Posts tagged Hotels
// NOLITAN //

I took a taxi from JFK to Manhattan, all the while fearing for my life, and landed in the lobby of the über cool Nolitan Hotel. After checking in, I was asked if I’d like a glass of champagne – to which I replied, ‘YESSSS.’ So there I was: squeezed onto the balcony of my hotel room overlooking a busy street, sipping on champagne and taking in the deafening (but glorious) sound of New York City traffic.

Perfection.

Nolitan Hotel
View from the balcony of the Nolitan Hotel
Jennifer Inglis at the Nolitan Hotel

I crawled onto the bed after exploring the wonders of the balcony and discovered that the sheets were the most indescribably soft things my skin had ever encountered. Honestly, they were amazing. I think the fibers were laced with cotton candy. That night we ventured around the corner to a little restaurant called Bread, as recommended by the hotel staff. It was delicious. Granted, my husband’s eggplant parmigiana was way better than the meatballs I had… but still, it was well worth the visit.

Bathroom at the Nolitan Hotel
Room at the Nolitan Hotel

The next morning we were feeling ambitious and full of life so decided to head down the street to 24 Hour Fitness where we engaged in a little early morning workout. On the way back, we stopped by The Butcher’s Daughter for a little detoxifying juice. Much to my shock the little baby set me back $10 but, I’ve got to say, it was the best juice of my life.

The Butcher's Daughter in New York

Afterwards we headed out in search of food. I was craving eggs royale and after much wandering we finally stumbled into Cafe Select. It wasn’t until we had already been seated that we noticed the bircher muesli on the menu and the Zurich themed posters on the wall… how, on earth, had we managed to come all the way from Switzerland and wind up in a Swiss themed restaurant on our first morning in New York? Oh well. The food was good and we enjoyed hissing over the hilarious exaggerated accents of the people at the table next to us. Post-breakfast we borrowed some bikes from the hotel (yes, they lend out bikes – so good) and we headed towards the Brooklyn Bridge. Through Chinatown we went and I promise I only screeched from fear of death once. It was an incredibly long and sweaty endeavour but the ride was, without a doubt, my favourite part of the entire trip to the city. If you’re ever in town, man-up and ride a bike around. Just beware of impending traffic. There is obviously a lot of it.

We spent the rest of the afternoon wandering around Little Italy. I’ve only been to New York a handful of times but I’ve got to say this was my favourite area of the city I’ve ever stayed in. There are loads of awesome shops and restaurants to explore. The best part is that it doesn’t feel too touristy at all and amazingly it isn’t that crowded. Also, if you happen to be in the area and need a sugar rush you can always pop into the Little Cupcake Bakeshop on Prince Street for some yummy treats…

Little Italy
// GRAMERCY PARK //

Stepping inside the Gramercy Park Hotel is akin to being transported to an entirely separate world. A world dissimilar to ones own, where all is still and grand yet rooted in a Bohemian subculture that harks back to years past. It’s as if you’re Alice and you’ve just tumbled down the rabbit hole. It is simultaneously surreal, dark, and comforting – a perfected combination of elements that leaves you wishing you could stay forever wrapped in its allure.

Established in 1925, the hotel has a varied past. Humphrey Bogart married his first wife at the hotel, the Kennedy family stayed on the second floor for several months, and during the Great Depression Babe Ruth often frequented the bar. In 1958 the hotel was bought by Herbert Weissberg, prices dropped and the location embraced a more bohemian character. In the 1970s Bob Marley and Bob Dylan frequently visited. Everyone from Madonna to David Bowie have made the hotel their home.

After Weissberg’s death in 2003 the hotel was sold to Ian Schrager. Co-founder of Studio 54 and often credited with co-creating the Boutique Hotel genre, it was under Schrager that the hotel was renovated in collaboration with artist Julian Schnabel. Today the hotel hosts a vast collection of 20th century masterpieces. Original works of art by Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Damien Hirst, Richard Prince and Keith Haring line the walls and make the viewer feel as if art is being democratized in front of them. Stand in your bedroom slippers, sip a cocktail in the Rose Bar, and be inspired by the vast wealth of paintings that sit all around you.

The Gramercy Park Hotel is such an enchanting place to stay that you’ll struggle to leave. While there I didn’t have the slightest interest in venturing out into the city. I could have spent all morning on the roof top terrace sipping lattes or lying in the Japanese soaking bath. Just next to the hotel is Gramercy Park. It’s the only private park in New York but as a resident of the hotel you’ll be granted access.

My only regret? That I stayed for just one night.

Gramercy Park Hotel sunglasses
Gramercy Park Hotel breakfast
Gramercy Park Hotel terrace
Gramercy Park Hotel room
Gramercy Park Hotel room
Gramercy Park Hotel bathroom
Gramercy Park toiletries
Gramercy Park Hotel view
Gramercy Park Hotel umbrella
Gramercy Park Hotel minibar
Gramercy Park Hotel
Gramercy Park book
// THE PARAMOUNT //

Arriving into America always feels like total magic. I love it when the woman at passport control looks up after having checked over my documents and says, ‘Welcome home, ma’am.’ Not only that, there’s something undeniably enticing about a yellow taxi. Sitting inside and watching as the magnanimous city landscape creeps ever closer. Until, unexpectedly, you find yourself completely eaten up by it. In my case, standing on the steps of the Paramount Hotel in Times Square.

When I walked in I was handed a keycard to room 1426. Otherwise known as the Couture Suite, this newly renovated 950 square foot space is enough to make your jaw drop. It’s sleek and crisp with a serious touch of glamour. Modeled off what you’d expect to find from a luxury New York style loft, it has white leather sofas, hardwood floors, and walls lined with vintage fashion prints (the likes of Marilyn Monroe and Jackie Kennedy will gaze down at you as you eat your breakfast).

The hotel itself sits right in the center of New York’s mayhem – I could watch the madness of Times Square from my window. If you’re new to the city I couldn’t recommend the location more. Your on the doorstep of some of the biggest attractions around. At the same time though, the rooms offer a total haven away from all the chaos. You can grab the best coffee in New York* without even having to go outside. There’s a Dean & Deluca attached to the hotel and, if I’m honest, that’s reason enough to lure me back. I found myself almost struggling to leave the premises of the hotel while I was there. Despite the unfamiliarity of the city, my little space at the Paramount felt like a home away from home… I already can’t wait to go back.

Paramount Hotel New York
Couture Suite Paramount Hotel
Couture Suite Paramount Hotel
Couture Suite Paramount Hotel bathroom
Paramount Hotel slippers
Couture Suite Paramount Hotel
Couture Suite Paramount Hotel
Couture Suite Paramount Hotel
Portugal
Lisbon
Lisbon

Recently, I headed over to Portugal for a little holiday. It was my first time in the country and I had absolutely no idea what to expect.

Our first stop was Lisbon where we stayed at the Heritage Avenida Liberdade Hotel. It's located right in the center of town on a street lined with lots of luxury shops (perfect for browsing on a lazy afternoon). On one of our days there I came down with a nasty stomach bug so spent the day in bed. Thankfully the hotel had a big selection of TV channels (including TLC - yey) and so I got to watch my ultimate favourite guilty pleasure show. Lisbon was a pretty great city to explore. Everything was super cheap (hello beer for €1.50). The food was really good - we had loads of fish and way too many pastel de nata (you've got to try it if you're ever in Portugal).

Monument-Lisbon
Monument-Lisbon
Tram-Art-Lisbon
Tram-Art-Lisbon
Buildings-Exterior
Buildings-Exterior
Sardines-in-Lisbon
Sardines-in-Lisbon
Outer-building-and-sign
Outer-building-and-sign
Lisbon-souveniers
Lisbon-souveniers
Lisbon-tram-and-old-buildings
Lisbon-tram-and-old-buildings
View-from-the-Heritage-Hotel-Lisbon
View-from-the-Heritage-Hotel-Lisbon
Heritage-Hotel
Heritage-Hotel

On one day we took a short train ride to the nearby town of Belem. While there we visited the Berardo Museum - a modern art museum filled with a seriously impressive collection. It's an absolute must see as, not only does it house some of the world's best artists, it's virtually empty and free. The best bit though is that there's a mist water feature outside which you can run through. Absolutely perfect and essential in the scorching Portuguese heat. While there we also stopped by the Jeronimos Monastery. Belem is right on the coast so if you get tired of sightseeing just snatch up some food and enjoy it in the park where you can soak up the beautiful views (that's what we did).

Belem
Belem
Belem-Cathedral
Belem-Cathedral
Sea-in-Belem
Sea-in-Belem
Paul-&-Joe-Sister-top
Paul-&-Joe-Sister-top

I wore a Paul & Joe Sister top covered in tiny blue lips, Acne jeans, Havaianas and Mykita sunglasses.

Onyria Marinha Hotel
Onyria Marinha Hotel
Pool
Pool

Our next stop was Cascais - a little beachside town located about 20 miles away from Lisbon. I'd definitely recommend it if you're looking to get away from the city and you want to spend a little time sticking your toes in the sand. We stayed at the super chic Onyria Marinha Hotel. It has a minimalist design aesthetic and all feels very zen. Unfortunately the pool was so enticing (it was salt water) that I had little motivation to leave the resort and go explore the town. When we did though I was intrigued by all the beautiful tiles on buildings that were verging on falling apart.

Onyria Marinha Hotel room
Onyria Marinha Hotel room
Cascais
Cascais
Tiles and door in Cascais
Tiles and door in Cascais
Feet
Feet
Tiles2
Tiles2
Street-Art
Street-Art
Tiles3
Tiles3

Overall I really enjoyed my time in Portugal. It has a very laid back atmosphere. You can get everywhere by taxi (the most you'll pay is €6 to get across town) which makes navigating easy and stress free. The food is delicious and the people are friendly. It's perfect if you're looking for a low cost getaway. It feels a bit foreign and exotic but is still really close by (if you're in Europe). If you haven't been yet, I'd definitely recommend it.

HOW TO SPEND ONE DAY IN NYC...

View-from-Crosby-Street-Hotel

A stay in New York City isn't quite complete without a few key things: street food, a deli, museums, coffee and, I think, a night spent at the Crosby Street Hotel. This super gorgeous and ultra luxe little gem is situated in Soho and provides the perfect base for exploring the city's coolest neighborhood. While there we ate the world's yummiest eggs royal (my favourite) and explored some of the best things the city has to offer. It was perfect.

Read on to discover, what I think is, the perfect way to spend a day in NYC...

Crosby-Street-Hotel

Wandering around NYC provides ample time to gaze at buildings (those fire escapes are so iconic). I know that looking up while you're walking around is the easiest way show off that you're a tourist... but when you are a tourist what's wrong with looking like one? Personally I don't mind. Slow down your walking so you can take in everything around you. There is plenty of good art to be found and lots of delicious street food to devour: hot dogs, pretzels and ice-cream are my personal favourites.

NYC-Streets

New-York-City-graffiti

Ice-cream-in-NYC

Hit up the New Museum (it's small but good) and be sure to visit the observation deck on the top floor - it has got great views of the city. Also, definitely check out the MoMA. It's crazy busy (an 8 hour line to get into the Rain Room?!) but well worth pushing your way through the crowds to get a glimpse at an entire wall covered in Andy Warhol's soup cans. Make sure to make time for lunch at Katz Delicatessen. They have the most enormous pastrami sandwiches (split one with a friend) and bring you a massive plate of pickles before you meal comes out. Iced coffee is always a must and I think Dean & Deluca do it best. They also serve donut muffins, which will undoubtedly rock your world.

Instagram-NYC

 For dinner, head over to Hell's Kitchen and try out Ardesia wine bar. They have a great selection of drinks and do delicious little nibbles. We had pretzels and ricotta crostinis and they were both seriously tasty - well worth the cab ride to get there.

Ardesia-Wine-Bar-Menu

Ardesia-Wine-Bar