The best boutique hotels in New York City
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After narrowing a hotel search by budget and location, the next key factor often comes down to what type of travel experience you seek.
For some, that’s five-star luxury. For others, it’s a basic base to sleep and shower.
There’s also the sweet spot reserved by boutique properties that are luxe without being over the top and sing to a more individualized tune. They’re led by design and personality, rather than a one-size-fits-all corporate model.
In a boutique hotel, a smaller scale layout offers (hopefully, anyway) more personality than a hotel housing potentially thousands. Amenities are thoughtful and well-curated and offer travelers an overall experience, not just a hotel.
Boutique hotels in New York have perfected this approach with properties that are more accessible than ultra-luxury hotels but remain well-elevated over no-frill chains. Rooms might be smaller, but are often located in hip neighborhoods where the property draws inspiration from surroundings. The design is usually purposeful and contemporary, and in my experience, involves a surprisingly high number of glass-enclosed bathrooms.
If you’re considering visiting amid the novel coronavirus, it’s important to understand the risks associated with travel, and hotels specifically right now. Without a vaccine, there is no guarantee of safety and we always recommend following guidelines from organizations such as the CDC and WHO. You’ll also want to assess your own risk factors and check state and government guidelines before making any travel plans. Keep in mind that New York currently has a 14-day quarantine in place for any travelers coming from a lengthy list of states. That list continues to evolve and change frequently, so check the latest regulations here before traveling.
But with safety top of mind, hotels have implemented new cleaning procedures. We’ve noted new policies for each listing below, but it’s always a good idea to read up on new standards for yourself as well before making any bookings.
Need more New York hotel inspiration? Click below to jump directly to all our coverage of the best hotels in New York City.
To help narrow the boutique field and highlight the best, we stayed at, toured, and researched boutique hotels in New York highlight the very best. Hotels were selected based on the following criteria:
These are the best boutique hotels in New York City to book in 2020, sorted by price from low to high:
Book Gild Hall starting at $122 per night
Gild Hall, a Thompson Hotel from World of Hyatt, offers much more personality than the typical Financial District hotel. Warm and welcoming, the cozy decor is inspired by Aspen country houses for an overall vibe that feels rustic and woodsy, yet elegant. Details such as tufted leather, dark wood, and brass accents are woven throughout the property, as well as a lobby chandelier fashioned out of antlers.
Mid-tier rooms typically start in the mid $300s per night in popular seasons, but nightly rates for smaller rooms start under $200, making it an interesting, out-of-the-box option for an otherwise corporate neighborhood.
Pros: Intricate design and decor that stands in sharp contrast to neighborhood surroundings, but in a good way.
Cons: Starter rooms can be small, and on-site amenities as well, in particular, the gym.
COVID-19 policies: This hotel is open and accepting new reservations with the following new procedures in place:
- Masks required at all times in public areas by staff and guests.
- Hand sanitizer stations placed throughout the hotel’s public areas.
- Mobile check-in and keyless entry are available via the World of Hyatt app.
- Guests receive a personal Wellness Kit, which includes a single-use mask, sanitizing wipes and remote control sleeve.
- All hard and soft surfaces in guest rooms are cleaned and sanitized, and guest rooms are sealed for a minimum of 24-hours prior to arrival. Electro-static sprayers are used for enhanced measures.
- Housekeeping services can be scheduled or declined based on guest’s preferences.
- Fitness Centers are open, though reservations are required and can be made through the front desk.
- See more info here.
Read our full hotel review for Gild Hall
Book MADE Hotel starting at $129 per night
MADE Hotel is a boutique property through and through with boho-chic design, quirky public spaces, minimal but mod rooms, and lush green plants spilling over throughout sunsoaked public areas.
It’s the kind of hotel that caters to guests who prefer experiential, one-of-a-kind properties — this is likely nothing like any Marriott you’ve ever stayed in. Think exposed red piping, beds perched atop platforms, and tribal fabrics in guest rooms that make smart use of small spaces.
Pros: On-site venues such as the rooftop bar make it a base you’ll want to stay and spent time at. Standard entry-level rooms are just as nice as more expansive suites, so save your money for exploring the city.
Cons: While they look nice, some bathrooms aren’t designed in the most efficient way and feel small and can become messy easily.
COVID-19 policies: MADE Hotel is open and accepting reservations. They are rolling out new procedures that include:
- Guest rooms will be left un-entered for 24 hours.
- Rooms will only be serviced upon request.
- Increased frequency of cleaning and disinfecting in public spaces.
- Following cleaning and disinfecting protocols to clean rooms, with particular attention paid to high-touch items.
- Read more here.
Read our full hotel review for MADE
The Evelyn New York
Book The Evelyn New York starting at $138 per night
The Evelyn is a historic NoMad hotel that recently underwent a multi-million dollar renovation for a new look that’s pretty darn charming.
While many rooms and public spaces were updated, the hotel still preserved the building’s iconic roots in music and history by maintaining original Art Deco design (pay attention to details in flooring and in the lounge area), which you’ll spy throughout the hotel and in guest rooms.
Pros: The Art Deco style is whimsical and envelops you in a stay that feels worlds away.
Cons: Rooms are on the small side, making it ideal for a solo business traveler, or couples looking for an intimate, boutique stay.
COVID-19 policies: This hotel is currently closed through September 15, 2020.
Read our full review of The Evelyn New York
Hotel 50 Bowery
Book Hotel 50 Bowery starting at $142 per night
Another World of Hyatt Joie de Vivre boutique property, Hotel 50 Bowery brings design-forward decor to the edgy Lower East Side.
We like how it takes inspiration from its rich cultural surroundings, and balcony rooms offer incredible views of New York City for quite reasonable prices. The rooftop bar is a destination in itself, but staying here also places you at the doorstep of fun dining and nightlife. This is a strong pick next time you want to stay downtown.
Pros: The hip, style-minded lobby and rooms, with interesting accents such as a boxer’s robe in place of a traditional bathrobe, plus stellar views and a great rooftop.
Cons: While some may love the LES/Chinatown location, others might find it noisy and far from tourist sightseeing. There is a lot to do in this part of town, but don’t expect to be near lush green parks.
COVID-19 policies: This hotel is open and accepting new reservations with policies that include:
- Limits on the number of people in an elevator and fitness center at one time.
- Frequent cleaning of high traffic public spaces and touchpoints.
- More frequent replacement of HVAC filters in guestrooms and public spaces with HEPA filters.
- Revised guestroom setups and the removal of high touch items.
- Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting measures of all guestrooms.
- Read more here.
Read our full hotel review of Hotel 50 Bowery
Moxy NYC Chelsea
Book Moxy NYC Chelsea starting at $149 per night
The Moxy Chelsea is a Marriott property but feels far from corporate with distinct character and vibrant design.
We like the location in the pretty flower district, which is wedged between NYC’s Chelsea and NoMad neighborhoods. Some rooms can be small, but great views, a rooftop bar, and an ideal location make staying here feel worth the tradeoff. Like most New York hotels, expect higher prices during peak seasons.
Pros: Views for days, Marriott Bonvoy earning potential, and the Chelsea location.
Cons: The hotel is expensive for what may seem like a quite standard offering.
COVID-19 procedures: Moxy is open and accepting reservations. New procedures follow that of the Marriott Bonvoy brand and Marriott’s new ‘Global Cleanliness Council’ policies that include:
- New cleaning technologies that include electrostatic sprayers for touchless disinfecting capabilities and cleaning processes.
- Surfaces are treated with hospital-grade disinfectants and cleaning is done with increased frequency.
- In guest rooms, Marriott has added detailed cleaning practices, requiring all surfaces be thoroughly cleaned with hospital-grade disinfectants. The company will also be placing disinfecting wipes in each room for guests’ personal use.
- Signage in lobbies will remind guests to maintain social distancing protocols.
- Added partitions at front desks provide an extra level of precaution for guests and associates.
- More hand sanitizing stations around Marriott’s hotels particularly near the entrances and front desks, elevator banks, fitness areas, and meeting spaces.
- Read more here.
Read our full review of Moxy Chelsea
Book Kixby starting at $152 per night
Kixby is a newer addition to Herald Square in Midtown Manhattan, housed in a historic building that dates back to 1901.
Many guest rooms and public spaces underwent an impressive redesign, meant to evoke a members-only club feel, and despite the often hectic surrounding neighborhood, rooms are quiet and calming. Newer renovated Lux rooms have soaring high ceilings, but older Classic rooms are actually larger and cheaper. Both offer value considering the central location, new look, and good on-site offerings.
Pros: The vintage-inspired style and decor feel immersive, and the hotel’s bar has an excellent drink program headed up by industry pro.
Cons: Newer renovated rooms are smaller and more expensive than their larger, but older, counterparts.
COVID-19 policies: This hotel is currently closed until November 2, 2020.
Read our full hotel review for Kixby
Book Sixty SoHo starting at $157 per night
Boutique hotels feel tailor-made for a neighborhood like SoHo, filled with fashionable shops and haunts. This hip hotel is nearly a natural extension of the neighborhood with style-minded, contemporary accommodations that draw a sleek crowd.
Ultimately, it can be an expensive hotel, but lower rates are possible, especially if you visit midweek, or in shoulder and off seasons such as winter. However, staying here made us feel like a SoHo A-lister, and if you’re flexible on travel timing, the chic setting is hard to beat.
Pros: Fancy digs with a coveted SoHo address.
Cons: Room prices can be expensive and fluctuate greatly, and some past guest complain staff can be snooty.
COVID-19 procedures: This hotel is open and accepting reservations. Sixty Hotels are implementing new procedures that include:
- Check-in/check-out kiosks available for contactless service.
- UV lights are used on guest’s luggage and HVAC systems to promote filtration.
- Rooms are left to “rest” between guests according to health expert guidance.
- Rooms are only serviced and sanitized before check-in and after check-out unless requested otherwise by guests.
- The front desk has been equipped with a plexiglass screen.
- Compressed spray cleaners and electrostatic spray cleaners have been implemented.
- Read more here.
Read our full hotel review for Sixty SoHo
Park South Hotel
Book Park South Hotel starting at $159 per night
Rooms at the four-star Park South Hotel are straightforward, well-appointed, and traditional in Manhattan’s NoMad neighborhood.
The hotel is a member of World of Hyatt’s Joie de Vivre boutique portfolio and the standout culinary program almost upstages the tasteful, but somewhat basic rooms. With even more affordable prices found in low season, this is one of the most value-packed boutique properties on our list.
Pros: The on-site food and drink are excellent and should be woven into any itinerary, and the pricing is competitive for similar hotels in New York.
Cons: Pricing is also unstable and can surge hundreds higher at busy times. Book in advance to try and avoid this, if possible.
COVID-19 policies: This hotel is currently closed until October 1, 2020.
Read our full hotel review for Park South Hotel
The Park Terrace Hotel
Book the Park Terrace Hotel starting at $167 per night
The Park Terrace is a boutique offering where little details shine. Each floor has an amenity closet filled with necessities for guests to take and use as they please, plus unlimited filtered water, a thoughtful wellness program, and an excellent breakfast buffet included for all guests, where all items are sourced from local favorite bakers and cafes.
All of the above, combined with a private, tranquil terrace makes staying here feels like you’ve stumbled onto a lovely little secret.
Pros: The low-key boutique vibe across from Bryant Park, and the not-to-be-missed New York-inspired breakfast buffet, included in all room reservations.
Cons: Room rates can be expensive and standard rooms are small.
COVID-19 procedures: The Park Terrace Hotel is open and accepting new reservations with a ‘Certified Safe & Clean’ program in place based on expert advice and guidance that includes:
- Contactless check-in options via the mobile app or website.
- Plexiglass shields installed at front desks.
- Once cleaned, rooms will be sealed by the cleaning staff and only broken by the guest entering the room. There will be 24-hour buffers between guests.
- All amenities provided will be single-use.
- Increased cleaning of all HVAC systems.
- High-touch public spaces will be cleaned at least once per hour throughout the day with hospital grade disinfectant.
- The fitness center will initially be closed and will open as conditions permit. We will provide recommended walking and jogging trails as well as local partner health clubs.
- Read more here.
Read our full review of the Park Terrace Hotel
Ace Hotel New York
Book Ace Hotel New York starting at $169 per night
Ace Hotels have long established themselves as the hotel cool kid, with outposts in cities like Portland, Palm Springs, Seattle, and others.
The New York location is equally inviting with dim lighting, minimal rooms, and industrial-meets-masculine decor. If you’re looking for a hotel where the scene is as hip as the rooms, Ace won’t disappoint. It also doubled as a creative base for locals who hang out on low slung couches to talk ideas over coffee or cocktails.
Larger rooms can be expensive, but small or bunk bed rooms offer the cheapest rates.
Pros: The hip Ace brand reputation, which promises to deliver on cool factor, but without delivering it in a cookie-cutter way. Each location feels unique and this NoMad hotel, in particular, has excellent on-site stores and eateries.
Cons: Some rooms are small, and show wear and tear. The lobby can become quite crowded from locals who use it as their co-working space.
COVID-19 policies: The Ace Hotel is accepting reservations and has implemented new policies that include:
- All staff and guests must wear face coverings in public areas and masks are available for guests.
- Implementing deep cleaning and sanitation of public spaces on an hourly schedule.
- Guest rooms are thoroughly cleaned and sanitized and then sealed for your safety for a minimum of 24 hours prior to the next guest arrival to allow for proper deep cleaning.
- Limiting the number of reservations and safely distancing occupied rooms.
- Read more here.
Read our full hotel review of Ace New York
Library Hotel New York
Book Library Hotel New York starting at $195 per night
Many great boutique hotels come with a theme and the four-star Library Hotel in Midtown executes theirs exceptionally well. It’s a charming book lover’s paradise with themed floors and over 6,000 book titles available to thumb through. Though, there’s also plenty to like even if you’re not planning to kick back with a good book.
The highly-reviewed property consistently ranks within Trip Advisor’s top 10 hotels in New York City, and after spending the night, it’s easy to see why it scores so much hype among fellow travelers. With wine and cheese receptions, 24/7 snacks and refreshments, and breakfast included for all guests, staying here feels homey and comfortable.
Pros: Perks such as happy hour, lounge access, and breakfast included in room rates adds strong value, even if prices start a bit high.
Cons: Rooms feel dated and small, and are not as stylish as other NYC hotels. Decor focuses more on the book theme, rather than high-end design.
COVID-19 procedures: This hotel will begin accepting reservations on September 10, 2020, with new policies that will include:
- Payment and check-in will be contactless and room keys have been through a UV-C cleaning process.
- Guest rooms are cleaned, sanitized, and sealed for your arrival. Staff will only enter your room upon request.
- The hotel will use EPA-certified products and CDC protocols to fight against viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens on all equipment, furniture, and surfaces.
- Increased the daily number of scheduled disinfecting and sanitation times for all spaces, with extra attention to high touch areas like door handles, banister railings, public restrooms, and elevators.
- Motion activated anti-bacterial stations, physical distancing markers, and NanoSeptic Ⓡ Self-Cleaning pads have been installed throughout the hotel.
- Appropriate PPE is required for all staff and available for you on arrival. Staff has undergone COVID-19 training.
- Removal of high-touch amenities (magazine, pens, notepads, umbrellas, etc.) from rooms, which are available upon request. All single-use or disposable items in rooms will be removed and disposed of following each guest.
- Some amenities and services may be limited or unavailable during your stay.
- All guests are asked to wear a mask in public spaces and when interacting with our team, and practice physical distancing in shared spaces and limit person-to person contact.
Read our full hotel review of Library Hotel
Book The Beekman Hotel starting at $237 per night
Behind a historic, yet unassuming facade, The Beekman Hotel is a boutique jewel hiding in plain sight. The New York City landmark building dates back to 1881 and features a breathtaking nine-story atrium that dazzles every time you see it.
We spent the night in a suite, and while lovely, your money is better spent in a more affordable Superior Queen, which feels equally memorable, especially since you’ll want to spend most of your time out of the room, exploring the hotel’s intriguing nooks and crannies.
Pros: Incredible architecture, friendly service, great on-site food and drink.
Cons: Many previous guests have complained of noise, which we experienced from construction and street traffic.
COVID-19 policies: This hotel is open and accepting new reservations with the following new procedures in place, guided by Hyatt’s Global Care & Cleanliness Commitment:
- All colleagues, guests, and patrons will be required to have a thermal temperature scan and wellbeing check upon entering the building.
- Face coverings will be required at all times inside public spaces, as well as in designated outdoor spaces, when social distancing is not possible.
- Guests will be advised to maintain a safe distance of six feet apart in all public spaces. Elevator spacing and reduced capacity guidelines will be adhered to throughout the hotel.
- Hand sanitizer stations will be prominently placed throughout the hotel’s public spaces and on each floor.
- Enhanced cleaning and sanitation protocols use EPA-registered disinfectants throughout the property, with increased frequency of property- wide cleaning including all high touch surfaces in public spaces, guest rooms, and back of house spaces.
- Guest rooms will remain vacant for a minimum of 48 hours prior to the next guest’s arrival and certain high-touch items have been removed.
- Housekeeping will only enter when the room is vacant and must be scheduled.
- New in-room fitness and wellness experiences have been designed to nurture your wellbeing. The fitness center will adhere to limited capacity guidelines and be available by appointment only.
- On-site dining will provide a modified “knock-and-drop” contactless in-room dining program.
- Contactless payment options will be made available on property.
Read our full hotel review of The Beekman Hotel
Book The Wythe Hotel starting at $245 per night
Williamsburg in Brooklyn is much like the boutique concept itself, with local artisan wares, small-batch products, and hip intrigue spilling out from most restaurants, bars, and storefronts.
The Wythe Hotel helped this trend along when it became the first hotel to open on Wythe Avenue in 2012, which is now dotted with several more hotel competitors. But none diminish the superb efforts of the Wythe. Entry level rooms are nice, but for a smidge more, the Brooklyn King room offers stronger value and feels like the New York apartment of your dreams with exposed brick, soaring ceilings, and repurposed midcentury modern furniture soaked in natural light.
Pros: The on-site restaurant Le Crocodile is a must for a French meal, and the rooftop bar Lemon’s serves a killer cocktail, with sublime views to boot.
Cons: Don’t be surprised if you’re paying well into the $400s for the entry level Queen room in peak seasons.
COVID-19 procedures: The Wythe Hotel is open and accepting reservations. They have not advertised specific new policies, however, in spring of 2020 they donated 2,000 room nights to local front line medical workers, and during that time implemented new practices to keep guests and staff safe and healthy.
Read our full hotel review for The Wythe Hotel
The Williamsburg Hotel
Book The Williamsburg Hotel starting at $269 per night
Another Williamsburg standout, The Williamsburg Hotel impresses quickly with meticulously-curated style, panoramic city views, and wonderful on-site food and drink that locals love, too.
The hotel channels the neighborhood’s cool factor, weaving it through guest room offerings and products, pop-up shops in the lobby, and weekly programming that includes anything from basket weaving and flower arranging to music sets and facials. While other area hotels are overtly modern and luxe, the Williamsburg Hotel is both, but with a more intimate, laid-back vibe. Starter rooms are small but sophisticated and as glam as you’d expect from this hip hood with wood floors and gorgeous jewel-toned furniture and bathrooms.
Pros: Guests receive priority access to the popular rooftop water tower bar and trendy pool scene. Rooms are well-designed and the gem-toned tiled bathrooms are gorgeous.
Cons: Entry-level rooms are very small and not soundproofed from other hotel guests. Splurging on a suite is really the only way to avoid both pain points.
COVID-19 procedures: The Williamsburg Hotel is open and accepting new reservations. They have implemented new policies that include:
- All bed linens are changed daily and washed at a high temperature. They have also increased the frequency of air filter replacement.
- Common areas are sanitized every hour.
- All venues will be at 50% capacity until WHO guidelines are lifted.
- Sanitizing safety kits are given to all guests.
- Rooms are cleaned with hospital-grade cleaning supplies including a virucide and hand sanitizer agent which is used on all surfaces.
- Read more here.
Read our full hotel review for The Williamsburg Hotel
1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge
Book 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge starting at $303 per night
Often, boutique means tiny rooms that quickly feel cramped. 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge makes excellent use of smaller spaces in the standard rooms, however, and it felt more spacious than many other standard rooms we’ve stayed in for the same price. Reclaimed wood and materials, green plants, and a soothing neutral palette make guest rooms feel like a calming oasis akin to a woodsy cabin.
Except when you pull back the curtains here, you’re met with beautiful floor-to-ceiling views of Manhattan and, of course, the Brooklyn Bridge. It’s such a sight, you’ll quickly pat yourself on the back for deciding to stay somewhere where you can gaze at the city and travel to it with ease, rather than cram yourself into the thick of it.
Pros: Rooms are comfortable and cozy without feeling small or overly minimal. The waterfront location is lovely and most rooms offer unbeatable city views.
Cons: The shower was glass-enclosed and provided little, if any, privacy.
COVID-19 procedures: This hotel is open and accepting reservations. All 1 Hotels are implementing new policies that include:
- Properties sanitized using hospital-grade EPA approved agents and virus-eliminating UV technologies.
- High touchpoints sanitized multiple times per day using UV technologies.
- All guests will be given wellness kits upon arrival and luggage and packages will be sanitized using UV technology.
- Guestrooms will be thoroughly sanitized and sealed prior to guests entering.
- Read more here.
Read our full review of 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge
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