We arrived in New York Thursday evening, for a first visit to the Kimpton brand’s Ink 48 property. Housed in a former printing press building just a couple of blocks from the Hudson River, we’re in an area that also offers impressive views of the Manhattan skyline.
While this is only our second stay in a Kimpton hotel, it delivered the warm welcome and richly coloured lobby furnishings I’ve already come to expect.
I like that the lobby provides ample opportunities for socialising – with your own group and others – but also provides some quiet little nooks and crannies.
Guests can pop down to the lobby each morning for complimentary coffee or tea, and fruit-infused water. There’s also a hosted wine hour at 5:00 each day. As you’ll see here, guests have access to loaner bikes. Four-legged guests are also welcome here.
We have a spacious, and very open, King studio with Manhattan views, including Times Square.
Homes and Gardens
These photos speak for themselves. I caught all of them within a five minute radius of our hotel; the park is Clinton Community Garden, another fenced and gated (yet accessible) property.
Love the Neighbourhood
When travelling to other cities, it’s all to easy to find yourself based in a generic and tourist-driven neighbourhood.
Here in Hell’s Kitchen, although visitors and travellers are clearly welcomed, we felt we were afforded a glimpse into the New York lifestyle. Need beverages or a morning bagel? We made more than a couple of visits to 5 Brothers Gourmet Market, just a block away from Ink 48.
Our first morning in New York, we strolled up the block and nabbed bagels. Where to enjoy them?
Directly across the street, in Hell’s Kitchen Park – where you have a curved row of benches that draws parents watching their little ones at play, as well as other visitors of all ages and stages in life. In addition to the basketball court and playground equipment, there’s a nice water feature for cooling off in the heat of the day. All this play is contained by fencing and a solid gate, with little ones under parents’ watchful eyes.
So many options! Apart from the deli, we tried Ethiopian, Italian and Mexican food. I particularly recommend Anejo (wonderful guacamole, salads and more), directly across the street from Hell’s Kitchen Park, and Patzeria Family and Friends. Anejo oozes charm. The service was good, and the food was delicious.
If you go to Patzeria, the decor is simple; the focus is on very good food and stellar service. Our thanks to Walter and kudos to owner Lee on the delicious food (delicious prawns and scallops, as you’ll see below), clean facilities and great staff. Patzeria is less than a 10-minute walk from Ink 48. You’d be wise to either make a reservation (by phone or online), or be prepared to wait in line. We stumbled across this restaurant, located at 311 West 48th Street, by chance. At first deterred by the lineup, we listened to the advice of a pair of departing diners who encouraged us to stay. They raved about the food, and we’re glad we listened.
Incidentally, Patzeria is in the heart of the theatre district; it seems popular with both pre- and post-theatre audiences, as well as cast and crew members. On our second visit, we enjoyed beer at a happy hour price of $3 each, and wonderful thin crust pizza … and were surprised, but delighted, to be offered a pair of tickets to The Crucible by another pair of diners.
We enjoyed great weather for most of our first day, but both times I popped up to the Press Lounge, it was to damp skies … which made for an interesting shot, below, of a traffic jam through raindrops.
Ready Access to the Business District
I had the privilege of joining Bonnie Low-Kramen and Vickie Sokol Evans for the opening of this weekend’s Be the Ultimate Assistant two-day workshop. I departed mid-day, but was impressed by the caliber of the administrative professionals in attendance and by trainers Bonnie and Vickie.
The group was hosted by sponsor KKR (Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P.) at its West 57th offices near Central Park, and I had a brisk, but lovely early morning walk through the local neighbourhoods and past landmarks such as Radio City Hall to reach the workshop. Ink 48 makes for a great home base for exploring Manhattan, whether you’re here for business or leisure.
Manhattan Skyline and Hudson River Views
The property’s location gives you access to great area restaurants and stellar views. The building height restrictions here in Hell’s Kitchen afford visitors these views from its rooftop Press Lounge. Have a look at the traffic jam below, and you’ll see why we were happy to hoof it through Manhattan for about five hours yesterday. I took all five photos below from the Press Lounge, where you literally have views in every direction, including over the Hudson River. I can understand why there are lineups to access this popular spot.
From the hotel, we walked up 10th to 34th and took a walk along the High Line. I’ll write more about that later but, in the interim, here’s a peek at this great – and relatively recent – walkway above and through various neighbourhoods.
We could see Times Square from our 14th floor room, and made our way down there last night. Before I sign off and we continue our explorations, here’s a look at and around Broadway – which was barely a 10-minute walk away from the hotel!