Hotel Hudson Hotel 4 star
Easyexperts
356 west 58th street New York, United States of America -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

Opened in 2000 after a three-year renovation, the Hudson is the result of yet another Ian Schrager-Philippe Starck team up. Following in an illustrious line of hotels from the Morgans Group, the hotel is one of the places to be seen in a city where to be seen is everything. It has a great location, great communal spaces and of course innovative décor from a designer who has been hot now for over 20 years. The unfortunate side effect however of this voguish approach is the size of the rooms, which, even for New York, would be difficult to swing a small cat in. Don't let this put you off though, especially if staying for only a few days as the rest of the hotel and its surrounding more than make up for the lack of space. A hotel more suited to friends and couples than to families.

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  • International Standard
  • Well located
  • Charm
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    • Location

      6.17 /10
    • Accommodation

      8.70 /10
    • Overview

      8.95 /10
    • Food and drink

    • To know

    • The Hudson is situated on West 58th Street between 8th and 9th avenues, right by Columbus Circle and therefore the southwestern corner of Central Park. It would be untrue to say that the hotel was on top of the city's main attractions, but at reason distances are the Theater District, MoMA, the Rockefeller Center, shopping on Fifth and Madison Avenues and Times Square which is a little further down south. There are two metro stations nearby, namely 59th Street Columbus Circle and 57th Street, with a total of nine lines between them. JFK is 20 miles away, La Guardia 11 miles and Newark 17.

    • While the Hudson offers a choice of accommodations, those at the lower end of the scale are not at all spacious. The standard room, like all the others, is fitted with an African teak hardwood floor and Makore wood wall paneling. On each side of the room there are two large mirrors facing each other, one of which has the flatscreen television fixed to it. The bed, which takes up most of the room's space, is dressed with Egyptian cotton sheets and to either side on the bedside tables are lamps hand painted lamps by Francesco Clemente, the New York-based Italian surrealist painter. The fabric used for the headboard (and also for some of the furniture found in rooms further up the price ladder) is the same as that used to make Prada bags. Opposite the bed is a metal desk with a lamp fixed down onto it. A closet which has a curtain as a door conceals the iron and ironing board, although where you'd open it out is anybody's guess. The bathroom, which is separated from the room by a sliding door, is equally as small and has a shower cubicle whose glass side gives onto the room as well as a hairdryer and Korres toiletries. The whole room is meant to have the look of a ship's cabin, which it does loosely in these lower range rooms and more so as you rise through the categories. The amenities are pretty consistent throughout the rooms, some of the higher priced ones boasting minibars, safes and Sony stereos (at least two of which are expected in most standard New York hotel rooms). The categories above the standard are simply bigger until you get to the Studio for example which enjoys better views, a separate sitting area and in some cases two double beds. The Loft and Business Suite are both offer more space, the latter with a large work station and walk-in closet. The Apartment features a wood burning fireplace, a covered terrace and views of Manhattan and the Hudson, while the Penthouse represents the pinnacle of the Hudson's offering with an ivy-clad glass solarium and dining space both indoors and out, not to mention the stunning views from the terrace. Notice how all rooms' doors are lit from above with the kind of lamps that illuminate paintings at galleries. This was done in order to define the rooms are pieces of art in their own right.
    • The exterior of the Hudson is typically Starck (by name and nature), featuring a low-rise grey stone edifice wedged into the space left between two towers by the receding tower behind them. A band of green glass across the centre of the façade gives a small clue as to what lays inside, as do the eight small windows with their single shutters a little higher. The lobby is reached by ascending a fluorescent yellow escalator starting from a small entrance hall at street level. At the summit of the escalator one finds oneself in a green house-like hall, with a glass roof coming to a summit in the centre, covered in false ivory. From the ceiling hangs a chandelier, which, you'll notice if you look carefully, actually has no bulbs! The light apparently emanating from brilliant piece is in fact the reflection of the spot lights surrounding it. Running the entire length of the hall of the hand-carved wooden reception desk behind which are huge arched windows and tall leafy branches propped up against the bare brick wall. Dotted around are trade mark Starck seats, although not enough to avoid crowds or people milling around on busy check in/out days. Another of Starck's leitmotivs is to be found in the doorways off the lobby, namely the guardian angels which we also find at The Paramount. To the left of reception is the concierge desk while also on the same level is the Library Bar. This relaxed lounge bar features a smart polished hardwood floor as well as beautiful wooden paneling upon the walls giving the feel of an old reading room; a feeling heightened by the presence of a fireplace, rugs under cosy seating and of course the many books piled up on the shelves up in the gallery. You'll notice that the pattern of vertically placed books is disturbed now and again by rebellious, horizontally posed ones. These are the favourite titles of those who helped to create the space-a kind of lasting reminder of their creativity. To one side of the room is a meticulously carved pool table upholstered in purple cloth, above which hangs a large dome-shaped lamp, while on the other side is a chess table whose surface lifts up to reveal a backgammon board. Adorning the walls are a number of portraits of Beth, the hotel's pet cow, in each of which she sports a different hat by Coco Channel. If there weather allows, you should spend at least some time in the Private Park which recalls a scene straight out of Alice in Wonderland. Regular sized garden furniture is made to look miniscule by giant watering cans and plants pots while scattered around the paved area are wheelbarrows, vases and lanterns which are lit at night. Under a huge metal framed arch, dominated by a creeper, are tables kept warm in colder weather by heaters. The hotel has both a gym and limited spa services by Brownings. The fitness centre is well equipped with both cardio machines (individual screens) and weight apparatus and offers personal training sessions starting at $85. Also available are pilates and yoga sessions, as well as several types of massage. As is usual with any hotel involving Starck or Schrager, there is always something a little quirky around every corner. In this case, each floor, directly outside the elevator, you'll find a tall marble table (some with PCs free for guests' use) with silver stools and in front are vending machines behind cupboard doors. Not only is the hotel well maintained, but the staff is up to the challenge too. We saw one of the receptionists deal calmly with a very difficult guest during our visit. Hats off.
    • It is all change at the Hudson at the moment. The restaurant is presently closed and due to be reopened at the start of May 2010. It is therefore the bar which welcomes guests for breakfast buffet with both continental and hot fare on offer. During our visit the hotel was working on an event space in the basement which will be open to the public as a club/lounge at weekends once they receive their cabaret licence. The sky terrace was also closed during our visit and will reopen in the spring offering sweeping views of the city.
    • The Hudson is part of the Morgans group of hotels which includes the hotel (bearing the group's name) which started the boutique hotel revolution as well as the Royalton and several other properties in the US and UK. The group was started by Ian Schrager and Steve Rubell, co-founders of the legendary nightclub of the 70s and 80s Studio 54. The hotel is currently working on a performance area in the basement of the hotel. With 831 rooms, the Hudson is one of the largest hotels in New York. The property which houses the hotel was built by JP Morgan's granddaughter as a YMCA.

    Equipment

    • Car park
    • Handicap access
    • Restaurant
    • Internet access
    • Air conditioning
    • Spa

      stretching, beauty salon, massage, spa, Limited services, keep fit, Turkish bath

    • Swimming pool
    • Sports equipment

      gym, aqua gym, aerobics, step, dance, bums and tums, fitness, sports

    • Animals allowed
    • Safe
    • Non-smoking rooms
    • Meeting room

    advantage

    • Décor
    • Décor
    • Location
    • Location
    • Library bar
    • Library Bar

    disadvantages

    • Size of rooms
    • Size of rooms
    • Restaurant curently closed
    • Restaurant currently closed
    • Lobby often crowded

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