48 Hours at The Pierre - New York City
“New York is always a good idea” – well a statement that surely has some truth in it. We were sipping around the Caribbean for quite a long time, checking out the best properties on each island. The entire idea seemed to be super cool and exciting. Well, things never come as one would expect and soon we found ourselves in a very remote luxury apartment somewhere in the Bahamas figuring out we need an adventure at the end of our Caribbean trip. Flying out to Miami seemed to cost a fortune and soon there popped up a special offer back to the U.S. At first we were not really aware of the fact that this price was including a stop-over but when we figured out that we just got a four night stay in the city that never sleeps, we were blown away! I love looking for the right places to stay and since my last travel plans for New York ended up somewhere struggling to find the right date, I knew this time it’s better got to be a perfect stay. I was hesitating a long time between where to stay: Upper East Side, Broadway or Downtown. Thanks to a friend of mine – who is half New Yorker to my luck – I went for Upper East Side. To be honest, it is the best location when heading to New York City for the first, tenth or 99th time. No matter if your trip is business related or leisure, having the 5th Avenue in between your hotel and the Central Park is not a disadvantage at all.
It’s been years that I follow the transformation of the hotel market in New York City, however I also knew that these uber-modern design hotels are not really up to those standards we Europeans expect from a 5-star hotel. So I had the choice between a few of the legendary, old school grand hotels. Of course I am a lover of design and appreciate to have a walk-in shower, so interestingly this was how the decision fell onto the famous The Pierre. Alright, if I am a bit more honest, I also went for this property due to its gorgeous views of Central Park, the pole position directly on 5th Avenue and the Plaza plus the fact that The Pierre used to be a Four Seasons and on top of all because I knew it from the movie “For Love or Money” – a classic for hotel lovers. I was super excited when we landed on JFK and it felt like I arrived to a completely unknown place, considering the last time I was in NYC was in 2004. A lot changed! Especially the way how to get into Manhattan. You take your smartphone, get your Uber and Voila, 30 minutes later a bellman opens the door and greets you with a warm “Welcome to The Pierre”.
Both, my colleague Lukas and me were standing there and being totally blown away to be back in our favourite city in the world. Feeling like a second, the two minutes passed away too fast and everyone was waiting for us to whisk through the dazzling marble floored lobby where we were welcomed with a refreshing towel, a water and a welcoming smile. Check-in was rapid – just like it should be in a city like New York. While the receptionist said something of an upgrade, we were only aware of that once the bellmen opened the curtains and Lukas and me were glued to the windows embracing the killer views of Central Park and the entire (!) Upper East side. We both were speechless. It was one of the most sentimental moments we have ever had – the weather was too perfect, the lights just as they never were before and the sound of the concrete jungle more quiet than expected. Once the friendly bellmen finally got our attention back after a few minutes, he introduced us to our spacious double room.
After having seen other upscale hotel rooms in the city, our room at The Pierre New York remains the biggest and most comfortable one – plus the most stunning when it comes to hotel views. I guess I could have stayed inside that room all day since it looked different at each hour of the day. Generally, the room was just perfect with that heavenly bed, comfy armchair, writing desk with calendar, walk-in wardrobe and that cosy bathroom. I have to admit, I expected the bathrooms in New York to be even smaller than it actually was. As long as I don’t have to use shower-tub combos, I am in heaven. On top of that comes the fact that they offered brand new Etro toiletries which made the bathroom even more adorable. Impressive to see what difference it makes when a bathroom is well planned. There even were 2 bath towels per person which I really appreciate. Also I found the maid service to be one of the best I have ever seen. They even put towels under our bags, provided us with shoe bags for the shoes plus put laundry bags next to our underwear – I mean that’s really over the top! I have to say, one could really feel that The Pierre is in extremely good hands when it comes to Management.
Even the staff in the elevators is always smiling and doing little small talk – The Pierre is one of the last hotels to have real elevators operating with actual persons. You walk in, tell them the floor you want to go and they will press the button. Meanwhile you can have a sit inside and being brought to your floor. It’s just another little touch that makes this hotel one of the greatest we have ever stayed at. There is so much more to discover, like the famous Rotunda or my favourite spot in the house: The Two E Bar which has that sexy New York style. On this point I have to pay attention to the extremely good concierge service. While we experienced the worst concierge ever in the two other hotels we have stayed during our stay in New York City, we had the pleasure to meet Erin, one of the best concierges we have seen. As we were looking for a camera battery, she called a few stores to make sure they have them in stock and not just send us there without any notice.
While breakfast is never included in any hotel in the US, we had the pleasure to try out the hotel’s own Perrine restaurant which is situated on the ground floor opening onto 61st Street. There is even a small outside seating – a lovely plus on sunny days like we had. For starters we ordered a slow roasted Tomato & Gruyere Tart as well as a tuna tartare while we both went for the The Pierre Burger Salad which in the end was a light lunch option actually as it comes without the bun and fries. Instead it was a wonderful Caesar salad with the perfectly cooked meat. All in all it is a very relaxing place just off 5th Avenue.
Considering I had high expectations for my stay in New York City (I will say they were too high for other upscale hotels), these high expectations have even been exceeded at The Pierre. I am really impressed by this property and would have wished I would have never changed the properties in New York City. Unfortunately, that’s the downside of our work. It also needs some hotels operating with a minimum kindness to appreciate the really outstanding properties. After having stayed at two hotels that are both selling rooms at a much higher rate than The Pierre, I even have to say that the Pierre has got New York City’s best value for money in addition to the most personal service in a hotel. I really wish I have the chance to stay at this hotel again when coming back to New York – I am glad I have a new favourite city hotel!
We were hosted by The Pierre, a Taj Hotel however all above written expresses our own opinion and has not been influenced.