Renaissance New York Midtown Guest Room Stonebridge Companies

Take a Tour: The Renaissance New York Midtown Hotel

Dave Farmer Uncategorized

Originally appeared in Forbes in July, 2018


One of the most striking, most audacious design touches the boasts is a clock.

Not just any clock. A four-story LED clock at the very top of the 432-ft building—a welcome injection of dynamism and color to the skyline in the city’s Garment District, on 35th Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenues. At certain times—the appearance of the clock changes constantly—the clock takes the form of a peacock, its tail feathers on extravagant display.

To be perfectly honest, a great many of the guests, occupying the hotel’s 348 guest rooms, won’t even be aware of it. But, to onlookers, it provides an idea of the interplay of art, design and technological razzle-dazzle going on within the building itself, courtesy of the hospitality-design wizardry of .

From the earliest moments of the hotel experience, there’s plenty to gawk or marvel at. Guests entering the hotel will immediately find themselves in ’s interactive passage, with colorful displays—via a combination of reflective wallpaper, motion detectors, projectors and 3-D cameras—that react to your every movement.

Even on the initial ride up to the sixth-floor lobby, you can’t miss that the elevator cabs are adorned with life-size pictures of well-dressed, drink-holding revelers—as if you’re joining a party already in progress.

On the sixth floor itself, guests will discover… Frankly, there’s a lot to discover in the sprawling, light-filled space, starting with a material palette that perfectly combines the concrete grit of the neighborhood with the chic elegance of the fashion industry.

On either side of the front desk, ’s frenetic photographic collages of New York are projected onto concrete, while a rousing quote from Diane von Furstenberg, “Attitude is everything,” is rendered in push-pins on a wall, in a piece by .

Ruel and Woolery are among several artists commissioned by Beers, through art marketplace Indie Wails, to make original works for the building. A personal favorite, again perfectly fashion-centric: “The Devil Wears Nada,” by Brooklyn-based artist , constructed out of more than 50 stiletto heels.

The lobby bar is an exquisite white-grey block of Calacatta marble. Seated on one of the upholstered bar stools, a certain kind of mind won’t be able to help but notice, and be pleased by, the mathematically precise placement of whiskey bottles behind the bar. Beyond the floor-to-ceiling windows, the bar offers views of the fifth-floor terrace (more about which later), and you can nurse your drink lounging on any number of winged chairs, barrel chairs or cushion-adorned sofas throughout the Library Lounge. There are laptop-friendly communal tables, more quotes from the likes of fashion greats Coco Chanel and Oscar de la Renta, and a secret DJ booth that whirrs to life on weeknights.

Gosh, all this before you’ve even reached your room. Neutral colors and pale finishes abound in the uncluttered , with occasional splashes of purple in the bedding and upholstery. As with the lobby, floor-to-ceiling windows allow natural light to stream in, while the all-white Italian marble en-suite bathroom is separated from the sleeping area by a frosted-glass shower wall.

For the high-flyers, there are seven Executive Suites and one Empire Suite, the latter offering a sitting/living area, dining area, stainless-steel kitchen area and wine bar, library and balcony space, which—as a friend with superior eyesight noticed immediately—offers a downtown view of the Statue of Liberty in the distance, in between skyscrapers.

Also worth highlighting: the hotel’s on-site, fifth-floor restaurant, (formerly Rock & Reilly’s), has just undergone a thoughtful, classier reimagining. With the building’s proximity to Madison Square Garden, it’s an inevitable destination for the sports-minded and, sometimes, the sportspeople themselves. (WWE performers have been known to drop by.) There are still plenty of television screens to catch any number of games but, as of this summer, you’re far more likely to spot buttoned-up business types along with jersey-wearing superfans, in more sophisticated surrounds, including an expansive and inviting terrace. (Brunch fans note: the Smashed Avocado Toast, with a generous helping of baby greens, is a dish worth cheering for.)

By: Darryn King