Pod 51 Rating: 2.5 Pearls

Part hotel, part hostel (with shared bathrooms), the Pod 51 is pretty basic for business-focused Midtown East. But it’s still not the cheapest hotel. Rooms, with their own bathrooms, also have free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, and iHome iPod docks. As the name suggests, they're tiny pods.

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Behold: The smallest hotel rooms in New York (2 of 16)

 Part hotel, part hostel (with shared bathrooms), the Pod 51 is pretty basic for business-focused Midtown East. But it’s still not the cheapest hotel. Rooms, with their own bathrooms, also have free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, and iHome iPod docks. As the name suggests, they're tiny pods.
With shared bathrooms and hilariously small (though cleverly designed) rooms, this West Village landmark offers quirky accommodations for hipsters on a tight budget -- rooms often start at $99 a night. Part hotel, part hostel (with shared bathrooms), the Pod 51 is pretty basic for business-focused Midtown East. But it’s still not the cheapest hotel. Rooms, with their own bathrooms, also have free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, and iHome iPod docks. As the name suggests, they're tiny pods. Like its sisters in South Beach, the 72-room MAve hotel (opened in 2009) uses slight style -- and a few treats, like H2O bath products and a nice, free cheese spread at breakfast -- as a means to over-inflate the price of its incredibly tiny guest rooms in Murray Hill. A 126-room boutique hotel in a historic, Beaux Arts building, the Mansfield has a friendly staff, popular bar with live jazz, modern gym, extremely convenient Midtown West location, and plenty of freebies: free Wi-Fi, free espresso, and free printing in the business center. Unfortunately, the standard rooms are among New York’s smallest. Starting at just 136 square feet, the rooms at the Hudson Hotel are extremely small -- but also sleek, with Wi-Fi (for a fee), flat-screens, and Malin+Goetz bath products. Most of Yotel's 669 rooms are tiny cabins, which clock in at just 170 square feet. But they have clever layouts to maximize space, and sexy mod design; picture crisp white walls and linens, blonde wood accents, and funky colored accent lighting. The 119 rooms here are very small. For guests on a short stay or only looking for a place to sleep, this many not be a problem, but some folks may find the small size uncomfortable. The decor in the rooms is dated, with thin, pastel comforters on the beds, nondescript wood headboards and end tables, old-fashioned wall lamps, and single pieces of floral artwork. Rooms at the Pod 39 start at a minuscule 55 square feet. No, that's not a typo. But Pod 39 is newer than its sister property, Pod 51, and so rooms look a little sleeker. Plus, there are three seriously cool -- and colorful -- public spaces: an upscale Mexican restaurant, a rooftop bar with unique architecture, and a hangout space called the Playroom. Located right on 23rd Street, in the heart of Manhattan's vibrant Chelsea neighborhood, this Catholic guesthouse has been welcoming visitors of all faiths to its clean, simple rooms since the 1920s. Rooms are small and straightforward, without frills, and the renovated ones have en-suite showers. The Econo Lodge Times Square is a basic hotel with 56 tiny rooms in a great location; the property is situated about two blocks from its namesake, and is near the Theater District and subways. The rooms have comfortable mattresses in spaces so small that it’s a challenge to drag a suitcase around the bed. This charming walk-up townhouse (no elevator) in Chelsea first opened its doors in 1985 and was considered one of the first gay-friendly hotels in the neighborhood. Today, its 20 Superior and Economy rooms (the latter share bathrooms) attract a mix of European backpackers and couples who can handle the limited in-room space. For visitors on a budget who want a prime New York City location, the 600-room West Side YMCA could do the job. The Upper West Side hostel provides minimum frills: expect dorm-style rooms and shared hallway bathrooms. There's free Wi-Fi and a small cafe, but the real highlight here is proximity to Central Park, Columbus Circle, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, and the Museum of Natural History. No-frills rooms here are compact and a bit stuffy, and TVs offer a slim selection of channels, many of which are Spanish-speaking only. Pillows and bedding are basic, and there is visible wear and tear -- torn bed platforms, nicked furniture. However, rates are generally very low. The loft-style Bowery House (not to confused with the more expensive -- and more luxe -- Bowery Hotel) is best suited for 20- or 30-something hipster types looking for proximity to downtown nightlife. It falls somewhere between a hostel and a hotel, and though snug "cabin" rooms are private, the latticed ceilings make for a lack of aural privacy (hence the earplugs). This budget hotel provides some of the best prices in town, and the two-bedroom suites are a particular value with prices typically under $200. Single Rooms, however, are so small that the beds touches both walls. Budget hotels in NYC are few and far between, especially in Midtown, but the Manhattan Broadway -- open since 1997 -- offers 43 competitively priced rooms. The dismal entrance, limited on-site amenities, and small spaces will not appeal to everyone, though incoming visitors will be hard-pressed to find accommodations with private bathrooms at these prices.
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