Hotel Roosevelt Hotel 3 star
Easyexperts
45 EAST 45TH ST. AT MADISON AVENUE New York, United States of America -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

The Grand Dame of Madison Avenue, otherwise known as the Roosevelt, has had an illustrious past and is famous the world over thanks to its appearances in many a Hollywood film and television series. Sadly, however, its best days are behind it and today, despite its grandeur and perceived glamour, it seems to have fallen victim to the mass tourism and corporate group markets. Yes, it enjoys a central location perfect for first time visitors, some remarkable architecture and some great views from its rooftop, but the service is poor, the food average and the rooms pretty worn out. Difficult to complain though when you see the prices.

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    • Hotel Roosevelt

      Roosevelt   -   © IGOR LUBINETSKY/EASYVOYAGE

    • Hotel Roosevelt

      Roosevelt   -   © IGOR LUBINETSKY/EASYVOYAGE

       
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    Location 8.86 /10

    Taking up an entire block on Madison Avenue between 45th and 46th Streets, the Roosevelt has a great central Manhattan location within easy reach of many of the city's top attractions such as Central and Bryant Parks, Madison and Fifth Avenue shopping, the Rockefeller Center, the Empire State Building, Times Square, Broadway and many more. It's just one block away from Grand Central meaning that should you wish to get around the city by subway or out of the city by train, couldn't be better placed. JFK is 18 miles away, La Guardia 9 miles and Newark 17.

    Accommodation 6.70 /10

    The vastness of the Roosevelt, with its 1,015 rooms, goes some way to explaining the mediocre service and difficulty in keeping the place looking spruce. Broadly speaking there are four categories of guestroom and suite, each one varying in size with amenities staying pretty much consistent. The guestrooms are pretty basic and are quite dated in their decoration and upholstery. Each has either a king or one or two queen beds dressed in good quality linens and plenty of pillows and cushions. The furniture consists of a television stand, bedside tables and a desk, all of which are in a dark wood. We presume there must also be at least one chair in the rooms, however, ours had absolutely no seating whatsoever! There are a couple of heaters/air conditioning units in each room, however these look as if they were installed when the building was built and are incredibly noisy. Amenities include a flatscreen television, telephone, clock radio, safe, robes and slippers and iron and ironing board. The rooms do not have minibars. The bathrooms, also highly outdated and drab, are rather pokey in the smaller rooms and have tubs with showers, large mirrors, hairdryers and toiletries by Bath and Body Works.

    The bedrooms in the suites are more spacious and seemed to have a complete set of furniture. They all have separate living spaces with armchairs and sofas as well as dining tables and extras such as coffee machines. In terms of views, rooms look out onto Madison Avenue, Vanderbilt Avenue, 45th or 46th Street, although in many cases all you can see is the building opposite as the Roosevelt is not especially high compared to its neighbours.

    Overview 7.70 /10

    The Roosevelt is probably one of the only hotels in Manhattan whose name you can give to a taxi driver without the stress of then having to explain to him or her where it is. Pretty much everyone knows where this imposing brick building is with its huge entrance canopies, its bust-topped arched first floor windows and bulging flags blustering in the wind. Along much of the ground floor of the hotel are retail spaces such as luggage shops, outfitters and hairdressers also accessible from inside the building. The hotel's main lobby is by far the most impressive public space, boasting an impressively detailed and intricate colonial architecture which has done much to uphold the Roosevelt's glamourous reputation. A good way to get another perspective on the lobby is to climb up to the mezzanine and look down on events unfold before your eyes. The vast space, which features marble floors, tall columns, original 1920s Tiffany crystal chandeliers and a gift shop, is, however, constantly heaving with people and is thus incredibly noisy. Waiting to store or deposit your luggage can be a time consuming exercise, as can be check-in or asking a question to the concierge. Not only is the wait long, but the attitude leaves a lot to be desired with porters openly asking for a tip and, as we saw with our own eyes, the concierge being incredibly rude to a group of young Spanish tourists with whose English he was losing patience.

    In terms of other public spaces in the hotel, there is a pool room at the back of the lobby which guests are free to use while on the second floor is a fitness centre with all types of machine and where water, towels and fruit are all provided on a complimentary basis. Also on this floor is the business centre (fee applies) while if you have your own computer you can hook up to the wifi which is present throughout the property (again, fee applies).

    Getting to your room can also take a while despite the six elevators which are constantly in operation. Once you're in, finding your room is a simple exercise although the corridors are very long. These latter, which feature lamps, plants and the original mail shoots, are in the midst of having their carpets changed, which is much needed. A lick of paint and some new wallpaper wouldn't go amiss either.

    Food and drink 8.20 /10

    If they experience just one of the hotel's food and drink outlets, for most guests it will be the Roosevelt Grill, which serves breakfast every day of the week. Described on the hotel's website as having 'breathtaking, restored interior design,' the space is in fact rather drab, but spacious and well oiled. The service is as unfriendly as in the rest of the hotel although it is quick and efficient if not a little too intrusive. There is a well stocked buffet with a large amount of choice of both continental and hot dishes although there are several à la carte options such as The New Yorker breakfast of smoked salmon served with a toasted bagel, cream cheese, red onions and capers or the Grand Central Eggs comprising two poached eggs and salmon croquettes topped with American sturgeon caviar hollandaise sauce. For those, however, in a rush in the morning, a more suitable option would be to head to the Madison Club Lounge where Starbucks coffee (a sign of selling out to the masses if ever there was one!) and pastries, sandwiches and other, healthier options are available to go.

    This restaurant is also open in the afternoon and in the evening for lunch and dinner. The menu offers soups and salads, some simple dishes such as steak frites, mac and cheese and pizzas, while burgers and sandwiches are also available round the clock. The lounge is also the place to come for a relaxed drink any time of the day with a good selection of cocktails, beers, wines and spirits to enjoy to the backdrop of the bar's stained glass windows and wooden panelling.

    Another option, during the week only, on the ground floor is the hotel's contemporary Vander Bar, which has a separate entrance from the street. Attracting a completely different crowd, this bar is busiest after work when it shows sports events. As well as serving similar dishes to the Madison Club Lounge, it also has a large selection of bar food and appetisers at lunch time and a similar drinks menu all day long. It might not be the place to come for great food, but it will certainly give you an insight into the Midtown work culture.

    Last but certainly not least is Mad 46, by far the best feature of the hotel. This rooftop bar, open every evening from April to October, has a huge wrap around terrace with views up to the surrounding skyscrapers. In addition to a decent cocktail selection, the bar serves all other types of drinks and a few finger food options such as dips, salads and wings. Best when the sun goes down and the Midtown lights go on, the bar is definitely worth a visit during your stay.

    To know

    The hotel opened back in 1924 and has been operating as the Roosevelt ever since. Even if you have never visited the hotel before you may well have seen it in a number of films such as Wall Street, Malcolm X, Maid in Manhattan and Man on a Ledge as well as several TV series including Mad Men. Unfortunately, the glamour of the hotel seen through these movies and programmes is somewhat detached from reality.

    Equipment

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

      massage, beauty salon, keep fit, spa, Turkish bath, wellness

    • Sports equipment

      gym, aerobics, fitness, sports

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

    advantage

    • Centrally located
    • Some stunning architecture
    • Some great views

    disadvantages

    • A huge people machine
    • Poor service
    • State of the rooms

    Traveller Reviews

    2
    • Overall Score nc/10
    • Johana M. Johana M.  
      2 Opinions
      • Package deals in septembre 2011 Posted on 2013-09-11 Seul - 3 à 5 nuitées (Chambre sans vue)

        Hôtel très bien situé, très soigné. Personnel agréable et serviable. Chambre très propre.

      • Advantages

        La situation, la propreté, le personnel agréable.

      • Disavantages

        Prix sans petits déjeuners mais très courant à New York

      • Infrastructure
      • Logement
      • Situation
      • Restauration
      • Sports / Loisirs
      • Animation
      • Qualité / Prix
      • Overall Score 8.50/10
      • Package deals in febbraio 2010 Posted on 2011-01-07 Con amici - Da 3 a 5 notti (Camera senza vista)

        Bell'albergo. Molto elegante e raffinato. Posizione invidiabile e time square è facilmente raggiungibile.

      • Advantages

        Posizione, eleganza, pulizia. Personale disponibile e gentilissimo. Stanza nella norma ma perfettamente funzionale e adatta ad ogni esigenza

      • Disavantages

        Bagno un pò vecchiotto ma molte stanze erano in fase di ristrutturazione quindi ci saranno le nuove sicuramente molto piu' belle.

      • Infrastrutture
      • Alloggio
      • Posizione
      • Restauro
      • Sport / Divertimenti
      • Animazione / Spettacoli
      • Valutare il prezzo
      • Overall Score 8.14/10
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