With over 66 million visitors each year, NYC is among the most popular tourist destinations for Americans and foreigners alike. In a city with a vibrant food, fashion, art, and entertainment scene, there are endless things to explore and indulge in.
However, with so many options available, finding a great hotel can be overwhelming. Its historic hotels are perfect for travelers who want to explore the city in style and luxury. Those looking for a budget-friendly experience have plenty of options as well. To help make your stay more enjoyable, here are five things to consider when booking a hotel in NYC:
1. Location and Accessibility
New York City is a bustling metropolis with several distinct neighborhoods, each offering unique attractions and experiences. Some of the city’s most popular neighborhoods for tourists include Midtown Manhattan, Times Square, and the Financial District. When booking your hotel, consider the following areas:
- Manhattan: As the heart of NYC, Manhattan is home to iconic landmarks such as Times Square, Central Park, and the Empire State Building. Staying here provides easy access to world-class shopping, dining, and entertainment options. This location is ideal for first-time visitors and those interested in art, theater, and fashion. Watch this video by Gabriel Lorenzi on where to stay when in Manhattan:
- Brooklyn: Known for its hipster vibe, Brooklyn offers a mix of trendy boutiques, art galleries, and diverse culinary options. Areas like Williamsburg, DUMBO, and Park Slope are popular for their unique atmosphere and proximity to Manhattan. Brooklyn is perfect for creative types, foodies, and those looking for a more local experience.
- Queens: As one of the most ethnically diverse urban areas in the world, Queens is a melting pot of cultures, cuisines, and attractions. Astoria, Long Island City, and Flushing are some popular neighborhoods to consider. Queens is an excellent choice for travelers seeking an authentic, off-the-beaten-path experience and those interested in exploring various cultures.
- The Bronx: Home to the famous Yankee Stadium and the New York Botanical Garden, The Bronx offers a mix of sports, nature, and history. It’s ideal for sports enthusiasts, families, and those interested in exploring the city’s rich history and diverse neighborhoods. Watch this video by TripHunter to see the best hotels in the Bronx:
- Staten Island: A more laid-back and residential borough, Staten Island is known for its picturesque views of the NYC skyline, the Staten Island Ferry, and the Snug Harbor Cultural Center. This location is suitable for travelers seeking a quieter retreat while still having access to Manhattan’s attractions.
2. Price and Budget
New York City is expensive, even by international standards, but there are accommodations to suit various budgets.
Luxury options: NYC has numerous high-end hotels and boutique accommodations for those who want to splurge on a lavish experience. These luxury properties often feature stunning views, world-class amenities, and exceptional service. Popular luxury hotel brands include the Ritz-Carlton, Four Seasons, and Waldorf Astoria. Remember that staying in a luxury hotel in prime locations like Manhattan can be costly, with room rates often exceeding $500-$1,000 per night.
Watch this video by Mojo Travels to see some of the most luxury hotels in NYC:
Low-cost options: For budget-conscious travelers, there are more affordable alternatives available. Consider staying in a budget hotel, hostel, or vacation rental in less touristy neighborhoods like Brooklyn or Queens. These accommodations may have fewer amenities and services but can still offer a comfortable stay. Some popular budget hotel chains in NYC include Holiday Inn, Best Western, and Hampton Inn. Hostels, such as HI New York City Hostel and The Local NYC, offer dormitory-style lodging at a fraction of the cost of traditional hotels.
Watch this video by Top 3 Hotels to see the most affordable hotels in NYC:
3. Hotel Amenities and Services
When choosing an NYC hotel, consider what amenities and services are important to you. A few critical amenities for most guests include:
- Concierge services
- Fitness center
- Room service
- On-site dining options
- Spa services
- Valet parking
- Business Center
- Pet-friendly policies
- 24-hour reception desk/front desk support
Additional amenities to consider include in-room workstations, swimming pools, and shuttle services. Many hotels also offer packages and discounts for extended stays, corporate travelers, and guests who book online. Most major hoteliers use a hospitality recruitment agency, so their staff is generally well-trained and experienced in providing first-class service.
4. Access to Transportation Options
New York is one of the few US cities that doesn’t necessitate a car rental to visit the many attractions. In fact, most residents use the subway, buses, and taxis. When booking a hotel in New York City, consider its proximity to transport links.
The subway system is generally the best option for getting around NYC quickly and conveniently. Many hotels are near subway stations, making it easy to travel to popular attractions like Times Square, Central Park, and the Statue of Liberty.
5. Reviews and Ratings
Before booking a hotel in New York City, it’s essential to consult reviews and ratings from previous guests to gain insights into the quality of the accommodations and the overall guest experience. These evaluations can help you make a more informed decision and avoid potential disappointments. Consider the following sources and tips when assessing reviews and ratings:
- Online travel platforms: Websites like TripAdvisor, Expedia, and Booking.com provide an extensive collection of guest reviews and ratings for hotels in NYC. These platforms often include both numerical ratings and written feedback, allowing you to gauge the hotel’s strengths and weaknesses.
- Social media: Check the hotel’s social media pages, such as Facebook and Instagram, for guest comments and additional insights into the property’s atmosphere and amenities.
- Travel blogs and forums: Travel bloggers and online forums can offer valuable perspectives and personal experiences from fellow travelers. These sources can help you discover lesser-known hotels and provide more detailed information about specific aspects of a property.
When evaluating reviews and ratings, keep the following tips in mind:
- Look for recurring themes or patterns in the feedback. If multiple guests mention a particular issue or praise a specific aspect of the hotel, it’s likely to be a consistent feature of the property.
- Consider the date of the reviews. More recent feedback will provide a better representation of the hotel’s current conditions and services.
- Take note of how the hotel management responds to negative reviews. A professional and timely response can indicate a commitment to guest satisfaction and continuous improvement.
NYC is a massive city with a vast array of hotels to choose from. Consider the location, amenities and services, transportation options, and reviews and ratings when booking a hotel in New York City for the best possible experience. With the right information and advice, you can find a great hotel that meets all your needs.