A quick (mostly work) trip up to NYC with my spouse, including dinner with our elder in Brooklyn, and a little long-delayed tourism ... and some pictures... So, first, we decided to try the W New York Downtown - located within a block of the Marriott and the Courtyard ... and not far from a handful of other hotels slightly closer to the Brooklyn Bridge.(There's so many hotels to choose from, we keep experimenting... We loved the Marriott on the other side of the Brooklyn Bridge - https://insiders.marriott.com/thread/57248 ... I even tried the nearby Moxy a few months ago - and here's my write up on that one: https://insiders.marriott.com/thread/57523 ...)
Briefly, back to the W and some thoughts on the hotel - not necessarily our type of hotel ... and warning - at least temporarily - there's no real food service (but there's a Starbucks across the street ... and plenty of other options), but a killer (corner) room with a stunning, unobstructed view of One World Trade. OK, here was our view when we rolled up our blinds this morning:
Not much else to add about the hotel other than ... again ... the room (that I selected and paid extra for) was spectacular. (No upgrade was given, and the web page clearly stated that Suite Upgrade requests/coupons would not be considered/honored, which seemed a bit odd.) Most of the staff was friendly and helpful. (I can only assume that the individual who helped us with check-in was having a bad night or we somehow offended her. Fortunately, her (brusque, bordering on rude) behavior seemed out of character with everyone else we encountered at the property.) The ground floor entrance is ... dark ... black on black? ... and we found it a bit oppressive, but you only pass through on the way to the elevator. Our only other observation was that ... in an, again, fabulous room with a killer view and great bed and terrific window seating ... it was ... frustrating (almost weird) that the large, comfortable bathroom had, basically, no place to put your toiletries bag (let alone two of them). Whatever....
And, now, outside of the hotel, finally, after putting it off for far too long, we took the (first) elevator up to the Observatory this morning. In a word, ... wow... Here's the basic view, looking uptown.
And here's the view looking across towards New Jersey.
Then, of course, there's Ellis Island and Lady Liberty.
And, well, there's the iconic Brooklyn Bridge (from a very different angle than the pics you'll see if you check out my post on the Moxy ... up at the top of this post).
Back to the views in a moment, but ... did I mention the hotel is basically across the street from the memorial and the the World Trade Center? Here's the view looking down at the W Hotel from the One World Trade Center Observatory:
Of course, on a more somber note, the North and South Pools are haunting remembrances. And it's hard to do them justice with a couple of pictures. Still, just to give you an idea, here's a couple:
We also noticed that roses were placed into the names of those remembered for their birthdays. Poignant stuff....
Closer to the W hotel, you can find the Horse Soldier memorial (of course, there's a book ... and then there's the movie, Twelve Strong), but, hey, this is the real deal...
To the extent I've included this rather martial/militaristic homage, let me also throw in this splendid inscription on the wall of Ralph Bunche park opposite the United Nations. (Bunche, son of a barber, and grandson of a former slave, was an African-American educator, political scientist, senior UN official, and recipient of the U.S. Medal of Freedom - presented by JFK.)
And, of course, since it was a work trip, here's the United Nations itself (a super easy commute up the Green Line (4 or 5) from the Wall Street Station, just a few blocks from the W and the Marriott and the Courtyard, to Grand Central Station), although it's far more interesting inside than outside.
Back to the World Trade Center, I still remain intrigued by the Oculus (which, frankly, is s shopping and transportation hub), although it's hard to get a shot of it without eyesore obstructions. Such is life.
And, maybe one or more from the observatory (some with a longer lens). C'mon - can you hear Carly Simon singing Let ... the River Run??? If that doesn't ring a bell, try this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cv-0mmVnxPA ....
I thought this one was kind of fun too.
My guess is we (most likely) won't go back to the W ... not really my scene, and, next time, I may try the Marriott across the street.... But I'm definitely planning to go back to the One World Trade Center Observatory ... next time for sunset!
And, of course, I'm not the first to post this kind of stuff. For more views, see, for example: kharada46's post: https://insiders.marriott.com/people/kharada46/blog/2017/03/03/big-apple-day-5-world-trade-center-sites