Hotel Review: The Jade, New York

Check into this cool Greenwich Village hotel


Reviewed by Markie-Robson Scott 


The Jade blends so beautifully into its surroundings in the West Village that you’d never guess that this 18-storey building was only two years old. So stylish, so downtown-central, and in an area notoriously sparse in good boutique hotels, so welcome. The façade is all Georgian portico, gas lamps, art-deco-style detail and restoration glass. The double-doored entrance leads to a dramatic stairway down to a stunning sunken lobby. A plush art-deco feel permeates: sofas beside an open fire, New York-themed books in a library corner, locals and guests – a good mix of both - sitting around drinking wine at happy hour. At night the stairs are illuminated, to match the stars of the Village outside.


The rooms and suites are - you’ve guessed it – equally art-deco inspired (Andres Escobar is the designer), even down to the clever sliding doors that hide the flatscreen TV. Some pricier rooms have balconies and bath-tubs. Views of down and up-town are iconic: One World Trade Center provides a compass point to the south, the Empire State Building to the north. There’s a black retro phone for calling 24-hour room service – the Grape & Vine restaurant downstairs provides – though with Greenwich Village and Union Square on your doorstep, there are infinite food options. Murray’s Bagels, round the corner on 6th Avenue, is an institution, and French Roast a block further on does a great brunch. This end of 6th is pharmacy heaven: some fancy, some regular, including the trusty Duane Reade, frenetic Ricky’s and upscale Bigelows.

What’s hot? Water pressure in showers is deliciously forceful. Bigelows supply groovy bathroom goodies. Free bottled water replenished daily. Exceptionally efficient maid service. Friendly staff at front desk and on the phone at reservations – none of that robot-speak you get from some chains. Quiet rooms. Passed the pillow test with flying colours: one squidgy, one firm. Delicious brownies at turn-down time. Free wifi – and it stays on throughout your stay, no need to log in each day.


What’s not. No kettles or coffee machines in the rooms, which are on the small side, unless you choose a suite. Bathrooms have glass doors which means you wake up your sleeping companion if you turn on the light in the night. A/C is a bit noisy. At weekends the hotel fills up, not surprisingly, and the lift can be slow and crowded.

Need to know: the Jade

Number of rooms: 113

Check-in: 3pm. Check-out: 11am.

Swimming-pool: No

Fitness centre: Yes, open 24 hours.

Eating and drinking: Grape & Vine restaurant, above, at the back of the hotel, is classic retro Americana: Joe-Allen-esque exposed brick with black-and-white photos of iconic New York moments, decorative tin ceiling, red high-backed banquettes. Plenty of good standards; southern fried chicken, wagyu and short-rib beef burger with shoestring fries (yum), seared Maine scallops. Clientele is a lively mix of hotel guests and locals. A bubbly bar scene: try the Gin Rickey.

Near to: The Highline park is at one end of West 13th where it meets the über-smart Meatpacking district. A few blocks to the east is Union Square with its famous farmers’ market at weekends (it’s also near New York University, so there’s an interesting studenty vibe). Plenty of restaurants there: the Union Square Café, Danny Meyer’s first restaurant, is still hanging on in there though the rumour is not for long. Walk south down 6th, passing a big Urban Outfitters, and you’ll find the heart of Greenwich Village with the IFC cinema, Bleecker Street and Cornelia Street, home to the Cornelia Street Café, an old-school Village hang-out that’s been a fixture since the 70s (Lady Gaga worked there as a teen).

Getting there: You’re surrounded by subways. The west side is served by the 14th Street stop at 8th Avenue with the A, C and E trains, as well as the L, which goes to Brooklyn (Williamsburg is four stops away). The Union Square subway is on the 4, 5 and 6 lines, going up and down the east side. The west-side 1 and 2 trains are at 14th Street and 7th Avenue.

The Jade Hotel, 52 West 13th Street, New York NY 10011; 212 375 1300.  Doubles from around £179 iRoom only

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