Review: Hyatt Herald Square New York

Introduction
Hyatt Herald Square New York
Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse New York JFK
Singapore Airlines Suites Class A380 New York To Frankfurt
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Singapore Airlines Suites Class A380 Frankfurt To New York


I was excited to check out the Hyatt Herald Square, which is Hyatt’s newest property in New York. As I mentioned in the introduction post, Hyatt’s New York footprint has been growing like crazy lately. In the past year they’ve opened the Park Hyatt New York, Hyatt Times Square, and Hyatt Union Square.

It’s nice to have yet another property, in another unique part of New York City.

I got a very reasonable “My Elite Rate” of ~$160.

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Within my cancellation deadline the rate actually dropped to $120, which seemed extremely cheap for New York City.

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Before I even review the hotel, I should mention something that I knew about the hotel going in — the rooms are really small. Rooms are 164 to 180 square feet, so are tiny by US standards. Also, while the hotel has a couple of suites, they don’t have any premium non-suite rooms, so as a Diamond member there’s not really much of a chance of an upgrade, aside from using a Diamond Suite Upgrade. I knew that going in from reading the room descriptions, and adjusted my expectations accordingly.

Anyway, the hotel is located on 31st street between 5th and Broadway, in a rather compact but modern high rise.

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Hyatt Herald Square exterior

The entrance is inviting, especially with the chalk board promoting the bar outside.

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Hyatt Herald Square entrance

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Hyatt Herald Square entrance

I do love how Hyatt seems to be going for more of the “boutique” feel with many of their new properties, and this lobby is a perfect example. The lobby feels intimate and not like it’s part of a chain hotel. To the left of the entrance is an espresso bar.

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Hyatt Herald Square lobby

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Hyatt Herald Square Espresso Bar

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Hyatt Herald Square Espresso Bar

Then there’s a small seating area in front of and to the side of the elevators.

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Hyatt Herald Square lobby

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Hyatt Herald Square lobby

Then behind the elevators is the reception desk to the right, and the hotel’s restaurant, The Den, to the left.

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Hyatt Herald Square The Den

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Hyatt Herald Square The Den

The check-in desk features just a couple of “stations,” and once there I was immediately helped by a friendly associate. I requested 4PM check-out for the next day (since my flight was only at night), and chose the 1,000 points as my Diamond welcome amenity.

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Hyatt Herald Square reception

Also next to the reception desk is a small pantry where you can purchase snacks.

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Hyatt Herald Square pantry

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Hyatt Herald Square hallway

My room was located on the 6th floor, room 608.

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Hyatt Herald Square room entrance

The hotel has just 122 rooms, and on my floor there were only eight rooms.

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Hyatt Herald Square floorplan

Given my expectations of the room and knowing how small it would be, I was pleasantly surprised. The room featured a long entryway.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room entrance

Then on the right side was a sliding door which led to the bathroom.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room entrance

The room was definitely small, though also felt modern and fresh, as you’d expect for a hotel that just opened a couple of months ago.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room

The room featured a king size bed.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room bed

On the left side of the room was an open closet, and then the safe and flat screen TV.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room TV

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room closet

On the opposite side next to the bed was a small fridge and then the coffee machine, which brewed Starbucks(ish) coffee.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room fridge

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room coffee

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room coffee

At the far end of the room by the window was what appeared to be a couch that was chopped in half. On the wood panel next to it was a small side table of sorts. I wasn’t sure if that was meant to be picked up and placed elsewhere or what.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room seat

Then to the right of the TV was a small vanity mirror and chair. My major complaint about the room is that there’s not really a desk from which you can work. As someone that works from hotel rooms for hours a day, that’s not good. But then again I also realize the space constraints they’re dealing with.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room TV

The bathroom was bigger than I was expecting given how small the rooms are. It was 10x more pleasant than the one at the Grand Hyatt New York, which has otherwise large rooms.

There was a sink, toilet, and walk-in shower. The one thing I’d note is that counter space was limited.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room bathroom

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room shower

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room bathroom

Toiletries were CO Bigelow branded, which is a fairly nice line for a mid-range hotel.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room CO Bigelow toiletries

The room had only a small window which faced a courtyard and made me sort of feel like I was in a prison. But when I woke up the next morning I realized just how awesome that is. I’ve never, ever been in a New York City hotel room that was so quiet. No joke, I slept for 14 hours that night, thanks to the comfortable bed, super-quiet environment, and black out shades.

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Hyatt Herald Square King Room view

Breakfast is served at The Den, which is a cute little restaurant with just a handful of tables.

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Hyatt Herald Square The Den restaurant

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Hyatt Herald Square The Den restaurant

The breakfast menu read as follows:

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I had a non-fat cappuccino to drink, which was quite good.

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Hyatt Herald Square The Den breakfast — cappuccino

Then I had Greek yogurt with berries.

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Hyatt Herald Square The Den breakfast — greek yogurt with fresh berries

And finally I had a veggie omelet, which was served with potatoes and salad.

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Hyatt Herald Square The Den breakfast — veggie omelet

The food itself was excellent. The service was well intentioned but exceedingly incompetent. It was just me and one other person in the restaurant (a blog reader, actually), but there seemed to be about five servers. Instead of having one server serving me, they all seemed to be doing a little bit of everything. So once I sat down three servers asked me if I wanted anything to drink before I was served my drink. The same was true for ordering food.

I’ll certainly give them the benefit of the doubt and assume it’s because they’re new and still figuring out a rhythm, but goodness gracious, assign one server per table, especially in a completely empty restaurant where there’s no excuse for such disorganization.

In terms of the hotel’s other facilities, there’s a nice but basic gym on the basement level.

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Hyatt Herald Square gym

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Hyatt Herald Square gym

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Hyatt Herald Square gym

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Hyatt Herald Square gym

It’s worth noting that at breakfast it was explained to me that the Diamond breakfast benefit was for up to $25 per person. That seems a bit low, though beyond that I tend to think that since the rate is the same for one or two people, you should always get at least the two person allowance. But I also didn’t argue about it.

I also have to give a lot of credit to the Director of Rooms, Ashley, who was at the front desk. I needed to print and scan something during my stay, and she not only let me use the computer they have in the lobby, but proactively offered to go into their office and scan it for me. That was above and beyond, and much appreciated.

Hyatt Herald Square bottom line

Overall I was really impressed by this hotel, given what it is. I knew coming in that the rooms would be small, so I was actually pleasantly surprised by the way they were designed. If the price were right, as it was for this stay, I’d definitely consider returning. $120-160 is a heck of a deal for a chain hotel room in New York, especially with all the elite benefits you can potentially get.

That being said, if it’s priced the same as the other options in New York, like the Hyatt Times Square or Hyatt Union Square, I’d probably go with one of them, simply because the rooms are considerably larger. I don’t think I’d want to stay at this hotel if I were sharing a room with someone.

Anyway, it’s nice to have more Hyatt options in New York City, and I’d definitely consider returning in the future.

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Comments

  1. It’s weird that this is a regular Hyatt, rather than a Hyatt Place or something. There are literally dozens of these 8-rooms-to-a-floor standard-footprint hotels in New York that have opened in the last few years (the area near the Hyatt has them on many blocks), but most are branded as limited-service hotels like Four Points, Courtyard, Hampton Inn, etc., while generally the full-service brands have been reserved for more “traditional” hotel designs with larger floors and slightly larger rooms.

  2. Hi Ben,

    Great review – This is helpful because I am starting to book more Hyatts than anything else. Knowing you’re an elite and so I am, I have a question for you and hoping for your feedback on this matter. I recently stayed at the Grand Hyatt Manchester and lets say my stay was just h o r r i b l e. Once I arrived into my room at 6:50am from LA, I knew it was going to be chaotic. My neighbors were yelling, playing loud music and doing everything you can think of. I called front desk to see if they were able to let them know and have them “QUIT” whatever they were doing. Fast forward a few hours in the day and I am back for a nap, and their party got even louder, more yelling, screaming, loud loud music and so on. CALLED AGAIN…….and “Security” was called, they didn’t do anything but to “turn it down.” It’s 10pm, 1am, and now illegal substances odor, plus more yelling and screaming is happening. Security was called again, they didn’t open the door to the folks.

    Here is what the hotel did for me which I still think they should give me a solid amount of points for this horrible stay. I charge everything to my room, food, drinks, etc. They paid for everything i had on my room chargers and didn’t walk out paying anything myself. Will that “justify” their mistake or should I ask for something else aside from that? Maybe points and I can call it quits with them? The stay was horrible, probably one of the worst stays I’ve had at a hotel all year.

  3. Sounds like a good property. Using a free night from my card for the Park Hyatt after New Years, but can’t decide which hotel we should move to after that (can’t afford to stay at the Park Hyatt another night!)

    Obviously anywhere we go is going to be a let down from the PH, but it looks like the Grand Hyatt and the Hyatt Union Square are the cheapest — both about $200 a night. Leaning towards Hyatt Union Square because I often find downtown more fun than midtown. Which would you choose?

  4. Ooh, Andaz 5th just opened up for about the same amount of money a night, so that is an option as well….

  5. Looks like a cheap Ikea hotel. I guess this is their lowest brand.. not the grand or the park.. but cmon marriot does a better job than this..

  6. My understanding is that this used to be a Holiday Inn.

    Lauren: Of your three options, I would choose either the Andaz or Hyatt Union Square and between those two it would be based on where you plan on spending the bulk of your time and/or your desire to ride the subway. Both are attractively designed and have solid facilities overall. Both also have some quirks in room furnishings based on the designer who did the,

    The Grand Hyatt is a fine property, but it is massive and as a result it just more stressful and loud than what you’ll find at the other two options. But if you are elite and Regency Club access matters, then go with the Grand. The new Grand Club is quite nice and much more specious than its predecessor.

  7. Thanks Jeffrey C!

    I am a diamond, but I doubt we will want to eat free food at the club when we could be eating out somewhere. So, I think I may go with the Andaz on 5th. I had a good stay at the Wall St Andaz in September, and have heard the 5th property is better, so I will give it a try.

  8. I just completed a stay at this property. I picked it since it was reasonably near to where I needed to be and I needed a Hyatt stay credit and the price was OK.

    The rooms are small and would be tight for two people. The strangest thing for me is that there isn’t really a desk to set up a laptop and work. I usually need that in a hotel room. However what Lucky called a funky end table had a tray that swivels out and when you open that you can set your laptop and work from the couch.

    I felt the lighting in the room was a bit inadequate for working. But otherwise the room had everything it needs and was actually somewhat clever in the use of space with the elevated fridge and coffee maker, and at least some cubbies above the toilet since there wasn’t much space at the sink.

    The agent confirmed that it is not a new build, but a conversion from a Holiday Inn.

    I was rushed for breakfast the service was surprisingly slow. Although there was only one other party there when I got there, and I immediately ordered something simple and told her I was in a hurry, another party came and got their food and then she came and told me that they didn’t have one ingredient I had ordered. The menu looks OK although $25 won’t go very far!

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