A recent business trip presented a chance to try a new hotel: the Stewart Hotel New York City!
Stewart Hotel New York City Location
There are big pluses to the Stewart Hotel’s location. But beware of a potentially large minus.
The Stewart Hotel is situated at 31st Street and 7th Avenue. Getting to and from the hotel is fairly simple. It’s kitty-corner from Penn Station (so catching a train is very easy) and Madison Square Garden.
Greenwich Village, Times Square, and the theatre district are within walking distance, as is the amazing High Line walking trail. The historic Macy’s (y’know — the Miracle on 34th Street one) is only three blocks away. I walked to Greenwich Village in about 25 minutes one afternoon.
Like most places in New York, there’s a pizzeria (Bravo Pizza), bagel shop (Bagel Maven), Duane Reade drugstore, Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, and several good bars within a block or two.
Here’s the big drawback: New York City Fire Department (FDNY) Engine 1 & Ladder 24 station are on the same block as the Stewart. The brave men and women of that FDNY firehouse are very busy — day and night. I awoke several times each night when the engine and ladder departed the fire station, en route to an emergency. I get that New York is the “City That Never Sleeps.” But this took it a little too far. 😉
As an added kicker, the New York City Police Department’s (NYPD) Traffic Control Division is a block south of the Stewart. The good news: police everywhere (assuming you’re a law-abiding citizen). The bad news: you’ll hear every police siren and horn known to humankind.
Checking In to the Stewart…
My client in charge of this trip reserved me a room with a king size bed. I checked in around 11:30 p.m. and was informed king beds were out of stock — only queens were available. Totally fine and understandable.
But then the receptionist said that I’d be happier in a room with two double beds “because (I’m) a tall person.”
Um — what?
She said the rooms with two doubles are larger, have more desk space, and a kitchenette.
Because I planned on being out of my room during much of my stay, room size wasn’t high on my list of concerns. Ditto with the desk space. Because I was in New York City — home to some of the world’s best food — I didn’t feel the need to cook.
Nevertheless, she knew the hotel much better than I, so I took her advice.
Stewart Hotel New York City – Two Double Bed Room
The Stewart Hotel shares a trait with many New York City buildings: it’s old. That being said, the Stewart does a fine job with its available space.
And speaking of space: this is the largest Manhattan hotel room I’ve ever stayed in. By far. That includes previous stays at a Holiday Inn in SoHo, a W in midtown and the disastrous Sheraton Times Square (which Bonvoyed itself long before the term became fashionable).
A coworker scored a room with a queen-size bed — and said the room barely fit the bed, much less any furniture.
Fortunately, I didn’t have that problem. My room (and rest of the hotel) weren’t exactly state-of-the-art — but not obnoxiously outdated.
The beds were fairly comfortable (yes, I slept in both — for travel blogging’s sake!) but nothing exceptional. I’m tall-ish (a little over 6’1″) and my feet easily reached the end of the bed. That wasn’t a highlight.
The sitting area was nice and spacious.
The work desk offered two electrical outlets and a lamp.
Speaking of power: there were a decent number of electrical outlets throughout the room but no built-in USB ports anymore. Make sure to bring your device charger(s) and/or a travel surge suppressor.
Unfortunately, I didn’t have much of a view.
The kitchenette features a two-burner stove, microwave oven, sink, and mini-fridge.
The closet had enough room to hang up about four days’ worth of clothes. It also featured a safe, which doubled as my suitcase holder.
The bathroom is very tight…
Kudos Spa and Eco.Fresh are the Stewart’s in-room toiletries of choice.
Here’s what skeeved me out about the bathroom. There were little black spots littering the wallpaper and walls. Dirt? Wear and tear? Black mold?
The room was good for what it was: a place to sleep, get cleaned up, and get a little work done. It wasn’t luxurious by any means — but served my purposes just fine.
Stewart Hotel New York City – Service
Here’s where The Stewart Hotel knocked it out of the park: their employees were fantastic.
The housekeeping staff was exceptionally welcoming, prompt, and did an excellent job cleaning the room. In fact, one housekeeper spotted some maintenance glitch in my room (which was obvious to her — but I had no clue something was wrong), apologized profusely when she saw me, and said it would be repaired ASAP.
The front desk crew were helpful with directions as well as restaurant and bar recommendations. Check in and checkout were quick and easy — the staff was respectful of everyone’s time.
The security staff checking room keys were professional and polite. They may be friendly and look relaxed — but you darn well better have a room key to board an elevator.
Stewart Hotel New York City – Wrap-Up
People who love new, fancy, posh hotels won’t like the Stewart. But if the rate is good, I’d recommend it to the casual, leisure traveler. Again, the location is fantastic and service is wonderful.
Next time I’m in New York (and book my own travel) I’ll likely stay at an IHG, Marriott, or Hyatt property because of my loyalty program statuses and ability to pay with points and free night certificates. That being said, I’d stay here again. – Chris