We booked at Sanctuary after reading the glowing reviews on TripAdvisor and cannot put into words how happy we are that we did...but let me give it a shot.
We were booked at Sanctuary in New York for three weeks in three rooms for myself and my husband (Superior King Room), My 67 year old mother (Superior Queen Room), and my parents in Law (the "Sweet"). We were all in New York to celebrate my 30th Birthday (on Memorial Day) and as we were the largest party for the longest stay Sanctuary has had in it's small but stellar history so far, we feel it appropriate to give a complete an honest review here on TripAdvisor.
Our experience began well before we checked in...given there were 5 of us who all wanted different things from our holiday we were in constant email correspondence with the remarkable Jacob Schwartz (Head of Concierge). Jacob was amazing, we mentioned we were "foodies" and gave a list to Jacob of the restaurants we wanted to visit....we are so glad that Jacob threw out our list and instead gave us his "improved" list. We were delighted, every mouthful in every restaurant he sent us to was the most delicious thing we had ever tasted......I'm telling you, DON'T book a restaurant in NYC without consulting this man first, he knows his stuff. Not only was Jacob warm and friendly, precise and accurate (a godsend when you are not familiar with the currency, custom's, etc), but also he does his job SO well that I want him to quit tomorrow, move to Australia, and come and work for me in my furniture store. I'm not joking.
We also wanted to see/do lots of different New York things i.e. Mum wanted to go to the United Nations, we wanted to do a Helicopter ride, my parents in law wanted to see the Naked Cowboy, etc, etc...Jacob made it ALL happen, we also did it without lines/queue's and were treated like royalty everywhere we went. Unbeknownst to me Jacob had told every restaurant he booked that it was my 30th birthday and were given birthday cake/free drinks/special attention everywhere!
Now here is were I want to introduce Jacob's "right hand man"....the equally as stellar Brandon McMillan. Now girls, I'm just telling you know, Brandon is the most gorgeous specimen I've ever seen, at first I found it hard to talk to him because he's just so good looking, but after I got over that I realized that Brandon is just as amazing as Jacob, he went to great lengths to make us welcome. Things like running down to 6th in the pouring rain to bring a cab to the front door of the hotel for us, helping my mum to get a cake from Magnolia Bakery and candles ready for when I came downstairs on my birthday (side note here that all the staff gathered to sing "Happy Birthday" to me and give me a big hug...never felt so special in my life), and organizing THAT night in Astoria....what happens in Astoria stays in Astoria so I'm sorry I can't elaborate.
So now that I've gushed about my two favorite men at Sanctuary let me give you the lowdown on staying there:
Superior King Room - I'll review this room only as this was the one myself and my husband were staying in (I'll leave the others to post their own reviews). The room was small but not as small as some of the reviews here had led me to believe. The bed was very comfortable, the shower is fabulous, and there was heaps of room for us, two suitcases each, and the furniture. The only downside is that the airconditioning is quite loud - too loud to sleep with it on, so we just opened the window during the night to allow a breeze through. As there is no view (the window faces a wall) it's completely quiet and the lack of sunshine allows for a cool breeze. We turned the television on about 15 days into the trip for the first time, there aren't many stations but if your in NYC, staying at Sanctuary, and want to watch TV then there is something very wrong with you.
The Hotel Location/Amenities - Location cannot be beaten...5 doors from the TKTS booth in Times Square, right near two subway stations, tucked away in a quiet street opposite a carpark so not much through traffic. It will be great when the restaurant is done, that was the only thing really missing from the hotel. The free Wi-Fi is great, it's not fast, but good enough for doing status updates and sending emails.The breakfast is fine, not exciting but good for grabbing a quick bagel with your cappuccino before heading out for the day. The housekeeping is quick, go down for a coffee and you'll probably have a made up room by the time you get back! There is no gym/pool/etc but I believe they have an agreement with a local place (we didn't check that out). The decor is great, I really liked the low lighting, asian/contemporary decor, it really felt upper class and exactly as the name suggests..like a "Sanctuary" whenever you got home.
The "Haven" rooftop bar - COMPLETELY AMAZING! OK this place opened about 3 weeks before we arrived (winning!), there are still a few teething problems with making cocktails and wait time for food when it's packed, but I am still rating this place in my top 3 bars in the world. Picture great views, fabulous decor, and the staff....particularly the gorgeous Dyana (server) and Mike (who works the door bringing people up to Haven...please forgive me if I got that name wrong), every time we went upstairs to Haven they had a special spot for us ready and treated all the "Miller's" especially "Princess Caroline" like royalty. We spent a lot of time at Haven and it was fabulous.
The Hotel Staff - As others have mentioned the doormen/reception staff were examples of the best in the world. All 5 of us have traveled extensively and we are amazed how Sanctuary has managed to find the best of the best in every area of the business. I can't remember everyone's names but I want to make particular mention of Julio on the door, the two GORGEOUS girls at reception, Jimmy with his hilarious "British" attitude, Vassilio who does the night shift (hope you enjoyed the McFlurry, sorry we don't remember arriving back with it!), The gorgeous girl on the Spresso bar (she makes a mean coffee...yes other Melbourites you won't be dissapointed).
We booked directly with the hotel, this meant that when we wanted to extend mum's stay and reduce our stay by two nights (for an unscheduled trip to DC) Jeremy could not have been more obliging and made it all happen with no stress.
So as you can gather from this review, I've sort of turned it into a "Thank you" rather than a normal review but it sums up what the Sanctuary is all about. After 3 weeks I realized that they actually do genuinely care about their guests and how much they enjoyed their trip. I think most of the staff tend to take their cue's from Jacob and Brandon, I'm not sure if the place would be the same if those two weren't there setting the example for the other staff. So it's an 'out of the ordinary' review for me but that was our experience and I'm glad to share it..all I can say is book here, have an open mind, and enjoy the best NYC has to offer.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Sanctuary Hotel New York is located in the heart of midtown and steps away Times Square. This discrete boutique hotel offers highly personalized service with Sanctuary’s very own S.T.A.R.™ Program (Service Tailored to Any Request). Luxurious rooms are decorated with a rich warm palette that includes deep orange, chocolate brown and cognac. Leather headboards and crystal chandeliers add a touch of glamour, with pillow-top mattresses that compliment imported European sheets, duvets and terry. Each room includes iHome stereo systems that supports iPod, iPhone and iPad, HDTVs complete with premium movies, and Eco-friendly organic bath amenities. Sanctuary Hotel features a fireplace-adorned lobby with an energetic bar lounge offering signature cocktails. The hotel provides • Free Continental-style breakfast buffet• Free Wi-Fi• Free access to Equinox gym. S.T.A.R.™ Experience Managers are available to assist you with transportation services, restaurant reservations, theater and event tickets, to spa appointments or anything else that your heart may desire. ... more less
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