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“In between apartments” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Empire Hotel

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Empire Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   44 West 63rd Street, New York City, NY 10023 (Upper West Side)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #328 of 464 Hotels in New York City
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
23 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“In between apartments”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2013

My girlfriend and I stayed here for one night as there was a gap between our old lease ending and new lease starting. The hotel is located on the Upper West Side a nice neighborhood away from the tourist areas of Midtown. The room was small like most NY hotels but furnished nicely. The front desk staff was helpful when we checked in. We enjoyed the rooftop bar. Definitely a good place to stay if visiting the city won't be disappointed with the location.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
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3,648 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (753)
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English first
Central PA
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

I have stayed @ The Empire for years and was very disappointed in the downward spiraling conditions during our pre Christmas stay. We upgraded to a suite which from the sounds of other reviewers, we at least had plenty of room and a lovely view.
Every day the towels either had holes in them or were frayed.
The newest con I'm seeing with regularity is that the TV doesn't work so someone has to be sent up to fix it; queue the tip music. This has happened to me in every hotel in Manhattan I've stayed at for the last 2 years.
As other reviewers said, stay here for the location because there's not much else positive.

Room Tip: Make sure you're not next to the elevator.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

The perfect way to ring in the new year -- the vibe was amazing, the service impeccable and the food was out of this world. Everyone who works there especially Aaron Collins makes sure you have a great experience. I wanted to have a chill, positive NYE and the Empire Hotel was the BEST PLACE to be. The music was also amazing and I basically couldn't stop smiling. I have been to a lot of crazy places for NYE but this has been one of the best!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Brooklyn, New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

celebrating NYE at The Empire was a perfect start t0 2013! My fiance and I were welcomed by the entire staff and Mr. Gabriel who gave us our bracelets was such a gentleman! I have never been around such welcoming people, the cocktail waitresses were very nice and the bartenders were there when you needed that drink! cheers to 2013

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

We visited the Empire during December of 2012 for the Holiday season in NYC. Upon arrival you will see a beautifully decorated lobby and bar area. The staff is very efficient and gets you settled in quickly. The rooms have the same decor as the public areas. When we returned back at night, there was a delicious cupcake with the Empire logo in our room. We both had a wonderful nights sleep, the beds and pillows are to die for! I truly appreciated the bath products they provide in their rooms. L'Occitane products are high quality and smell great! We had a nice corner suite that provided some great views of the upper west side and the Lincoln Center. This boutique hotel is in a great location whether you plan on going to the Lincoln Center or not. It's so close to Central Park, some really great restaurants, lots of shopping.. and it's NYC, you are supposed to be walking and exploring to other areas as well! I had an absolutely wonderful stay, I can't wait to stay here again. Great job to every one at the Empire. Thank you for making my holiday season in NYC special.. Keep up the wonderful services you provide!

Room Tip: The corner suites provide some extra nice views!
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Boston
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2012

This hotel's location is great if you're going to the Met, which is the reason we booked it. It's right across the street.

We only stayed one night, for which we ended up shelling out $270 total, although the website we booked it through advertised it as $100 bucks initially. The room was tiny, not at "user-friendly", due to some faux-European stylizations which make for an odd experience. For example, I'm 5'6"" and had to stand on my tiptoes to reach the hangers in the tall, narrow closet as well as the hook for bathrobes. The sink in the bathroom is completely flat and quite shallow, causing a splash-back issue. The shower has a steel baton attached to it by coil for no immediately apparent reason, except perhaps to make you think water is actually going to come out of it if you don't look at it closely. When you turn *on* the shower, it pours out of a ceiling fixture directly onto you, which is completely non-adjustable. Turning the lever to the other side simply prevents water from coming out, since there's not faucet. So, if you don't want to suffer the freezing water first coming out, you either have to squeeze against the wall near the fixtures or suffer the freezing water momentarily until you jump back out of the way, and then keep leaning into the falling water until you get it adjusted to the right temperature.

There's more. We were told by the web site (not the hotel) that our room had a view of the Met Plaza. It turns out the "view" was streamed through the tv, apparently so they could say "now every room has a view", as was happily announced on a placard next to the TV. What a con. The actual view was a brick wall.

Be careful of the hotel's restaurant, the Chowder something or other. It's amazingly expensive - we paid $80 for 2 with strictly an entree for each, plus one $8 glass of sparkling water. Oddly, we thought the prices would be much better, because Mon-Thurs they run a happy hour, which includes cheap food, from 4-6 pm. Although we were inside by 10 before six, they give us the regular (really expensive) menu rather than the much cheaper happy hour menu. I was confused and didn't realize until we left the restaurant that we should've been offered the happy hour menu, when we talked to a couple who were leaving the same time as us and who *had* gotten the happy hour menu, and were raving about how good deal it was. Ouch.

Also, as a heads up, there is a $100 "incidentals" charge added on your bill at checkout, which they don't tell you about - it just shows up on your charge card. I called the hotel just now and asked them what was up when my wife spotted it. They said it would be cleared in 72 HOURS!!!! I'm hope so!

FWIW, the performance of "Barber of Seville" at the Met was fantastic. And this is from someone who is decidedly not an Opera afficionado but who's married to one.

Next time, we'll book a Holiday inn and take the train. It's cheaper, everything's "normal", has WiFi, and the rooms are larger.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
35 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2012

The best part about this hotel is the location - close to Central Park, Columbus Circle, Subway, Museums etc... The lobby and the bar look great and you will be forced to spend time here because Wifi is only free here and not in the rooms. An that's the good news over. The first room into which we were sent was a disgrace by anybody's standards. Firstly, it was on a smoking floor. Secondly, a minature Yorkshire Terrier would be too big for this room and finally, the shower sprays water all over the bathroom and basically floods the place.
When I called to complain about these things, among others, I got the most frustrating responses from the Front Desk.
"It's not a smoking floor, it's a smoking optional floor" - what is that supposed to mean????
"it's a European style shower" - I'm European and I dont shower like that!
"we'll send somebody by to spray your room" - I didn't really expect my four star hotel room to require spraying!
We gave up complaining and went to the bar where we met other people who were equally unhappy with their rooms. Then we were all equally unhappy at the outrageous cost of a drink at the bar.
Eventually we got to speak to manager who was very helpful and we were moved to a normal hotel room the next day. The new room was adequate and had a view so we were satisfied.

Beware also of the neverending wait for elevators on a Saturday evening. If you do have to stay here then it might be worthwhile asking for a lower floor so you can at least use the stairs. I am not exaggerating - I waited 20 minutes on one occasion before locating the first escape!

The hotel has a rooftop nightclub (which has great views) which attracts a very young crowd. I think this hotel is more suitable for twentysomethings on a group vacation than couples or anyone over 25!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Joseph R, Manager at Empire Hotel, responded to this review, December 29, 2012
Dear JQ_1a,

Thank you for posting a review from your most recent stay at The Empire. As Assistant General Manager, I am pleased our team was able to find a room more comfortable than your initial experience. I have shared your comments with the Executive Team at the hotel and we will act accordingly. We take our guests’ feedback seriously and use it to make improvements in an effort to enhance the guest experience at The Empire. Thank you for your patience and understanding and I sincerely hope we have an another opportunity to welcome you back to The Empire.

Regards,

Joseph Rauer
Assistant General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Empire Hotel

Address: 44 West 63rd Street, New York City, NY 10023
Location: United States > New York > New York City > Upper West Side , Manhattan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #328 of 464 Hotels in New York City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Empire Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 426
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled on our own private corner of West 63rd Street between two legendary New York City landmarks - Lincoln Center and Central Park - this boutique NYC hotel provides luxury accommodations overlooking the Broadway / Columbus Avenue - the gateway to the Upper West Side. Location is essential to the spirit of the Empire Hotel and the interior motif and design is inspired by the earth tones of Central Park and the stately modernism of Lincoln Center. 426 Deluxe guest rooms and suites, WiFi, Pool Deck open seasonally, Ed's Chowder House Restaurant, Rooftop Lounge, Lobby bar. ... more   less 
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