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Brooklyn Travel Guide

Brooklyn’s Hotel Scene Is Hotter Than Ever

Courtesy of Genesis

No longer Manhattan's lesser-visited sister, Brooklyn has become more than just a borough—it’s an internationally known brand. These days, it’s a travel destination unto itself, a hotbed of culinary and cultural delights that attract visitors from across the East River and around the world. The only problem has been a serious lack of appealing hotel options, with few options beyond big-chain properties—aside from Williamsburg’s game-changing Wythe Hotel, of course. That’s all changing, however, as Brooklyn is in the midst of its biggest hotel boom ever, with more than 1,100 new rooms added in 2015, and just under 1,000 more in the pipeline for 2016. Though details are still scant on buzzed-about openings like a Brooklyn outpost of the Pod Hotel and the sure-to-be-hip Gowanus Inn & Yard, helmed by superstar restaurateur Matt Abramcyk, we’re putting the spotlight on nine properties—three already open, the rest opening over the next year or so—that are transforming the Brooklyn landscape for visitors. —Sandra Ramani

Courtesy of Dazzler Brooklyn Hotel

Dazzler Brooklyn Hotel

Opened: August 2015

Last summer, Argentina's Fën Hotels chose Downtown Brooklyn for the first NYC outpost of its Dazzler brand, which also offers sleek accommodations in urban hubs like Buenos Aires and Lima. Set near the entrance to the Manhattan Bridge, the hotel features 174 serene, residential-style rooms and suites with touches like free Wi-Fi, handcrafted decor (like stenciled headboards), C.O. Bigelow bath products, and Frette linens, plus mini-bars with Eataly products; complimentary breakfast is also included with all rates. A modern-vintage aesthetic rules throughout the comfortable spaces (think raw concrete staircase, oiled-wood floors, and polished brass fixtures), which also include a ground-floor café and espresso bar and a second-floor al fresco beer garden. Guests will also appreciate facilities like fitness and business centers, state-of-the-art meeting spaces, and a 24/7 on-site parking garage.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide

Courtesy of The Brooklyn A Hotel

The Brooklyn A Hotel

Opened: September 2015

The Brooklyn A Hotel sits on a bustling stretch of Atlantic Avenue on the border between the up-and-coming Crown Heights and Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhoods. Designed by Long Island City–based Espacios Design Studio, and inspired by the borough's evolution, the former industrial space has been transformed into a 34-room boutique hotel with a decor that melds modern furnishings, a slightly edgy vibe, natural elements like brick and reclaimed wood, and artwork that honors various Brooklyn stories. Cobblestoned floors and soaring ceilings set the tone in the lobby, where La Colombe coffee is served throughout the day; the adjacent bar serves stronger stuff around a communal table made of black basalt stone. Free Wi-Fi can be enjoyed throughout, while rooms have perks like 300 thread-count linens, oversized bathrooms with rain showers, and Smart TVs. Facilities include a gym, meeting spaces, and an on-site market, and complimentary continental breakfast is included; a full restaurant and rooftop bar are set to open in 2016.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide

Courtesy of BKLYN House


Opened: December 2015

In keeping with its Bushwick location, BKLYN House marries an industrial style-design—think slate-gray walls and hardwood floors—with lots of nods to the local art scene, from street art-inspired murals depicting different Brooklyn neighborhoods to an on-site public gallery with exhibits curated by IMAGE Gallery, a nearby contemporary art hub and printing studio. The 116 loft-style rooms vary in shape and size, but all have simple, clean-lined furnishings, pillow-top mattresses, free Wi-Fi, White House coffee, and eco-friendly soap, accented by brightly colored chairs; continental breakfast is included in the rates. Elsewhere, find a 24-hour concierge, business center, Brooklyn-centric retail space, and a front desk stocking passes to nearby Crunch and Planet Fitness gyms. A sidewalk terrace serving drinks and snacks, a panoramic rooftop lounge, and hotel-operated food trucks stationed on the corner lot are all slated for summer 2016.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide

Escobar Design

Holiday Inn Brooklyn Downtown

Opening: May 2016

Although it's just a short walk from major subway lines, and not far from the shops and dining of Atlantic Avenue and the Barclays Center, the leafy Boerum Hill neighborhood has managed to stay relatively quiet and residential. In the midst of it all now rises the Holiday Inn Downtown Brooklyn tower, an affordable option with a roster of on-site facilities. Designer Andre Escobar has crafted a host of contemporary spaces, from the 245 rooms and suites—each with pillow-top mattresses, work spaces, and free standard Wi-Fi—to the Korean–French fusion Brasserie Seoul restaurant, and a tranquil spa. Round-the-clock room service, a business center, gym, and cocktail lounge add to the amenities, which also include Holiday Inn standards like the Kids Eat Free program—a handy perk when visiting New York City.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide

Steelblue Courtesy of The Williamsburg Hotel

The Williamsburg

Opening: Late spring 2016

Created by some of the names behind hip Manhattan hotels like The Standard and The Bowery, plus an impressive roster of architects and designers, this stylish eight-story property on Wythe Avenue is one of the most anticipated openings of 2016. Behind a brick, glass, and CorTen steel exterior are 150 rooms and suites, most of which have balconies and floor-to-ceiling windows framing the sweeping views; all have oak floors, leather headboards, and custom furnishings. Double-height ceilings abound, including in the subterranean grand ballroom—Williamsburg's largest, which can accommodate up to 400 guests. Social spaces are big here, from the lobby-level restaurant/bar/outdoor cafe, and a hotel guests-only lounge, to the rooftop's pool and bar; the latter is set in a replica water tower as a tribute to the neighborhood's now-defunct wooden water tower factory. Chef Adam Leonti, formerly at Vetri in Philadelphia, will oversee the dining program.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide

Courtesy of Genesis

William Vale

Opening: Summer 2016

Locals have been eyeing the evolution of the distinctive, 21-story structure on Williamsburg's Wythe Avenue for well over a year, waiting to see what appears behind the futuristic facade. This summer, they'll finally get a peek when The William Vale hotel opens its doors. Soaring above several retail levels, the hotel—which takes its name from a notable mid-1800s Brooklynite—will feature 183 rooms, each with complimentary Wi-Fi, Smart TVs, and floor-to-ceiling windows to highlight the Manhattan and Brooklyn skyline views. The hotel was designed as an urban resort, so guests will also enjoy perks like a 60-foot outdoor pool, rooftop restaurant, and one-of-a-kind Vale Park, a 20,000-square-foot public green space with rolling “hills” and shaded seating areas. Amenities like a 24-hour gym, ballroom, and plugged-in concierge services will set the place apart, as will the food and beverage outlets overseen by acclaimed chef Andrew Carmellini.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide

Courtesy of EVEN Hotels Brooklyn

EVEN Hotels Brooklyn

Opening: Summer 2016

A member of the InterContinental Hotel group, the EVEN brand is all about offering guests a balanced, wellness-focused experience; its advisory board includes bigwigs from the fields of nutrition, health, fitness, natural products, and more. Set on Downtown Brooklyn's Nevins Street, just blocks from the Barclays Center, the 202-room location will feature all the hallmarks of the brand, including in-room workout zones, free WiFi, all-natural eucalyptus linens, and spa-inspired showers. Enjoy made-to-order smoothies and grab-and-go meals at the on-site Cork & Kale restaurant, or get in a workout on your terms in the 24-hour athletic studio. Standout design touches of the natural light-filled structure include a living green wall and an interior courtyard lined with original historic brick from the adjoining building.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide

Courtesy of 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge

1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge

Opening: Late 2016

Following recent openings in Manhattan and Miami, 1 Hotels brings its brand of nature-inspired hospitality to riverfront Brooklyn Bridge Park later this year, in a building surrounded by views of the East River, the Statue of Liberty, and the Manhattan skyline. As a nod to the waterside location, the design will feature palettes, shipping containers, pilings, and pier structures, as well as signature 1 Hotels elements like reclaimed wood, energy-saving fixtures, and lots of natural light. The 194 rooms will range from standard Queens and California Kings to one- and two-bedroom suites; all will boast seating areas, eco-friendly bedding, 55-inch Smart TVs, floor-to-ceiling windows, and triple-filtered water systems. New York-based chef Seamus Mullen—a multiple James Beard Best Chef NYC Award semifinalist—will helm the farm ingredient-driven lobby bar and restaurant, room service, and grab-and-go cafe. The wellness focus continues at the 24-hour gym and full-service four-room spa, where signature treatments include an “Earth, Wind, Air, and Fire” experience. A stunning rooftop bar and lounge will top it all off with rocking chairs, fire pits, a plunge pool, daybeds, and Lady Liberty views.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide

Courtesy of The Hoxton

The Hoxton

Opening: Early 2017

With its first hotel, opened in 2006 in London's hip Shoreditch neighborhood, The Hoxton announced its commitment to “no bull” hospitality—no expensive mini-bars, no Internet charges, just quality accommodations with lots of local flavor. Since then, the brand has opened an outpost in Amsterdam, with Paris on deck for summer 2017, and Brooklyn for early 2017. Though the Williamsburg site is still under construction at press time, we hear the location will feature all the Hoxton hallmarks, including top-notch mattresses and rain showers, mini-fridges stocked with complimentary milk and water, free Wi-Fi, a regular events calendar, and an on-site restaurant, lounge, and shop. Presumably, it will also offer the daily Breakfast Bag service, which delivers a continental breakfast to every guest’s room.

PLAN YOUR TRIP: Visit Fodor's Brooklyn Guide