Review: Park Hyatt New York

Introduction
Emirates First Class A380 Los Angeles To Dubai
Park Hyatt Dubai
Afternoon Tea At Skyview Bar Burj Al Arab
Lunch At At.mosphere Burj Khalifa Dubai
Emirates First Class Lounge Dubai DXB
Emirates First Class A380 Dubai To Singapore
St. Regis Singapore
Westin Singapore
Singapore Airlines Private Room Singapore SIN
Singapore Airlines First Class 777-300ER Singapore To Melbourne
Park Hyatt Melbourne
Qantas Club Melbourne MEL
Qantas Business Class 737 Melbourne To Sydney
Park Hyatt Sydney
Qantas First Class Lounge Sydney SYD
Qantas First Class A380 Sydney To Los Angeles
SLS Hotel Beverly Hills
Oneworld Business Class Lounge Los Angeles LAX
Qantas Business Class 747 Los Angeles To New York
Park Hyatt New York
Dad’s Thoughts


I stayed at the Park Hyatt New York opening night last August, and was really impressed. It’s Park Hyatt’s new flagship property, and it really is spectacular. I find most luxury hotels in New York to be way past their prime, so it’s nice to have a new five star option that’s modern and has large rooms.

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Park Hyatt New York entrance

In this case I redeemed a free night certificate I received for staying at 50 unique Hyatt properties, so I don’t think there’s a better use than this property, given that it’s a Category 7 property (meaning a free night would cost 30,000 points).

This review won’t be as comprehensive as the last one, as I won’t cover some of the public facilities as I did last time, like the amazing pool, gym, etc.

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Park Hyatt New York pool

Now let me start by saying that we stayed the night of Thanksgiving, so I almost feel guilty being critical of service, since I realize no one wants to work on Thanksgiving. But I’ll still share my observations, and you can draw whatever conclusions you’d like.

Anyway, we took an Uber to the Park Hyatt, and upon getting out of the car we were welcomed by a bellman, who asked for our last name and brought us into the street-level lobby.

Then when we got to the street-level lobby they asked for our name again, which I thought was odd (usually when the bellman asks for your name it’s so they can communicate it to their associate, given that we were handling our own bags).

They took a moment to look up our reservation, and then gave us detailed instructions on how to get to the reception desk. “You’re going to take the elevator up to the third floor, then turn right, and then take another right, and then reception will be on the left.”

I found that odd. At the Park Hyatt they’re supposed to escort you straight to your room from the street-level lobby and complete check-in formalities there. And I’m not sure why we had to give our information a second time if we weren’t even checking in there. I figured if she looked up my reservation she’d see we were repeat guests, so it would seem to me that it would make more sense to say “welcome back. Unfortunately we’re understaffed today, so check-in will be at the reception desk. Do you remember how to get there?” It seems more logical to explain to me why the process is different as opposed to giving step by step instructions for how to get to the lobby level reception desk.

Then we got to the reception desk, and I presented the associate with my credit card and ID. Since we had provided our name twice before this, I figured at this point they’d already have the reservation pulled up.

She typed for a few minutes, and then said “I can’t find your reservation, do you have a copy of it?” For a second I thought I had maybe booked for the wrong day or something. It wouldn’t have been the first time.

But I pulled up the reservation and it was correct. I showed it to her, and a minute later she said “oh, there it is.”

She then looked at my ID. “Hmmm, you look different.” Right, my driver’s license photo was taken when I was 16…

Just a very odd interaction, I thought. At a 3-4 star hotel none of this would have fazed me, but at a five star hotel I expect that if they ask for your name twice without doing anything it’s so they can communicate it to someone else.

We were assigned a Park Deluxe room (unfortunately they didn’t have rooms with two beds, so we had a king bed and a rollaway).

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Park Deluxe King entrance Park Hyatt New York

The room itself is gorgeous, with a large entryway.

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Park Deluxe King entryway Park Hyatt New York

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Park Deluxe King entryway Park Hyatt New York

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Park Deluxe King entryway Park Hyatt New York

By New York City standards these rooms are massive, in my opinion. The beds in the hotel are extremely comfortable, with high quality bedding.

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Park Deluxe King room Park Hyatt New York

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Park Deluxe King room Park Hyatt New York

The desk features both a chair and a bench of sorts to sit on, and is located right in front of the TV.

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Park Deluxe King desk Park Hyatt New York

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Park Deluxe King desk Park Hyatt New York

Then in the corner by the window is a chair.

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Park Deluxe King chair Park Hyatt New York

Waiting on the desk were a few chocolates and also some Asian pears as a welcome amenity.

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Park Deluxe King welcome gift Park Hyatt New York

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Park Deluxe King welcome gift Park Hyatt New York

The bathrooms at this hotel are gorgeous, with double sinks, a soaking tub, a huge walk-in shower with Le Labo toiletries, and a partitioned off toilet.

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Park Deluxe King bathroom Park Hyatt New York

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Park Deluxe King bathtub Park Hyatt New York

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Park Deluxe King toilet Park Hyatt New York

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Park Deluxe King shower Park Hyatt New York

While the Park Hyatt is in the iconic One57 building right near Central Park, unfortunately it’s on the lower floors. As a result, the views are limited. Would it be nice if the hotel were on the top floors? Of course. But given that a condo in this building just sold for over a hundred million dollars, I don’t even want to think how expensive the Park Hyatt would be if that were the case.

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Park Deluxe King view Park Hyatt New York

Since we had eaten on the plane and were only a bit hungry, we decided to have dinner in The Living Room. It’s one of my favorite parts of the hotel, and even when I’m not staying at the Park Hyatt I come here for drinks. Drinks are extremely reasonably priced by New York standards, and the service is consistently excellent.

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Park Hyatt New York Living Room

In this case my dad and I both ordered turkey clubs (after all, we had to have at least some turkey for Thanksgiving). I asked for mine without bacon. Simple enough order, right?

Well, mine was served with bacon. When I pointed it out to the server she said “well why don’t you want bacon?” Bizarre question. I responded “I just don’t like bacon…?” She said “to clarify, I was asking because it’s actually turkey bacon.”

Anyway, it wasn’t a big deal as I just gave my dad the bacon to eat.

The next morning we had breakfast in The Back Room. It’s a gorgeous restaurant, and the service is excellent.

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Park Hyatt New York The Back Room

The breakfast menu read as follows:

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PH-NY-2

PH-NY-3

The Diamond breakfast consists of the 57th Street Breakfast, or you can apply an equivalent amount towards something else on the menu.

I had orange juice and a nonfat cappuccino to drink.

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Park Hyatt New York 57th Street Breakfast

Then I had an egg white scramble to eat.

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Park Hyatt New York 57th Street Breakfast

That was served with a side of wheat toast.

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Park Hyatt New York 57th Street Breakfast

Given that it was Friday morning the “A” team seemed to be working again. We passed Simon, the chef concierge, in the lobby, who is awesome.

And then upon walking out of the hotel I ran into Christopher, my favorite doorman in the world. If you see Christopher, tell him I said hi! He makes me smile every single time, and is one of a kind.

We took advantage of late check-out, and in the afternoon took a taxi to LaGuardia to catch our flight back to Tampa.

With that, an epic trip came to an end and reality set in again, for both my dad and me.

Park Hyatt New York bottom line

Physically the Park Hyatt New York is a gorgeous property. The public facilities are gorgeous, the rooms are massive and well appointed, and the location can’t be beat.

The service during this stay was a bit off, but then again it was Thanksgiving, so I don’t want to be too critical of service. I asked on Twitter whether one should be more forgiving of off service at a hotel on Thanksgiving, and almost across the board the answer was yes.

So I’ll note how the service was, but say that I suspect it’s the exception rather than the norm. And I’ll also say that this hotel has some front line employees that are incomparably awesome, like Christopher, Simon, etc.

What do you think — am I being too harsh by even pointing out service shortcomings for a Thanksgiving stay?

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Comments

  1. color me totally unimpressed by this property. the rooms don’t look that much better than the hyatt place by my office or even the hilton garden inn. and the service sounds atrocious for a five star hotel — especially your server at breakfast. maybe i’m biased as a new yorker but with all the amazing restaurants in this city, i would probably never even bother with the hotel’s offerings — although breakfast i can understand if it’s included and i get that you were staying there during a holiday when things are a bit quieter.

    so far i must say park hyatt is batting pretty low as far as i’m concerned. even the one in DC i found so flawed compared to 5 star properties elsewhere in the world.

  2. I think if a business is open during a holiday, they should give it their 100% like every other day they’re open. The service issues you encountered at a hotel at this level would have totally ticked me off. Seriously, asking a diner why they don’t like something is crossing several lines, and I hope someone at PH NY reads this review and figures it out.

  3. If they charged less for Thanksgiving, I might understand! Sure they didn’t. But hey, we tend to get picky which is funny considering how often our stays are free!

  4. Are you kidding me Ben? This place looks no better then any hotel around Times Square. I just went to Hyatt.com to book for mid week Feb. $725 a night + tax for a park King. Sorry this hotel is not even close to be charging that. Just because it says PARK that’s funny. Now to your comments. No not harsh downright sad.

  5. the rooms don’t look that much better than the hyatt place by my office or even the hilton garden inn.

    In person they are phenomenal – the quality of the finishes is superlative.

  6. A bit unsurprised with your experience for service. They cancelled my reservation in August and probably cost me ~$700 without any compensation. I had to complain to Hyatt directly for any form of partial compensation. I will say that Hyatt corporate did an okay job. Didn’t make me whole, but did what they claimed they were able to do…

  7. Living Room drinks are “extremely reasonable” by New York standards? Come on, let’s be real here. You must not be getting out of hotel bars very often if that’s what you think. Wine, beer, and cocktails are all $1-2 more than they would be at most nice, non-hotel bars/lounges around the city. And $6 for a coffee? This is borderline absurd. In conclusion, if you’re comparing to luxury hotel bars these prices might be reasonable (although I’d still argue not “extremely” so), but in comparison to most nice bars you can find in the city the prices most definitely higher.

  8. Is this hotel bookable on points yet? Last time I checked, it wasn’t.

    And $41 for the 57th Street Breakfast is comical. Even factoring in 5* hotel markup, that’s just insulting. Good thing you got it for free.

  9. It’s none of the server’s business why you don’t want bacon. If she thinks it’s because it’s pork, then she should mention that immediately.

  10. Is this hotel bookable on points yet? Last time I checked, it wasn’t

    Stayed 2 nights on points 2 weeks ago and 2 nights on points back in September.

  11. This hotel sucks! Overpriced and overrated. The staff is incompetent from the Front Desk to their arrogant GM.

    They think their s*it doesn’t stink!

    The rates will drop in the future when they don’t get any business.

    The Andaz 5th Ave is way better in every way and the rates are 2-3 times lower. And they know how to treat elites.

  12. Not at all harsh, IMO. My wife and I stayed there around the same time and found the interactions with front desk staff to be similarly awkward and difficult. We showed up around 5pm, well after check-in time and they did not have a room ready, strike one. As two hosts hovered over the computer I clearly heard one of them say “no, that would be too much of an upgrade”, strike two. Then we were asked to sit down and wait nearly 20 minutes for our (entry level) room to be prepared, strike three. On the plus side, housekeeping was punctual and the doormen were friendly and helpful.

    The hard product at the hotel is pretty good by NYC standards, but the views are mediocre, and they clearly staffed the front desk of the hotel with inexperienced younger people (presumably lower cost) and figured they could train them up. At a great hotel, staff can read guest expectations (body language, tone, past stay preferences noted, etc) and adjust the type of interaction (from formal to casual and everything in between) to suit. Considering the rates are pretty similar to the Mandarin Oriental a few blocks away (where they know quite well how to exceptionally serve guests of all types), if you aren’t HGP Diamond I really see very little value here. Points rates are decent, but not a value, unless you want a large suite in this part of town for less than 1k/night equivalent value.

  13. Sorry but this is another “blogger must try” hotel. There are many better properties in NYC than this one. I feel the same for the Park Hyatt Paris where it is a “must for any US blogger” but I save my points to stay in other amazing Hyatt properties and get a much better Paris experience by going with local but amazing boutique hotels. Is that the only shower head they had in the shower? If yes, Novotel in Europe offer the same. For that price I would expect nothing less than a huge rain shower coming from the ceiling. Shame on you Hyatt!!!! Also, those breakfast prices are ludicrous.

  14. This property is overrated. It’s called Park Hyatt but not even with a park view, not to mention i could do so much better with that price at other hotels.

  15. For that price I would expect nothing less than a huge rain shower coming from the ceiling.

    It has a huge rain shower that comes out of the ceiling and the hand nozzle.

  16. Ben, please don’t take this the wrong way, but the last line before the Bottom Line (“With that, an epic trip came to an end and reality set in again, for both my dad and I.”) should read “my dad and me.” I’m sure it was an accidental mistake.

  17. @scw, what do you mean Hyatt cancelled your reservation?

    @bob, a difference of $1 or $2 is not even worth mentioning… what planet do you live on that we need to be quibbling about $2 bucks… really….. for drinks unless it is $4 or $5 bucks more.. it is not even in my radar… up to $3 bucks is within the same price range….

  18. Oh yeah and to add to the multiple comments I doubt I would pay to stay at this hotel, I would prefer Ritz Carlton or Four Seaons, St Regis etc the room you stayed in is too basic.. or Mandarin Oriental.. all of these seem like more interesting choices… but we gotta keep in mind he does the chains thing for a reason and for a free night it was a so so redemption….sure value point wise and money wise.. but TRUE value as in what you are getting nah…

  19. I have not yet had a chance to stay at the Park Hyatt New York, but based on the photos I’ve seen and Ben’s comments on the service, I might make it a point not to.

    I’m partial to Langham hotels myself, so I often find myself staying at one of their hotels when I’m in a city where I have that option (not a wide footprint at this point, but they are growing). I’ve consistently received 5-star service at the Langham Place Fifth Avenue and the hotel itself is fantastic. Ben – I think you’d appreciate the “understated luxury”. I also love the “welcome back” from every person I interact with, starting from the moment I get out of my taxi. I only stay there once every few months, but they almost have me convinced I’m a more regular guest.

  20. @ Santastico — Not sure I follow. I’ve never stayed at the Park Hyatt Paris and have no plans to stay here. I had a free night certificate valid at any hotel in the world. Should I instead have redeemed it for the Hyatt Place New York, or…?

  21. @lucky: Sorry but my comment was not aimed at you at all. My comment was related to most Boarding Area bloggers that keep writing about “how amazing they stay at Park Hyatt Paris” was. In my opinion it is not the best way to spend my Hyatt points. Not because of the hotel but because I think Park Hyatt and Paris are not a good match. Paris is such an amazing place where you get the most of the city by walking and trying little restaurants and eating on the street while spending the night in amazing boutique hotels that offer you way more personalized service than a Hyatt. Thus, it is the place I would not spend my time in a suite room getting room service just because “I have to stay at the Park Hyatt Paris”.
    As for the Park Hyatt NYC, by all means if you have an expiring certificate you should stay there. On the other hand, if I have to spend my Hyatt points to stay in NYC I would prefer to use at the Andaz rather than the Park Hyatt. Also, if I have enough points in other hotels programs I would prefer to stay at the St Regis instead of staying at the Park Hyatt.
    Again, I love the Park Hyatts but there are some cities were I don’t think they are the best option and NYC and Paris have way better options than a Park Hyatt in my opinion.

  22. Just a small comment about their menu – Kobe beef does not exist anywhere outside Japan.
    What was most likely offered was Wagyu.

  23. Mandarin Oriental seems to outclass this hotel by a lot. I live in NYC and have been tho the Park Hyatt a few times for dinner and drinks – the service, while attentive, can be clumsy and fussy. The rooms look OK, but nothing that special. The views, as you described, aren’t that great. The street level lobby and the restaurant rooms (Living Room and Back Room) look great, but there are comparable dining rooms in the city.

    For an actual paid stay, if you are not staying at say the Mandarin or St. Regis, I would focus more on location within NYC or go with something more boutique like (Ace, Standard, Gansevoort) or even lower cost (plenty of adequate and new build Hilton Garden Inns and such in the city).

  24. Last summer, I stayed at the Surrey Hotel for two weeks – I know it’s a Relais & Chateau, so no points… – but if you are looking for an extremely (in my mind) elegant, smallish hotel in NYC with amazing service, it is definitely a fantastic choice (with a really nice rooftop bar, btw). Breakfast however is subpar and very expensive.

    Anyway, thanks for the report!

  25. Another way to make the point many others are trying to make here…

    1) Within NYC, the hotel doesn’t necessarily compare all that favorably to other luxury hotels (Mandarin, St Regis, Ritz, etc). It’s not a “destination” hotel by any means.

    2) Within NYC, there are plenty of nice Hyatt redemption options available (Lucky, you’ve stayed at a few of them) if you need to redeem Hyatt points for a NY stay

    3) For a cash payer, there are dozens of more interesting options, options that may be more convenient, etc

    It looks like Lucky had an expiring certificate, but for general Hyatt redemptions or cash, the Park Hyatt seems to underwhelm…

  26. there are plenty of nice Hyatt redemption options available

    But, the Park is easily 5,000 points nicer than the Andaz 5th Avenue.

  27. Ben – as you said, it’s Park Hyatt’s Flagship property. It should be the best of the best. This would never happen at Park Hyatt Paris on any day of the year. Poor (or average) service at this level is just not acceptable.

  28. Not totally off the topic but I have two Hyatt free night awards from the credit card signup. Where would be a good place to use them? I have a planned visit to western Europe but it doesn’t include Paris.

  29. Do you think the PH Tokyo would show you a discounted level of service during New Years? Or the PH Vendome during Christmas? Absolutely no excuse! Why do we always let Americans get away with less-than-exemplary service? Same goes for airlines!

  30. @Emily Garrigan: This is no longer true. A US ban on imports was in place 2001-2006 and 2010-2012. However, small amounts of Kobe beef were and have always been exported to places like Hong Kong, Singapore, and Macau. Today, there are at least two places that import genuine Kobe beef: the Wynn in Las Vegas and 212 Steakhouse in NYC.

  31. Stayed here a week ago…. yes beautiful property as well as some great staff members here and there, however I felt that there was an air of arrogance with a lot of the staff. Have any diamond members gotten free suite upgrades here? It just seems that since the hotel is so new they are stuck up about their new place. Oh well, maybe just me…. I did just come back from a stay at the Fairmont Pacific Rim (phenomenal staff/service and hotel), so I got spoiled by a NA hotel.

  32. @ JW — Really any Category 6 or 7 property is a great option. Park Hyatts in Milan, Paris, Zurich, Sydney, New York, etc.

  33. Steven L. – I actually know the manager of Cane Ridge Cattle Co., which is a vertically integrated farm-to-table operation in my community that has one of the few herds of purebred Wagyu cows in the country (USA).
    From what he told me about Kobe, there are only about 3000 total animals in a particular region of Japan and they are extremely tightly regulated by the government. He was adamant that, if you wanted to eat Kobe beef you had to do it in Japan.
    My feeling is, and I have seen certain restaurants and even grocery stores do this, is that the beef is mislabeled as Kobe when it is actually something else, like Wagyu.
    Not too long ago there was a big deal made of fresh fish being mislabeled in some upscale grocery stores. It’s plausible (and I wouldn’t be surprised) that the same thing is happening with Kobe beef.

  34. Even taking into account Thanksgiving, thats a bit more backchat than I’d tolerate from a property at this level.

  35. Lucky, I love your blog.

    However, I’m perplexed by your definition of “extremely reasonable” cocktails.

    I’m here at the Park Hyatt NY and it appears that all of their cocktails are $18. Perhaps they got more expensive since the last time you were here?

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