Answers from Our Experts (3)
Be prepared to splurge a little if you hope to get the best views of New York from your guest room or suite. For sweeping vistas of Central Park and the New York City skyline — and some of the best accommodations in the city — book a room at one of these three Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star hotels:
1. Trump International Hotel & Tower New York. You won’t find a better location for unobstructed views of the city than Trump International Hotel & Tower New York, which takes up an entire block in uptown Manhattan. All guest rooms and suites here have views of Central Park or the city through ten-foot floor-to-ceiling windows, with the most impressive option being the massive Two Bedroom Park View Suite. This luxurious pad features a separate living room, deep-soaking tub positioned right next to the window and a chandelier-clad dining room for entertaining — and for showing off. If you can tear yourself away from your room, grab a gourmet meal or cocktail at Nougatine, the hotel’s restaurant and bar that, like most everywhere else in this Five-Star hotel, offers breathtaking views of Central Park.
2. The St. Regis New York. Located in the heart of the city’s luxurious shopping area, The St. Regis New York features some of the best views of iconic Fifth Avenue from its guest room and suite living rooms. (Bedrooms are located towards the rear of this luxury hotel.) While the Presidential Suite offers views similar to those from other accommodations, it’s the only option in the hotel that has two terraces. If money is no object, our editors’ pick is the iconic blue Tiffany Suite, which has a huge living room with decorative fireplace, state-of-the-art technology, a full Italian marble bathroom and an eight-person dining area with views facing Central Park, Fifth Avenue and 55th Street.
3. Mandarin Oriental, New York. Thanks to its elevated location on floors 38 to 54 of the Time Warner Center, Mandarin Oriental, New York offers impressive views of Columbus Circle, Central Park and the Hudson River. The floor-to-ceiling windows in every guest room and suite guarantee at least one of these winning perspectives, and if you happen to land on the Hudson River side you can soak in the views from your tub in the luxurious wraparound bathroom. The best suite to stay in at this Five-Star hotel is the Central Park View Suite, which provides unparalleled views of New Yorkers’ favorite green space. Everyone can soak up the surroundings with a cocktail in hand on the 35th floor at MObar, or in more casual The Lobby Lounge.
The best view of NYC is via a helicopter ride or by ferry. But, for those who prefer their feet firmly on the ground, here are a few great options:
The Empire State Building offers some incredible view of the city, as those Top of The Rock at Rockefeller Center. But if you want a close view of the Chrysler Building, the Empire Center's observation deck is where to be.
The Ritz-Carlton Battery Park, a Forbes Star Guide Four-Star hotel, has some of the best views of the Statue of Liberty, Governors Island, and New Jersey - not to mention that of Battery Park and the pier as well - from their roof top private event venue, Rise. Formerly a popular cocktail bar in the city, the space has now been transformed into a luxurious event space, popular for weddings and other special celebrations. Even on a cloudy day, the views are truly breathtaking. If staying here, check with the Front Desk to request access, which they will happily grant so long as there are no events taking place.
The Brooklyn Heights Promenade will take you out of Manhattan proper, but it's one of the most stunning locations places to watch a sunset over the city. Another great view of the city is from Governors Island, off the shores of Manhattan.
The roof top bars are also great options, with a favorite being the rooftop cafe at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
On a clear day, the number one view in the city can be found at the 102-story Empire State Building. From there, you can see the entire city, and a good portion of New Jersey to boot. Of course, this famous skyscraper isn’t always open, so where to go when it’s closed? First on my list is the Top of the Rock Observation Deck at Rockefeller Center; and the best part is it’s open from 8am to midnight every day, and though the hours change, it’s open on holidays.
Next up, if you want a view with a drink, check out The Press Lounge on top of the Ink48 Hotel. Here, they have outdoor fireplaces, indoor seating with encased in glass, couches, tables, and a panoramic view of Manhattan. For a cultural view of the city, head the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s rooftop gallery and bar where you can get a lovely view of Central Park and the Upper East Side. Finally, though you can’t stop and stare in this spot, if you happen to be in a car going to LaGuardia Airport on the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, aka the BQE, make sure to take in the spectacular view of the city, it’s one of the best.