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“"Gem" Hotel? I say not: Worst Hotel Ever” 1 of 5 stars
Review of The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West

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The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   449 W. 36th Street, 36th Street between 9th & 10th Avenues, New York City, NY 10018   |  
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Ranked #248 of 451 hotels in New York City
New York City, New York
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“"Gem" Hotel? I say not: Worst Hotel Ever”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2012

This is by far the worst hotel I have seen in NYC. I had a reservation at the Gem - Midtown West property. Walking up to the front door, they had multiple trash bags on the curb along with old rolled up carpet. Not a good first impression.

Checking in, the room they gave me was literally in the basement – as in you go to the elevator, hit the “B” button, and you go down. In the basement they have only one hotel room. To get to the room you have to walk past all the cleaning supplies, staff changing area, staff break room, and a shower facility (I’m assuming the shower was for staff, but I did not dare ask the real purpose). The basement room window provided a view of the staff smoking area.

The room was so small a two foot midget would have been claustrophobic sleeping there. Literally I could not pull out the chair from under the desk because it hit the bed. Standing in the room / cube, I heard a dripping sound. I looked up at the ceiling above the bed and noticed a long brown strip caused by water damage from above – this solved the mystery of why the carpet was out on the curb. At this point I knew that my presence in that room would be short lived.

I picked up the phone in the room to call the front desk to ask if they had a different room but the phone did not work. I took the elevator from the basement back up to the reception area to beg for a different room – no luck. On the verge of panic, I started weighing my options: 1) sleep standing up, fully clothed in the basement room, 2) find a bench in Central Park, or 3) locate a bar that is open 24 hours and tie one on. Since I cannot sleep standing up, option 1 was out. I went back to the room, got my suitcase. Walking through the lobby, the receptionist (who was a nice guy) even admitted it gets “a little scary” down there in the basement. With a strong shiver going down my spine, I bid him and the hotel a good day and walked out the front door.

By the grace of God a friend of mine was able to call in a favor and got me a room at a different hotel. The benches in Central Park and the hangover caused by a 24 hour drinking binge will have to wait for the next person sleeping in the basement of the Gem Hotel.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, General Manager at The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West, responded to this review, June 26, 2012
Dear RyanN,
I like to take this opportunity to express my apology to you. With real gems or diamonds there are flaws within them. We at the Gem Hotel Midtown West strive everyday to make sure that we are committed to our guests. It was unfortunate that your reservation was assigned our last room in the lower level. I hope that if you have the opportunity to contact me at midtown.gm@thegemhotel.com I like to offer you an upgraded stay with us.
Our sincere apology again and know that your comments and reveiw of your stay will be addressed.
Best Regards,
The Gem Hotel Midtown West
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (35)
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English first
Cromwell, Connecticut
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 20, 2012

The staff was very friendly and the room was clean (no bed bugs)! The room was tiny, but that is to be expected in NYC. The location was a little off-putting at first. It's right by the Lincoln Tunnel, on a very quiet street. The walk to the subway was not too bad, but we took a cab back at night, because of the slightly creepy location. It is pretty close to the Javits center, and there was a cool flea market right around the corner. I don't usually stay over night in NYC, but this hotel was definitely worth the money.

Room Tip: We stayed on the ninth floor. It was nice.
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, General Manager at The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West, responded to this review, June 26, 2012
Dear KimberlyCT,
Thank you having chosen The Gem Hotel Midtown West during your most recent stay in New York City. Your reveiw and comments mean alot to us, our staff and I use the feedback as a gauge to measure or level of service and commitment that we strive for everyday. The Gem Midtown West though near the Convention center is quick hop into Hell's kitchen, Chelsea or even to the Flatiron district with trendy bars and restaurants. We hope that on you return visit that you use "LGEMR" and please follw us on FACEBOOK.
Best Regards,
The Gem Hotel Midtown West
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Upstate, New York
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2012

I have stayed previously at the GEM-Chelsea, but received a great rate at the Mid-Town location and decided to give them a try; I came away very impressed. The location is very convenient to Penn Station, in fact, it is closer than their sister property; up three streets and over just two avenues if you use the eighth avenue exit at Penn. The check-in was fast, and my room was spacious with a fantastic bed, and lots of interesting amenities from polished rocks that had engraved messages that you could take with you after leaving, complimentary IPODS that you could check out that were preloaded with special walking tours of the City, to a small vile of aroma therapy oil placed on your bed after the room was serviced that you would place a drop or two on your pillow when settling down for the night. The WiFi is free but was not working while I was there, it turns out that the company they were using has a lousy track record and they are switching to another service provider (Time-Warner) so I wouldn't blame the property, it wasn't their fault. The staff were always smiling and responsive to any questions that I might have. There is a Dunkin Donuts right around the corner, not 100 feet away and the adjacent service station is also a standing area for taxis so you never have to worry about flagging a cab---they are right at your doorstep!! I like the GEM properties but especially liked this one, I will DEFINITELY return.

Room Tip: Rooms facing away from the street would be best, also there is only one ice machine and it is on the...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, General Manager at The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West, responded to this review, June 26, 2012
Dear DixonR925,
Thank you for staying at The Gem Midtown West during your recent stay in NYC.We are pleased and estatic that you have made Gem Hotel your preferred destination stop. Gem Hotels strive to provide the best service and commitment to all of our guest. Your comments and reveiw lets us know that we are heading in the right directions. The Midtown West is ideally located for the Amtrak traveler, drive (lincoln tunnel), or even by bus. As a continued GEM traveler, please use "LGEMR" for your next return visit or please feel free to contact me at midtown.gm@thegemhotel.com.
Sincerely,
The Gem Hotel Midtown West
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2012

I booked a room at this hotel through Priceline for 6/16-17/2012. I arrived on 6/16 and was told by the front desk staff that my King room was upgraded to a double bed room. Only problem was there were NO rooms available, NO King, NO Double! We learned this after having cleaining staff check one room and then being escorted up to another room, only to find that it was occupied. The front desk staff then told me that no rooms where available but that there were rooms at the Comfort Inn across the street. They were nice enough to walk me acroos the street; enroute, I asked my escort if the Comfort Inn was as nice as the Gem, and was told that it was "comfortable" but not as nice.

The next morning (6/17) I checked my bank account online and learned that The Gem had not one, not two, but THREE authorizations on my card. Two were for the room (!) and the other one was for parking...which was only to be validated, not charged to the room!! (This hotel does not have a parking lot, so why would an authorization even be required for a simple validation??) I called to find out about the authorizations and was told that my card would not be charged and the authorizations would be removed by Wednesday, 6/20. Ok fine...

I checked my account again today (6/19) to find that I was charged for the stay, after being told they were going to remove the authorizations. I called, and after the front desk person did some research, was told that the charge would be reversed in 72 hours. Because I "checked out" on the weekend, it will take time for it to be removed. Funny, because I never actually checked in. In addition, one of the authorizations is still pending and I was told that would be removed by 6/20 (we'll see).

Though the front desk staff was helpful and responsive, the booking and billing practices of this hotel leave a LOT to be desired. Unfortunately,friendly, helpful and responsive staff do NOT make up for being charged for a stay when I never made it pass the lobby, except to view an occupied room. I travel to NY frequently and typically stay in the Times Square area at the more pricey hotels. I guess I'll be returning back to that area... may cost more, but I've never had problems with getting a room or billing.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, General Manager at The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West, responded to this review, June 26, 2012
Dear K B,
I like to take this opportunity of offer you my sincere apology to you for the level of service received. I hope that if you have the opportunity to contact me at midtown.gm@thegemhotel.com I would like to assist you with the bank in resolving your accounts. I hope that you will also allow me the opportunity to make up your stay in some way. And truly experience THE GEM.
Sincerely,
The Gem Hotel Midtown West
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Atlanta
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2012

After reading several of the reviews for the hotels in this immediate area, I decided on booking reservations at this hotel. Many of the reviews of this property stated that the rooms were small, which many reviewers noted was the standard for Manhattan hotels. True to the reviews, my room was very small, but clean. I travel quite a bit for work and have basic standards on where I choose to spend the night. Pretty much, if the hotel and rooming accomodations are CLEAN, I'm pretty much happy. All the other ammenities are 'gravy'. I can't say enough about the staff, they were very helpful and insightful on eateries in the immediate area. I would recommend this hotel, just be mindful, the rooms are small....

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
General M, General Manager at The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West, responded to this review, June 1, 2012
Dear mrlutor,
Thank you for chosing The Gem Hotel Midtown West during your most recent visit to NYC and taking the time to post your comments and review of your stay. We pride ourselves with the level of service and commitment we have for our guest. The everyday experiences and interaction! Please use LGERM on your next return visit and follow us on Facebook.
Best Regards,
Lawrence Hou
General Manager
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Wakefield, Massachusetts
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 29, 2012

I recently stayed at the Gem for one night, and let's just say a gem it is not. The room was tiny (smaller than any of the rooms I stayed in during my recent trip to Europe). There was only about two feet of walking space around the king sized bed. The bathroom was tiny as well--you couldn't even open the door all the way. Every time I pushed it open from the outside, it hit the toilet.

The room was not as clean as it could have been. There were several hairs on the bed sheet, and the bathroom was very grungy--it was in desperate need of an update. The tub and shower were so grungy that I didn't even want to use them.

I wasn't happy with the location. I have been to New York over 30 times, and usually stay in the Times Square/Rockefeller Center area. I have never felt unsafe in that area, but I didn't feel comfortable here. There were always sketchy looking people lingering around the neighborhood (picking through trash, or lingering in doorways drinking and smoking).

I would not recommend this hotel, and I will not stay here again. You get what you pay for in New York. If you're looking for a cheap room and don't care about the quality or condition, stay here. But if you want a clean comfortable room, stay elsewhere.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Paul, MN
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2012

This is a smaller hotel with one staff person at the front desk who always greeted me and my friend when we came back. I had a couple of special needs, including having a package delivered to the hotel room, and they called immediately after it showed up and offered to deliver it to my room for me. Given the price, it was a good value. I don't expect 100% of everything I could want for what I paid.

The beds were comfortable, and the bathroom and whatnot were always clean. Given the usual size of NYC hotel rooms, this one was actually bigger than average for similar star ratings. There was a "sleep" aromatherapy thing that you can apply to the pillow on the bed which was actually helpful. The area was quiet--almost no street noise. Excellent water pressure and heat in the shower.

Some things to consider that you should know, but are relatively minor given the price:

1. I'm a girl, and no conditioner in the room. Seems like they could have just provided a small thing of conditioner. Bad hair days in NYC as a result--BYO conditioner.
2. The walls had black scuff marks and some repaired areas of wallpaper.
3. The TV made a horrible shrill sound on some channels. They only had some basic stations (no A&E, History Channel, Comedy Central, Pay-Per-View, etc), and half had the sound. I didn't tell anyone about this, but I bet they would have given me another room if I'd have asked.
4. It's a longer-than-average walk to the nearest (A-C-E) subway, perhaps 10-15 mins. For me, not a big deal.
5. There's a dicey-looking mission with homeless-looking people across the street, but not a lot of people hanging around.
6. No great restaurants or coffee shops or anything right there, have to walk a few blocks.
7. No complimentary breakfast, but there's a coffee maker in the room.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
General M, Manager at The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West, responded to this review, April 18, 2012
Kelly55423,

Thank you for staying with us during your most recent stay. I’m sorry that you didn’t call us during your stay about the TV not working properly. Yes we would have addressed the issue immediately, if it was possible we would have offered a room change if needed.
We are located across the street from both a church and a mission which we have a great relationship with. The mission does provide a place to stay for under privileged kids and young adults with no homes, and affords them a place to sleep at during the night, but the mission only has 2-4 beds, and our guest and employees have never had a problem with the mission.
Next time you stay with us be sure to ask any of our front desk agents about the local restaurants’ and bars. We do have some really good places very close to us to eat at. There is a nice place for steaks just a block away. There is a nice Thai food restaurant the same distance away, and an Italian restaurant just 3 blocks away that offers our guest a free glass of wine with your meal.
We also have two places just feet away from the hotel, The Cafe Grind and Dunkin Doughnuts that provide coffee and breakfast sandwiches to eat. So next time please stop by any of these places for a bite to eat. We again thank you for your detailed comments and look forward to seeing you with us again.
Assistant General Manager
James L
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Additional Information about The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West

Address: 449 W. 36th Street, 36th Street between 9th & 10th Avenues, New York City, NY 10018
Phone Number:
Location: United States > New York > New York City
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#132 Business Hotel in New York City
#210 Romantic Hotel in New York City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Free Wifi. The GEM Hotel Hudson Yards/Midtown West is ideally located in "your corner of the world." We provide boutique atmosphere and offer our guests elegantly designed rooms with luxurious amenities.We are conveniently located in Manhattan Midtown West, just two blocks away from the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. Guests are within walking distance from all that Midtown Manhattan has to offer, including world-famous restaurants, night clubs, art galleries, shopping and more. The hotel is three blocks away from New York City's subway system and within close proximity to both Penn Station and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.The GEM Hotel Midtown West offers a wide array of amenities and services that add value. For no additional charge, guests can enjoy wired & wireless Internet access, premium bottled water, nightly turndown service with our signature pillow mist, and shoeshine and concierge services.All guest rooms are smoke-free and boast flat-panel LCD televisions, iPod docking stations, paraben-free bath amenities, bath robes, down pillows, plush towels and Wolfgang Puck coffee. Standard room amenities include coffee makers, hair dryers, irons and ironing boards.While staying at this New York hotel, check out the GEMmine in the lobby to find what is happening in the neighborhood; sights, sounds, dining and attractions. You can also tour Manhattan with our GEMwalking tours.The GEM Hotel - Midtown West, an Ascend Collection hotel, is a sanctuary of luxury in a trendy Manhattan neighborhood. Guests will feel truly ensconced in an elegant, private and boutique atmosphere. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Gem Hotel-Midtown West Hotel New York City

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