Patterned bedspreads may turn off modern travelers
Shared bathrooms only
No lobby or dining options (though not expected in this price range)
The budget-friendly, 150-room Hotel 17 in the residential Gramercy neighborhood is even cheaper than its smaller sister property in Midtown, Hotel 31. But there are no private room and bathroom options here and the location is a bit less central. Rooms of varying sizes (larger rooms include coffeemakers and sinks) have clean but outdated decor -- think patterned bedspreads and mini-blinds. But prices are consistently among the cheapest in this posh neighborhood. One reason for this is shared bathrooms -- each floor has four bathrooms (two bathrooms for every seven rooms); there's rarely a wait and the hard-working cleaning crew keeps the place spic and span.
A few guests can occasionally be found making use of the outdoor smoking area, but otherwise, it's easy to feel like the only person staying here. The lobby consists of a small front desk area for check-in, but guests don't spend time here. Though bathrooms are shared, there is rarely a wait. The low-key scene is safe and quiet; this is no more than a place to drop the bags and rest.
Hotel 17 gets its name for its location: 17th Street, or East 17th to be precise. While Hotel 31 is better suited for those who require close proximity to Midtown, this slightly more downtown location would be more appropriate for those who want to be closer to the Union Square area and its many bars, restaurants, and shops. The L Train to Williamsburg, Brooklyn -- one of the trendiest neighborhoods in the city for dining and drinking -- is just two blocks away.
Basic accommodations are clean, but have outdated bedspreads
Though the building doesn't seem big, it surprisingly houses 150 rooms, which come with two double beds, one full bed, one queen bed, two twin beds or a mixture of the above. Well-worn furnishings, wallpapers and bedspreads are dated, and to some, ugly; travelers who are used to white duvet covers may have a hard time adjusting. There are two full (and clean) shared bathrooms for every seven rooms, and a wait is rare.
Besides offering free Wi-Fi, early check-ins, baggage storage and neighborhood advice from the long-standing staff (many have worked here for over 18 years) the hotel lacks property features. Food, drink and even seating areas are nil! This is a place to bathe, change and sleep.