27 Grand Street, New York City, New York, United States, 10013
- Recommended for:
- Business travellers, Couples, Singles, Celebrity spotting, Great views / scenery, People watching, Trendiness
Best for Trendiness - Expert review of The James
It's not hard to find a chic and modern hotel in Soho but The James, the second US outpost of the chain, may have them all beat. First is its commitment to the environment; next, its championing of local artists, and last but not least is its amazing 360 views of the downtown skyline. I think The James has raised the bar for other hotels in the area.
On a corner of Sixth Avenue that affords dramatic views of the Hudson River, Chinatown and Soho. Popular local watering holes such as Cafe Noir and Naked Lunch are steps away.
The hotel has 114 rooms with four one-bedroom suites and one penthouse suite. Each room offers a dramatic view of the New York skyline, whether north, south, east or west. Windows run floor-to-ceiling making the cozy rooms seem larger than they are. Reclaimed lumber was used on the floors, illustrating the hotel's environmental commitment (the hotel provides triple-filtered water at turndown). Standard rooms have queen beds with wooden headboards and mattresses swathed in organic cotton sheets. A round desk and chair make checking your email a breeze and, if the large closet isn't enough, you can also store items in the leather bench that duals as additional seating. Bathrooms are spacious and feature small black tiles and Intelligent Nutrients products.
The 1,300-square-foot penthouse suite was designed by Dutch legend Piet Boon and includes one and a half bathrooms, a kitchenette and a large living room. The main bathroom has an egg-shaped tub, dual sinks and a separate toilet.
The marble lobby features a small check-in desk (guests can check in on the third floor as well) and an orange and brown tapestry. One can walk to the third floor lounge or head up there via the glass elevator - I felt a little like a Roald Dahl character. The hotel also has a 800-square-foot meeting area. The large plank-floored urban garden will be a happening spot once it opens in the spring.
David Burke's Kitchen is due to open in February 2011 and will feature locally sourced ingredients, many of which will come from the on-site herb garden. Jimmy's, the rooftop bar, uses design elements from the 1970s. Bright blue cotton banquettes and wooden seats surround the cedar bar and reclaimed wood covers the floor. My eyes strayed to the herringbone-patterned tile wall. The bar is accessible to the public via a special elevator, enter at 15 Thompson Street.
The hotel has a small gym on the 17th floor. Lifefitness weight machines and treadmills are available. But the real draw is the majestic views of the Hudson. Few hotel gyms can compare. The rooftop bar has an adjoining pool and lounge area with several lounge chairs and two outdoor showers. It will eventually feature a fireplace for those cold nights.
Service is friendly and efficient if glitchy here and there.
Business travelers, Europeans and anyone looking for a chic getaway without the velvet rope nonsense.
The hotel opened in September 2010 so rooms are relatively inexpensive until the holidays. Sundays are always the best bet.
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- 27 Grand Street, New York City, New York, United States, 10013