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“Not Worth It” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The Benjamin

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The Benjamin
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   125 East 50th Street, at Lexington Avenue, New York City, NY 10022 (Manhattan)   |  
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Ranked #94 of 458 Hotels in New York City
chicago
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
“Not Worth It”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2006

I can't explain all the good reviews, but this is the worst hotel value I've ever experienced, and I'm a pretty seasoned traveler. Although staff is very, very nice, this hotel's decor and amenities don't justify the price - $329/night buys a tiny, tiny room even by New York standards with fixtures and furnishings that largely need updating. Tub is too shallow to take a bath in, lower level rooms are very noisy - I changed to 16th floor and noise was better. "Spa" is a bit of a joke, workout room is OK. Decor is adequate, few amenities. Location is great. Given the price, I won't stay here again. I really don't know how it got such high ratings in TripAdvisor, which is why I tried it in the first place.

  • Stayed January 2006, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,744 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (291)
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English first
New York (upstate)
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2006

My wife and I just finished staying at the Benjamin in January and made my selection based upone advice from this site. As soon as we pulled up to the front door we were greated by an extreemly polite doorman. Next the front desk clerk continued this and you got a feeling that the staff really does care if you're attended to. Our room was on the 4th floor and was very nice, nothing so over the top, but you can see that there was attention to detail. It's very close to shops and restaurants many within a short walking distance. The price was very reasonable (got it from priceline for $209.00 per night.) The bed was very confortable, great water pressure in the shower, and room service right away.

Now the honest - The room was facing Lexington Avenue and was very noisy all night long. Much of the time you could hear the trafic, with horns honking, whistles etc. So even though the bed was confortable, the noise was a turn off.

It was a better than average stay, but would look for a quieter place for next stay.

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
upstate NY
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
76 helpful votes 76 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2006

Recently stayed at the Benjamin in New York (January 2006) and I must say that it was a very good stay and I would recommend this hotel to anyone.
Warmy greeted by Mohammed the door man who made us feel welcome. Ditto inside by all the staff. Upon checking in we received an upgrade to a larger suite with balcony- wow when was the last time that ever happened to anyone in NYC!
Suite was very nice, a bit small as was the bathroom clean although the carpets in room were a bit dirty. Drain in tub was slow to drain. Pillow selection was a nice touch and they were delivered in minutes. Biggest dissapointment was no Fox News.
No formal bar or restaurant but plenty nearby and they do offer drinks in the lounge which was very quiet and pleasent after a long day on the streets. Quite a contrast from the bar at the Waldorf across the street.
I will definitely stay here again.

Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scotland
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2006

My husband and I have visited NY on 3 previous occasions and have to say that this hotel was the best hotel yet. We got an excellent rate via Expedia and stayed for 3 night. Our room had everything you could possibly require and the balcony just finished it off! The staff were very friendly and helpful and upon arrival you even have the choice of around 12 different pillows to choose from! Excellent location and within walking distance to everything. The only downside to the hotel at the time we visited was that the bar and restaurant was being refurbished. Would definitley stay at the Benjamin again!

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2006

After reading reviews from Trip Advisor on the Benjamin, we decided to stay there between Christmas and New Years for shopping and enjoying family. After staying for a few days, we started to wonder if shills write some of these reviews. While it was nice and functional like a new Toyota Camry is, it certainly was not the "Lexus" that many folks make it out to be.

Our rooms were 2 of the 1 BR Suites on the 25th floor. They were smaller than the 1 BR Suite we had at the Righa Royal in October,but the beds were nicer and the large refrigerator was a nice plus. The rooms were quiet, just as the one at the Righa Royal was.

The staff was polite and accomodating but not overly so. There was no "addressing one by name" when we rang up the hotel staff. This alone is hard to believe in the day of caller ID. The room was nice and clean but not what we'd call luxurious. There was a desk with high speed internet access (worked fine for $9.95 a day), a printer ( trouble free) and a sofa bed if you needed it. Housekeeping was really this hotel's strength-it was thorough and responsive. The Bellmen also did a fine job.

On the other hand, the Concierge desk is not very responsive. It took us 2 unanswered e-mails and 2 phone calls before we finally just called a manager on duty. Joanna, the manager on duty did a great job of trying to get things fixed, but by the time the Concierge called back, the event we wanted- reservations to "Feinstein's at the Regency" had "sold out" of seating for that night. We called a contact at Loews Hotels and they got us seats for the event anyway. Another request for spa reservations was never resolved either-they never even called us back so we spent the $500 we would have dropped there for a spa afternoon at Elizabeth Arden instead. We give the Concierge desk at the Benjamin a big "F" for failure.

These things made us wonder about the gushing reviews this place seems to get.

Some notes on the neighborhood around the Benjamin-there is a Starbucks right across the street on 50th and Lex, and the Waldorf-Astoria is diagonally across the street. Having drinks at the Bull and Bush at the Waldorf, was quite enjoyable and the bartenders are fun and on top of it.

If you want an very good buffet lunch or dinner, try Azure, a specialty food store, right around the corner (on the same block as the Benjamin)at 51st and 3rd. It is a bargain and they have good crackers, cheese, bottled waters of all kinds, beverages and a very fresh salad bar and hot bar. George's Steak and Chop next door to the Benjamin has a great breakfast buffet-wide selection and good at $12.95 per person for adults. Pass on the Fresco by Scotto restaurant-not very good in our experience-the food is so-so and you wouldn't think it by seeing their segments on the Today Show.

Saks Fifth Avenue and St. Patricks Cathedral are just 2 blocks away straight down 50th. Rockefeller Center is only one more block from there. Subway lines are also quite convenient across the street and down Lexington to 51st and 53rd. This must be hotel row as the Kimberly Suites and Affinia 50 and the Doubletree Metropolitan are all on this same block. The San Carlos, Marriot and Intercontinetal are either across or just down Lexington.

We drove in from Upstate NY and the drive down FDR Parkway to 53rd was easy. Parking at the hotel was included in our rate, which was $419.00 per night per suite.

In all, for the price, it is a good value, but we wouldn't consider it a luxury property. For those, try the St. Regis, Peninsula, Waldorf Towers or the Carlyle.

On a side note, we travel to Manhattan 3-4 times a year. Last winter (2004) we stayed at the Waldorf Towers-a One BR Suite was $495. This year? $1500 a night. Seems like New York hotel rooms are going through the roof this year. Our take on the Benjamin? It's an Embassy Suites with a good staff that is trying to be Luxury Boutique.

  • Stayed January 2006
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salisbury, North Carolina
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2006

My husband and I stayed at The Benjamin over Christmas, and it exceeded all of our expectations. From the moment we walked through the door (after being warmly greeted by Mohammad), we were in the lap of luxury and tranquility. Our room was on the 12th floor, with three windows and a wonderful view. The bathroom appointments were magnificent -- marble walls and floor with Aveda products, a towel heater, hidden television sound speaker, crystal tray and glasses, and a luxurious terry robe!

The bedroom was the perfect size and included a state of the art business center -- large desk top, internet access, printer and fax machine, leather blotter, business cards, leather desk chair and more! The bed was outfitted with Frette linens, and a pillow menu was available. The room colors -- cream and beige, were soothing, and the windows were covered with soft Roman shades that were easily raised and lowered. When we returned each evening, our bed was turned down and classical music was playing. The room also had a kitchen station -- small refrigerator with a large icemaker, marble counter, built-in cabinets with cups, plates, utensils, and a microwave and coffee maker. The honor bar contained everything imaginable.

The hotel is also home to the Affinia Wellness Spa, which we sadly did not have time to visit. Next time!

Without reservation, I would recommend this hotel to anyone traveiling to New York. One and two bedroom suites are also available (some with terraces) as well as superior rooms.

  • Stayed December 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montreal
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2005

First of all, I agree with others that the staff at this hotel are outstanding.

But let me focus on a few things that are not...

First, this is an older hotel with room temperature problems. Even though I was there in the winter I still needed to run the AC at times to keep the place from overheating. Which means that periodically icy blasts of air would get pumped in from the blower next to the bed, and the room would get cold, then start to heat up again, and so on. When I called downstairs I was told I was not the only person who had done so, looking for a way to keep from overheating.

Second the bathtub, or lack of. The shower was great but if you're thinking of soaking in a nice hot tub at the Benjy, forget it. Unless you're Tom Thumb it's impossible. Not only is the tub small, but the overflow drain, which limits how high the water can go, is just a few inches from the bottom.

My queen bed felt saggy, not firm as I thought it would be. And the TV remote control barely worked.

I still had an okay time, but the other reviews had led me to believe staying at the Benjamin would be a "luxurious" experience. It was not.

  • Stayed December 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Benjamin

Address: 125 East 50th Street, at Lexington Avenue, New York City, NY 10022
Phone Number:
Location: United States > New York > New York City > Manhattan , Midtown
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#55 Business Hotel in New York City
#67 Luxury Hotel in New York City
#68 Romantic Hotel in New York City
#98 Family Hotel in New York City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Benjamin 4.5*
Number of rooms: 209
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the heart of Midtown, The Benjamin offers 209 newly re-designed terrace suites, one-bedroom suites and guest rooms by Rottet Studio featuring kitchenettes and signature Benjamin Beds. Housed within the hotel is The National Bar & Dining Rooms with a menu of modern bistro dishes by Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian. Known best for its world-renowned Sleep Program Rest & Renew, The Benjamin features a Pillow Menu and bedtime snacks. Families enjoy Winks' Kidzzz Club with pint-sized amenities for kids to use during their stay. A private guest lounge on the second floor offers two business stations and lounge seating. The Benjamin affords quick access to Fifth Avenue's high-end boutiques, Rockefeller Center, MoMA and Central Park. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Benjamin Hotel New York City
Benjamin New York City
Benjamin Hotel New York City

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