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New York Restaurant Week 2011: InterContinental Times Square

 

For the second night of my stay in New York, I figured I'd check out what is supposed to be the new flagship for the InterContinental brand, the InterContinental Times Square.  It is located on West 44th St. right at 8th Ave. right next to the Shake Shack.

Welcoming Experience

In my limited experience, this property has the most welcoming lobby I've seen for the InterContinental brand, as it is focused less on old school grandeur, and more on understated elegance, which is a nice change.  The garden design behind the front desk really helps the guest feel welcome upon checking in to the hotel.  The front desk was helpful and friendly, making a point to mention that they are running a promotion for ambassadors where in addition to the free movie, they also provide free internet for one computer.  This makes me very happy, as I feel high level elites should never have to pay for internet.

The Room

I will say that this is one area where the different room classes are extremely important.  I booked a Superior room (located on floors 3-7) and received an upgrade to a Deluxe room (same room but on a higher floor).  This was adequate, as I am not a Royal Ambassador, however this does bode well as it shows that they do provide upgrades on points stays.  The room is practically a palace for the city, and still have the new hotel smell.  The robes are just generic robes, but then it really takes a special experience for me to even consider getting a hotel bathrobe for personal use.

There is a computer for your use if you not wish to use your own, however be warned that it charges the same rate for internet as if you used your own personal computer.

Going with a technological theme, the hotel actually lacks the hotel guide book, and instead offers the hotel guide through the TV.

The room also includes some interesting artwork.

The bathroom is extremely spacious, with extremely high quality amenities.

The shower is a rain shower for general use, however there is a spout for you to reach any places that might be difficult to reach from above.  The shower is spacious, and extremely large for the area.

I really apreciated the turndown service offered by the hotel, as it really was above and beyond the standard turndown service.

I am a fan of the Sweet Dreams Cards, and have collected all of the ones I have received from other travels, as they provide a nice reference for the city you are in, and a good keepsake.  The use of a local chocolate source is a nice touch, and provides a much more unique experience than the standard chocolates you find at many properties.  But this was not the entirety of the turndown service, as there was a change of sheets, and a nice mat for waking up and a place to put on your slippers without having to put your feet on the carpet.

About 8pm, my ambassador fruit and water arrived, with an extra special gift from the front desk.

And unfortunately there was no way provided to warm the nuts ;-)

It was very nice, though extremely rich.  But definitely a nice touch.  The only real complaint was how late the whole package arrived, as I checked into the hotel ~12:30pm, and may have wanted the amenity earlier, with the cake arriving later.  Especially since I needed to leave the hotel around 7:30 am to catch my flight out of LGA.

And one of the most important things about a NYC hotel room, I did not hear any noise from the street, which was actually surprising.  I slept quite well without even having to worry about the sound of sirens blaring.

Warning: Do not rely on the alarm clock in the room.  I consider myself a tech savy person, and just when I thought I had the alarm figured out, I discovered I did not, and overslept by an hour and a half.  Fortunately I was still able to make my flight, but not without a little panic, and more financial outlay than I planned.

The View

Pretty good from my room on the 19th floor looking south.

The Area

This is where the hotel really shines.  It is hard to get a better location, as you are one block away from Times Square, next door to the Port Authority Bus Terminal subway station, and only one block from the Port Authority Bus Terminal itself. 

Overall

If you need to be in this section, and are partial to full service properties, this is a property that is hard to beat.

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