Maybe because the room rates of Holiday Inn Express are on the budget range. People in general, the staff - they are a bit more genuine and sincere in hospitality.
Staff are extremely friendly. If you're not a stuffed-up snob yourself, you're able to converse on how's your day to what's on TV... It's great to have some sort of human-connection with real people after a long day's work or travel. I was smoking outside, the doorman from Eastern Europe exchanged thoughts on New York City... Interesting to hear what others have to say about the city.
Because there's no attitude or much pretense from walking to the lobby and be completely decked out with a fake smile. You can relax without an eye-roll or a stare from head-to-toe looking as if you're a Martian (as long as you're fairly the average Mr./Ms. Joe...) I guess depends what you like. Some do like all the glitz and glam with a massive hangout bar/lounge in the hotel...
The location is towards the outskirts of the Mid (Upper Mid) West Side. It's slightly away from all the hustle and bustle. Not bad to have a walk to/from the hotel in the morning/afternoon after sight-seeing/work, consider that a chill-out, cooling off walk and you'd get to have a good night sleep.
15-minutes or so by foot to Columbus Circle and Central Park. About the same to Times Square.More