Doubles from: $202 to $500
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Reviewed by EuroCheapo.com Editors
When we sat down with Sonny, general manager of the Washington Square Hotel, we couldn’t stop asking questions about this historic, artsy spot. He answered all patiently, and then told us, “The Village changes, but the hotel stays constant.” Sonny couldn't have been more right. This three-star hotel may be snazzier than when it opened in 1902, but it still makes us pine for days past, when one might drop in to hear Miles Davis at the Village Vanguard or happen upon Allen Ginsberg on the street. And its comfortable rooms, ideal location and mom-and-pop staff make it worthy of a splurge.
Pros: Fantastic location. Accommodating staff and helpful concierge. Fun, artsy vibe.
Cons: Small rooms. Isn't exactly "cheap."
The Washington Square Hotel’s 152 guest rooms have all been renovated with modern brown carpet, fresh tan walls and sleek leather headboards. An Art Deco theme still holds sway, and starlets from Hollywood’s Golden Age look down from the walls.
Superior rooms face the interior—and are thus a bit quieter and darker—while Deluxe rooms offer city or park views, for about $20 extra. Either way, rooms are on the small side, but they come with all the amenities you’d expect, including a flat-screen TV, telephone, safe, coffee maker and iPod dock. Renovation also replaced the window air conditioning units with new (quiet!) models.
The private bathrooms are also quite small and on the whole unremarkable, save for the fact that they are impeccably clean. All offer toiletries, a bathrobe and hair dryer.
The hotel has a long history of sheltering starving artists. During its time as a cheap resident hotel, one might have run into Dylan Thomas, Bo Diddley, Joan Baez or Bob Dylan wandering its halls. In more recent history, Nora Jones worked for a time in the restaurant, and we’re told various musicians still return to stay (and play).
Today, the Washington Square Hotel is one of the few remaining family-run hotels in the city, lovingly run by the Paul family, who took over in the ‘70s and revamped the joint, while retaining the artsy feel. In fact, the tiled art in the hallways, lobby and even elevator are all the works of proprietor Rita Paul. We loved the lobby's classic black-and-white checkered floor, as well as the swank martini bar beyond it. The restaurant maintains a similar jazzy feel, and there is a modern gym off the lobby.
Breakfast, included in the room rate, is served in the lounge, which is also the site of live jazz on some Sundays. Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel.
The hotel's idyllic setting across from Washington Square Park is a perfect starting point for exploring tranquil Greenwich Village and its slightly grittier neighbor, the East Village. The campus of New York University radiates from around the park, which is surrounded by a mix of historic architecture and modern buildings.
The Soho shopping district is not far on foot, and seven nearby subway lines at West 4th Street make the rest of city accessible.
Subways: The nearest subway station West 4th Street-Washington Square is just 1 block from the hotel and offers access to the A/C/E, B/D/F, M and 6 lines.
Note: This hotel was visited by a EuroCheapo editor. This review is based on cleanliness, location, price and overall quality. EuroCheapo did not charge this hotel to be listed.
- Breakfast Included
- Reception: 24-Hour
- Wi-Fi: Free
- Air conditioning
- Bathroom: Private
- Bathtubs Available
- Cable TV
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About the Washington Square Hotel neighborhood
Running west from Lafayette Street and north to 14th Street, Greenwich Village is, in many ways, classic New York—brimming with history, culture, and lively characters. It's home to New York University, Washington Square Park, sidewalk cafes, used book shops, and cheap restaurants. On weekend nights, the neighborhood's comedy, jazz, and live music bars spill into the streets. The West Village, which begins after Seventh Avenue, is one of the most charming places in Manhattan, with smaller apartment buildings and brownstones along leafy streets. It's also (no surprise), quite expensive.