New York, New York.

17/11/2011

NYC from Hotel Americano
So good they named it twice… so the saying goes… but there really is something rather marvelous about the City that Never Sleeps. On a recent business visit I was pleasantly surprised by the urban-chic hospitality at the Hotel Americano (518 W 27th Street) which although small is absolutely perfect for a short 4-5 days stay. The rooms are very simply furnished in a utilitarian manner, with a Japanese-style raised bed platform defining the sleeping area, and a small table and chair providing a space to eat from room service (which is all served in bento boxes) or to work. Every room has a pre-loaded iPad2; when I arrived into my room mine was playing the theme from Grease which made me smile. In the lobby is a smart cafe bar serving snacks and drinks and a full-service restaurant and terrace complete the facilities.

Round the corner from this hostelry is another find worth knowing about – a really great neighbourhood restaurant called Bottino (248 10th Avenue) I had their golden beet salad to start followed by grilled salmon… simple but very well put together and dinner for one (I had a copy of New York magazine for company) came in at 45 bucks including a “seasonal” lager and sparkling water. The service was absolutely impeccable and lightning-fast… I noted that it was much more sedate for those dining a deux showing a thoughtful approach to tailoring the experience for those eating because they didn’t fancy another room service supper (me) and those that wanted to make their evening last.

One of the best things about Chelsea aside from the rather nice galleries however has to be the Chelsea Market which is to be found on 9th Avenue between 15th & 16th Streets. Occupying a former biscuit factory, this space is now home to a catwalk of food shops, selling such deliciousness as fresh lobster (The Lobster Place) and heavenly chocolate brownies (Fat Witch Bakery). There are enough places here to provide novelty at lunchtime for over a fortnight as well as shops selling gifts, foods, wine, flowers and books.

New York isn’t all about skyscrapers and uptown shopping… areas such as Chelsea and The Village are deserving of being destinations-within-a-destination in their own right and I delighted in experiencing their unique and friendly environs.

Bottino NYC

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