A stay at the Plaza is a New York luxury travel rite of passage. From Frank Lloyd Wright to The Beatles, or The Great Gatsby and Kevin McCallister, since 1907 the Plaza has cemented itself as treasured piece of Manhattan’s history — in both fact and fantasy. Guests can even relive some of the magic: book the Fitzgerald Suite to step back into the Jazz Age, or indulge your inner child with a decadent 16-scoop Home Alone sundae. Read on for the full review.
After having undergone a US$400 million renovation in 2008, the northern and eastern sides of the hotel have been converted into private condominiums. However, the rest of the chateau-like structure has been meticulously restored to its original French Renaissance-style grandeur. If you’re in town you can’t miss it — just look for the castle at the foot of Central Park.
Where is The Plaza?
Standing at the corner of 5th Avenue and W 59th Street, The Plaza is where buzzy Midtown meets upscale Upper East Side, and the green expanse of Central Park meets the concrete jungle. LaGuardia Airport is about 16 kilometres by car; JFK Airport is around 27 kilometres; and Newark Airport clocks in at about 28 kilometres.
What’s near The Plaza?
It may be easier to ask “What isn’t near The Plaza?”. You’re steps from Central Park, stretches of flagship retail shops along Fifth and Madison Avenue, and Museum Mile (which is where you’ll find The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Guggenheim, among other noteworthy galleries and museums). A 10- to 20-minute stroll can take you to Rockefeller Center, Radio City Music Hall, Times Square and Broadway.
Every room puts you in the lap of luxury. Twenty-four-carat-gold-plated bathroom faucets. Solid marble vanities. Crystal chandeliers. Regal gold-trimmed headboards that look like something out of Versailles. And, most importantly, the perfect kind of crisp yet oh-so-comfy white bedding that begs to be jumped on and slept in well past the alarm.
The Guest Rooms, available with King Beds or two Queens, start at 44 square metres – large by general standards and palatial for central Manhattan. All rooms overlook either the interior courtyard or 58th Street, apart from the Tower Room, which has views of Fifth Avenue.
Suites range from the 60-65 square-metre Junior Suites up to the 418-square-metre Royal Suite Three Bedroom (regularly frequented by heads of state).
For a panorama of Central Park, book a Carnegie Partial Park View One Bedroom Suite or the Grand Penthouse Two Bedroom Terrace Suite.
Restaurants and bars
The Palm Court is as famous for its domed stained-glass ceiling and lush garden interior as it is for its 100-year-running Afternoon Tea service. Much like the hotel itself, the fare is a melange of modern and traditional: think English cucumber sandwiches with labneh, mint, tarragon and pickled mustard seeds; fresh-from-the-oven spiced cranberry truffle scones; and accoutrements of devonshire cream and blood orange curd. Palm Court service is from 6:30am to 11pm and includes breakfast, lunch, tea and cocktails.
The Champagne Bar is no casual affair. This is where you sip fine bubbles, get the caviar service and watch well-heeled guests glide through the marbled lobby. Service is from 6:30am to 11pm and includes breakfast, light meals and cocktail service.
Guests can also order in-room dining from 24-hours a day from a fairly extensive menu that includes the expected (breakfast and meals for all-day dining) and the unexpected (a 16-scoop Home Alone sundae served with your own mini buffet of candies, cherries and sauces.)
Spa and fitness
The in-house Guerlain Spa, famed for its personalised facials and speciality massages, was voted New York’s best Hotel Spa at the 2022 World Spa Awards. There’s also a full-service salon (hair, nails, mani/pedi, brows and waxing) and a 24-hour fitness centre with a selection of weights and machines.
Travel for work
Baroque-style wooden desks and upholstered chairs make the perfect workstation in almost every room and suite. Guests can visit the business centre on level 3 for printing and other administrative support, and meeting rooms can be booked in a range of sizes.
Wheelchair accessible rooms are available with wider doors and roll-in showers The hotel can also provide accessibility items such as raised toilet seats, tub bars and non-slip mats upon request. Arrange any accessibility requirements directly in advance.
What you need to know
For a one-of-a-kind treat, ask the in-room dining team for an edible chocolate “Plaza-opoly” game board lined with gourmet house-made petit fours.
The hotel’s Maybach is available as a complimentary car service for guests for a distance of up to 10 blocks. The car cannot be booked and rides are on a first-come-first-served basis.
Best for: Couples and city breaks
Ambience: Elegant luxury
Number of rooms: 282 rooms, including 102 suites
Rates: From US$1040
Wi-fi: Basic wi-fi free for all guests; high-speed wi-fi free for ALL — Accor Live Limitless Members
Parking: Offsite valet. Must be overnight with no in-and-out. US$95 per night
Address: 768 5th Ave, New York, 10019
Phone: +1 212 759 3000
Earn 3 Qantas Points per $1 when you book your next stay at qantas.com/hotels