Pendry Manhattan West is a discreet and coolly sophisticated five star, 164-room hotel (including 30 suites) with a rippling blue glass façade, designed by SOM Architects and opened in September 2021. It’s the fifth property created by father and son Alan J Fuerstman and Michael Fuerstman under their “new luxury” Pendry brand to complement their “classic luxury” Montage hotels.
Where is it?
Manhattan West is an eight-acre, six-building ‘superblock’ by Hell’s Kitchen in midtown NY, built over 15 active rail lines that feed out of nearby Hudson Yards and into Penn Station. The Pendry itself is on West 33rd St, just down the road from Penn Station and Madison Square Garden: the Empire State is a few blocks east. With fewer storeys than the new skyscrapers around it, the Pendry provides classic New York views of modern glass facades broken up by low rooves with water towers, and from the upper roof terrace, a distant glimpse of the Statue of Liberty.
The interiors by Gachot Studios are all about understated elegance and muted shades, with a particular emphasis on flattering lighting. The reception feels private; Bar Pendry is squirelled away like a speakeasy, but features a huge, gorgeous artwork by NY’s Nancy Lorenz made with mother of pearl and echoing seashell shapes. The main restaurant, Zou Zou’s (which began service the week after my visit), also accessible to non-guests from the concourse behind the hotel, is lofty and bright.
The circular motif of the smaller, fourth-floor, bamboo-adorned Vista Lounge – which opens out onto the hotel’s lower roof terrace - embraces the tables, plates and floor plan. Suites have seating areas off the bedroom with curved floor-to-ceiling windows
All bedrooms have Espressotoria System coffee machines, swanky bathroom products by MiN NYC and huge LG NanoCell TVs (but who wants to sit inside watching telly when you’re in the city that doesn’t sleep?). Guests can also download a selection of magazines and other reading material from a QR code. The spanking new, 1700 sq-ft fitness lounge has Technogym machines, Peloton bikes (the cycling cult’s new HQ is in Manhattan West) and a bijou movement studio.
You can choose from the all-day coffee menu in the Garden Room Lounge off reception, beneath an art installation of translucent panels by John Wigmore. The Pendry building also contains an independent coffee shop, Black Fox. And if you fancy a spa treatment, the hotel’s house Cadillac will ferry you to the Naturopathica Spa & Healing Center in Chelsea.
Where to start? The High Line – Manhattan’s enviable linear park built on an elevated railway – starts just behind the hotel and it’s an hour’s stroll down it to the restaurants and boutiques of Greenwich Village, Soho and the Meatpacking District. Also nearby are new arts space The Shed, spectacular open air viewing platform the Edge – which juts from a skyscraper 1,131 feet up - and The Vessel, Thomas Heatherwick’s heart-shaped viewing platform of interlocking staircases made of polished, copper-coloured steel. (Sadly, the latter was closed at time of writing after four people threw themselves.)
You can pick up Circle Line boat tours that circumnavigate Manhattan from nearby Pier 83 on the Hudson: or explore the Air, Sea and Space museum – including a Space Shuttle and a Concorde, among a selection of combat planes - on the warship Intrepid, at Pier 86. The greatest concentration of theatres in New York, where Broadway intersects Times Square, is eight blocks away. To the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) it’s 20 blocks. Central Park, and the shops and galleries of Fifth and Madison Avenues, are a Yellow Cab or Metro ride away.
Food & drink
Ground Floor Zou Zou’s, with its open kitchen and huge, wood-fired hearth, is the creation of serial restaurantrepreneur Michael Stillman through his Quality Branded group. Chefs Madeline Sperling (Gramercy Tavern, the NoMad) and Juliana Latif (also ex-NoMad) serve Eastern Mediterranean food. Zou Zou’s opened nine days after my visit, but I had an excellent Hamachi Crudo and smoky Grilled Branzino at the Vista Lounge, washed down with a Margarita from the recessed, beautiful, blue-tiled bar.
Breakfasts here are built around supposedly-healthy-but-not-really American staples: bagels, omelettes, avocado sandwiches. Cocktails in Bar Pendry are imaginative. The Manhattan West development is also home to a Whole Foods market, the Citizens Food Court, and a new restaurant, Ci Siamo, from New York’s culinary king Danny Meyer.
The 1,265ft Pendry Suite, which includes a piano, fireplace, and dining table for eight plus kitchenette, but accommodates just three people (including a maximum of two adults). It connects to a separate Skyline King room – presumably for nannies, bodyguards, etc – and is currently priced at $10,000 a night, plus tax
Urban go-getters who urgently want to cram everything this peerlessly exciting city has to offer into their eyes, ears and mouths, but also to have somewhere quiet and elegant to grab a cocktail and some shut-eye at the end of the day.
At time or writing, rooms begin at $625 plus tax per night and suites at $1250 plus tax per night. pendry.com/manhattan-west