TRAVEL ATTACHE | HOTEL HOP: SPRING EDITION / by Brackett Bilodeau

New York City is home to both the finest culinary destinations and internationally acclaimed icons in the hospitality world. The two married together make for a double threat -- and endless possibilities for the city savvy.

With the help of our Attachés, we mapped out the perfect day hopping from hotel to hotel in our very own backyard: Manhattan. Check out our journey of brunch, cocktails, and the pursuit of the best rooftop view in the city.


Image courtesy of sohogrand.com

Image courtesy of sohogrand.com

BRUNCH
Ah, SoHo Grand in its sunshiney glory. This downtown gem’s breathtaking lounge sets the scene for the quintessential hotel brunch, bursting with natural light and filled with living room-esque seating. Pull up a chaise. Order some steak and eggs. Is that a peacock in a life-size bird cage? Why yes, yes it is.


Image courtesy of ritournelleblog.com

Image courtesy of ritournelleblog.com

SHOP ‘TIL YOU DROP
Our Attachés took it uptown for the next stop, heading to Central Park South’s iconic crown jewel: The Plaza. After walking off the SoHo Grand spread, taking a shopping break seemed like a natural choice. From the Assouline haven above the lobby to Slavic import Misahara, The Plaza’s boutique offerings are nothing short of dreamy. Right this way to The Palm Court’s afternoon tea.


Image courtesy of ny.eater.com

Image courtesy of ny.eater.com

AFTERNOON TEA
Nothing says luxe like a triple-tier tray of afternoon bites flanked by a pot of tea and a glass of Roederer. The Palm Court is hands-down one of our favorite spots in the city with its stunning stained glass roof and palm fronds aplenty, arching to and fro high above the tea-sipping guests below. Trust us -- this might just become a tradition. BONUS: we sat down with the one and only Geoffrey Zakarian for the skinny on his secret to bringing The Palm Court back to life.

LA: What was your vision for the revamp of The Palm Court's culinary program?
GZ: We wanted to retain the integrity of The Palm Court and its history, but modernize its accessibility, look and feel.

LA: Tell us a bit about the collaboration between you and Thierry Despont -- how did you bring your ideas together?
GZ: Thierry, quite frankly, is a genius, and is three steps ahead of you all the time. His thinking is thoroughly modern but rooted in a deep desire to preserve the most important of the past. It was a dream working with him, we finished each other’s sentences!

LA: What's your favorite dish on the menu right now?  
GZ: Well I am a firm believer in a philly cheesesteak sandwich, and it's there at The Plaza!

LA: Go-to cocktail?
GZ: Plymouth gin martini with a twist, exceptionally cold.

LA: What's on the agenda for The Oak Room?  
GZ: We shall see...we are starting the planning.

LA: How do you envision the future of the dining scene at The Plaza as a whole?  
GZ: Well we want it to be not only the best of the best, but homespun and local as well. It has to be a place for real New Yorkers to visit, not just tourists.

LA: Any future plans or projects in the works?
GZ: We are working on rolling out lots of concepts.

And there it is.


Image courtesy of maven26.com

Image courtesy of maven26.com

WINED & REFINED
Next stop: rooftop. Team Hotel Hop took to the Refinery’s top floor for a taste of the great outdoors...and their killer cocktail menu. Drinks in hand, our Attachés kicked back al fresco with an unbeatable backdrop while the sun set over the New York City skyline.


Image courtesy of nymag.com

Image courtesy of nymag.com

NINGS & THINGS
Nothing like a nightcap to bring a long day of hotel hopping to a close. The Peninsula is the epitome of New York City hospitality with its old school digs and modern approach, somehow perfecting the balance between the two. From an exceptional tasting menu and bar program in cornerstone restaurant Clement to a world-class spa and accommodations, this hotel tops our #attachéapproved list. Dusk rolls around and the rooftop calls. Going up.

Chic 1930s Shanghai-inspired décor and two outdoor terraces, all boasting dramatic views of the surrounding skyline, make Salon de Ning an unforgettable experience in more ways than one. Our Attachés cozied up beneath heat lamps, signature cocktails in hand. Ning Sling, anyone?

Now that’s what we call a day out on the town.