PHOTO: Luca Bravo | Unsplash

Fodor's Expert Review Hyatt Union Square New York

134 4th Ave., New York, New York 10003, USA See on Map Fodor's Choice

Julie Baumgardner

If Hyatt conjures visions of Anywhere USA, for this Union Square franchise, think again. This is as contemporary as they come, with Nordic-inspired furnishings in a sleek, technology-integrated accommodation fit for the urban traveler on a quiet corner of a central Downtown thoroughfare.


Mostly designed with two people in mind, the rooms are cut trimly with each inch of space maximized for some function. King-sized beds (firm but plush) flow into storage-nightstands (with lighting controls for the whole room) that merge into built-in closets. Desks and TVs are at once part of the same wall unit, and often as are the bar carts, housing a flush minibar but more importantly complimentary Nespresso.

Book on the second floor, on which all rooms have terraces (kitted out with outdoor lightings and flora galore).

King Courtyard Room
Photo: King Courtyard Room
King Terrace Room
Photo: King Terrace Room
King Sanctuary Terrace Suite
Photo: King Sanctuary Terrace Suite


As with so many contemporary spaces, the bathroom’s trough sink and tiled spa shower are exposed—a modernist slatted partition is all that separates here from the bedroom. But, fear not, the toilet is behind closed doors.


The first sign of the Hyatt Union Square’s growth spurt (it opened in 2013) is the lobby’s transformation from a cookie-cutter contemporary gallery-feel to 19th century clubhouse, a design allusion to the origins of 4th Avenue, which was once the Bowery. Flanked by the hotel’s bar and restaurant, the lobby feels like a proper lobby. Stately couches and armchairs await for guests awaiting transport. There is always complimentary infused-water and fresh fruit, apple cider after 5 and occasionally sweet treats from Union Square’s beloved farmer’s Greenmarket (whose parent company GrowNYC is a partner of the hotel).


With no spa onsite, the hotel has a deal with the lavish Red Door spa on 18th street offering guests 20% off treatments.

24-hour Fitness Center
Photo: 24-hour Fitness Center


The hotel’s gym occupies the majority of the basement level—it’s big and kitted out with nearly every machine, cardio or weight, found in membership establishments. There are also headphones, apples and the papers should those be required for burn sesh. If for whatever reason the gym isn’t sufficient, the hotel also has partnerships with some of the larger gym chains in the area.

24-hour Fitness Center
Photo: 24-hour Fitness Center
Bowery Road
Photo: Bowery Road


The recently opened Bowery Road is an independently owned-and-operated American Brasserie from the Apicii group, serving local and seasonal fare with ingredients from the Union Square Greenmarket. Bi-level, with a 30-foot custom chandelier (and designed by the buzzy Dutch East Design), the dining space is stylish and comfortable—an upscale neighborhood joint, if you will. Guests are privy to special offers to dine at the restaurant. Bowery Road also provides breakfast to guests with the bed-and-breakfast package.

Bowery Road
Photo: Bowery Road
Library of Distilled Spirits
Photo: Library of Distilled Spirits


If the Library of Distilled Spirits’ sumptuous velvet banquets and brass high bar stools wasn’t enough to lure you in, perhaps the over 1,000 varieties of liquor will. Swank enough for the style set, expert enough for the cocktail connoisseurs and laid back enough for anyone and everyone. The Library’s speciality are seasonal drinks are made from herbs and fruits found at the Union Sq. Market.

Library of Distilled Spirits
Photo: Library of Distilled Spirits


Getting Around

Union Square sees the the intersection of the 4/5/6 and N/Q/R/W subways, as well as the all-important L train to Williamsburg and Bushwick, which will shut down in 2019 for repairs.


Located at the nape of the East Village, which covers lots of ground but remains an unparalleled culinary corner of New York, there are far too many top-pick restaurants to rattle off. However, for the finer fare, try Hearth (9-minute walk), an early addition to the neighborhood of American local and seasonal. It would be remiss to deny yourself the original Momofuku Noodle Bar (10-minute walk), which started David Chang’s ascent to star chef, though many New Yorkers prefer the Ssäm Bar (6-minute walk). Try your luck at getting a table at Hong Kong dim sum import Tim Ho Wan (3-minute walk), but if you can get in, it’s well worth the often 1-hour wait.


Long the terrain of punks, freaks and Madonna, the East Village is the OG stomping ground for legendary nightlife: Danceteria, Club 57, ABC No Rio, CBGB’s. Need more? Nowadays, speakeasies and cocktail clubs are more de rigueur, so try both the original cocktail bar that started the international speakeasy craze Jim Meehan’s PDT (10-minutes walk) or its formidable opponent Death & Co (15-minutes walk). Another secret spot is Japanese whiskey bar, Angel Share (5-minutes) tucked behind Village Yokocho, an homage to Tokyo’s backstreet stalls.


The Hyatt Union Square doesn’t feel like a Hyatt—and yet, offers the expected quality standards of the hotel conglomerate. Comfortable and practical, stylish and predictable, this outpost has a boutique feel with corporate standards. The best of both worlds. The Hyatt Union Square also makes a concerted effort to be part of its community, by partnering with NYC Grow as well as neighboring establishments, which is certainly felt throughout the halls.


Pet Friendly, Views
176 rooms, 2 suites
Breakfast Yes
Lunch Yes
Dinner Yes
Bar Yes
Cafe No
Room Service Yes, AM to Late-night


Phones: 212-253–1234

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