hotel Hype / Hotel Development / Pod Hotels / BD Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / New York Hotels / → All Tags
When this New York Yimby report directed us to the brand-new renderings of the hotel development project at 400 West 42nd Street, we thought to ourselves: that's that's the new Pod Hotel! But, strangely, neither the Yimby report nor the site with the renderings that they link to (the New York Immigration Fund) say anything about Pod Hotels or BD Hotels. The NYIFund referring to it only as the Times Square Hotel.
We did a double take. That rendering certainly looks like a Pod Hotel, with the red awning and cube windows, but why no mention of Pod? We went back out to check the site (below):
In typical BD Hotels fashion, the project is pretty low-key and not a lot of information is available at the moment. What we do know is that the new Pod is going to be located at 42nd Street and 9th Avenue, in a former meat market, and that it is expected to break ground later this year.
Here's a peek at the new Pod's future home:
We are pretty enamored of Pod Hotels. It's true that at first we were skeptical of the capsule concept and bunks beds, and shuddered at the idea of sharing a bathroom with some stranger; but by the time the second New York location opened up in Murray Hill last summer, we were won over, not least by its colorful taqueria, fabulous rooftop bar, and fun Play Room -- oh, and we were mighty happy that all rooms had their own bathrooms.
Given that the majority of the Pods' clientele are usually on the younger side, it was perhaps inevitable that Pod would soon be compelled to set up shop in hipster haven Williamsburg.
There's a lot of buzz building over the new taqueria at Pod39 in midtown, and as far as we're concerned, it's well-deserved. Managed by April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman (the same duo behind The Breslin and The John Dory Oyster Bar at The Ace Hotel), Salvation Taco is a festive, colorful hideout that perfectly suits the Pod hotel chain's young, upscale backpacker vibe.
We stopped by recently for a late afternoon cocktail and some nibbles—not quite dinner, but late enough to know we wouldn't have to go back to work afterwards. In fact, any thought of work was immediately banished thanks to the bright plastic fruit and veggies adorning the walls, and our high-top table, which had pink watermelon-painted tiles.
Hotel Bars / Manhattan Hotels / Pod Hotels / Hotel Restaurants / Hotel Lobbies / Hotel Design / → All Tags
Here's a first look at the new lobby bar and lounge area inside Pod 39. The venue is called Play Room and it's a huuuge space with a fireplace, two ping pong tables, color-coded bookshelves, a video projector, stained glass windows, and a 25-foot butcher block bar. Pretty much everything we look for in a hotel lobby hangout area.
Though the hotel debuted its rooftop bar back in September, it's taken this long for the street-level space to come together (sounds like they've got their priorities straight over at Pod!). But we think it was worth the wait. Pod Hotels put serious emphasis on socializing, so it makes sense that their public space would be so big and captivating—in many ways, more so than the first Pod hotel.
Here are our five favorite things about the new space:
The other day we singled out what might be our most favorite airport hotel yet. Having stayed in a few of them ourselves, we know a good airport hotel—straightforward, modern, clean, a place where we can lay low until our plane whisks us away—isn't always easy to find.
As it happens, Gatwick South Terminal in the UK is due for an exciting addition this fall with the opening of Bloc Hotel Gatwick. Last we heard from Bloc, they'd just opened their first-ever property in Birmingham, and the Japanese pod-inspired rooms have so far been a hit, with TripAdvisor reviewers praising the hotel's affordability, style, and helpful staff.
Just like before, the new 245-room Gatwick hotel will be tech-savvy (free WiFi, 32" HD TVs, Artemide ambient lighting) with chic Missoni-designed carpets, monsoon showers in Italian-tiled "wet rooms," and, of course, super affordable rates.
New York Hotel Week / Hotel Deals / Pod Hotels / Hotels Under $100 / Gem Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / → All Tags
[UPDATE: We’ve been following The Jade hotel pretty closely, and was surprised (and delighted) they were on this updated list. Then we remembered rumblings about a February opening, so we had to double check if they’d be honoring reservations for Hotel Week. We contacted the hotel's PR team and was told that when first signing up with Hotel Week, a November opening was anticipated. Due to Superstorm Sandy, the debut was majorly delayed (not because of damages, but setbacks with the utility company). So, unfortunately The Jade will not be participating in Hotel Week. Stay tuned for more news on the eagerly anticipated opening.]
We let you know about NYC's Hotel Week early, so it may have slipped your mind.
But here’s a brief recap:
From January 4 – 20, 2013, hotels that normally go up to $500 a night will be on sale starting at just $100 and none coming in at more than $250. The reason behind this promo is simple—January is one of the slowest tourism times for NYC, so this is one way for hotels to bring in guests.
We’ve been keeping an eye on the list to see if anything jumps out at us (we are bummed that our beloved Andaz isn’t participating this year), and we think there plenty worth checking out. And hey, if you live in the city, now's your chance to do that overnight you've been wanting to try.
Hotel Restaurants / Manhattan Hotels / Trump Hotels / Ritz-Carlton Hotels / Pod Hotels / Hyatt Hotels / Hotel Openings / Hotel News / → All Tags
There's been a flood of restaurant openings over the past few weeks in NYC—and the streak will likely continue through Thanksgiving, as more restaurants struggle through delays and other setbacks. In the meantime, here's our take on five of the newest NYC hotel restaurants to hit the scene:
1. Koi, Trump Soho. Taking the place of the former Italian-themed Quattro is this latest effort by contemporary Japanese mini-chain Koi (the brand's only other Manhattan outpost is at the Bryant Park Hotel). While big leaguers like Nobu or a Blue Ribbon, also have a presence in the city, Koi can certainly hold its own when it comes to fresh seafood. The restaurant's signature Crispy Rice appetizer ($16, pictured) comes with four melt-in-your-mouth hunks of tuna tartare placed on four wedges of perfectly browned rice. Meanwhile, yummy rolls like the Northern Lights (snow crab, cucumber, avocado, salmon, black truffle) and the Baked Lobster roll will keep sushi connoisseurs plenty satisfied.
Hotel Rooftops / Hotel Bars / Pod Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / Chicago Hotes / Portland Hotels / London Hotels / San Diego Hotels / Affinia Hotels / Swissotels / Istanbul Hotels / Los Angeles Hotels / Luxury Collection Hotels / Marriott Hotels / → All Tags
We hate to see rooftop season go, and with fall officially beginning tomorrow, places will start closing up shop soon. Which is why we've asked our HotelChatter editors and contributors to pick their favorite hotel rooftops around the US and Europe in case you haven't visited one yet. Ever the optimists, we'll say there are a few weeks of prime rooftop hopping left before annoying things like rain, wind chill factor, and snow block us from the outdoor lounging we love so much.
Use this guide to get your pre-Fall affairs in order!
Pod 39, New York City
Word's gotten out about midtown's newest hotel rooftop bar, located on the 17th floor of the Pod 39. And why not? Enclosed by a series of majestic terra cotta columns and slender brick archways, the al fresco space feels more like a re-discovered Greek temple than the regular old Manhattan standby. But, it's a bar alright. Cocktails like the delicious Weathervane (rye whiskey, grapefruit juice, campari, ginger, and a sprig of fresh rosemary, $12) make a great accompaniment to up-close views of the Empire State Building, Chrysler Building and neighboring Queens. (ASchechter, Assistant Editor)
See the rest of the picks after the jump!
Hotel Deals / New York Hotel Week / Pod Hotels / Hotels Under $100 / Gansevoort Hotels / Gem Hotels / Hyatt Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / → All Tags
Ok, it’s clear that advanced planning can be a good thing in the hotel world when it comes to new properties. It can be important when you’ve got plans to stay at a New York City hotel where rates can be outrageously high.
Sure, we tout the wonderfulness of last-minute bookings using apps like Hotel Tonight if you’re the footloose and fancy-free sort. But, if you crave a bit more structure, take advantage of the Second Annual “Hotel Week” on January 4 – 20, 2013. During this time you can score New York City hotel rooms for $100, $200 and $250 at more than 20 hotels. Although we liked the list a bit better last year, there's still some great deals here considering some of these places normally charge more than $500 a night!
And guess what? You can book NOW. The codes below are live for the hotels on sale. The catch? The stay is for, in the words of the Dreamgirls song, “One Night Only”. But we say there’s nothing to stop you from hotel hopping if you’ve got the chops and plan your neighborhoods right. Sure, it'll be winter, but that's never stopped people from visiting the city!
Here’s a sample of what’s on sale. You’ll find the full list of hotels here soon. But click on our links now for the lowdown on these properties:
POD 39 and 51
How to Book: Call 212-355-0300 and mention “Hotel Week”
Hotel WiFi / Hotel Lobbies / Manhattan Hotels / Indigo Hotels / Yotels / Tryp Hotes / Pod Hotels / Hotel Restaurants / Hotel Amenities / → All Tags
Finding a good deal on a room can be stressful enough—but when all you need is to duck into the hotel lobby to fire off a string of emails, or upload photos onto Flickr, or write up a hotel story, (as is often the case with us), the last thing you want to feel is rushed. Here are a few trusty hotspots we like to keep on our radar when roaming the Big Apple, looking for a chilled-out place to turn into our office for a quick hour or two:
1. Indigo Chelsea: Our buddies at Indigo Chelsea like to keep things simple in their ground-floor lobby on 28th St. They even did away (for the most part) with those floppy white plastic tubes that had us all scratching our heads for a while.
But with a new dining concept (Blu) that replaced the previous Bice Italian restaurant last year, and free WiFi all over the hotel, this midtown gem is a clean, friendly, reliable place you can go and get a bit of work done for a while. Which we do often, with a side of sweet potato fries ($8) to keep our appetite at bay.