This year has been a huge year for hotels in New York, with a slew of luxury hotels opening even in the wake of a down economy. In November, The Setai Fifth Avenue became the newest member of the 2010 gang, with a brand new 60-story tower on one of the world's most famous streets, just blocks from the Empire State Building. The hotel -- which shares its name with one of Miami's top luxury hotels, though the owners and managers are completely different -- is hoping to wow guests with huge rooms (they start at 425 square feet), a restaurant and bar by Michael White (of Marea fame), and a first-floor bar where jazz musicians perform nightly. There's also an Auriga Spa and a 24-hour fitness center, but service will likely be the differentiator at this 5-star hotel: For example, each guest is assigned a personal assistant, who calls the guest before arrival to offer assistance with any preparations (dinner reservations, theater tickets, and so on). 10 more photos after the jump
The Setai Fifth Avenue is housed in a new 60-story building designed by Gwathmey Siegel & Associates. There are 214 hotel rooms and suites, topped off by 184 condos on floors 20 through 60.
The hotel's interiors were designed by Das Concepts. The lobby features a dramatic staircase that winds upwards to the second floor restaurant and bar.
The hotel has Standard Rooms (which are completely booked for the next two years), Deluxe Rooms, Premier Rooms, Studio Suites, and Avenue Apartments. Above is the Studio Suite, which is 825 square feet. Smaller rooms do not have the sitting area seen here.
All rooms have an espresso machine with free coffee, free minibar snacks and non-alcoholic drinks, and a flatscreen LED-backlit LCD television (the first New York hotel to have them, apparently). Beds are by Duxiana, covered in Pratesi linens.
Not every room has a bathroom that's quite this big, but they do all have tubs, a shower with a rainfall showerhead, a TV hidden in the mirror, and bath amenities by Lorenzo Villoresi.
The hotel's second floor is home to Ai Fiori, an Italian restaurant from Michael White (known for Marea, Alto, Convivio). Attached to the restaurant is a bar, intended to be a destination in its own right (guests were enjoying lunch at the bar when we visited).
On the first floor of the hotel is Bar on 5th, which serves three meals a day in addition to drinks. Although the hotel is pretty close to business-centric midtown Manhattan, this is one of the only business-appropriate bars in the immediate neighborhood, so it's bound to crawling with suits, in addition to hotel guests, in no time. Jazz musicians play here every night from 9 p.m. to midnight, and the hotel is hoping to soon have Lincoln Center pianists grace the bar's grand piano.
The hotel has 214 hotel rooms, 157 of which are "normal" hotel rooms and 54 of which are Avenue Apartment suites, like the one seen above, plus three penthouse suites (all 214 are part of the hotel, separate from the condo portion of the building). The Avenue Apartments have a living room that's separate from the bedroom, a guest bathroom in the foyer in addition to the master bath, and a kitchen area that comes fully stocked.
The kitchens in the Avenue Apartments come with an oven-cum-microwave, an espresso machine, a full-sized fridge (with free soft drinks), a four-burner stovetop, and enough kitchenware to cook a meal (plates, pots, vegetable peeler, whisk -- you name it).