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The best hotels in Midtown have the luxury of a prime location in the center of all the action, as well as unparalleled amenities, posh accommodations and impeccable service. For an upscale New York experience you won’t soon forget, book a stay at one of these Forbes Travel Guide-approved Midtown hotels.
Considering Midtown is an epicenter of prime real estate in Manhattan, it’s fitting that the Five-Star Mandarin Oriental, New York is situated on floors 38 through 54 of the Time Warner Center — and as you might imagine, that location does wonders for the views.
Iconic parts of the city such as Columbus Circle, the Hudson River and Central Park can be seen throughout the hotel, whether you’re enjoying a leisurely afternoon tea in The Lobby Lounge or an Asian-style breakfast of housemade buckwheat noodles, eggs and Osetra caviar at the onsite Four-Star restaurant Asiate. If you’re looking for the very best views, we suggest booking the luxurious Central Park View Suite, which provides a stunning bird’s eye perspective of the 2.5-mile long park and glittering Midtown skyline. A different type of accommodation to consider is Five-Star The Spa at Mandarin Oriental, New York’s VIP Spa Suite, which is patterned after a traditional Asian-style home. Stay with the theme and try the signature Thai Yoga massage, or turn back the hands of time with the age-defying Vitamin Infusion facial.
East meets West in style at The Peninsula New York, a Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Hotel particularly popular with business travelers — and not just because of its central Midtown Manhattan address. This hotel is ideal for conferences and meetings — the staff is even happy to accommodate them at the last minute — and also has a robust business center where you can borrow a laptop, cell phone charger, or an iPad, as well as request secretarial and translation services. Guest rooms feature large desks stocked with supplies, in-room faxing and complimentary Internet.
A stay here shouldn’t be all work and no play, however. This Five-Star hotel’s popular rooftop lounge, Salon de Ning, has fantastic views of the skyline that can be enhanced with a signature cocktail such as the Ning Sling, a potent mix of Absolut Mandarin, Soho Lychee Liqueur and fresh mint leaves shaken with lychee and passion fruit juices. If serenity is more your scene, you won’t want to leave 35,000-square-foot The Peninsula Spa New York, the largest of its kind in New York City and one of only two Five-Star spas in Manhattan. Yes, you’ll love getting a signature massage or facial in one of the spa’s twelve private treatment rooms, but you could also easily spend an entire day just enjoying amenities that include aromatherapy steam rooms, ice fountains, experience showers and saunas.
Donald may be the original genius behind the Five-Star Trump International Hotel & Tower New York that takes up an entire city block in Manhattan, but it’s his daughter Ivanka who’s lately spearheaded Trump International Hotel & Tower New York’s significant upgrades.
Ms. Trump led a renovation in 2010 that brought refreshed color palettes and furniture to the guest rooms — and Schonbek crystal chandeliers to the suites — along with tech updates like the iLive, which you can use to blast tunes on your iPod through a surround-sound stereo system. The 6,000-square-foot The Trump Spa New York, where you can book advanced skin care treatments created by celebrity skin specialist Sonya Dakar and aromatherapy massages with oils from Manhattan’s Essence of Vali, was also treated to a $8 million facelift in 2012 under the direction of Donald’s daughter.
It’s not all Ivanka all the time at this Five-Star Midtown hotel, however. Award-winning chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten is responsible for the hotel’s Five-Star restaurant Jean Georges, where we recommend splurging on the multi-course tasting menu named after the chef himself. Yes, it almost seems criminal to venture out from this glorious property, but the luxury won’t stop once you do: Drivers of a small fleet of Mercedes-Benz vehicles are readily available to whisk you around the city free of charge.
If size is what you’re after, at 52 stories Four Seasons Hotel New York is the tallest hotel in Manhattan and the guest rooms are among the largest in the city with an average of 650-square-feet of well-appointed luxury, not to mention terraces on some of those guest rooms and suites from which you’ll be treated to sweeping views of the city skyline and Central Park. Equally impressive is Four-Star The Spa at Four Seasons New York — we are still raving about the Big Apple Antioxidant body treatment, a complete full-body exfoliation and massage using delicious “ingredients” like brown sugar and apple body butter.
Turn-of-the-century history meets modern luxury at Five-Star The St. Regis New York, which was opened in 1904 by a wealthy socialite and is still a preferred choice for traveling celebrities today. That’s likely due to a number of fantastic amenities that include English-style butler service — which has been around since the day the hotel opened — a palatial Presidential Suite that has the hotel’s only two terraces (and dazzling views of Fifth Avenue) and Adour Alain Ducasse, the hotel’s Four-Star restaurant highlighted by its lauded seasonal tasting menus.
To experience the glamorous side of old New York, take afternoon tea in Astor Court, the hotel’s elegant bistro that was designed to resemble the original Palm Court from 1904. If you sip just one thing during your stay, however, we say it should be the Bloody Mary at the hotel’s legendary King Cole Bar. Here’s it’s called a Red Snapper, and the recipe was supposedly created onsite in the 1930s.
As its name suggests, Five-Star The Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park offers both a prime location and splendid views of one of the city’s top green attractions. We suggest splurging on one of the Parkview guest rooms or suites, all of which are outfitted with telescopes for getting close-up looks of the scenery — of course, a deep-soaking tub and bathroom stocked with high-end Frédéric Fekkai bath products, French sateen linens on posh beds and a choice of seven pillow types are nice amenities, too. We also liked the fully stocked mini-bar and an in-room DVD collection of Central Park-themed films such as When Harry Met Sally, The Muppets Take Manhattan and Breakfast at Tiffany's.
If you stay up too late watching movies due to a time zone change after a long flight, get back on track in the morning with a jet-lag treatment from an expert therapist at La Prairie at The Ritz-Carlton Spa. Now fully refreshed, later that night pull up a stool at the dark marble bar in the dimly lit Star Lounge and order a signature cocktail like the Big Apple (chilled Van Gogh Apple Vodka and fresh apple puree served “up”) from legendary bartender Norman Bukofzer — he’s extolled for his stellar memory and can supposedly recall decade-old drink orders.
With its beaux-arts décor and Old World charm, Four-Star The Plaza Hotel has been synonymous with luxury and class for more than a century — and it’s also done a wonderful job of periodically introducing modern updates over time without losing all the touches that put it on the map. Guest rooms and suites here were renovated in 2008 and received tech-friendly upgrades such as iPads that put you in control of the temperature, lighting, your room service and more. Other welcome additions include the Caudalie Vinothérapie Spa — the first of its kind in the United States — and a 8,300-square-foot fitness center that includes an Olympic-sized lap pool and basketball court. While you can still experience a traditional afternoon tea in the Palm Court, Todd English’s European-style The Plaza Food Hall offers more modern fare, including a seafood grill, pizza station and much more.