Thursday, December 22, 2011

Kudos! to the New Setai, Fifth Ave!


Another Kudos! post, to the design team of Gwathmey-Seigal and das concepts, inc.  on the new Setai Hotel, Fifth Avenue!

Recently I did a quick spin through New York, and the good news is that despite the malaise of the US hospitality industry, there actually are several great new hotels out there. As always, some managed to disappoint, but the shining star on this trip for me was the newest addition to my list of Great Hotels in New York, The Setai on Fifth Avenue.


Hats off to the incredible architecture of Gwathmey Siegal, www.gwathmey-siegel.com, as the ground-up building is quite stunning, with gently rounded corners, the angled windows and a sexy streamlined porte-cochere that extends to the curb. 


 Inside the main lobby of the hotel, they’ve created a stunning spiral staircase up to the second floor, which houses Ai Fiori, their fine-dining restaurant. The art program is exceptional as well. Note the gorgeous piece behind the reception desk, and their "homage" to the garment district, the two mannequins at the far end of the lobby.



Another gorgeous space is the lobby bar and lounge, where you while away the evening to the early morning hours enjoying a nice tapas menu, as live jazz that's actually worth listening to...


But huge Kudos! goes to the interior design team at das concepts, inc.; they have done an amazing job with both the public spaces and the guest rooms. Beautifully outfitted with floor-to-ceiling wood paneling and doors (with exquisite fine cabinetry hardware) they are contemporary but inviting and luxurious, which can be a tough combination to achieve. This was our room on the corner, with a great view of the Empire state building from the 14th floor....



 As a designer myself, I can appreciate the impact of the white carpet, but I do wonder how long that will last.... Gorgeous and comfortable Duxiana platform beds, excellent lighting, and automated drapery systems made the room quite livable, tho. The only problem with this beautiful fenestration detail is that the top half, due to its angle, needs cleaning virtually all the time! 


Bathrooms are wonderful, with unusual stone selections, a fantastic shower and tub, (great Grohe fixtures) and what is becoming the prerequisite mirror with TV screen. But best of all, with all the stone and cool surfaces, the bathroom has it's own little power heater; so staying warm after a shower is as simple as turning a dial! 

  



Note the wonderful attention to detail with the millwork hardware....



Even the Spa was great, very simple, warm and inviting, unusual in a NYC Hotel...




 The most impactful part of my stay was actually the staff and their Capella management. Mr. Guenter Richter, the GM, has trained a fantastic group of front-of-house and concierge (referred to as "personal assistants") and virtually recreates the experience of the Grand Hotels, when delighting guests with anticipating their every need was a normal event. Upon mentioning that I was catching the show The Book of Mormons, I arrived back at my room to find the CD of the shows’ score, with a lovely note from the lead concierge, KImberly. A completely unnecessary gesture, but a very memorable one, and one that virtually guarantees that guests will return. 

If you find yourself needing to hit the Big Apple, be sure to give the Setai a try, and let me know if you aren’t delighted!

Buon Viaggio.....

No comments:

Post a Comment