Review: St. Regis New York

Introduction: Pulling Off A Very Special Surprise Trip
Review: St. Regis New York
How I Pulled Off A Surprise Trip… Sort Of
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I reviewed the St. Regis New York back in 2014, when the hotel’s public facilities were still being renovated. While I had stayed at the St. Regis before, Ford hadn’t, and I knew he’d love it. This is a Category 7 SPG property, meaning that a free night redemption costs 35,000 Starpoints per night. I value those points at ~2.2 cents each, so to me that’s $770 “worth” of points.

So as much as it usually pains me to do this, I figured paying cash was the best option, given the occasion. Ford booked us at the St. Regis through Starwood’s Luxury Privileges program, which offers the following amenities:

  • Complimentary third night for stays through September 4, 2017; the promotion may be repeated during stay.  Black-out dates: May 15, 16, 17, 18, 2017. Complimentary night will be adjusted at check-out.
  • One 100 USD food and beverage credit per room, per stay
  • Daily full breakfast for two guests in the restaurant or via room service
  • Complimentary standard in-room internet access
  • Upgrade at time of booking
  • Early check-in and late check-out which are all subject to availability

The rate is still eligible for Starpoints accrual, etc. The Luxury Privileges rate is equal to the best available rate, which was roughly $1,000 including all taxes & fees (NYC has ~15% taxes on hotels, which really add up). So in the end my out of pocket was just under $700 per night, which I consider to be a good deal for this hotel, especially when you consider that this was a busy time where most mid-range hotels were going for almost $400 per night.

The St. Regis New York is located at 55th & 5th. Personally I find staying in midtown to be convenient for the easy access to various parts of the city, though I don’t necessarily love the immediate area. However, since we had quite a few commitments on the Upper East Side, staying downtown didn’t make sense.

The renovations were recently completed on the St. Regis’ lobby, and they did a great job. The entire hotel feels both old world and classical without feeling run down, which can be a tough balance.

While the lobby’s finishes are beautiful, the space is definitely on the small side, and there aren’t really any nice sitting areas as you’d find in most other high end hotels.


St. Regis New York lobby


St. Regis New York lobby


St. Regis New York elevators

We arrived early at the hotel, and were told our room would only be ready around 2PM. So we dropped off our bags and walked around the city for a bit. Sure enough, just minutes before 2PM I got a phone call saying our room was ready.

Thanks to my Platinum status we received an upgrade to a beautiful suite on the fifth floor, #516. The room had an entryway with a guest bathroom immediately to the right.


St. Regis New York suite entryway


St. Regis New York suite guest bathroom

Then there was a beautiful living room with with a couch and chair around a coffee table.


St. Regis New York suite living room


St. Regis New York suite living room

In the corner of the room was the TV, which was sort of oddly placed, but I guess it was the only space where it could really go, given the sliding doors to the bedroom.


St. Regis New York suite living room

Underneath the TV was the minibar.


St. Regis New York suite minibar

Then in the corner of the living room was a desk with a leather chair. I realize the room is supposed to have a classic design, though I wish they still had practically positioned outlets near the desk, which they didn’t.


St. Regis New York suite living room desk

Waiting on the coffee table was a lovely welcome amenity, consisting of fresh berries, cheese, and macarons.


St. Regis New York welcome amenity

There was also a fruit plate next to the couch.


St. Regis New York welcome amenity

The living room was separated from the bedroom by a couple of sliding doors. What a gorgeous bedroom.


St. Regis New York suite

Not only do St. Regis properties consistently have great mattresses, but the sheets were high quality as well.


St. Regis New York suite bedroom

Our room didn’t have much in the way of views. This is probably partly because we were only the fifth floor, but even higher up I don’t think the views are great.


St. Regis New York suite view

Next to the bedroom was the bathroom, which featured double sinks, a tub, a walk-in shower, and a partitioned off toilet.


St. Regis New York suite bathroom


St. Regis New York suite bathtub


St. Regis New York suite toilet

The water pressure and temperature control in the shower were excellent.


St. Regis New York suite shower

As is the norm at St. Regis properties, toiletries were Remede branded.


St. Regis New York suite Remede toiletries

Overall I thought the room was fantastic. It was spacious, well designed, and beautifully decorated. Usually I’m someone who prefers modern, minimalist decor. However, in moderation I can appreciate classic decor when a hotel is as well maintained as this one. I also loved the attention to detail in the design, like how the vents even had St. Regis branding.


St. Regis New York suite details

As is the norm at St. Regis properties, the hotel has butlers, so shortly after checking in a butler came by to introduce himself, explain the services that the butler service offers, etc. As someone who is pretty self sufficient and doesn’t like other people touching my (limited) stuff, my favorite butler service feature is the complimentary coffee & tea, which we took advantage of every morning before breakfast.


St. Regis New York butler service coffee

Speaking of breakfast, for booking through Luxury Privileges we received complimentary breakfast at Astor Court, the hotel’s restaurant located just off the lobby.


St. Regis New York Astor Court restaurant


St. Regis New York Astor Court restaurant

The breakfast menu read as follows (check out the titanic omelette):

The breakfast privilege at this hotel was for the American Breakfast, or otherwise a credit equivalent to that amount ($43 per person).

One morning we both had the American breakfast, which was filling.


St. Regis New York Astor Court American breakfast


St. Regis New York Astor Court American breakfast

Another morning I decided to try the shakshuka instead, which I also enjoyed.


St. Regis New York Astor Court breakfast — shakshuka

And then the last morning I had smoked salmon with bagels.


St. Regis New York Astor Court breakfast — smoked salmon with bagels

I know this is totally random, but I loved the coffee pots at breakfast.


St. Regis New York breakfast coffeepot

Right next to Astor Court is the hotel’s famous King Cole Bar. This is where the bloody mary was supposedly invented, so we easily spent our $100 food & beverage credit there having drinks with family. Since the bloody mary was invented here, the St. Regis brand has a tradition where each property has their own signature bloody mary, which I enjoy trying, even though I’m not otherwise much of a bloody mary drinker.

In terms of other services, the St. Regis doesn’t have a pool (it’s rare for NYC hotels to have pools, though the Park Hyatt does, for example), though it does have a renovated gym. Stupidly I seem to have forgotten to taken pictures of that.

I found service throughout the hotel to be excellent. Ultimately you don’t have that much interaction with staff at a city hotel compared to a secluded resort, but everyone I interacted with was friendly and accommodating.

St. Regis New York bottom line

The St. Regis New York is a fantastic hotel with great service and lovely, well maintained classic rooms. Usually I value luxury hotels more in secluded destinations than in cities, since that’s where I’ll typically spend the most time in a hotel. At the same time, it’s rare that I get excited about staying at a hotel in NYC, since you can pay $300-400 for a perfectly mediocre hotel. The St. Regis New York, however, was a real treat, and a big step up from many of the places I usually stay in NYC. If you’re visiting New York and willing to really splurge, I highly recommend it.

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Comments

  1. What did Ford think you were going to NY for, since he knew about that part of the trip?

  2. Since I am from NYC I am not in touch with the hotel market there. The entire hotel seems designed for old-money folks. The prices at breakfast are ludicrous and stupid for anyone who cares about the value of their dollars to actually pay (and I say this as someone who loves fine dining and goes to numerous 1-3 Michelin starred restaurants each month). But then again I am assuming most people who stay here either have their breakfast included or don’t actually care about how much money they spend on breakfast.

  3. This review brought back fond memories of my two stays there back in 2004, when SPG had a fall promotion giving a free weekend night at any property after staying several nights at any other SPG property. I laughed as I lugged my cheap carry-on from Marshalls into a lobby full of Louis Vuitton-carrying guests. And I laughed again when the butler rang the doorbell! Champagne taste on a beer budget, indeed!

  4. Thanks for the review. We are planning a stay here (first since the renovation) in 2018 and appreciate the descriptions and photos with the updated styling. The suite certainly is cleaner and more current for classical styling than it was on our last stay. From then to now, our favorite in NYC actually has been the Chatwal…but we are looking forward to returning here to the original StR and seeing how it now compares.

  5. Thats sooooooooo expensive for breakfast….I’d rather spend that eating out in one of the millions of restaurants NYC has to offer

  6. The layout of that room is strikingly familiar. It reminds me of the layout of our room at St. Regis Langkawi with the only difference being that the NY hotel has a guest bathroom and Langkawi didn’t but Langkawi of course had a balcony being that it’s a beach resort.

  7. Did you learn the true meaning of the famous mural in the King Cole Bar?

    Also, I’m relieved to hear you didn’t have to spend 43 bucks on that pared down Denny’s Grand Slam. Absolute ripoff! The ingredients on that plate are worth about $2.00.

  8. What room type did you book and what were you upgraded to at booking? and finally what suite type did you get… one of the great deals is the third night free here, booking a grande luxe room and getting a confirmed at booking upgrade an Astor suite….

    FDW

  9. Stayed 4 nights late April for our Anniversary. This review is spot on. Great hotel & great service. Yes expensive but worth it. We were able to get 2 of our nights at $225/my + 15,000 points. The other 2 were 32,500 puts or about $1000/not with tax. We used points. SPG/Marriott Platinum. Great upgrade and same benefits like Lucky’s.

  10. This used to be a points blog. Now you just waste the money you earn from your readers on flying and staying in $1000/night all-paid hotels.

  11. Thank you for selecting the bagels and Shakshuka for breakfast as they were the two items I would have ordered. To those who are surprised by the menu prices, one needs to consider the silver (literally) service, ambiance and quality of ingredients used in creating the breakfast – these prices are not outrageous in that context.

  12. @carrie I can get that same service and better quality food for half the price in many New York City restraunts. 15 dollars for juice? Those ingredients cost them a couple of dollars max not anything very high end/

  13. Bloody Mary was invented at Harry’s New York bar in Paris and they still make a very fine one to this day. Well worth a visit.

  14. Ben and all,

    Was great. Emphasizing Was. Although quite pretentious before, still one could use points and have a nice 2 nite stay.

    The breakfast was great many years ago. Eggs Benedict was special. As many in this column noticed the poor quality, it is true, we stayed a year ago and extremely disappointing. In fact they had to make our orders over 3 times, regardless the quality has gone.

    Did anyone notice Ben’s pieces of fruit welcome amenity? $1,000 per nite?

    Were there other guests in the hotel during your stay or vacant as your photos show?

    Not a favorite any longer for us.

  15. We were in NYC for a theatre weekend in January and used SPG points to stay for 3 nights. Our first visit to this hotel We thought the location, our room, the reception staff and our butler were fantastic. Not so thrilled with King Cole Bar staff. Inattentive, rushed and unfriendly. Used our SPG gold gift of a free drink. We took one look at the prices in the restaurant and went elsewhere. Found a fantastic pub on 54th and 7th much more suited to our tastes and pocketbook. One of the big spiffs at the SR is the use of the house car, a Bentley. It was in the shop during our stay and replaced with a Mercedes. You can’t preschedule its use and every time we asked for a ride (one way within 10 blocks), it was in use and we were told it would be a 15-20 min wait. We could walk there faster, so we did. I will stay there again and stay long enough to get the extra day free when using points.

  16. Surprised u didnt mention the wonderful King Cole bar…having stayed there since a child and returned often Starwars has done a decent job of returning the Old Girl to her former state.
    Maxfield Parrishs’ mural in the KIng Cole is the heart of the hotel along with the characters that drift in and out..

  17. Did anyone else notice the typo on the breakfast menu? Incredibly minor detail of course, but I wouldn’t have expected that to slip by on a St. Regis menu.

  18. I loathe all that “olde worlde” “elegance”. Give me the sleek, minimal décor at the Four Season NY any night.

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