- Few shopping or dining options in the immediate area
- 10- to 15-minute walk to the nearest subway stop
- Fee for Wi-Fi (free for Kimpton members)
- Poor in-room noise insulation
- No coffeemakers in rooms
- Pricey valet parking
Chic hotel in the building of a former printing house, in a remote corner of Hell's Kitchen
The 222-room Ink48 -- located on the far western reaches of Hell's Kitchen -- is a serene respite from the tourist bustle of Midtown West. The hotel is one of the Kimpton brand's cluster of fashion-oriented properties in New York, such as Times Square's Muse Hotel. Like its sister hotels, Ink48 has an aura of quirky, design-forward elegance. Its living-room-like lobby, designed by innovative architects David Rockwell and Carlos Zapata, features bubble-glass chandeliers, vivid teal velveteen couches, and seating alcoves upholstered in red silk.
The hotel is one block from the Hudson River (meaning some rooms have some spectacular views) and far removed from the tourist hub of Times Square -- a blessing or a curse, depending on your point of view. By being slightly removed from the usual tourist stomping grounds of midtown Manhattan and Times Square, guests are rewarded with comfortably sized room; a quiet, sophisticated vibe; and great perks, like the free nightly wine receptions. Plus there's an eco-minded spa, the attractive lobby-level Print restaurant, the Press rooftop lounge with sweeping views of the Hudson and midtown Manhattan.
One block from the Hudson River, in Midtown West's far western (and now-stylish) Hell's Kitchen area
Ink48 is in the Hell's Kitchen part of Midtown West, a neighborhood that is somewhat desolate, but slowly transitioning into a more culturally vibrant area with great nightclubs (including some popular gay clubs), restaurants, and galleries. (If it's any indication, the NYC office of one of the world's top advertising firms, Ogilvy & Mather, is across the street from the hotel.) But for now, the immediate blocks are still largely characterized by strip joints, car dealerships, and auto body shops. Ninth Avenue, two blocks to the east, is much more populated, with its huge array of bars and restaurants.
Big, modern rooms with excellent details and views -- either of the Hudson River or the midtown skyline
With high ceilings and ample closet space, guest rooms feel comfortably spacious. Standard rooms have a king-size bed and start at about 250 square feet -- small, but still larger than the typical boutique hotel room in New York. The 300-square-foot Deluxe King Room features a chartreuse daybed, an armless chair with circle-print upholstery, and lots of lamps with natural fiber shades.
All rooms also have iHome docking alarm clocks, 37-inch flat-screen TVs, cheetah- and zebra-print bathrobes, and stocked minibars (there are no coffeemakers, but the hotel can provide one upon request). Small touches -- recycling bins, yoga mats, stemless wine glasses, black wicker nightstands lit from beneath to provide ambient light -- illustrate the hotel's attention to detail. Beds feature pillow-top mattress on a platform frame, with Frette linens and four goose-down pillows. Most room have small, white-marble and tile bathrooms with standing showers, though a few have shower/tub combos and bath products by Atelier Bloem (a Malin + Goetz offshoot).
A widely noted downside to the rooms are their lack of noise insulation: slamming doors, construction sounds, elevator dings, and hallway conversations are often heard.
The rooftop lounge has stunning river and city views
Press Lounge, the gorgeous rooftop bar, offers sweeping views of Manhattan and the Hudson River from its wraparound terrace with a reflecting pool. Inside, there are espresso-hued leather couches with dark throw blankets and a modern fireplace. The space is open to the public, but hotel guests and restaurant patrons get first dibs on entry. The full-service lobby-level restaurant, Print, serves farm-to-table cuisine for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
The 24-hour fitness center is small, but solid: all of the Precor cardio machines have private TVs and headphones, and there are also free weights, medicine balls, even hula hoops. Located on the second floor, InkSpa provides facials, body treatments, and massages (in-room services can be arranged through the front desk/concierge, just note that not all standard rooms are large enough to accommodate). The hotel also has custom-made bicycles for guest use, free of charge.
No charges or restrictions apply to pets of any size, shape or type. Pet bowls, leashes and doggie beds are free; pet food and treats available for purchase at the front desk.
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