- The Private Room
- SQ26 SIN-FRA-JFK Suites
- Luftansa Senator Lounge
- New York Marriott Marquis
- The Ritz Carlton New York Nomad
- Kimpton Eventi New York
- Conrad New York Downtown
- SQ25 JFK-FRA Business
- The Westin Grand Frankfurt
- Sheraton Frankfurt Airport Hotel and Conference Centre
- Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge
- SQ25 FRA-SIN Suites
Ah, the hotel splurge of my trip.
It was only a few months back that the opening of this property popped up on my reading list and I was hooked. Ritz Carlton? New? Club Lounge? With Titanium status? YES PLEASE.
But prices? NO PLEASE.
Nonetheless, massive stalking of anything related to this fancy property commenced.
Address – 25 West 28th Street, New York, New York 10001 United States. Website.
Contact – Tel: +12124048400. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Price – Redemption for 2 nights with 228,000 points + cash upgrade of (an eyewatering) USD650 per night for a Skyline Club Double (would have preferred a king bed but there were no such option available). Total cash outlay = USD1,498. GULP. God knows how many times I rebooked this due to my changing plans.
Location – Set in one of New York City’s quintessential neighborhoods, The Ritz-Carlton New York, NoMad is a luxury oasis for guests. The streets are steeped in history and lined with handsome buildings, world-class hotels, wonderful restaurants, exciting nightlife, and unique retail shops. Its famed surroundings include Tin Pan Alley, the area on West 28th Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues known for its cultural significance as the birthplace of American Popular Music. Some nearby attractions include Madison Square Park, the Flatiron Building, the Empire State Building, Bryant Park and the Highline.From the property’s website
Aside from the fancy phrasing above, I actually found the location abit of an odd spot. It’s definitely NOT in a first timer friendly area, so I was very glad that I was super efficient at Marquis in killing off my tourist list. It’s considered within the Flatiron District ,walking distance to Empire State Building, and somewhat close to 5th Avenue so you do get some shopping options, and a smattering of small eateries nearby. I was surprised to also find a Koreatown nearby so good for those who likes Korean cuisine and skincare stuff.
Pre-Arrival – Oddly enough, there was no pre-arrival welcome. I did my in-app check in when available and chatted with the team on my early check in request, my preference to have a king bed, as well as any possible Suite for upgrades (Titaniums are supposed to be eligible for Suites at Ritz Carltons). All were duly acknowledged, and in fact they confirmed that a Manhattan Club was available. I did a quick search on the app and saw that that was actually a double downgrade from my original room in terms of cash prices (BOO). But the staff assured that for redemption, both rooms cost the same.
Getting There – An Uber from Marriott Marquis here cost me USD22 and took about 20min. Once the car started to pull up onto the curbside of the hotel entrance, the bellman sprang into action and assisted with my luggage with a warm welcome. It’s nice to be welcomed like this!
I later feedback about my disappointment via the in-app chat and was told that upgrades are ‘”difficult” during the holiday period. But I am quite sure they can do better for a Titanium, no? Sorry if I sound like I’m expecting more from my status but benefits like these is exactly why I work so hard to get elite status. Sigh.
I was given a welcome letter listing the Club timings:
And I thought the lobby area is super nice – all classy elegance with staff on duty looking all sharp and spiffy. There is even a Diptyque display in one corner which is supposed to be for guests to experience their scents and products – it was empty though due to my arrival day being eve of Thanksgiving but products were back on display thereafter.
There is also a green corridor which you pass through heading in and out – quite a unique touch and certainly very IG-able spot!
Apart from the heat, I loved the room! The main bedroom space is a little compact but perfectly fine for 1pax. The king bed is awesome (a world of difference from Marquis’ thinnish sheets), flanked by 2 very different bedside tables but both sides are equipped with USB / 2-pin charging ports and lighting controls + bedside reading lights. I was particularly impressed with the round bronze table’s slide out platform for some reason.
For chilling, I loved the couch nestled in a corner with a coffee table which became my spot for sorting out stuff at the end of each evening. Or reluctantly doing some work while on holiday.
The elegant theme continued to the mini bar – an enclosed fancy cabinet which opens up to an entire assortment of overpriced drinks and snacks, alongside your coffee machine, tea bags, and accompanying glassware. The fridge is also fully stocked in case you are that thirsty.
Not sure if it’s meant to be sneaky but there is also a smartphone charging kit in one corner, which I innocently thought was available as a resource for guests BUT it’s not. It a chargeable item as part of the mini bar, so don’t use it!
The wardrobe is positioned at the hallway and uses dark wood tones as part of its design. The first cabinet opens up to be a low drawer with a torchlight but this spot is badly scratched which was really odd for a new Ritz Carlton. The other doors is the wardrobe proper equipped with bathrobes (a little scratchy), very fluffy slippers etc.
The bathroom is super nice and feels like pure luxury to me. Decked out in very classy white / grey marble finishing, the generous space contains a combined double sink, a giant bathtub, and separate enclosed sections for the toilet and shower. Toiletries are pump sized Philosykos branded which smelt really nice but a little too dry for me. There are also plenty of towels for 1pax which was a god send ever since I discovered how to efficiently do your laundry on the go.
A welcome note and a box of MarieBelle chocolates were sent to my room thereafter (though I wonder why am I a Mr) – they were really pretty and very tasty!
For turndown, you’d find 2 signature Ritz Carlton chocolates placed by the bedside.
In addition, a cute Thanksgiving sweet as also in my room on day itself.
Ritz Carlton Club Lounge (dedicated page) –
Right from the start, I told myself that if I do go ahead with staying here, I have to try the club lounge. After all, YOLO right? So my excitement was oozing out from my brains as I took the lift to level 36. I was super stoked to be able to experience my second RC Club Lounge experience (hopefully more to come!).
The Ritz-Carlton Club® redefines our luxury experience, combining intimacy, comfort and exclusivity with the personalized service and attention to detail. This oasis in a well-appointed, relaxed lounge environment located on the 36th Floor of the building offers 180-degree views to Downtown Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty. The Club Lounge offers continuous complimentary culinary offerings throughout the day by Michelin-starred chef José Andrés.From the property’s website
The space is…..honestly less atas than I thought. I think they were trying to go for the muted elegance vibe but with the going cash rate for a club room here (USD2,000+), I assumed there will be more luxury touches. The space was also smaller than I imagine but then again, I don’t think a crowd is a plausible scenario because they are so expensive.
You can take your pick of the living room-esque corner on one end, the sofa seats in one nook, and 2-seater dining tables otherwise. Though, take note that like the room, this space is designed to receive plenty of natural light, so choose your seat wisely if you don’t prefer to be drenched in sunlight – the timestamp of my pics is close to 2:00pm.
But the highlight of any RC Club Lounge is the 5 meal presentations, correct?
Well okay, first thing first: alcohol is available ALL DAY. The champagne they serve is Veuve Clicquot Brut which is my least favorite. I was secretly hoping they offer a more premium champagne as well.
If you are not a bubble person, then you can choose from the assortment of spirits, pre-made Bloody Mary, or the 4x red, 3x white, 1x rose, and 1x prosecco.
And then we come to the Daily Culinary Presentations (I did try my best to eat all of them throughout my entire stay):
- Breakfast: 7 a.m. to 11 a.m
- Lunch: 12 p.m to 2 p.m
- Afternoon Delights: 2:30 p.m to 4:30 p.m
- Hors d’oeuvres and Cocktails: 5 p.m to 8 p.m
- Desserts and Cordials: 8 p.m to 10 p.m
These are all served in one end of the lounge:
Breakfast: 7 a.m. to 11 a.m
Breakfast is something I really look forward to, especially at a Ritz Carlton. In my mind, I ask how can a Ritz Carlton Club Lounge make the breakfast experience different?
Turns out, it was a small selection but I think there was an attempt to offer elegant dishes: Baked farm eggs, fresh berries, fruits, yoghurts, cold cuts, cheeses. More generic stuff included sausage, potatoes, oatmeal, cereal. They were alright for me, but I did wish they had the option for made to order eggs – I tried asking and was rejected. I should not have assumed that I can order overeasy eggs at a Ritz Carlton Club Lounge. Boo.
Lunch: 12 p.m to 2 p.m
This is a “light” affair consisting of DIY salads with some pre plated options (couscous salads etc), a hot soup, finger sandwiches, bread sticks and crackers, a handful of bite-sized desserts, a variety of cookies, some chips, an assortment of pickled veg e olives, veg crudites, and ready to go snacks. The selection was actually sufficient as lunch for me, and I did see different variety each day.
It is also useful to note that some of the lighter stuff is made available off-hours as well.
Afternoon Delights: 2:30 p.m to 4:30 p.m
I was expecting an afternoon tea tier of sorts but it was actually just 3 tea items served in a set to your table – they are passable. The funny thing I was also sitting in the lounge for same sessions over the next 2 days but I was not offered any. I mean I was not hungry so did not actively ask but I wonder why I was missed out when I can see staff offering other guests.
Hors d’oeuvres and Cocktails: 5 p.m to 8 p.m
My most anticipated session for both my evenings, especially when it was Thanksgiving on one of my nights. The spread is certainly more generous than other sessions, with oysters taking center stage on both nights (thought they were not replenished even when empty earlier in the session which I thought was rather stingy). You also get canapes like ceviche, hot bites in canapé portions eg. shortrib and polenta, meats, grilled veg, cheeses, cold cuts, and finally desserts. There was even turkey on Thanksgiving evening too. A full dinner can certainly be amassed from this spread.
Desserts and Cordials: 8 p.m to 10 p.m
The most disappointing session – this was just the same desserts available from the previous session re-arranged onto the center island. Boo. But on thanksgiving evening, they had a chocolate booth on offer.
While the meals were certainly nice and very much adequate for my 2-night stay (I already knew I needed to moderate my expectations in terms of quantity), I was actually expecting more in terms of quality, especially when they tout that the offerings are by Michelin-starred chef José Andrés. This is the same chef which helms the Zaytinya and The Bazaar which is offering the same culinary options for a price. Would I pay the running price for the same thing at the restaurants. No.
Facilities – I decided to hide away in the hotel on Thanksgiving Day to try out the Spa facilities including the Fitness Centre (website).
The name proper is “Ritz-Carlton Spa New York, NoMad” and feels indeed like the atas spa it should be! The facilities are complimentary for in-house guests even without treatments booked which was great. The faultlessly polite staff offered to show me around since this is my first visit and I spent a good 1hour+ enjoying the fancy facilities which still feels very much new.
There are of course locker facilities for use and they come equipped with robes, towels, and slippers.
The shower and toilet facilities are more than adequate as well, equipped with ESPA products interestingly.
There are also dressing area to make your face up
The steam room and sauna is located in what they call the Relaxation area and is a pretty big space in itself. The steam room is draped in pretty blue colors, while the sauna is nice too. This area comes with it’s own set of loungey chairs to relax in – and this is where you can request for complimentary tea to be served if you so wish. So nice.
There is also a Lounge room and this contains a length of chillax chairs complemented with the same teas available in the relaxation room, and well as prepacked nuts / dried fruits. Very thoughtful touches!
Curious about the prices, I browsed the list and numbers are expectedly sky high for a property which charges USD1K upwards.
Then onwards to the Fitness Centre which is co-located with the Spa – it’s nothing fancy but a decent array of equipment for a quick workout.
Overall Service – other than the bumpy service about the upgrade, I’m pleased to report that service was excellent, especially in the club lounge. I have nothing but good words about my interaction with the front desk, concierge, and bellman.
I have to especially compliment the Club Lounge staff Carla and the concierge team for assisting with my special case of a lost spectacles. I mentioned I had left my spectacles in Marriott Marquis and I only discovered to my horror after checking into RC the same evening. And after not being able to get any assistance from Marquis at first call, I approached Carla for assistance on possible places to get a new pair done the next day after explaining my situation, though I knew it could be tough given that it was Thanksgiving the next day.
Carla and her concierge team quickly found a possible place and said they will call the place at the next available time to confirm that they are indeed opened on Thjanksgiving. I thought wow great service and thoughtful initiative!
Then Carla approached me for my room number at Marquis and said they can try calling the hotel on my behalf to see if anything can be done. So I gave them all the details I can, said I am happy to go back to retrieve it if found, and I went about my day.
That same evening, I was heading back to the Club Lounge for dinner and Carla called out to me in the lobby – with my lost spectacle in hand! Sh explained that Marquis first said item was not found, but then thereafter told her they found it, and they went to collect it to bring it back to me. Not kidding but I literally thought OH MY GOD THANK YOU SO MUCH – and I think I tried to express as it is.
I bought Carla and the team a token of appreciation the next day and asked to pass to her personally as I was checking out that same day. I mean the new pair of spectacles wouldn’t have been expensive but it wasn’t about that – it was about Carla and team doing their best to help a guest in distress and took on the problem as their own. I am not sure if the two properties belonging to the Bonvoy family played a part THANK YOU ONCE AGAIN RITZ CARLTON NOMAD.
Check Out – Painlessly done at front desk at 4pm. The same bellman also helped to with my luggage
I am super duper glad I was in this property as I am quite sure any other hotel would not have been able to deliver the same level of service about my lost item. Carla and team were exemplary of what a Ritz Carlton service standards should be!
That being said, objectively thinking, would I pay USD2K+ cash rate for a club room? No, because I think they are wayyy overpriced for the value – I mean I don’t think I ate / drank half of what I paid in cash for.
But ah wells, bucket list checked!