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Need NYC Hotel Help. Which Area is Best?

Old Nov 11th, 2001, 06:06 PM
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Need NYC Hotel Help. Which Area is Best?

Hello and thanks in advance for your help. I've searched around this site, but with the new search features in place, I can't find the answer to this question, although I'm certain it's been addressed before.

My wife and I are going to NYC for 4 days in December. I'm using Hotwire for the hotel reservations, and they list the following areas where our hotels could be located:

1) Upper West Side
2) Midtown West
3) Upper East Side
4) Time Square
5) Midtown East
6) Midtown South
7) Soho-TriBeCa-Greenwich Village
8) Financial District

Hotwire is a discount site where you get to pick the area, price and the quality of the hotel, but the name of the hotel is not revealed until after your reservation is completed. I've used this service successfully in Boston, D.C., etc. Unfortunately, my geographical knowledge of Manhattan is not very good.

I know that much of the answer depends on what type of hotel that we get, but I was wondering if people had particular favorite areas to stay, which would be convenient for tourists. In the alternative, are some of these areas less convenient or safe?

Thanks for helping.

Old Nov 11th, 2001, 06:22 PM
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Personally I care too much about where I stay to do that kind of gamble, but since I really like staying in the theatre district, the only one I'd opt for is Times Square. They can stick you in some pretty seedy areas if you even say midtown east or midtown west. Although some of the best hotel choices might be in those areas, you could also get stuck really out of the way. Do they even give you an idea of which hotels they are talking about in each of these areas?
Old Nov 11th, 2001, 06:33 PM
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No question there is a gamble involved. Also, no question there are some savings to be had as well.

They give you a hotel description of each hotel, the price offered, the amenities located at this particular hotel and they rate the hotels using a five-star system. Also, hotels are nationally-recognized chains only.

I have stayed at the some wonderful hotels in Boston and D.C. for $45 - $65 per night using this company. The hotel prices are, of course, higher in NYC, however, I have seen some 4 & 4-1/2 star hotels offered for under $140 per night. Also seen some 3 star hotels for under $100 per night.

Thanks for your input.
Old Nov 11th, 2001, 07:07 PM
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I would choose Uppper West, or the Tribeca/Greenwich locations. Times Square is over run with tourists, making going outside an exhausting procedure. It's more fun to visit that area because then you get to leave it. Upper west side is nice because of its proximity to the park, Columbus Circle, and is actually not too far from the Theatre District, depending on where you end up. Tribeca/ Greenwich Village offers more of a downtown atmosphere, great shopping and restaurants (which you can find all over, but they have a different feel downtown) and some of the most interesting architecture and street layouts in the city. Avoid Midtown because it's generally just boring. I think either of these two areas are considered safe.
Good luck and have a great trip.
Old Nov 12th, 2001, 11:55 AM
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Greenwich gets my vote.
Old Nov 12th, 2001, 12:02 PM
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I agree with a prior post - definately with upper west side or greenich/soho - both of these areas feel like living in NY, not very touristy/ great restaurants and transportation is not a problem.
Old Nov 12th, 2001, 12:18 PM
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Most of the best hotels are located in Midtown East and West, The Plaza, The Palace, The Four Seasons, The Essex House, The Pennisula, The St. Regis, etc. Also most of the 3 & 4 star hotels are located in midtown. Lastly Midtown gives you easy instant access to most of the tourist attractions. My vote goes with Midtown.
Old Nov 12th, 2001, 01:26 PM
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If you are planning on seeing a couple of Broadway shows, I would recommend Midtown east or west. Broadway is very walkable from the Midtown west hotels and walkable from most Midtown east hotels. I like Midtown east because the east side is a little nicer and just far enough from the throngs of Times Square.

Upper east side is a classy neighborhood, but would be good only if you were going to be doing some of the museums there. Otherwise, you are a little out of the way.

Do not consider the financial district unless you have business down there. Too out of the way from midtown and too close to ground zero.
Old Nov 12th, 2001, 02:03 PM
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I think you have to figure out what you are going to do in NYC. I agree with others that Greenwich or Upper West or Upper East are nicer areas away from the tourists, but if you are going to be touristy things every day -- heading to the theatres, checking out Times Square, Rockefeller Center, St. Patrick's, stores on Fifth Avenue, etc., then it doesn't make any sense in my opinion that you stay somewhere else for your short four day trip and then spend all your time heading back to midtown and back to your hotel again. In fact if these people will reread your post you specifically asked which areas were best for "tourists" indicating that you will be doing the tourist things. If you want to go to NYC and experience a neighborhood but avoid the usual things then by all means stay in one of those areas. For years I always stayed in the Times Square area, mainly because I do up to 8 shows in 5 days. This past summer I had the pleasure of staying for a month on the upper East side. It was a wonderful change, and I hope to do it again. But if I were going for only four days, I'd still stay in the Times Square area.
Old Nov 12th, 2001, 03:40 PM
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Business people probably like midtown, there are so many offices etc, but for a holiday, Soho/Tribeca/GVillage are the best! You will love the restaurants, the shopping, it is young, fun, interesting, near the University there are great movie houses with art films, great cafes,there are some really good hotels, and they can run in price from reasonable/high to very expensive.The St Regis, etc, are stuffy and old fashioned-look into the Soho Grand, The Mercer,and the Hudson for starters.What a good time to be coming to NY! It will be dressed in all it's Christmas finery~M
Old Nov 12th, 2001, 06:30 PM
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I've had fabulous luck with Hotwire (even though is is rather unnerving not to know the property prior to paying, and the occasional hotel would rate one less star, by comparison, to others, in my opinion) and recommend going with the most stars for the lowest rate. Each neighborhood has it's plusses and minusses and unique charms and appeal. The diffence will pay your overnight parking and lots of taxi fares (although, do familiarize yourself with the bus and subway lines and stops - while taxis are USUALLY readily available, not always). Or, if you're finding similar rates in many neighborhoods, you'd want to select the area nearest to what you'll be seeing and doing, as walking is THE best way to enjoy the city, but it will likely be VERY cold out. Regardless, it's best to pack and dress for the weather so you'll be comfortable while out and about. I've learned using Hotwire (where you cannot try again for 48 hours) that it does pay to think it over and try again several days later. The prices flucuate. I haven't quite figured out the timing (which may have absolutely no rhyme or reason). Most of the same, the same "deals" are available a few days later, and often the prices go DOWN. If not, try a few days after that. My strategy lately, though, has been to check prices on - then shop for the same prices (or much less) at the same hotels directly and book a room just to be sure of one. Then, I check HotWire within 30 days of our stay, when the hotels start releasing more rooms if available. If a real bargain pops up, I might grab it, or I might wait until within two weeks or even one week. You sort of get a feel for the availility by shopping in this manner. I learned this when shopping for Boston earlier in the year. Thinking I got a bargain (which I definitely did) with Hotwire at the Back Bay Hilton for $85/night, others who booked closer to departure reported getting a rate of $55/night. All in all, it's a matter of "fill" and timing. Good luck!

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