For many families, Spring Break means it’s time to pack up and get out of town together. After staying at hundreds of properties across many cities, our undercover reporters have chosen the best hotels for family vacations. New York City can be the perfect destination for families seeking a cultural experience or for local families that want to save on airfare. Below is our list of the most kid-friendly hotels in New York.
Located in the quiet and safe Upper West Side, a short walk from the Natural History Museum and Central Park, the Hotel Beacon is very popular among families. About half of the hotel's rooms are dedicated to one- and two-bedroom suites that can comfortably sleep a family of six. Even the standard rooms at the Beacon can easily accommodate cribs and rollaway beds (for an extra $20 a night). All rooms have well-equipped kitchenettes, and the hotel's 24-hour coin-operated laundry room is especially handy for those traveling with spill-prone toddlers.
Large rooms, special kids' menus, an on-site movie theater, and plenty of nearby attractions in Times Square make the Hilton a great choice for families. Kids stay free in rooms with their parents, and standard and deluxe rooms with two double beds range from 330 to a palatial 360 square feet -- far bigger than the standard rooms in most New York hotels. The kids' breakfast buffet at Restaurant Above costs $10 and includes toast, eggs, pancakes, bacon, and juice.
Families love the Affinia Fifty, given its safe, convenient location in Midtown East, its large rooms (most of which sleep at least four people with sofa beds and can attach to other rooms), and its laid-back lounge with plenty of board games. Affinia also runs a popular "Jet-Set Kids" promotion, where young guests receive a New York City guidebook for kids, plus NYC stickers, a scrapbook, and even a digital camera.
Though it has a reputation for being a party hotel, the Gansevoort is actually an excellent place for style-minded families. In addition to its sizable rooms and rooftop pool with a lifeguard on duty, perks include free baby amenities (from wipes to diapers to baby baths to strollers), free Nintendo Wii video game systems, and a room-service kids' menu with standards like chicken fingers, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, grilled cheese, and cookies and milk (prices range from $9 to $13).
Loews will make your kids feel like VIPs. Age-appropriate welcome gifts -- from Etch-a-Sketches to iTunes gift cards -- and in the spring, kids often get backpacks and jump ropes to use at nearby Central Park. Free milk and cookies await in rooms. The Library restaurant in the lounge has a kids' menu, and every other Sundays the supper club, Feinstein's, puts on a sophisticated magic show.
Though most guests are business travelers, children are definitely welcome at the Omni Berkshire. At check-in, all kids under age 12 get a suitcase filled with games, puzzles, and coloring books, plus a kids cup with unlimited refills anywhere in the hotel. Housekeeping's standard turndown service includes milk and cookies. There's a kids' room service menu for the Fireside restaurant that includes, among other items, ants on a log, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and grilled cheese (no crust!). Rollaway beds or a folding cot are available for $30/night and cribs are free.
At the Kimberly, all guest rooms are large, multibedroom suites. The one- and two-bedroom suites are a good choice, as they come with kitchenettes and an additional queen sleeper sofa in the living room. Cribs are free and rollaway beds are $30 per night. The Midtown East location is near the American Girl Store and FAO Schwarz.