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Review: ex-Novotel New York Times Square [no longer part of Accor]

Review: ex-Novotel New York Times Square [no longer part of Accor]

Old Jun 12, 2011, 11:26 am
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Review: ex-Novotel New York Times Square [no longer part of Accor]

I recently stayed 4 nights at the Novotel Times Square as my normal haunt the Sofitel was just too expensive.

The hotel is centrally located at 52nd St/Broadway and ideally located for any tourist activities (if one must). The entrance at street level is rather glum and down heel, up an elevator to the 7th floor lands you on the lobby and restaurant floor. The lobby is bright and airy. Unfortunately at 1 pm my booked room was not ready and I was told by the altogether not too friendly receptionist at the separate A-Club check in counter that I would have to wait til 3 pm which is official check in time. I wasn't too happy about the lack of welcome or the wait time after a TATL flight but at least one of the other staff got on the case and after an hour I got my room. Despite the reservation stating "KING BED WONDERFUL TIMES SQUARE VIEW" the view was of the back of buildings onto 8th Av. so technically not what I had booked but I was happy to get to my room.

A voucher for an A-Club Platinum drink was handed over at check in.

The corridors are bland and slightly worn out as was the room. Wear and tare has not been kind to the hotel and while there was nothing seriously wrong with the room it certainly showed its age and lack of upkeep. The bathroom was standard tourist size and not exactly spotlessly clean. Toiletries were unbranded Novotel and nothing special.

The bed was large with a thin duvet and a good choice of pillows. Sleep quality was ok though unfortunately the air condition (despite what the display said) had only two settings: off and arctic rendering the duvet too flimsy to be warm (outside temperature was 39c so aircon was a must).

Internet access was only available via paid wifi and if like me you travel with more than one laptop and iphone you must pay for each gadget's access separately which was very expensive and not acceptable.

Very positive (and better than the Sofitel) was the fact that all TV channels were available in HD.

The restaurant served a decent buffet breakfast ($25) which was good and offered great views over Times Square. The best part of the hotel was the outside terrace which had plenty of seating (limited service during the day) and is available to smokers.

Room service was good and well priced. I had a fantastic steak and frites one night which was better than the equivalent in the Sofitel.

I had arranged for a late check out which was confirmed on the day of departure for which I was very grateful.

The rates were very high and 4 nights came to $1840. However it should be noted that all hotels during this week were expensive or sold out.

Verdict: The Novotel is a standard tourist hotel and while basic in many respects offers a decent service. It is not luxury or even upmarket but if you get a good rate it should be fine. Some more loving attention to maintenance, customer service (though some receptionist were great, the initial welcome was not) and cleaning would make it better.

While A-Club Platinum members per rules get nothing other than points at Novotel I was offered a drinks voucher and late check out. Points were credited correctly within 24 hours.
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Old Jun 13, 2011, 3:08 am
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Sounds like a typical Novotel to me Thanks for the review.
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Old Jun 13, 2011, 1:45 pm
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Thank you Starflyergold for this review. I stayed 2 or 3 times in this hotel and had similar experiences as you, except that I was always given a room on a top floor with a nice view on Times square. I also found the staff at front desk quite "rude" and I agree that the steak-frites is wonderful .
As a whole, it's a good hotel, with a perfect location in Manhattan, and I will go back there witout hesitation.
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Old Jun 19, 2011, 5:09 am
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thanks for posting, i always has been wondering what was this hotel worth.
it seems nothing fancy, but will check/hope for a decent price
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Old Jun 22, 2011, 10:25 am
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Thanks for the review starflyergold. I'm currently looking for some accom in Manhattan and this review has been fantastic.

Cheers
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Old Nov 4, 2012, 1:54 am
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Has anyone been to this hotel recently and can offer more input on it? I'm planning a January trip and found some decent rates for this hotel and am familiar with the Accor brands including Novotel having stayed at a few in recent years.

Staying right in Times Square would definately be my first choice but keeping money in my pocket definately is and overrides location to a degree. I'm not uber high maintenance, I dont think, so a (fairly) clean, comfortable hotel that's a good value is really all I need and so am considering this location.
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Old Nov 4, 2012, 3:31 am
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Originally Posted by tcook052
I'm not uber high maintenance
Unlike the OP?
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Old Nov 4, 2012, 3:34 am
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I didn't stay there this year, but unless something dramatic happened there (which I doubt), no reason for you to not go there if you are interested by this hotel. When you see the crappy hotel rooms you can have in Manhattan for $200 a night (cockroaches on the pillow included - no kidding), this hotel is excellent value for money + the perfect location.
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Old Nov 4, 2012, 8:16 am
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Originally Posted by starflyergold
Unlike the OP?
That wasn't the inference at all.

Originally Posted by Goldorak
this hotel is excellent value for money + the perfect location.
That's what I keep coming back to and am willing to overlook other minor matters so this property just might be what I'll end up in.

Nice thing about visiting NYC in the depths of January is having more value choices and not having to have something nailed down quite as far out.
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Old Nov 4, 2012, 7:05 pm
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Next to Novotel: Crowne Plaza Times Square recently renovated

Platnum benefits (even on points):
- Free upgrade to club room on top floor with great view over Manhattan,
- Free access to club lounge with breakfast, evening spread and drinks,
- Free access to fitness centre with large indoor pool,
- Free wifi.

Another good reason for me to prefer IHG over Accor.
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Old Feb 17, 2013, 7:10 pm
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Thanks for the report OP. Been a while...but do you remember how late your late check out was until?

Kind of a bummer even for Plat, there's no free WiFi at this location.....
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Old Feb 17, 2013, 7:45 pm
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Originally Posted by CanucksHKG
Thanks for the report OP. Been a while...but do you remember how late your late check out was until?
At Accor properties, the late check-out is usually until 4:00 pm.
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Old Feb 18, 2013, 2:14 am
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If I remember correctly I pushed them to 6pm which was great. Remember on Sundays most Novotels offer a 4pm check out for all.
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Old Feb 19, 2013, 9:36 pm
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6pm check out would be awesome as I have a 10pm flight.

But judging by the reviews on tripadvisors....I'm still not too convinced on this location, especially with the current renovation going on right now.
There seems to be many reports of random no hot running water...and noises from the lift grinding at night.

Sofitel has a much better solid record of positive reviews (both on tripadvisor and this forum), but their price is substantially higher than Novotel's....
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Old Feb 20, 2013, 6:52 am
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Originally Posted by CanucksHKG

Sofitel has a much better solid record of positive reviews (both on tripadvisor and this forum), but their price is substantially higher than Novotel's....
Sofitel is a solid business hotel, with very good breakfast, smiling and attentive staff.

But do not expect wow effect (rooms with quite elegant but basic design, room size ok, not all the rooms have impressive view; no pool, no club lounge).

Last edited by nicolas75; Feb 20, 2013 at 4:26 pm Reason: Typo
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