10016 Travel Guide
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:
Not even 2 minutes after we posted the question "What Is This At The Hotel Chandler?", you smartypants posters had the answer down pat both on HotelChatter's Facebook and Twitter pages. We thought it would take at least an hour for someone to figure it out!
Well, you were right, Fred Geiger (the first to answer on Facebook), the image above are assorted 19th-century European clock tower hands. They're made of hammered copper with original gold leaf finish and came from a private museum in Germany before the Hotel Chandler's owner purchased them from an antiques dealer in New Jersey.
Another cool thing we discovered was that this fireplace mantel (below), original to the building, had hundreds of layers of paint on it. After a recent redecoration of the hotel's rooms, it was stripped (took a few weeks!) and these intricately hand-carved lions heads were revealed and lovingly restored.
When we first looked at the above pieces on the wall at New York's Hotel Chandler, we honestly didn't know what to think. Was it art? Medieval weaponry? We felt like damned fools because we couldn't figure it out. So we just stood there staring at it for quite some time, like someone in a gallery, hands on chin in pretentious deep thought about a piece. But we weren't in deep thought, we were bloody perplexed and we don't like feeling that way.
Luckily the Chandler is chock-ful of quirky pieces, and the staff is quite used to questions about the fun pieces that dot the place. Normally, we like to pretend we're know-it-alls, but we couldn't fake the funk on this one. Being the inquisitive sort we couldn't leave without an answer, so we found out just what was hanging on the side wall of the hotel's lobby. And then we said "Ooooh." And felt silly. And kept staring because we couldn't believe we didn't get it at first shot.
But before we reveal the answer, we'll let you take a wild guess--there's always a smarty pants waiting to show us up--and tell us what do you think this is, anyway?
[Photo: Chanize Thorpe for HotelChatter]
Sweet Suites / Manhattan Hotels / Autograph Collection / Marriott Hotels / Hotel Furniture / Hotel Design / Hotel Bars / Hotel Libraries / Hotel Amenities / Hotel Minibars / Hotel Speakeasies / → All Tags
Marriott swooped in last year and made plenty of Marriott Rewards members happy by adding the Carlton Hotel to its Autograph Collection. And while perhaps the place isn't quite as historic as its Autograph Collection sister hotel, The Algonquin, the Carlton still has a few tricks up its sleeves...
So for those of you planning on staying here, here's a little secret: up in room 1105, you'll find the exact bookcase you see pictured above. Looks like a normal bookcase, right? Wrong. The bookcase is in fact a door that opens onto a hidden wood-paneled room, accessible only to guests staying in room 1105, which is also known as The Speakeasy Suite.
For more photos, click through!
The Tuscany now, a diamond in the rough. But not for long
After a few scheduling snafus, we were lucky enough to be the first to get a sneak-peek at The Tuscany , part of the St Giles Grand Hotel group. Originally scheduled to open this month, the grand reveal has been pushed back to mid-December due to a few Hurricane Sandy setbacks. Despite our walking into a very active constructive zone (and encountering a rather nervous PR exec) we think the Tuscany is shaping up quite nicely, we loved our first look.
We were continually reminded (almost every few minutes, in fact), things “aren’t finished yet” and we get that. Really, we do. But the things we did see, we’re happy to show our readers who are excited to have another Murray Hill option minutes from Grand Central, the Chrysler Building (there’s a great view from some rooms) and all those important places where business meetings, etc., occur. Thanks to a great rate on Hotel Tonight, we’ve stayed at the Tuscany’s sister property next door, The Court, (on 39th/Lex) and we dig both locations and think it'll do very well, indeed.
In the final stages of completing its $10 million, multi-phase renovation, Hotel Chandler in Midtown is almost ready to flaunt its fully finished makeover. In the meantime, the hotel is still in operation and all 138 rooms were fully sold out every night this week. There's a reason for this, people, and it's because the hotel is mighty home-y and its quiet location can't be beat.
First, a brief history to get you up to speed. In 1905, the building served as a welfare station, transformed into a weird little hotel called Le Marquis in 1999. Eventually, the name changed to Hotel Chandler, Triumph Hotels eventually took over, and all the rooms got a sweet facelift in 2007. Last year, we saw all the public spaces become intensely modernized and the final touch will be complete when two-star Michelin chef Shaun Hergatt's Juni restaurant opens in January 2013.
Hotel Sex / Celebrity Scoop / Rihanna / Chris Brown / Gansevoort Hotels / Manhattan Hotels / Hotel News / → All Tags
Just one day after multiple sources say they caught Rihanna and Chris Brown canoodling at Meatpacking District nightclub Griffin, the troubled pair seem to have elevated their relationship status from "it's complicated" to "we're sharing a hotel suite."
On Tuesday evening, photographers caught Brown sheepishly exiting the Gansevoort Park Avenue, which, as we know, is where Rihanna likes to stay whenever she's in NYC. While not exactly the most luxurious digs in the city, those dark interiors make it easy to sneak around unnoticed.
Or at least, that's probably what Chris Brown was hoping...
Hotel Penthouses / Hotel Breakfast / Hotel Restaurants / Morgans Hotel Group / Manhattan Hotels / Hotel Renovations / → All Tags
With all the news lately about Delano moving to Russia, and Hudson crossing the pond, it's easy to forget about some of Morgans Hotel Group's other properties. Like the hotel that started it all: Morgans Hotel, which Ian Schrager opened in 1984 as his first boutique hotel.
Described by its prolific progenitor as "a kind of quiet, understated European Inn," the hotel is certainly more understated than the other MHG properties in Manhattan. Though personally, we don't know of any quiet European inns that have flashy duplex penthouses like the one pictured above.
And speaking of that penthouse—since the hotel is currently finishing up renovating its restaurant and lounge (due to re-open at the end of 2012), this summer and fall, all guests are being kindly treated to a lofty breakfast up on the penthouse's two terraces.
SLS Hotels / Hotel Hype / Sam Nazarian / Loyalty Programs / Loyalty Program News / SBE / Hotel News / New York Hotels / → All Tags
Oh boy, we hope the neighbors who are suffering from the Gansevoort Park's rowdy pool parties are stocking up on more ear plugs. That's because another party spot is coming to the block in mid-2013--SLS New York.
The NY Post reports that Sam Nazarian has announced that the Philippe Starck-designed SLS outpost for the Big Apple will open at 444 Park Avenue South, which is literally just a block away from the Gansevoort. The hotel will have 190 rooms, presumably with Ciel toiletries in the bathrooms.
While our source inside SLS says a José Andrés restaurant at the ground-level is not confirmed, we hope it happens as we can't imagine SLS without José. There will also be rooftop scene of some sort and we hear that the S bar brand might be revived. There might even be an outpost of Hyde at the hotel,too.
But that's not all Nazarian has planned for NYC. He's also expanding the LA's Umami burger chain with five Umamis set to open within the next 18 months. (Hint: put one in the SLS and make it a "secret" spot.) He's also hoping to spin off the Redbury Hollywood in SoHo or Tribeca or even open up a second or third SLS hotel down there.
When the Gansevoort Park Avenue hotel first opened back in 2010, we were pumped about their rooftop pool scene, Plunge, which is spread out over three levels and includes a 40-ft heated indoor-outdoor glass-enclosed, swimming pool.
Yet some neighbors who live near the Gansevoort are less than thrilled about the hotel's Sunday pool parties which only run from 3:30 to 8:30pm, but thanks to loud music and drunk partygoers, effectively kill any plans for a quiet, relaxing, Sunday at home. One neighbor told the NY Post:
"I try to not be home on Sundays. The last thing you want are a bunch of crazy people with loud techno music until 8 or 9 p.m.,” said frustrated local Greg Housset, 24, looking down from his apartment Sunday at the mob of hard-partying revelers packed like sardines on the hotel’s pool deck as turntable star DJ Chuckie spun booming dance tunes.
“Even when the windows are closed, you feel like there’s a sub-woofer in your apartment."
Eeee. We can't even imagine what that noise must be like if you're trying to rest up in your hotel room at the Gansevoort.
We found rooms for tomorrow night for just $85 a night. Yes, that's for a bunk bed but guess what? All the room categories at the hotel, including the queen bed category, are going for a special sample rate of $85 this month.
That's because the hotel hasn't quite finished up its construction so as a concession to guests willing to put up with "light construction work, intermittent or no access to internet or cable television" and no restaurant or bar service, rates are super, super cheap.
While we do prefer our hotel stays to have all their amenities and services at the ready, we can't turn away from an $85 room rate. Will you?
Have you stayed or are about to stay at the Pod 39 Hotel? Let us know how it went!
[Photo: Pod 39 Hotel]
Design Thursdays / Hotel Design / Photo Gallery / Photo Galleries / Hotel Renovations / Steven Kamali / Manhattan Hotels / Hotel Lobbies / → All Tags
Well, what do you all think? After a mysterious closing down of the lobby in late March, and some smart alec signs in the windows that had us all wondering what the hotel was up to, The Roger (formerly The Roger Williams) has now officially joined the ranks of other mononymous hotels (The James, The Gansevoort) and has a whole new identity to boot.
We poked around the new white-brick-walled lobby, sat in the blue suede sofas, and even got to check out a few of the guest rooms. The new look is the brainchild of Steven Kamali, who wanted to find a way to "balance the historical nature of the property" while keeping things "relaxed," "chic," and "new." And that, of course, involved a lot of bow-ties.
Go on, take a look through our photo galleries and decide for yourself if Roger is a hottie or a nottie!