TL;DR. Although I had a bad first impression of the Park Hyatt New York, my stay was redeemed through a series of well-timed meals, relaxing baths, showers, and hot tub sessions. But although it’s an excellent property in New York, I wouldn’t put it at the top of my list for a Cat 7 redemption.
Although my stay at the Park Hyatt New York got off to a rough start, I woke up the next morning feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the day ahead. Neither too firm nor too soft, I found the mattress just right for a good night’s sleep. And I suppose it helps that I was the first guest ever to stay in room 1004!
I’m usually one to sleep in (especially where blackout blinds are involved), but having just returned from Europe, I woke up at 5 AM with a voracious hunger and patiently waited until our agreed upon breakfast time of 8 AM.
Easily the best hotel breakfast I’ve enjoyed yet (that is, until I check out the PH Tokyo in Jan)
As a Diamond member, I receive complimentary breakfasts for all of my stays. In the case of the Park Hyatt New York, the benefit only includes the 57th Street Breakfast taken in either the Back Room restaurant or as room service. For our first morning’s breakfast, we decided to head downstairs to check out the restaurant.
I think it’s a bit of a cop-out to offer only one breakfast menu (especially for guests staying multiple nights), but technically Diamonds are only guaranteed a continental breakfast. Other Hyatts offer a comped amount or sometimes even a “whatever your heart desires” unlimited order. Whatever qualms I may have had were quickly scarfed down with the arrival of my breakfast.
Breakfast was egg-celent with the egg-ception of my poached eggs, which came out hard-boiled (though I was too hungry to send them back). While “your choice of eggs” is rarely a showstopper entrée, the bacon, potatoes, and roasted red pepper were unexpectedly good, especially when composed together in one single bite.
After devouring our savouries, we turned our attention to the pastry basket, another oft overlook hotel breakfast staple. But again were we proven wrong with each successive croissant, chocolate croissant, apricot scone, muffin, and danish–even the bread was to die for! The apricot scones were my favorite, which were baked with TLC and a side of creme fraiche.
Having filled my belly, I was ready to experience the Park Hyatt New York with a fresh set of senses.
What luxury bathrooms are made of
Upon first glance, I thought the room looked nice enough, though I was unimpressed by the views or the location of the hotel (though my friends in NY corrected me that this was exceptional by NY standards). But when I looked beyond the surface, I realized how every thoughtful every detail, fixture, and amenity had been chosen.
First, I present you with a bathroom that was designed with your sensory pleasure in mind. Appealing to the inner narcissist in all of us, there was an anti-fog mirror in the shower, accompanied by Le Labo toiletries scented especially for the PH New York. And let’s not forget the ultimate in lavatory luxury, the TOTO toilet with attached bidet.
The shower experience itself? Sexy. Like minute 3:03 of this Beyonce video. I’m usually not a fan of overhead shower heads, but they actually designed the shower so that you could avoid drowning beneath its waterfall. Even the way the water felt on my skin as it rained from the shower head was memorable.
Luxury is personal
After unwinding from my third bath in 1.5 days, I received a knock at my door and an early birthday treat for A.
As I settled into the desk to admire the treats, it occurred to me to look for the hotel directory containing a guide to its amenities. I couldn’t find any printed materials, but finally thought to dig deeper into the iPad, which I had assumed was only there to play ambient music. This brought back memories of my cluster of a check-in, but that experience warranted its own post and I’ve since moved beyond that.
It turns out that the iPad was ground zero for everything I needed to know about the property, in addition to being my tool for ordering room service, cleaning, and turndown. In theory, I love the idea of luxury being personal. In practice, I ordered turndown at 8PM, but still received a knock on my door at 6:30PM. I guess their still ironing out the kinks.
A quick photo tour of the room
Lazy lifeguard or just an understaffed opening?
Later that day, we had a chance to swing by the pool and check out the locker room and gym facilities. My only complaint was that the pool chairs were cumbersome to set up and were clearly meant to be set up for you. When we arrived at the pool, there was only one lifeguard working, so I guess he couldn’t very well abandon his post–he was looking after the safety of an empty pool after all.
The morning after
I first discovered room service when my friends would fly into San Francisco for work. Sometimes I would only be able to catch them late at night or early in the mornings, so we made a habit of ordering room service, sitting around in our bathrobes, and catching up on all the time that had passed. I love room service because it reminds me of those times–this trip included!
They sent me off with a surprise bag of scones and chef’s recipe, so that I could recreate the experience at home. That was a nice touch.
All in all, I think that the hotel has a lot of potential, just as soon as it irons out its little kinks in service.