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One of the most dynamic neighborhoods in New York, the Lower East Side combines a laid-back sense of cool with some of the best restaurants, bars, shops and street art in the entire city. Combine that with a mix of trendy but relaxed hotels, perfectly reflecting the vibe of the area, and you might just want to stay forever.
The Lower East Side, just a hop over the bridge from Williamsburg and to the east of SoHo, is a bustling neighborhood in the heart of Lower Manhattan. Home to dining institutions like Katz’s Deli and an array of shops, the area is also full of ultra-trendy hotels. We round up our pick of the best below.
If you’ve ever envisioned diving into a rooftop swimming pool adorned with an underwater portrait of Andy Warhol, the SIXTY LES was made for you. Designed by acclaimed late designer Jim Walrod, the rooms give off a futuristic ’80s vibe with black mirrored walls offset by luxe white linens and sleek furniture. Communal tables and fresh sushi at the hotel’s Blue Ribbon Sushi Izakaya make the perfect start before closing out the night at the rooftop social club, Make Believe, designed to “evoke the feelings of exotic and far-off lands” through international music and cocktails.
This glass-clad skyscraper offers some of the best views in the city. Waking up in your enormous room (a real luxury in a city of tiny living spaces), you’ll be tempted to toast to the scene in front of you – especially in the High Floor Corner Kings, which look out towards One World Trade Center. In-house Café Medi is unsurprisingly an Instagram favorite, with eye-catching interiors and an inviting menu of Mediterranean food and drinks. Meanwhile, Shanghai-inspired bar and lounge JIA will have you dancing the night away with the city’s trendiest residents in no time.
Walking into the cavernous entrance, it’s clear that the Hotel Indigo Lower East Side takes its dedication to art seriously. A colorful mural by graffiti artist Lee Quiñones commands the space, and modern art fills both the rooms and public spaces. You’ll need to head up to the 14th floor to check in, where the lobby has unobstructed skyline views and plush seating. Rooms feel plush with hardwood floors, chic ombré curtains and C.O. Bigelow Apothecary bathroom products. The hotel’s rooftop bar, Mr Purple, is popular among locals, pouring seriously good cocktails. And this might be New York, but you’ll need a swimsuit – Mr Purple also has an open-air pool with views of the Empire State Building.
Not one inch of Ian Schrager’s PUBLIC Hotel was left to chance. Rooms are designed to provide distinct zones for sleeping, working and entertaining, and offer incredible city views through floor-to-ceiling windows – though the Great View rooms are the most breathtaking. Famed chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten oversees the hotel’s restaurant, Public Kitchen, which is accompanied by suave cocktail bar Diego and a green outdoor space inspired by the Tuileries Garden in Paris. Guests are offered exclusive hours at Diego and Shinola bikes to cruise around the city, plus the hotel claims to have the fastest Wi-Fi in New York City.
A sleek and minimalistic place to rest your head, the Sago Hotel has 20 guest rooms with high cork headboards, glass showers and, in select rooms, a full kitchenette. A rooftop lounge offers free wine at certain times, but classic New York City views are always happening. Though not a budget hotel, the Sago Hotel does offer competitive rates with an elevated feel that’s walkable to some of the best shopping and nightlife in the entire city as well as public transport.
CitizenM makes the most of its location inside a skyscraper by offering brilliant views over the city from both rooms and social spaces. Beds are positioned under wall-to-wall windows, bringing a whole new meaning to the term “a room with a view.” Dining options include a ground-floor breakfast space and a rooftop bar and terrace, seemingly perched among the clouds at 20 floors up. Design, true to the citizenM style, is whitewashed and modern with pops of cherry red and enormous beds – although who’s thinking about furniture with views like that?
Molly Codyre contributed additional reporting to this article.