Downtown Manhattan or Lower Manhattan was once the main commercial hub of New York. As such, the best hotels in Downtown Manhattan mainly catered to business travelers. However, much has changed over the years as more travelers discover that there is more to downtown than just business.
With a number of new tourist attractions taking root in the area and a booming restaurant scene, Lower Manhattan has seen a renaissance of sorts. The Financial District houses some of New York City‘s most iconic sights such as the 9/11 Memorial and Museum, One World Observatory, and Wall Street besides other historical monuments. Neighborhoods that were once looked down upon such as SoHo, TriBeCa, and the Meatpacking District have been transformed into some of the trendiest areas in Manhattan where you’ll find some of the best hotels.
The Greenwich Hotel
Set on Greenwich Street in the middle of TriBeCa in Downtown Manhattan, the Greenwich Hotel is co-owned by Robert De Niro. It’s a private space exclusively for hotel guests. Tribeca has plenty of stylish restaurants and designer boutiques as well as many elements that are a nod to its bohemian past. The hotel is a short walk from the 9/11 Memorial and Museum and just a block away from the Hudson River Greenway.
The large and comfortable rooms with their rustic design transport one to an apartment overlooking an Italian piazza. However, the style is a seamless fusion of Morocco and the tropics with elements of Europe and the Orient. Each of the 88 guest rooms and suites is unique. Some rooms are more European while others have touches of the Orient with Tibetan silk rugs. The standout out feature of the rooms is the huge 42-inch television. Although the cable includes 40 channels, guests can request a DVD player in their room. Just like the rooms, the bathrooms are also unique. Some have bathtubs while others have shower stalls.
Another feature that draws guests to the Greenwich Hotel is the underground pool a the Shibui Spa. Designed by Japanese designer Mikio Shinagawa, the area echoes the rustic theme of the hotel but with a Japanese twist. Near the spa, you’ll also find a large fitness center. In-house dining includes the Locanda Verde restaurant that serves tasty Italian cuisine.
Right in the heart of the hip Meatpacking District of Manhattan, you’ll find the Gansevoort hotel. The hotel’s location just 400m from Chelsea Market and 350m from the Whitney Museum of American Art puts it at the top of the best hotels in Downtown Manhattan.
The subtle lighting combined with careful use of textures and minimalist decor creates a cozy space. High ceilings and large windows make the spacious guest rooms bright and airy. Fully stocked minibars, flat screen-TVs, and bathrobes are some of the amenities that guests can look forward to in the rooms. The newly renovated guest rooms and suites slated to open in the fall 2020 promise to enrich your experience at Gansevoort.
Guests especially enjoy relaxing in the heated year-round pool or working out in the 24-hour fitness center. The rooftop bar, B. On Top is also another busy spot with guests and locals, and so is the American bistro, The Chester on the ground floor.
Crosby Street Hotel
Ideally located on a cobblestone street in SoHo, the luxurious Crosby Street Hotel exudes charm and style making it one of the best hotels in Downtown Manhattan. Art is a focal point here with plenty of conversation pieces strategically placed throughout the hotel. The hotel seamlessly blends into one of the trendiest districts in New York. Half a block from the hotel is the renowned Balthazar restaurant and the MoMA design store. The hotel’s location provides easy access to Brooklyn and other parts of Manhattan. Public transport is also easily accessible from here with the Broadway-Lafayette Street subway station just three minutes away.
Guests can choose from a wide range of room categories beginning with Superior Rooms and going up to two-bedroom suites. Color schemes vary from one room to the next but the aesthetics are the same. Floor to ceiling windows, luxurious ensuite bathrooms with walk-in showers and heated towel racks are found in all rooms.
You can look forward to some excellent, friendly service at the Crosby Street hotel along with some other great amenities. Although there is no pool or spa, a small gym is ideal for those who like to add a bit of exercise to their travels. There’s also the Crosby Bar on the ground level which serves all meals and three event spaces.
Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriot
A prime location in the Financial District gives the Marriott Fairfield Inn & Suites an edge over its counterparts. It’s one of the best hotels in Downtown Manhattan that is great value for money. If you’re looking for a good affordable hotel in the Financial District, Fairfield Inn & Suites is one of the best. The hotel is surrounded by restaurants, bars, and cafes and is close to many tourist sites. Just six minutes away on foot is the Wall Street subway station which connects you to almost anywhere in Manhattan. A 22-minute drive away is the Empire State Building and a little further is Times Square. The ferry dock for the Statue of Liberty is an even shorter drive from the hotel, just six minutes away.
The modern three pearl hotel is good for both leisure and business. Housed in a high-rise building, a blue and white color scheme runs through the hotel in sync with the nautical theme of the hotel. The same theme runs through the 176 guest rooms. Rooms are small but comfortable and outfitted with a number of modern amenities.
One of the plus points for business travelers is the complimentary buffet breakfast which consists of a good spread. Although the hotel lacks a full on-site restaurant, the Lobby Bar serves a variety of beverages and light snacks. Guests can also avail of room service from other local restaurants. For the health-conscious, the fitness center has a good selection of LifeFitness cardio training equipment.
The Ludlow Hotel
You won’t find many upscale boutique hotels in the Lower East Side of downtown Manhattan so the Ludlow Hotel is a pleasant discovery. The location of the hotel right in the middle of the Lower East Side puts you in close proximity to some of the most happening places in New York. A ten-minute walk from the hotel will take you to Chinatown, SoHo, or the East Village although you may not want to venture out too far with all that you have in the vicinity of the hotel. The subway lines are also easily accessible for those interested in exploring the tourist sites.
The hotel’s design is all about boho-industrial chic with curated artwork and dim mood lighting. This theme spills over into the guest rooms with hardwood floors and huge windows that bathe the room in natural light. You pay for what you get here in terms of room size starting with Mini Studios and going up to the Penthouse or the Skybox Loft. Most room categories have ensuite bathrooms with shower/tub combos set in front of huge windows.
Dirty French, the hotel’s upscale restaurant sees a fashionable clientele but if you’re looking for a more relaxed space, the adjacent Lobby Bar is great. Other amenities include a modern fitness center on the 20th floor and a rooftop patio area with sun loungers.
The Dominick Hotel
Formerly known as the Trump Soho, the hotel was rechristened the Dominick Hotel in 2017. The sleek glass tower that houses the hotel sits on the western edge of Soho in downtown Manhattan. Although the immediate surrounding area of the hotel may seem a little too quiet, it’s only a few blocks from SoHo’s happening spots and TriBeCa. The other popular Downtown Manhattan attractions are a short taxi ride from here. You’ll also find seven subway lines at a short walking distance from the hotel.
The exterior of the hotel resembles a fancy Manhattan apartment building but the striking lobby reminds you that you’re in a luxurious hotel space. There are just 12 guest rooms on each floor which makes it a more intimate hotel experience. Rooms are large with floor-to-ceiling windows that offer some fantastic views. If you’re in a mood to splurge, the two-bedroom penthouse suites and Duplex Penthouse with a spacious terrace will give you your money’s worth. Another special feature of the suites is that guests can also book a spa suite which has a connecting couples-sized treatment room.
The 11,000 square full-service spa is one of the standout features of the hotel. It features the first Turkish hammams in New York. Guests also enjoy relaxing at the seasonal outdoor pool on the seventh floor or working out at the fitness center. Added to this are four restaurants offering a variety of cuisines. The main restaurant, Spring & Varick is a destination in itself.
The Bowery Hotel
The Bowery Hotel is located on the edge of East Village on a street with the same name. The Bowery is a mile-long avenue in Lower Manhattan that was once infamous for drug addicts and homeless people. Nowadays, however, the street has undergone a tremendous change to resemble trendy SoHo with eateries and boutiques adding a different color to the street. The hotel’s location is ideal for exploring the vibrant nightlife of Downtown Manhattan although it’s at a good walking distance from a subway.
The hotel lobby is unique with its Gothic arched fireplace and shabby-chic vintage furniture. Guest rooms are bright and ultra-luxurious with a host of modern amenities such as 40-inch LED flat screens, free Wi-Fi, iPod stereos, and coffee and tea facilities. Floor to ceiling windows provide great views of the surroundings.
A dimly lit lobby bar is a popular spot for guests and locals as is the trendy trattoria, Gemma, on the ground floor. There is no spa or pool at the hotel but a small, gym with free weights and several other exercise machines is adequate for those looking to work up a sweat.
Soho Grand Hotel
The Soho Grand Hotel holds the distinction of being Downtown Manhattan’s first luxury boutique hotel. Housed in a 17-story, red-brick tower on the edge of SoHo and steps away from Tribeca, the property sees a fair share of celebrities passing through its doors. You’re spoiled for choice with a large number of bars and restaurants in the vicinity. It’s just a stroll away from Balthazar Osteria Morini, City Winery, and other popular hangouts. If you enjoy street shopping, Canal Street is just half a block away. The hotel is also conveniently located within four blocks of seven subway lines which makes all of Manhattan’s sights easily accessible.
The hotel’s design is a nod to old New York and two important periods in SoHo’s history. Exquisite art, cast-iron detailing and plush fabrics give the hotel its distinctive character. Guest rooms echo the neighborhood vibe with understated industrial-chic designs. Big windows offer expansive views of the city. The rooms are also equipped with standard amenities with ensuite bathrooms outfitted with shower/tub combos. Suites however have deep soaking tubs and separate walk-in showers.
Soho’s Grand has two restaurants and a bar that is quite popular with the local crowd. It also has a late-night club that plays live music. Apart from these dining options, there’s also an outdoor seasonal restaurant, Gilligans, that offers a fresh summer menu.
The Mercer stands out for its magnificent Romanesque Revival architecture. It is one of the best hotels in Downtown Manhattan that celebrates a long history and is often frequented by celebrities. The structure was built in 1890 and converted from artist studios in 1997. Located on the northern border of SoHo, New York’s bohemian fashion epicenter, you’ll never run out of things to do here with art galleries, shops, and restaurants all nearby. There are no big tourist attractions on this side of town but the Theater District is just under 15 minutes by subway.
The hotel’s interiors are trendy, starting with the Christian-Liaigre designed lobby and handsome library space. The rooms are stylishly designed with tall city windows, subtle earth tones, and minimalist decor. Although the Courtyard Rooms are quite small, they’re comfortable with a wide range of amenities that include a nightly turn-down service.
The Mercer Hotel is renowned for its impeccable service. In-room spa treatments, exercise classes, chauffeur driven cars, and dog-walking are just some of the services that the hotel offers. Adjacent to the lobby, you’ll find a 40-seat cafe which is an extension of Mercer Kitchen. The bar and restaurant are a big draw for hotel guests and outsiders. It’s a great place for some celebrity spotting.
Blending antique style with modern comfort, the stunning Beekman is one of the best hotels in Downtown Manhattan. It was one of New York’s first skyscrapers when it went up in 1881 and was used as an office block for decades. The hotel then lay abandoned for over 15 years until it received a huge multi-million dollar facelift and opened as a hotel in 2016. Situated in the Financial District, the hotel is well connected to multiple subway lines which are easily accessed by foot. It’s also within a stone’s throw from the end of Brookly Bridge and a five-minute walk to the new One World Trade Center.
The nine-story atrium with intricately wrought iron railings and a pyramidal skylight is sure to wow you as will the Bar Room that is a nod to the 19th century. Guest rooms also reflect the vintage design of the hotel with their wooden wardrobes and chests of drawers. However, the decor in the rooms is more muted than the public spaces. White marble dominates the sleek bathrooms.
The dining options are the highlights of the hotel with two of New York’s most successful amateurs having their outposts here. Augustine and Temple Court shine with their great menus and comfortable decor. However, the most popular meeting space at the hotel is the Bar Room under the atrium.
Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown
Less than 700 meters from the iconic Brooklyn Bridge in the heart of Downtown Manhattan, is the Four Seasons Hotel, one of the best hotels in Downtown Manhattan. Opened in 2016, the high-rise hotel is a convenient place for business travelers due to its proximity to the Financial District. The hotel is also close to numerous restaurants and takeaway spots. If you’re looking to hit the touristy sites from here then it’s about a 20-minute ride in the subway.
The hotel occupies the first 38 floors of a slim 82-story tower while the Four Seasons Residences are above. In keeping with the brand’s penchant for high-quality design, the interiors are sleek and polished with dark-wood paneling. You can expect spacious guest rooms outfitted with top-notch amenities. Suites come with separate living areas and some even have terraces. The en-suite bathrooms are definitely standouts with their marble floors and deep stand-alone tubs.
Other standouts of the hotel include an upscale steakhouse, a good-sized indoor pool, and an elegant spa that offers a wide range of treatments. The modern 24-hour gym is also well equipped with weight-training machines, weights, and yoga mats.
Recommended Restaurants / Bars in Downtown Manhattan:
- Locanda Verde – This restaurant at Robert De Niro’s Greenwich Hotel in TriBeCa offers up a delectable Italian spread created by chef Andrew Carmellini.
- Cupcake Bakery Crawl – If you’re a fan of cupcakes this tour will definitely excite your taste buds. Learn about the history of cupcakes as you crawl through some of the best small bakeshops in Greenwich Village.
Recommended Activities In Downtown Manhattan:
- Ground Zero 9/11 Memorial Tour – One of the most popular things to do in Downtown Manhattan is to visit Ground Zero, the site of the tragic events of 9/11. This tour gives you a deeper insight into one of the most horrific events in modern history.
- Statue of Liberty – A visit to Lower Manhattan is incomplete if you don’t climb to the top of the Statue of Liberty. Getting access to the crown requires advance reservations (at least six months ahead) as tickets run out fast. However, the pedestal also offers commanding views.