The Mandarin Oriental
Columbus Circle and the Upper West Side are not, in truth, a hotel hotspot. Aside from The Empire and The Hudson, though, the area is home to the undisputed queen of New York Fashion Week hotels, the Mandarin Oriental New York. It may be just a little on the large, new and glossy side to be a part of the ELLE escapes collection, but itd have been a bit obtuse of us to leave it out. After all, its got the location (a very heels-friendly stroll away from the Lincoln Center), the full range of bordering-on-the-decadent luxury facilities, the after-party primed Mandarin Ballroom, a special Moët Champagne Slumber Party package (including a Saks Fifth Avenue personal shopper and a mani/pedi in the spa) and pedicabs to ferry people back and forth from the tents.
Why The Bowery? Two words: Alexa Chung. Its said to be her favourite place to stay in New York (as well as being the ELLE team's New York Fashion Week basecamp), and back in February she took over the hotel for Madewell. Lightning may not strike twice, but you wouldnt bet against her showing up at some point during the week. Alexa or no Alexa, though, if restaurant Gemma is a place to be seen during New York Fashion Week, then the inner-sanctum of the (guests only) lobby is almost certainly set to be one of the places to be seen again this year, while ultra-hip café/media hangout The Smile is also just around the corner.
Crosby Street Hotel
Way down in SoHo, Crosby Street Hotel isnt what youd call an ideally located hotel for New York Fashion Week. But if its good enough for star stylist Rachel Zoe to decamp from 60 Thompson for last year, you know its got to have some pretty serious fashion cred to it. (In hotel circles, finding out where shes going to be staying this year is about as eagerly anticipated as Marc Jacobs closer Ps. It turned out she knew when she was onto a good thing, and stayed at Crosby Street again.) And sure enough it does: aside from the trademark classy but kitsch Kit Kemp interiors those tailors dummies just scream fashion week it's home to a couple of the city's most desirable watering holes.
The James Hotel
The James Hotel makes the cut for a couple of reasons: firstly for a combination of its rooftop pool, oh-so scene-y Jimmys Bar (androgynous model Andrej Pejic is a regular), and views that are just something else. But theyre also running a Fashion's Night Out package to kick the week off with on September 8th including a couple of cocktails in the Treehouse Bar, a ride in the hotels Lexus to the event, and a special fashion-friendly midnight snack when you get back consisting of celery and champagne. Cute.
It may be more than just a block or two from the Lincoln Center, but budget bolthole The Jane is just around the corner from rival venue Milk Studios (as well as being a short stroll from hip Chelsea Market basement dive bar du jour, the Tippler, and the collection of Marc Jacobs stores on Bleecker Street). Add to that the pitch-perfect retro rooms, the trendy Café Gitane restaurant and plenty of bouncing after-show parties, and youve almost got a downtown, hipster version of the MO. (Almost.)
And one more New York Fashion Week hotel for luck
The Bryant Park Hotel
For what seems like forever New York Fashion Week was Bryant Park. And while the action may have upped sticks and moved itself over to the Lincoln Center, therell still be plenty of fashion editors checking in at the Bryant Park Hotel. Why? Because theyre feeling a bit nostalgic, and miss the sleek, chic rooms, sushi in Koi and long nights in the Cellar Bar. Oh, and its because its just an all-round fab hotel, fashion week or no fashion week.
To keep on top of what's happening at every fashion week show - from the latest reviews to the front row scenes - check out ELLEuk's catwalk section.