New York is full of some great hotels from The Carlyle, The Four Seasons, The Mark to the more boutique properties like The Crosbie Street Hotel downtown.
The newly opened Baccarat Hotel, the vision of the highly talented Barry Sternlicht on West 53rd Street, between Fifth Avenue and Sixth, opposite MOMA is a fantastic addition to choose from in the luxury category. With rooms starting around $800 in low season, it is up there with the very best hotels in the city and a sight to behold...
It’s discreet entrance, flanked by friendly doormen has a sparkling wall in the foyer made up of LED lights, set behind cut glass, crystal wine glasses, twinkling gently to soft, watery sounds. Access to the floors where the bedrooms are is by secure key, a good thing in this day and age.
The hotel is home to an opulence of shimmering chandeliers and the trademark heavy, Baccarat crystal is has a strong presence everywhere, there are even small works of art in some bedroom entrances, where local artists have been commissioned to put their own take on Baccarat wine glasses.
Rooms are beautifully appointed, spacious (not always the case in NYC) with fabulous bathrooms. Everything has been finished to the highest possible standard, from the crisp bed linen and beautiful throw across the bed, soft pillows, delicious amenities and halleluiah the best hotel hairdryer I have ever come across!
The TV is in the huge mirror facing the bed, and there was a sofa and separate chair in my room as well as a writing desk with plug sockets built into the desk.
Opening the mini bar is heavenly as you are presented with a red lacquered case full of the most beautiful, crystal Champagne flutes, water and wine glasses and small bottles of Grey Goose vodka, gin and whisky . Soft drinks are complimentary as is wifi throughout the whole hotel, no passwords required.
Suites have double vanities. My room had a huge, walk in rain shower, soft white fluffy towels and beautifully lit mirror. Each room has a ‘vision board, where postcards, writing paper etc. is held. A feather quill and notepad are on the bedside table and everything in the room is controlled by a small tablet which was thankfully easy to work. I spent one night in a hotel in Morocco looking for the light switch on a similar gadget and managed to open and close the curtains and raise the tv out of its chest at the end of the bed, before giving up and using the light from my phone to guide me to the bathroom.
The main floor of the hotel is on the second floor, a beautiful drawing room with comfy chairs, great bar which serves the most delicious cocktails. Behold the three magnificent chandeliers graduating from clear crystal, to the signature Baccarat red drop, to a red and clear crystal one.
Harmonie Room is a lovely, salon style private room overlooking MOMA on 53rd Street. Its prismatic walls of glass lining the 800 square floor space can accommodate up to 40 guests for a private celebration.
The Chevalier restaurant is on the ground floor to the right as you come in. It feels like a chic, intimate Parisian brasserie and has to be one of the prettiest dining rooms in the city. Michelin starred Executive Chef Shea Gallante holds the fort, so they will be hoping for a star at least in the future.
Last but by now means least is the gorgeous Spa de Mer below the hotel’s entrance with a fabulous swimming pool and day beds reminiscent of holidays spent in cabanas on the Cote d’Azur.
With my favourite shop Henri Bendel and the best hairdresser in the city, John Barratt, a five block, five-minute walk away, who could ask for more! In one word, the hotel is spectacular.
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Every time I explore a new destination, whether it’s on an adventure holiday in Peru or a luxury beach escape in the Indian Ocean, I return home full of excitement to share the amazing sights I have seen. Through my own experiences I have developed a love of helping others experience the great wonders of the world; truly getting under the skin of the extraordinary destinations that are at your fingertips. Getting the details right, from which hotel is perfectly located for exploring away from the crowds, to which local guide is most knowledgeable on history or culture or art, is of paramount importance to me. I am constantly seeking out new and exciting experiences and exploring off the beaten track to ensure my clients are receiving the best and most honest first-hand advice.
Take a look at my travel diaries for food for thought on your next trip...