The Hilton Garden Inn on 49th Street and 8th Avenue is a very pleasant surprise. In fact, if it didn’t have the HGI name on it, a visitor might easily mistake it for a new boutique hotel. (Note to Hilton—why are some of the most interesting initiatives rolled out at HGI and Hampton properties? For example, amazing to get mouthwash at an HGI, but not at a full service Hilton. . .hmmmm. Ditto for good, wifi—free and everywhere)
If there is a more convenient location in New York, I am not familiar with it. The C and E trains are across the street, the 1 trains are a block away, and Radio City/Rockefeller Center are just a few blocks beyond that subway station. Times Square is close at hand, and beyond the theatres, this area is home to countless restaurants, both on 46th Street’s Restaurant Row (between 8th and 9th Avenue) and the main 9th Avenue spine of the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood between 43rd and 55th Streets. Central Park is less than ten blocks’ walk.
The staff of the hotel is uniformly helpful, cheerful, and proactive. My room was not ready when I checked in, and the restaurant was still serving breakfast—so the front desk agent bought me breakfast in Pigalle, the hotel’s bistro. Note to other hotels: This kind of proactive hospitality should be a part of all hotels’ arsenal. As well, I didn’t need to ask for it. . . In the evening, be sure to snag a cookie or two at the front desk—they put them out, and it is a nice touch in a hotel filled with them.
Pigalle’s breakfasts are very good, and as a Hilton HHonors Gold member, I receive breakfast for free when I stay at HGIs. This restaurant feels like an independently run bistro—if the hotel does indeed run it, this is a concept that should be replicated elsewhere—and the full American breakfast is a plated cooked-to-order menu, rather than a buffet some other Hiltons/HGIs/Hampton Inn feature. And for late risers, it is great that breakfast is served until 11:30 each morning. The restaurant’s likely theme, theatre district location, and prix fixe specials have it busy during all its operating hours—the vibrancy of the place is a great addition to the hotel—complete with a traditional bistro bar.
This hotel had a previous life as a motor lodge, but the renovation has been complete. The hallways are bright and well decorated, with well done black & white photos of NYC displayed. The rooms are nicely sized for NYC—normal for other cities I guess—with granite top desks, a microwave/refrigerator/coffee maker, and easy chair. For a mid-city location, the hotel room is notably quiet. HGI takes special pride in its beds, and while the mattress is not the cushy or heavenly variety other hotels favor, the comfort is noteworthy—with white duvets and New Zealand lambswool mattress covers. Wireless internet is free throughout the hotel for guests, and there are printing facilities in the lobby’s business center.
The bathroom is adequate and nicely finished with granite and a curved shower rod—though the space is small enough that if you are not careful, the end of your shower curtain will wind up dipping into the toilet bowl.
With all these advantages, why isn’t my score for this hotel higher? Well, while I used points to stay at this HGI, the online rate for the evenings I overnighted here was $389. And while the breakfast was a part of my Gold HHonors benefit, that rate would not include breakfast customarily. There is no doubt that New York can be an expensive city, but $389 is an outrageous rate for an HGI—however convenient the location or stylish the redesign. For $389, a visitor can and should have a beachfront room in a Caribbean resort in high season, or three nights in a suite at The Venetian in Vegas in December. If I were to pay $389, I should be enjoying one of NYC’s storied hotels—not an admittedly very pleasant HGI on 8th Avenue.
So value is important consideration in the rating of a hotel. If this property has the $150-$200 rate that is reasonable for a stay of this quality—my rating would be a solid 4 dots—and I would recommend this hotel without hesitation. For the management of this hotel to charge nearly $400 a night (with NYC’s taxes, at four night stay will easily surpass $1700 here at that rate) is sheer profiteering. And this hotel is just not worth that.
Kudos to the management, staff, and designers of this great little hotel. The pricing people, however, need to reread the definition of value and start doing their jobs accordingly. To price this hotel at nearly $400 a night during a recession is just obscene—so shame on the people at this hotel or the owners who prompt such greed that they taint an otherwise noteworthy hotel with rates unbecoming to it.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Prime Times Square location with COMPLIMENTARY amenities including Internet, fitness center, business center & more! Hilton Garden Inn Times Square is a modern hotel with best Times Square location that is steps from Broadway theaters, Restaurant Row, TKTS discount theater ticket booth, famous 42nd Street and much more. Located on Eighth Avenue at 48th Street in the heart of Times Square, the hotel is in the midst of New York City’s best restaurants, lively nightlife, sightseeing and shopping. Hilton Garden Inn Times Square is walking distance to all major subway lines, Radio City Music Hall, Rockefeller Center, Central Park, Carnegie Hall, the Museum of Modern Art, Jacob Javits Convention Center and Port Authority Bus Terminal plus is convenient to all (3) area airports.The hotel features 369 oversized, contemporary-styled guestrooms each equipped with 32-inch LCD flat panel television, refrigerator, microwave, safe, coffeemaker large work desk with ergonomic chair and complimentary Internet access with secure remote printing to the hotel’s Business Center. COMPLIMENTARY amenities include high-speed lobby and guestroom Internet access, 24-hour Business Center, 24-hour Fitness Center, morning coffee and tea in the lobby and USA Today®. Additional onsite amenities include Pigalle Restaurant and Lounge (a 1950’s style Paris café that is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner), XVI Rooftop Lounge (the only Hilton Garden Inn in Manhattan with a rooftop bar!), evening room service, 24-hour Pavilion Pantry (stocked with your favorite snacks, drinks & toiletries) and Concierge/Theater Ticket Desk. The hotel is 100% non-smoking. Self parking is available. The hotel allows service pets. 24-hour Security onsite. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Hilton Hotels Direct, Odigeo, Southall Travel, Evoline ltd, Ebookers, HotelQuickly, getaroom.com and Cancelon so you can book your Hilton Garden Inn Times Square reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Hilton Garden Inn Times Square Hotel New York City
- Hilton Garden Inn Manhattan
- Hilton New York City
- Hilton Garden Inn New York
- Times Square Hilton Garden Inn
- New York City Hilton