Cool Hotel Alert: The Carlton Hotel

Cool Hotel Alert: The Carlton Hotel

New York City hotels offer so much more than just a place to lay your weary head after a fun-filled day spent out on the town. I mean, think about it. Several NYC hotels boast cool amenities for guests (state-of-the-art gyms, palatial pools, cutting-edge salons, serenity-inducing spas and more), plus added perks like trendy restaurants, lounges and even nightclubs—open to guests and non-guests alike. These diverse accommodations range from minimalist pads to grand edifices that embrace the splendor of the big city. Earlier this week, I got a chance to check out the latter in the form of The Carlton Hotel.

A Look At The Lobby: Located in NoMad (that’s North of Madison Square Park for those not familiar with NYC’s never-ending neighborhood acronyms), The Carlton Hotel’s breathtaking Beaux-Arts-style building has remained a fixture on Madison Avenue since opening in 1904. Once inside, a winding staircase leads down to the spacious David Rockwell-designed lobby—bathed in deep chocolate, beige, gray and crimson hues—with large comfy leather chairs and substantial coffee tables. The pièce de résistance, however, is the lobby’s cascading two-story contemporary waterfall, which reveals an enormous vintage black-and-white photograph of the hotel taken in 1924.

The Restaurant(s): Offering not one but three dining options, it would be an arduous task to go hungry at The Carlton. Foodies can choose from French fare at the two-level seafood brasserie Millesime; enjoy French and Mediterranean-inspired small plates while serenaded by live music/DJs at Salon Millesime; or grab a drink and light bites in the Lobby Bar. Those that fancy themselves wine connoisseursshould head to the old-French-parlor-inspired Bar Bordeaux—the mezzanine level lounge that overlooks Salon Millesime.

Cool Fact: Given the hotel’s striking façade and interiors, it’s only natural that Hollywood came calling; popular primetime hits, including White Collar, Smash, Elementary, The Good Wife, Curb Your Enthusiasm and more have been filmed at the hotel.   

The Suite Life: The Carlton’s luxe guest accommodations include 294 rooms and 23 suites—and I got a chance to tour two of the hotel’s four specialty suites. Guests can entertain (or just relax) in the 1,050-square-foot penthouse Corner Pocket Suite—complete with a restored 1950s Brunswick Centennial billiards table, custom-made solid mahogany bar and 55-inch flat-screen TV. For even more space, the suite can connect to Carlton’s New Yorker, an equally impressive penthouse space featuring a 12-foot Chesterfield sofa, white lacquer crocodile-embossed dining table and, of course, framed New Yorker covers that date back to 1920s through to today. Both feature grand king-size beds and sunken Jacuzzi tubs.

The other two specialty suites include the Broadway Diva Suite—a shout out to the history of (and legends who’ve graced) the Great White Way, with a 14-foot custom velvet sofa, velvet chaise lounge, dressing room mirrors, playbills, and plush bedding on the canopied king-size bed. Recalling the Prohibition era and complete with a discreetly hidden back room, the Speakeasy Suite features a king-size leather Chesterfield bed, hardwood floors and solid oak wainscoting, custom bar, barstools made from wine barrel stands and a poker table for four. Going with the G-men theme, the room also boasts a tommy gun movie prop, as well as an authentic rock from Alcatraz—the California prison that was a stopping ground for several gangsters during their infamous careers.

Room rates for the current season are $249 to $499 (not including suites). Penthouse suites sell for $1,250 per night.

Getting hitched? The Carlton Hotel’s themed specialty suites are the perfect place to celebrate the upcoming nuptials—from the ultimate bachelor party in the Speakeasy Suite to a lovely day with the ladies during a bridal shower in the Broadway Diva Suite. For more on packages, click here.  

Photos Courtesy The Carlton Hotel; From top, Broadway Diva Suite and Speakeasy Suite

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