What, did you expect the Westin? It's a relief that the corporotization of America hasn't touched this one building, with its black-and-white tile lobby complete with two telephone booths and an old-school Coke machine. The bay windows are a good place to read the papers in the morning, perhaps accompanied by a character or two who are old-timers there. The hand-operated elevator (at night you carry your own bags: the guy has to sleep at some point) doubles as a time machine. Be sure to check out the historic photos in the lobby before heading upstairs. You've got to love a place that hosted John Hinckley during his unsuccessful stalking of Jodie Foster at Yale ("He seemed like a very nice young man") and also Jane Fonda and other actors from the Yale Rep, kitty corner across the street. In the halls you can almost sense the ghosts of Smithies past as they bunked here during Yale mixers, dances, and games. The rooms are indeed bare bones, and there's no Internet;if you're at Yale on business, though, they usually provide guest WiFi codes, and you can get it from the architecture school down the street. There's one cleaning lady--please tip her!--and she is hard-working, but there is a certain degree of "use" that's built into an old building. My sheets were clean, as was the bathroom--just don't examine the edges of the carpet too closely. Might bring flip-flops if you're squeamish. Some of the attendants at the desk are friendly and helpful; others are a little sullen and just get it done. I wouldn't be able to attend conferences and consult manuscripts at the Beinecke if it weren't for this place: I can just walk out the door go to the lectures or head to a museum or a restaurant. I also appreciate their willingness to call a cab for me and help me with my book bag: this was my fifth or sixth trip to the Duncan, and it will not be my last There's a little Cohn brothers in all of us.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Clean, Quiet, Comfortable.Conveniently located on the edge of the Yale campus and within walking distance of theaters, museums, boutiques, restaurants and more. The Duncan Hotel has been in business for over 100 years. Rooms are always available for daily or weekly rental. On-street metered parking is available. There is also a parking garage just around the corner on York St between Crown St & Chapel St. The hotel now has free wi-fi, there are also many wifi networks available in the area. Remember - Clean, Quiet, Comfortable. We look forward to your visit. Hotel Duncan ... more less