Hotel Elysee Rating: 3.5 Pearls

In the rooms, Francophile fleur-de-lis emblems mark the bathrobes, the stationary, the bathroom wall, and even the toilet paper.

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Boutique Hotels in Midtown East, New York City (18 of 18)

 In the rooms, Francophile fleur-de-lis emblems mark the bathrobes, the stationary, the bathroom wall, and even the toilet paper.
A homey, 60-room, literary-themed boutique, located down the block from New York's famous Public Library, and among Midtown East's corporate skyscrapers. Most guests love it for its perks: an upscale bistro on the ground floor, a lively bar on the penthouse floor, free Wi-Fi, free gym passes, and free daily pastries, wine, and cheese. Small and classy, the rooms feature Egyptian cotton sheets, bamboo, and luxe bath products. But you'll have to upgrade in order to avoid being near the dinging elevator. Business (and some leisure) travelers craving style and a social scene will enjoy the colorful, newly renovated 688-room flagship of the W chain amidst Midtown East's gray business hotels. Cutesy language and small, mood-lit rooms are not for everyone, but great service and a popular bar scene seem to justify the room rates. The Benjamin is a classy place. It's decorated in sophisticated New York style: tasteful, some may even say understated, yet distinctly luxurious -- neither stuffy nor sedate. With handsome desks and stuffed leather desk chairs, the rooms have the feel of a quiet den in an English country estate -- albeit one with a supremely comfortable bed, a kitchenette, and city views. The Alex is located in a non-descript, 33-story building newly constructed in 2004 on the border of Midtown East and Murray Hill. David Rockwell, renowned for designing New York's W Hotels and Nobu, designed the 203-room property. Plenty of space, flat-screen TVs in the bathrooms, and Frette linens make even the standard rooms luxurious. This charming 91-room boutique property in Midtown East offers handsome, newly renovated rooms with supurb beds, and a casual but high-quality, pub-style restaurant. First opened in 1991, this modestly elegant hotel has hosted both the Prime Minister and President of Ireland, director Jim Sheridan, and Heath Ledger, and is more popular with the leisure than business crowd. Much of the recent $10 million renovation went towards making the 91 guest rooms worth the stay. Spacious deluxe standard rooms feature only one queen or two full size beds, but they're extremely comfortable. This former boutique hotel just joined the Marriott big leagues; excellent beds, great service, and attention to functionality means an easy stay in Midtown East, near Bloomingdale's and other major shopping destinations. The neighborhood doesn't have much nightlife, but the on-site Opia bar is pretty happening. Few design frills in the rooms, however: Wood paneling and black-and-white photographs are about it. Decent business infrastructure and a fabulous bed, but Wi-Fi costs $16.95. A 1903 Beaux-Arts chemists' club-turned-midtown boutique -- "CHEMISTS' CLVB" is still engraved above the entrance -- the 107-room Dylan offers the once sleek (now ho-hum) mood-lit style of design industry mogul Jeffery Beers. For a 107-room boutique hotel with 11-foot ceilings, rooms feel surprisingly small and buzzing (literally). The biggest assets: iPod docks, flat-screen TVs, and free in-room Wi-Fi Made up of 130 homey guest rooms -- with books and live plants -- this unique, B&B-style hotel feels worlds away from its surrounding corporate skyscrapers in Midtown East, near subways and museums. Free Wi-Fi and a funky, artsy café add even more to the charm. All told, a fine (and fun) pick for the price. In the marble-floored lobby, there's a crystal chandelier, gold sparkling brocade wallpaper, and fresh-cut lilies by the entrance. But at just 103 rooms, the Elysee is still a small, personable property. In the rooms, Francophile fleur-de-lis emblems mark the bathrobes, the stationary, the bathroom wall, and even the toilet paper.
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