My husband and I chose to stay at The Nolitan for a few reasons; it was recommended by someone who has great taste, it was in the perfect neighborhood, it looked cool and it had bikes for guests (husband is a big fan of biking through cities).
We stayed in a room with a balcony which some people have commented that it makes the room smaller and you don't go out on it very much, but I loved having access to fresh air and a place to view the street.
Our bed was amazingly comfortable and the mini-fridge allowed us to remove items so we could put our own beverages and snacks in it. We did not get yelled at for doing this (some hotels hate this). Out first night had lovely turn down service with homemade macrons instead of the usual chocolate piece.
The shower is unique and may be uncomfortable for some guests; it is in the room (not separated as the toilet is). There is a curtain on the side that faces out, but if you are in a room that is this cozy, I can't imagine that you would be shy about the shower. The toiletries are by Red Flower and if you know the brand...they are quite yummy.
Anything else that was needed or any request made was met with a smile and absolutely no attitude. Pride was taken in making sure that the room was spotless. The robes were cozy and I loved the slippers! A newspaper was at our door every morning.
During our stay, the restaurant was still under construction. This was a bit of a disappointment but not so much so that it made our stay any less special. Mornings had coffee and tea ready in the lobby along with fruit and toast and bagels and sweet rolls.
The lobby in the late afternoon was a time to have a glass of wine with the other guests and some noshes for a casual break before any evening plans.
A note on the lobby; it was so lovely, especially after dark when a beautiful screen projection produced a magical atmosphere. The modernist chandelier was spectacular also. Another plus, if you care about such things; most hotels have a "library" that consists of paperbacks and bad novels left by guests. The Nolitan has an art library! An amazing selection of art and design and architecture books that you are welcome to take to your room.
Oh, and I'm forgetting the roofgarden; an area that has a breathtaking view of downtown, including the yet to be completed Freedom Tower. In warmer months this feature would be a must, although even in October, it was lovely to take in the expansive view.
So the reason for our visit to New York was to attend my 40th high school reunion on Long Island. The reunion was on Saturday, October 27th. We arrived in New York on Thursday, October 25th, and had reservations to return to Florida on Monday, October 29th.
The reunion was terrific and although there was a bit of a concern about a storm called Sandy, no one could predict was exactly was going to happen during the next few days. On Sunday back at the hotel, the weather was not looking so great. A day to rest and listen to the news and make sure friends and family were taking this storm seriously. We had also heard from our airline that we would not be flying on Monday...oh really? So as Monday turned uglier and uglier...Superstorm Sandy had arrived.
But the staff at The Nolitan could not have been more gracious. Most of them had been up all night monitoring the storm. They had brought extra clothes and looked totality professional in the chaos that was downtown. The power went out but the lobby had a generator and the elevators never stopped working. And people were scared and the staff did everything they could to clam every guest. They made phone calls, they had hot water and hot coffee and they always were sympathetic and kind. Due to the construction of the restaurant, part of the lobby was cold and threatened to be wet. So it was closed off (and those lovely art books placed somewhere safe).
What was amazing was that The Nolitan was one of the few businesses that had any power and without any cell service, we were relying on our iPads and computers and the internet access on our smart phones. And every guest had at least three electronic devices that needed charging and the staff charged ever one of those devices without question.
And in speaking to people who were hanging out in the lobby (there was really nowhere else to go) I found out that the staff was charging the phones and computers of their neighbors!!! This truly convinced me of how special all of the staff was! They were helping people who were not staying at the hotel because they were being good neighbors and because it was the right thing to do! And many of those neighbors were hanging out in the lobby just to be with other people as it was very scary to be alone in the dark in New York.
and speaking of...I have never seen New York so dark before. It was almost impossible to go outside; no street lights, no traffic lights, no store lights; just total darkness. And somehow The Nolitan managed to keep us all safe and warm and with some light and with snacks and beverages and a feeling that we were in this together and it could have been so much worse as it was a few blocks below us and in Staten Island and Long Island and New Jersey and Queens...
Our rooms did not have power, but we were given flashlights to move around and we were only in the room to sleep. The lobby became command central. The Nolitan was becoming home. At 3 AM I was in the lobby in my pj's and a sweater trying to contact the airline (JetBlue damn them!) on the hotel's landlines which were operational.
In the morning the staff called at least six pharmacies for me to see if any in the area were open (note to self and those who take daily meds; pack lot's of extras!!!). None were open but they kept trying because by now we were all feeling like family.
Also NYPD came to the neighborhood and began to direct traffic when the streets were finally safe to pass, but the traffic lights were still out. And where did they take breaks to use the facilities and have a nice hot cup of coffee. Well, the lobby of The Nolitan of course!!!
We finally left New York on Friday, and after the most complicated trip I have ever experienced we returned to Florida around November 4th.
But I can't wait to return to The Nolitan! Everyone was so kind and helpful and they put the well-being of their guests above all else. I'm sure the staff had their own personal worries, but they were there for us and always professional and kind.
So I'm hoping for a trip when it is warm enough to enjoy the roofgraden and the new restaurant and take a bike and ride around the city and to say hi to all of the great staff that made what could have been a terrible situation into something where you know you have just seen the very best that people can be.
Thank you Nolitan. I can't wait to see you all again (especially you Carlos :-)
We had a room in the front of the hotel (facing the street) on the forth floor, with a balcony. Ther...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.