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Here’s our take on the best luxury boutique hotels in New York City (NYC) right now, from Midtown Manhattan, SoHo and the Lower East Side to Brooklyn Heights and Williamsburg. They’re all very expensive – and all worth the price.

what are the best luxury places to stay in nyc?

It’s a good problem to have, but nevertheless a problem, trying to decide where to stay in NYC when your budget will support a true luxury boutique hotel experience. Because there are SO many options! Especially in Midtown Manhattan. How do you know which ones are actually worth the (very high) price?

Dear reader, we’re here to help.

We’ve personally stayed at all of these properties (yes, it’s tough work but someone has to do it). Whether you’re in need of a staycation or you’re visiting Gotham and looking for the perfect place to establish as your home base, look no further. Herewith, in alphabetical order, the Magnificent Seven: the best luxury boutique hotels in New York City (NYC) right now, from Midtown Manhattan, SoHo and the Lower East Side to Brooklyn Heights and Williamsburg.

Which one you choose depends in large part on what neighborhood you want to make your own on this trip. The good news is that no matter what part of the city you’re thinking of, there’s a fantastic luxury boutique hotel for that.

the best luxury boutique hotels in new york city

1. the crosby street hotel.

Who doesn’t want to stay in SoHo? It’s the epicenter of chic Manhattan, filled with luxury boutiques and hot restaurants. But then again . . . who wants to stay in SoHo? Crowded, noisy sidewalks, cool kids waiting to get into the BAPE store . . . who needs it? Enter The Crosby Street Hotel, part of the Firmdale Hotel Group, the perfect place to call home when you’re tired of the cacophony of SoHo’s tony streets.

The interior courtyard is spacious enough for several full-grown trees, lots of shaded places to sit and work or just hang out, and magical fairy lights as evening falls. And the common areas are filled with contemporary art that rotates from time to time.

The rooms are spacious, with lots of  natural light and state-of-the-art bathroom amenities. The bar and restaurant on the first floor is always buzzing with energy – great for people-watching as well as for breakfast, lunch, drinks or dinner. Whenever we stay at the Crosby Street, the hardest part is having to leave . . .

2. the greenwich hotel.

If Robert De Niro were your close personal friend, you wouldn’t need to book a stay at the Greenwich Hotel in TriBeCa. But for the rest of us, this is as close as we’ll ever get to living like a Hollywood legend in our own home city.

After entering through a discreet doorway on Greenwich Street, guests immediately feel that they’ve been admitted to a lush private home whose owner has exquisite taste. The color palette in the common areas is rich and warm, with deep jewel-toned upholstery. There’s a library reserved exclusively for hotel guests, and also an incredible courtyard eatery that’s available for breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night snacks. It’s very hard to believe that there’s such a hushed and lovely space right in the middle of Gotham. True luxury, indeed.

But wait – there’s more. The onsite restaurant is the acclaimed Italian eatery Locanda Verde, which hotel guests can enter straight from the lobby. And many of the rooms, including the corner suite we stayed in, have working fireplaces, well-stocked bookshelves and beautiful decor. The views of the Hudson River are spectacular, especially at sunset.

The hotel’s spa is one of the best we’ve ever visited – their pool is made of wood from a Japanese forest and it’s utterly transporting. Meanwhile, just outside your door lies the Hudson River Park, hot restaurants like Frenchette and more. We imagine its impossible to book during the TriBeCa Film Festival. But any other time of year, this is the perfect chic haven from which to venture out into our enchanted city.

3. nine orchard.

Is it the fresh-baked sugar cookies that await you at the end of the day beside your pillow? The two onsite restaurants with a warm luxury vibe and fabulous food? The complimentary breakfast of yogurt, granola, fruit and a fresh-baked croissant? Or the warm and knowledgeable staff who quickly learn your name and make you feel as if you’re being welcomed home every time you enter the lobby?

It could be the iconic bell tower and the spacious rooms, all equipped with Apple TV, state of the art speakers and vintage-looking light fixtures. Hmmm . . . Very tough to say. We love Nine Orchard, and we’d be hard-pressed to say what the top reason is. Suffice it to say, if you’re planning on staying on the Lower East Side, this is your spot.

It’s perfectly located in Dimes Square, the micro-neighborhood on the Lower East Side that is quickly becoming a hot destination for art galleries and cool eateries. The New Museum, Essex Market and the unique small shops in the neighborhood are an easy walk away. But once we settled into our room – complete with a terrace looking out over the city that offered unparalleled views of the sunrise – we were pretty keen to stay put for a while. Tough call.

4. one hotel brooklyn bridge.

Imagine being able to see the Brooklyn Bridge as clear as day from your charming hotel room in Brooklyn Heights, which features abundant fresh greenery in addition to the spectacular view.

Or, imagine a hotel lobby so spacious and soothing that you’ll want to hang out there indefinitely. Or a rooftop restaurant that you get first dibs on as a hotel guest with even more astounding views of the Bridge, Brooklyn Bridge Park and the iconic Brooklyn Heights?

That’s One Hotel Brooklyn Bridge . . . absolutely the best place to make yourself at home near the East River and the charming historic neighborhood of Brooklyn Heights. The only problem? You’ll find it hard to leave the hotel and explore the neighborhood. But we suspect you’ll find a way to get yourself out the door, where you’ll find the New York Ferry, the River Cafe and many other memorable, only-in-New-York experiences just steps away.

5. the pendry.

OK, perhaps the Pendry Midtown West doesn’t strictly count as a boutique hotel, since there are several Pendry properties in other cities.  But it’s definitely luxurious, its the best lodging option by far in the neighborhood, and the rooms and service are 5-star all the way. So we happily count it among the best luxury boutique hotels in New York City.

Manhattan West is an up-and-coming neighborhood that’s just beside Moynihan Station and a short walk from the High Line, thanks to a new connector that links to Hudson Yards. The complex is home to numerous restaurants, including the fantastic Zou Zou’s, Daily Provisions, and Citizens New York, a food hall with an amazing array of global options. Plus the Peloton New York studio and numerous retail stores.

The Pendry prides itself on providing a relaxed, California-inspired vibe of “elegance and ease.” Mission accomplished. Many of our friends from Cali stay here and they tell us the aesthetic is completely on-point. Our own experience is that the staff is warm and accommodating, and the rooms are spacious and well-appointed. Making this one of our favorite neighborhoods and one of our top picks for hotels in all of Manhattan.

6. the whitby hotel.

We’ve long been fans of The Whitby Hotel in midtown – also a part of the Firmdale Group that includes the Crosby Street Hotel listed above. It’s a fresh and energizing take on the idea of a luxury stay in a traditional Midtown Manhattan neighborhood. So much more fun than the old-line grand dame properties! And so much more personal.

And yet, all the benefits of staying near Fifth Avenue in midtown are still there: Central Park, luxury shopping and Broadway shows are all just a short walk away. The onsite restaurant hosts a lovely afternoon tea, in addition to breakfast, lunch and dinner. There’s even a screening room on the lower level that makes this a popular spot for film premieres and private viewings.

The rooms are all decorated in Kit Kemp’s signature style – maximalist, vibrant and yet somehow soothing. The proprietary Kit Kemp pillow spray alone is worth the visit!

7. the william vale.

Williamsburg hasn’t shed its hipster image, so we were skeptical about what the vibe would be at this landmark boutique hotel on Wythe Street near the East River. Happily, the welcome is warm here, and the property itself is stunning (and impossible to miss, as at 21 stories, it towers over the neighborhood).

We stayed in one of the rooms with a wraparound terrace on a high floor – which gave us a front-row seat with spectacular views of the East River and the Manhattan skyline. If you’re looking for a cinematic experience in Gotham, this is it.

In contrast to some of the other properties on our list, the hotel’s aesthetic is cool, sleek, minimalist and modern. Allowing the view to be the standout feature in the room. Westlight, the rooftop bar and restaurant, is well-known as one of the best rooftop eateries in the city. But don’t sleep on the restaurant on the main floor of the hotel – both the bar and the main dining room are sensational.

We’re still on a journey to visit some of the other potential properties to add to this list – we’re looking at you, Lowell Hotel on the Upper East Side, you, Walker Hotel in Greenwich Village, and you, Beekman in the Financial District. It’s possible that this list will grow to 10. So check back for further updates!

the best luxury boutique hotels in new york city

That’s our take on the best luxury boutique hotels in New York City (NYC) right now, from Midtown Manhattan, SoHo and the Lower East Side to Brooklyn Heights and Williamsburg. Whichever one you choose, have a wonderful stay, dear reader.

Pamela Thomas-Graham

Pamela Thomas-Graham is the Founder & CEO of Dandelion Chandelier. She serves on the boards of several tech companies, and was previously a senior executive in finance, media and fashion, and a partner at McKinsey & Co.