The first surprise we encountered regarded the payment policy of Sylvan Guest House: even though we fully understood that the whole amount is non-refundable, we were not aware that the full amount would be debited to our credit card shortly after the booking. I presume, this fact was stated at some point during the reservation process at booking.com, but we did not realize it until we saw the debit on our credit card bill.
In an e-mail before our visit, we were given the code which opened the little safe box containing the key of the apartment. In person, we only saw our host once for a short moment as he picked up his mail. After our arrival, we were surprised to find out that the door of our apartment was not reached by walking UP the beautiful stairs shown on various pictures of the location, rather we had to go DOWNstairs into a basement apartment. Our kids immediately had a name for the apartment: the bunker. This is actually a good summary how the place felt. Even in the brightest sunlight, the lights had to be switched on as the little window did not allow for a lot of daylight to enter the apartment. Therefore, the nice and bright photos shown in the website have little to do with the apartment in reality. Being in a basement had another side effect: the underground trains of NY could be heard as they passed by. The unpleasant atmosphere was rounded up by two quite noisy air condition units in the bedrooms. Finally, the little outdoor garden mentioned in the booking.com website was nowhere to be found as there were no instructions whatsoever, for example where to leave the garbage during our stay.
Overall, the experience was disappointing and we felt overcharged for the type of apartment we rented. When it comes to the location itself, Sylvan Terrace is a bit far away, but we did not feel that this was a major drawback. The proximity of subway as well as supermarket was quite helpful. However, without having seen the other available apartment on the upper level from the outside, our conclusion was that it only makes sense to consider a stay at Sylvan Guest House if you obtain a definite assurance that you have a reservation for the second, upper apartment.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Sylvan GuestHouse.Located on a quite, historic cobble stone street is a modern styled guesthouse with its own private entrance. Built in 1882, this renovated townhouse is located on Sylvan Terrace in Manhattan's Harlem Heights area. Sylvan Terrace has been published around the world and 30,000 tourists walk this block each year to experience the allure of a one of a kind street and the Morris Jumel Mansion, where George Washington once resided. Steps away from the C train, and one stop away from the #1 and A trains, this destination is close to grocery stores, pharmacies and laundry centers. Only 20 minutes from lower Manhattan, this residence is a home away from home. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- The Sylvan Guest House Hotel New York City
- The Sylvan Hotel