Hyatt Union Square, New York – Hotel Review
Contemporary and sleek, this hotel fits perfectly into the Union Square neighborhood in downtown. Located at 13th Street and Fourth Avenue, the frosted front doors swung open to reveal the high-ceilinged, open-space lobby. Small seating areas with leather covered furniture were tucked into the corners while the reception desk was staffed by a trio of cheerful folks.
The reception staff seemed to be more concerned with my day and how my journey had been than with the traditional formalities of checking in. Those wishing to avoid such personal attention have the option of using Hyatt’s check-in kiosk to select a room and get a key.
This new hotel, which opened in May, kept its historic façade intact, while numerous levels were added to the building to accommodate the rooms as it had not originally been a hotel.
The décor, creative work from decorator Paul Vega, incorporates natural elements that seem to bring the outside inside, but the lounge area, which opens to the street in seasonal weather and doubles as a bar in the evening, has a striking wooden table crafted from a tree that had fallen during Hurricane Sandy.
Room access was facilitated by two elevators.
With only a few rooms on each level, there were no long walks. Opening my door, I was greeted with a playful twist of décor meant to appeal to both a business and leisure traveler.
The hardwood floors were very European, as was the open-plan bathroom. If traveling with a companion, it would be wise to opt for a large suite, which has more private bathroom space. In traditional guest rooms here, the shower opens directly into the room behind a vanity area. Still, they are beautiful with powerful showers and stocked with peppermint-scented toiletries as well as Hyatt’s signature touch of a full tube of toothpaste.
The bed called attention to itself because of its flower-power, vintage look headboard and cushions at the duvet’s edge. Having electrical outlets bedside, and the clever alarm clock-retro stereo combo were a welcome bonus.
My room, on the second floor and one of only a handful in the building, had an outdoor terrace with seating area and beautiful city views. All rooms, however, have oversized windows permitting excellent skyline snapshots, but guests should know that the second floor units provide the best vistas. I took a peek at the Sanctuary Suite, which must be one of the coolest in this part of town. It has a terrace almost as large as the suite itself in addition to entertainment areas inside with dining and living space and two bathrooms.
Those arriving late at night or with flights at odd hours should ask about the business-friendly rate plan that allows guests to check out 24 hours after their arrival. For example, one could arrive at 11 p.m., and keep the room until 11 p.m. the following day. These package rates will surely be popular with international travelers.
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