The 10 Best Staycations NYC Has to Offer
At one point or another during this seemingly never-ending pandemic, we’re sure you got to the point where you couldn’t stand your own cooking anymore, got a Netflix divorce because you and your partner couldn’t agree on what to binge-watch next (then reconciled because your fave show came back), and desperately craved an escape from your weekly routine. With the pandemic still very much a thing, the cycle is sure to repeat itself over and over again, and while you can’t always pack up and go glamping for the week, you can always opt for a staycation at a luxe hotel in the city.
Whether you’re long overdue for a weekend of pampering or you just want a Saturday morning where you don’t hear your neighbor blasting the best of Kenny Rogers as she cleans, our pick of the best staycations NYC has to offer will make you feel like you got away for a much-needed break. (Even if that just means taking the G train three stops.)
1. UPPER EAST SIDE: THE LOWELL
A staycation here—east of the park but west of Lexington—is about as calm, peaceful and rejuvenating as it can get in Gotham. On any given day, the sleepy, townhouse-filled streets of the Upper East may feel posh and out of reach for most New Yorkers, but the area sure does make an ideal spot to spoil yourself. Post up and do just that at The Lowell, a luxurious staple in the ’hood that just celebrated 37 years since its historic restoration and continues to top the list of Travel & Leisure’s top 15 hotels in New York City.
Staying here is almost like having a fancy-pants UES condo in a doorman building, because each of the 74 distinct rooms and suites feels like a luxe apartment, with features like wood-burning fireplaces, insane city views and plush, contemporary furniture, not to mention manicured terraces. We also love the portraits of iconic New York buildings and streetscapes. Francophiles and flower lovers: You’ll want to swing by Majorelle, the hotel’s gorgeous restaurant, filled with stunning arrangements at every turn, where the French fare by executive chef Emmanuel Niess will instantly give you chic-night-out-in-Paris vibes.
2. GREENPOINT: THE BOX HOUSE HOTEL
Greenpoint is equal parts trendy and chilled-out, offering visitors the chance to soak up as much or as little of the emerging shopping, food and nightlife scenes as they’d like. The Brooklyn nabe has always had more of a tight-knit community feel, but that doesn’t mean visitors won’t feel welcome at The Box House Hotel. The individually designed apartment-style rooms will make you feel totally at home. Since many of the rooms have their own kitchenettes and outdoor terraces, you might even be able to make some local friends and invite them over to enjoy a night in a private space.
If you’re not so comfortable in the kitchen, you can pop into one of the neighborhood’s finest dining hot spots, Madre, located at Franklin Guesthouse. The global menu includes everything from hamachi crudo to ham croquettes to eggplant agnolotti.
3. SOHO: HOTEL HUGO
We’ve finally figured out how to extend the amount of time you can spend shopping in Soho: Just sleep where you sling your hard-earned cash. How could one describe Hotel Hugo, the exact place you’ll want to lay your head when you do? Trendy, for sure. But it’s the comfortable, contemporary nature of the place, paired with stellar service, that makes it a good staycay option in the city. It’s also budget-friendly enough whether you pick up threads at Zara or Maje.
And when you feel like grabbing a bite to eat, you don’t have to go too far for a five-star meal. You can either stay in and dine at the hotel’s Café Hugo or stroll over to Kaña Tapas Bar for some delicious Spanish cuisine.
4. MIDTOWN: THE KNICKERBOCKER
Hear us out: You know how Midtown is generally terrible and overcrowded? Well, a weekend spent at The Knickerbocker Hotel will make all the hassle and bustle of the city feel like a world away. This contemporary stunner is housed in a Beaux-Arts era building that’s just steps from Times Square, but one look at The Knick’s rooms—with oak wood walls, crisp linens, sheer drapes and some elegant AF oversized marble bathrooms—and you’ll know you’re in for a truly pampered experience.
While you’re in the nabe, do yourself a favor and see the show at Paradise Club or grab a drink at the handsome 701West Bar (they’re in the same building). The dimly lit, semi-circular bar with dark green sofas has a legitimate Champagne cart and crazy good cocktails (try the Los Gringos: mezcal, calpico, cilantro and cumin). You’ll quickly realize this is the place to kick back and relax.
If you’re in the mood for some more entertainment, you can catch a basketball or hockey game and even a concert at Madison Square Garden.
5. NOMAD: INNSIDE BY MELIÃ NEW YORK NOMAD
Looking to check out of your cramped, slightly messy apartment to unwind in a pristine, crisp white space? The accommodations at INNSiDE by Meliã New York NoMad will fulfill any minimalistic itch you have, with stark all-white-everything decor and large picture windows and balconies that frame some pretty epic skyline views.
If you choose to turn your staycation into a workcation and stay the week, the INNSiDE will accommodate with ease. The hotel is equipped with two flexible and functional meeting rooms that feature floor to ceiling windows offering natural light and built-in audio-visual equipment for those conference calls. The hotel also has a 24-hour fitness center with an outdoor terrace, so you don’t have to worry about disrupting your workout routine.
6. UPPER WEST SIDE: ARTHOUSE HOTEL
About a ten-minute walk from the Central Park’s 77th Street entrance is Arthouse Hotel, a casual boutique hotel with a decidedly downtown feel. The building’s historic character is juxtaposed with lots of exposed brick and piping, poured concrete steps and communal spaces filled with comfy, tufted sofas, as well as sconces and soft Edison-bulb light, dimmed to create a comfy ambiance.
The rooms tend to be on the smaller side at Arthouse, but that’s OK, because you’ll want to spend most of your time on the rooftop terrace or exploring the neighborhood. Local highlights include Levain Bakery and its all-too-dangerous cookies just steps away, the Boat Basin Cafe, the American Museum of Natural History and Fairway Market.
7. LONG ISLAND CITY: BORO HOTEL
Craving a little sunlight? How about a bright, airy space to sprawl out in? The Boro Hotel in Long Island City boasts all of that—and some pretty splendid views—right in your room, and rounds things out with a robust library of Strand books available in the lobby to laze about with. Another great perk of staying here: The hotel is pet-friendly, so you don’t even have to find a sitter for your fur baby.
If you haven’t been to Long Island City since that one time you went to PS1, it’s time to explore the evolving New York neighborhood so you can one day squarely say, “I remember when Long Island City…[insert very New York thing to say here].” But in all seriousness, LIC may have escaped the grips of Amazon, but that was never going to slow the pace of all the new restaurants, bars, shops and even one of those liquid nitrogen, thermal blast ice cream places that were in the works before Bezos and Co. pulled out.
8. Williamsburg: The Williamsburg Hotel
Located in the heart of Williamsburg, this hotel is a walk, subway ride or short Uber drive away from all the stellar shopping, eating and entertainment destinations this buzzing neighborhood has to offer. Scope out the local talent at the Music Hall of Williamsburg, eat your weight in delicious homemade pasta at Michelin-star chef Missy Robbins restaurant Misi and shop for flea market trinkets like the Brooklyn hipsters do when you stop by Artists & flea.
The Williamsburg Hotel also has pet owners covered. When you book the hotel’s pooch-friendly rate, your four-legged bestie gets fresh baked treats at check-in, you’ll have access to a dog treat mini bar as well as room service and a specialized Kong will be delivered to the room stuffed with their favorite treats.
9. Dumbo: 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge
Only three minutes away from Brooklyn Bridge Park, this waterfront retreat offers expansive views of the East River and Manhattan skyline. Perfect for when you need a weekend away to get some zen but can’t leave the city, 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge’s individually decorated rooms are filled with native greenery, reclaimed wood and organic cotton mattresses.
Treat yourself to a dip in the rooftop plunge pool or a deep tissue massage at Bamford Wellness Spa which offers a selection of holistic treatments and classes to help you completely unwind. And if you want to stay locked into your own little paradise, you can easily do so. The hotel features a full-service restaurant serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, so you don’t have to leave the premises. And it also has a lounge open daily for evening drinks and light bites for a romantic night overlooking the NYC skyline.
10. Financial District: The Beekman, A Thompson Hotel
Talk about the pinnacle of luxury, The Beekman is the best choice if you’ve been saving your dough for a big splurge—your beau’s birthday or anniversary perhaps? This architectural beauty is known for its iconic nine-story atrium (which is decorated with Victorian wrought-iron railings and balustrades among other high-end ornaments), pyramidal skylight, and expansive hallways laced with portraits, prints and photographs from various artists. Rooms and suites feature high ceilings, bespoke and vintage furnishings, aged oak floors, craft cocktail tables and spacious marble baths with rain showers, so you and your person can feel like royalty.
Located within the center of Downtown Manhattan and nestled between both the East and Hudson Rivers, The Beekman is at the heart of the Big Apple’s most famous attractions, including the Brooklyn Bridge, the World Trade Center, South Street Seaport and City Hall.
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