After living in Williamsburg, Brooklyn for nearly a decade, I'd seen how the area transformed from hipster haven to international cultural hub, attracting tourists from around the globe. As such, the need for accommodations exploded, and hotels shot up along the East River. One of those bad boys was The William Vale. One of the tallest structures in North Brooklyn, you can't miss it, with its eponymous "Ws" and "Vs" built into its very architecture. So, when I got the chance stay one night in the Williamsburg hot spot, I chomped at the bit.
I Will Never Forget the Room Service Pizza: My Night at Brooklyn’s The William Vale
Name of accommodation: The William Vale
Location: Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Price: from $245 per room, per night
Accommodation options: rooms, suites and residences (ADA compliant)
What to Pack?
You'll be in NYC, so, depending on the season, definitely bring shoes you can walk a million blocks in, layers to throw on and off, an umbrella, and a bag you can comfortably tote everything you might need around with you (this is a leave-the-house-gone-all-day type of city). That said, bring that special outfit you never get to wear for the night(s) you dine on-site at Leuca or imbibe a cocktail at the swanky Westlight. Hell, bring those heels that hurt your feet—you can head back to your room to change anyway, and they look damn good.
As for extras, should you choose to indulge in The William Vale's seasonal amenities, you will definitely want to pack swimwear, sunnies and any pool accouterment. Come winter, the same goes for cold-weather gear to keep you nice and toasty as you skate on one of New York City's few rooftop ice rinks. (We'll get into that below.)
I probably never need to see the Manhattan skyline again. That's to say, one night in a Gotham Corner Suite offered enough panoramas of the Big Apple to fuel me for the rest of my life. Though somewhat narrow, the three walls of windows made up for any claustrophobia (just don't be afraid of heights), and the king-size bed was a welcome site. I'd planned on waking early to read an actual book and sip coffee on the balcony, but comfortable and happy, I slept too late, which turned out to be just what I needed.
I didn't expect my night at The William Vale to be a food trip, but even amid the Manhattan views, the plush bedroom details and the soaking tub so deep it could fit the East River, it's the pizza that appeared in my room that I will always remember. While I didn't have the chance to dine at Leuca—the Southern Italy-inspired restaurant helmed by James Beard award-winning chef Andrew Carmellini—I did get to head down near closing time to sit at the bar with a friend and sip on a couple glasses of sparkling rose, which I'm glad a did, because the ambiance is enveloping. Next time, I hope to eat a full meal of homemade pasta in the golden light of that dining room.
Back to the pizza. Two glasses of bubbly in and obviously I needed pizza, stat. So, from my barstool, I ordered two pies via the room service app, which felt very futuristic, and when I entered my room later, there they were, waiting for me on the coffee table...which also felt very futuristic. Though I didn't dine at Leuca, I did enjoy their wood-fired pizza right in my room with a wraparound view of the skyline, and it was (both the pizza and the skyline) delectable.
Come summer, it's the rooftop pool that draws locals and tourists alike to The William Vale. Since I visited in December, instead, I got to experience Vale Rink, an equally novel NYC amenity where you can get your winter wonderland on with views of the city from the 23rd floor. You don't have to be a guest at the hotel to skate, either. Adults and children can purchase tickets ($20 and $12 accordingly) for a half-hour session . Warm up at the Winter Spa, the fourth-floor terrace, currently transformed for winter with panoramic barrel saunas and deep soaking cedar hot tubs.
Know Before You Go:
The hotel doesn't have the typical lobby you might be used to, but there are other common-y spaces, like Westlight on the 22rd floor where you can pop open your laptop and work with a cocktail in hand or, if weather permits, in Vale Park, the property's 15,000 square foot public outdoor space.