The Plaza Hotel

 

Midtown West, New York City

 

A renovated historic site now houses wealthy residents and those who want a hotel room with butlers.

It can be said that no other hotel in New York is synonymous with luxury or that it has achieved such a position in 20th-century culture as the secular Plaza. Truman Capote held his famous Black and White Ball here; in International Intrigue, Cary Grant was captured by spies at the famous Oak Bar; F. Scott Fitzgerald staged part of The Great Gatsby here; on their first visit to the United States, The Beatles occupied an entire wing on the 15th floor. And last but not least, Crocodile Dundee pitched a tent on those 400-thread-count sheets.

Following a $ 400 million renovation, the Plaza hotel, with 282 rooms, reopened in May 2008. The Champagne Bar adorns the lobby, and the Rose Club attracts a new group of the early twenties.

But whether the reform was an improvement or not is open for debate. After the renovation, none of the guest rooms and only a few of the suites overlook Central Park or Fifth Avenue – the Plaza’s 181 private condominiums claimed most views. Separated by a private entrance and a lobby, the apartments starting at $ 2.5 million are a return to the original function of the Plaza, a residence for the extremely wealthy.

But because of its fame, the centenary Plaza is not just a haven for hiding celebrities or wealthy Maharajas. Families fill the golden elevators, which have a capacity for seven people, overloaded with Coach shopping bags. The Plaza’s Grand Ballroom, the site of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas’s wedding, continues to host some of the city’s most extravagant weddings. And Fifth Avenue tourists rush to take some pictures of the Palm Court’s stained-glass ceiling and the lobby’s grand marble stairs – before they are chased away by the ubiquitous security, of course.

 

Right in Central Park and Fifth Avenue – steps from the upscale boutiques and Bergdorf Goodman.

Located opposite Central Park on Fifth Avenue, the Plaza is on Midtown West and Midtown East. It is an excellent base for exploring the shops along Fifth Avenue – from the famous Tiffany & Co. to high-end flagships like Gucci and Versace. On the right, on Fifth Avenue, is the luxury department store Bergdorf Goodman, and on the other side of the avenue, past the famous Pulitzer Fountain, is the flashy and emblematic Midtown Apple. ( Hint: This is a great place to check your email for free.) Many food stores and Starbucks feed room occupants – Midtown East is where many New Yorkers come to work. Nightlife is scarce but excellent, typically expensive. Restaurants close to the place.

The area lacks the Upper West Side’s residential uniqueness, and most of the informants’ favorite places are found farther away in the city center. But access to the subway is ample, making it easy to venture anywhere in the city. It is also a very safe neighborhood, although it empties during the night.

 

About 30 to 90 minutes from three airports

New York has three nearby airports: JFK, LaGuardia, and Newark (in New Jersey). Getting to the city from JFK or LaGuardia is usually more convenient than Newark, but travel times are highly dependent on day and traffic conditions. From JFK, a taxi to anywhere in Manhattan costs a fixed fee and takes about an hour under normal conditions. From LaGuardia, a metered taxi ride to Manhattan can take 30 minutes if traffic is quiet, three times as long if it is terrible. Races from Newark can take more than 90 minutes. It is customary to tip your driver between 15 and 25 percent.

Those who want to save money can take one of the circular buses operated by available private companies. For more information about buses, go to the Super Shuttle or New York Airport Service. Public transport is also available for approximately US $ 7 per person, but the journey can take up to two hours, and there is still the problem of carrying your bags.

 

Large, Louis XIV-style rooms, all renovated in 2008 with luxurious Italian beds, 37-inch HD plasma TVs, and some unimportant views – very few rooms overlook Central Park. The gigantic bathroom comes with 24-carat gold-plated fittings.

Unlike St. Regis, with its rooms accented with light blue, Four Seasons with its appeal to an office away from home, or Mandarin Oriental with its simplified Asian-influenced design, the Plaza’s rooms embrace Louis XIV’s golden and extravagant style. With 44 square meters, the Plaza’s standard room is one of the city’s most significant luxury options. The Plaza’s Deluxe Rooms reach up to 51 square meters; the Signature Room of the same size has a private terrace, and the nine different suites offer additional space (58 to 408 square meters) and extra features like dressing tables.

Unfortunately, since the hotel’s renovation in 2008, no guest rooms, and only a few of the suites overlook Central Park or Fifth Avenue – most views have been claimed by the Plaza’s 181 new private residences. All guest rooms overlook the landscaped interior courtyard or the 58th Street commercial buildings.

    • Stearns and Foster mattress with pillow-top and wrapped in 400-thread-count Italian Mascioni sheets
    • Guests can request pillows that include a double-down border, buckwheat, lavender buckwheat, hypoallergenic, or Tempur-Pedic.
    • 37-inch LG plasma cable TV with free movie channels like HD Net Movies and HBO HD
    • iPod compatible stereo iLuv
    • The bathrooms are large, with 24-carat gold-plated sinks and an insulated toilet.
    • A large soaking tub and shower with an intricate stone mosaic on the walls
    • Mascioni Turkish thick cotton towels and bathrobes (available in adult and child size)
    • Hygiene products provided by Caudalie, the hotel’s spa
    • iPads that control the entire room and allow customers to request services
    • Hairdryers
  • In-room safes

 

A wine-themed French spa, a celebrity stylist’s hair salon, and a mall with its Viennese café.

Like its other units in Bordeaux and Spain, the 740 square meter Caudalie Vinotherapie Spa focuses on completely natural grape-based treatments. (The wine theme comes naturally to the French founders, who also own Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte’s Bordeaux vineyards.) If you need to cut your hair, go to the Warren-Tricomi hair salon, the iconic 566-meter main salon squares of celebrity hairdresser Edward Tricomi, and colorist Joel Warren, who has worked with Kate Beckinsale and Jessica Alba.

La Palestra is the hotel’s gym, which has various cardio and weight machines, yoga mats, and dumbbells. Guests can also sign up for the Fairmont Fit program, including Reebok clothing and shoes, an MP3 player, and a yoga mat with a stretch band.

Shops at the Plaza include jewelers, clothing, specialty food, health, and beauty shops, all of a high standard.

 

Small pets (under 9 kilos) are allowed free of charge.

The Plaza accepts only tiny pets. There is no charge, but owners must sign a term accepting financial responsibility for any damage their pet may be subjected to. The hotel’s proximity to Central Park is an absolute advantage, and amenities such as cookies and water can be requested before arrival.

 

A children’s menu with an Eloise theme, huge standard rooms measuring 44 square meters, and just Central Park steps.

Standard rooms of considerable size (44 square meters with a king-size bed) and proximity to Central Park make the Plaza a good choice for families, but don’t count on any free Wii or PlayStation as at Gansevoort or Four Seasons. Deluxe rooms come with double beds, and the Edwardian Suit has a separate living room. Cots and playpens are free, and rollaway beds can be requested for a nightly fee.

Eloise – the character in Kay Thompson’s books who lived at the hotel – is (surprise, surprise) the mascot for children at the Plaza. Lovely Eloise room service menus are available.

Babysitters can be arranged through the concierge at an additional cost.

Midtown East is, in general, a very safe area. The Plaza is very well lit at night, with door attendants right outside the door.

 

Expensive drinks and 24-hour room service menu. Also check out the glamorous Palm Court and Todd English’s Food Hall.

    • The Champagne Bar and Rose Club, in addition to a 24-hour room service menu, all items have a strong French influence
    • The Palm Court is open for breakfast, lunch, and afternoon tea with a menu from the famous chef, Geoffrey Zakarian
  • Todd English’s Food Hall, a glorified food court, offers a calmer atmosphere where customers can opt for sushi, dumplings, thin-crust pizza (Todd English’s Food Hall specialty), tapas and wine, cold cuts, bakery or grills

 

For a gala party or an equally expensive event, few hotels rival this Beaux-Arts masterpiece.

The inspiration for the film Brides at War, the Plaza has long been one of New York City’s most desirable wedding venues. But it is not necessarily the best wedding destination in Manhattan. For example, some people consider Pierre even more beautiful, and the more accessible New York Palace offers a similarly historic and ornate space. And, of course, the Plaza’s great golden luxury is not for everyone. You can get a little more stylistic flexibility without leaving Central Park views at Mandarin Oriental.

CPS Events at the Plaza takes care of every detail of the wedding. This makes planning a little easier, but it also means you’re stuck paying a premium for just about everything. Of course, the Plaza is not ideal for couples who need to keep a close eye on their budget.

    • Wedding size: Up to 450 guests; only one wedding at a time
    • Ceremony Venues: The Terrace Room
    • Reception Locations: The Grand Ballroom
    • Wedding Packages: The standard wedding package includes past hors d’oeuvres, three cocktail seasons (carved meat, pasta, seafood, sushi, and more), a three-course dinner, a custom-designed wedding cake, a premium open bar, wine and champagne throughout dinner, a bridal suite adjacent to the ballroom and a complimentary suite for the bride and groom on their wedding night.
    • Extra Fees and Restrictions: If the Terrace Room is used for a ceremony, there is an exorbitant rental fee of $ 12,000. Besides, while other hotels typically include services like “a wedding day coordinator” in the standard package price, this is not the case at the Plaza (they charge an extra $ 600 for that). Also, note that valet parking costs a hefty $ 65 per car.
    • Music: You will need to find your musician or DJ (with no extra fees associated). Note, however, that Bentley Meeker Lighting and Staging is the exclusive supplier of all lighting and audiovisual.
    • Food: Without a doubt, the food is excellent. All items are supposed to be prepared and served within 36 hours of being picked up at the CPS Events organic farm in upstate New York. You can choose a personalized menu of almost any cuisine imaginable, including kosher and the special menu for children (for children under 12).
    • Spa Treatments: The on-site Warren-Tricomi beauty salon offers wedding packages for hair and makeup.
  • Honeymoon Suite: A one-bedroom Edwardian Suite is free for the bride and groom on their wedding night.

 

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