Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
A stylish hotel with thorough attention to detail -- and striking Manhattan views
The Z Hotel is a welcome departure from the chain hotels that are prevalent in the area. It’s got an industrial-chic design with hipster-friendly touches and a sleek, modern look. The lobby is a small space packed with stylish and fun details, from the stacks of vintage trunks that make up the front desk, to the cool mural depicting the City Hall subway station, and the train station departure board above the elevators that welcomes guests in dozens of languages.
Down a flight of stairs is the hip lounge, with rustic-chic decor, a piano, and large second-story windows that let in natural light. Top 40, Jazz, and dance music is played all day at a reasonable volume, and there are DJ sessions on weekends. The lounge shares the space with the Diner 24/7 -- which is the hotel restaurant -- and with a solid rotating art program showcasing local artists. Continental breakfast is served here every morning for a fee.
One of the highlights of the hotel during the warmer months is the Z Roof, a hopping rooftop bar featuring 360-degree views of the Manhattan skyline and Queens. Here, guests and non-guests can enjoy a drink or a pizza from the on-site pizza oven at night, or join a yoga class in the morning.
With its contemporary vibe, great perks, and location near many subway lines, the hotel draws all types of travelers -- from business travelers who want to be near the Midtown corporate offices, to couples looking to stay in a quieter locale and save some cash. While the hotel is not quite family-friendly, as it does not offer any specific activities for kids and does not have adjoining rooms, those traveling with young kids can book a Deluxe King Suite, which has a double futon.
One subway stop from Midtown, in the up-and-coming neighborhood of Long Island City
The hotel is located on a quiet, industrial block a little removed from the buzz in the more central areas of Long Island City. It’s not the most attractive block in the neighborhood, but it offers a convenient location equidistant from seven subway lines connecting both to Manhattan and Brooklyn. (This area is actually more conveniently located in terms of commuting to attractions than certain areas in the Upper West Side and Downtown.). The hotel also offers free shuttle service hourly to and from Manhattan.
There are tons of great restaurants and bars along and off Vernon Boulevard -- located less than a 10-minute walk from the hotel -- and there are several top-notch museums both within walking distance and a short subway ride away from the property.
Long Island City is the area in Queens closest to Manhattan. It is located right across the Queensboro bridge from Midtown (at 59th Street), and some believe it to be the new Williamsburg. It’s still quieter than Brooklyn, but rising housing prices have driven thousands of New Yorkers to this up-and-coming neighborhood, bringing it back to life with gleaming skyscrapers on the waterfront, restored historic houses, and beautiful parks offering gorgeous river and Manhattan views.
Stylish and hip rooms with jaw-dropping views of Manhattan
The Z’s rooms are stylish and fun, with details such as Mason jars used as overhead lamps, funky wall murals, intimacy kits, and a contemporary black, silver and white color palette with red pops of color. The size is standard for Manhattan, but guests staying in hotels outside the city center tend to expect slightly larger rooms -- however, the striking floor-to-ceiling windows help rooms feel more spacious than they really are. And the views are exceptional from every single room.
There are three room types here: Double Twins, Queen Rooms, and Deluxe King Rooms. Twin and Queen rooms are the same size; Deluxe King Rooms are a little larger; feature a deep, rectangular European tubs instead of walk-in showers; and have the king bed facing the window. Other than that, the design and amenities are the same in all room types.
A restaurant with a tapas menu, a stylish lounge, and a seasonal rooftop bar with a pizza oven
The outstanding freebies are the key here.
No fitness center, but free use of loaner bikes, and rooftop yoga in the warmer months
The hotel does not offer a fitness center, but guests looking to work out can borrow bicycles, helmets, and locks at no extra charge. In the spring and summer months, the hotel offers rooftop yoga with stunning Manhattan views several times a week.
The Z is a hip boutique in the up-and-coming neighborhood of Long Island City, Queens. Stylish rooms have dark grey accent walls with funky murals, floor-to-ceiling windows offering sweeping Manhattan views, and tons of fun details. The attractive, industrial-chic lounge is the meeting point for guests day and night, and offers a solid drinks and tapas menu well into the evening. The hotel's location (a short walk from seven subway lines and one stop on the E train from Midtown); outstanding freebies (Wi-Fi, hourly shuttle to and from Manhattan, loaner bikes, and phone calls); and reasonable rates (cheaper than Manhattan hotels) make it a great value. It's a chic option for those who don’t mind staying in a quieter part of the city.