I wanted to take a slight detour from food to review our hotel Duane Street Hotel, TriBeCa. When we first arrived in NY we stayed in Midtown and then headed downtown to Duane Street halfway through our trip. I must admit I had really high hopes for this hotel, but I’m not sure they quite lived up to them.
If you’ve been to NY more than once I definitely suggest staying downtown. There are far less tourists and more locals downtown, the restaurants are better and there is definitely a nicer vibe. If you’re a celebrity fan, many of them having residences downtown – Sarah Jessica Parker, Hugh Jackman, Taylor Swift – just to name a few! If you’re a first timer to NY I would recommend staying somewhere closer to all the main tourist attractions – i.e. somewhere near Midtown. We stayed at the Springhill Marriott at that was great. Even if you are a first timer you still could stay downtown as Duane Street Hotel is two blocks away from the subway – just depends on how close you want to be to the action. The hotel has a main road on the side where our room faced out to, but we couldn’t hear a thing.
I loved being able to walk from our hotel down to the Hudson and Battery Park. It was also such a short subway trip to West Village which we frequented.
Now, I understand that NY isn’t exactly known for it’s generously sized hotel rooms, but this room felt exceptionally small. There was absolutely no where for us to store our suitcases – it really was just a bed in a box. They have a desk that runs along the wall which I couldn’t really see the point of – without it there would have been enough room for our suitcases. The bathroom was beautiful and the amenities were lovely – L’Occtaine. The shower head was great, although there wasn’t a door to the shower and water went everywhere. My main issue with the hotel was the lack of soundproofing. You could hear absolutely everything. Every morning we were woken up by the people in the next room, people walking past our room, the lift…If you’re reading this Duane Street Hotel, please invest in some soundproofing as this is the reason I wouldn’t return. One other thing the hotel needs to compete with is the rumblings of the subway that occur so frequently (especially in the morning). I had read this online after booking and requested a higher level room. They put us on the top floor (level 6), however the noise of the subway was pretty bad…Every time a train went past the room would vibrate and the glasses on the desk would clink.
On the plus side though the room was very nicely decorated and the decor made it feel like a NY loft.
I love that this is a boutique hotel. With only six levels it feels quite intimate and the people and the reception of a sense of recognition when you walk through the door. There weren’t a great deal of facilities in the hotel however. Just your standard – no gym or pool. The restaurant seemed to be under a bit of construction as well. There was never anyone in there so I’m not sure if it was even open. The WiFi was a bit annoying as you had to sign in with your email and full name every time you got back to the hotel. But it was free so thats always a bonus.
My favourite thing about the hotel was the little bar downstairs in reception. During the Manager’s hour which was Monday to Thursday from 6pm-7pm, you were serve free wine and beer, and some munchies – guacamole and chips. This was a really cool service that you don’t get at the bigger hotels. As the lady in reception said when she served us the wine, “Here are two healthy glasses of wine!”. Theres a chess board set up and a few other board games to choose from, so Lex and I loved just having a glass of wine and versing each other in chess before we went out for dinner.
The staff were exceptionally friendly and helpful. They would, without fail, greet you in the morning wishing you a good day, and welcome you back in the evening asking you how your day was. They were also more than happy to print tickets to shows that we had. When we were heading home they offered to book us a car too – added bonus, a limousine turned up to take us back to JFK!