The city that never sleeps may not be the first destination that springs to mind when planning a family getaway, but with its galleries, shopping strips, theatres and parks, multi-tasking New York ticks myriad multi-gen boxes. Boutique travel experts Mr & Mrs Smith have done the legwork for you, turning up three sleek hotels that welcome kids, and are offering unbeatable deals for sussed summer stays.
Style Beaux Arts beauty
Setting Upper East Side
Located near the fabled and fawned over Fifth Avenue, The Surrey hotel has glamour and grace in spades, making it a must for Manhattan’s movers and shakers. This Upper East Side darling is also surprisingly child-friendly, and with spacious suites, babysitting, a welcoming restaurant and a soothing spa, it offers the perfect blend of ‘me’ time and ‘we’ time.
Sleeping The Ultra Deluxe Suites have kitchenettes with microwaves, fridges, hobs and sinks. There’s space for cots, which are provided free of charge, and day-beds for US$40 a night. Plus, there’s a sumptuous soaking tub that has your name written all over it…
Activities New York’s magnificent ‘Museum Mile’, lining Fifth Avenue, is on your doorstep, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Guggenheim. Give the smalls a shot of culture, and then explore New York’s laid-back pleasures – ball games, malls, restaurants, performances and nearby Central Park, which boasts a zoo and the Wollman Rink for ice-skating in winter. Across the park, the American Museum of Natural History should also prove a hit with the kids.
Feasting The restaurant menu at the hotel’s acclaimed Café Boulud is sure to please the fussiest of eaters – who could pass up Belgian waffles for breakfast and roast chicken with spring peas for dinner?
Why now? Book through Smith for stays until 3 September and you’ll receive free breakfast, plus 20 per cent off selected spa treatments.
The James New York
Style Skyscraping scenester
Setting Southwest SoHo
The James New York may lure the style set to its rooftop pool and party-ready bar, but it also draws families with a host of fun extras, such as Paul Frank pyjamas for kids, bikes to borrow and free trips around town in the hotel’s Lexus Hybrid.
Sleeping The Corner King Studio and the Queen Guestroom can be interconnected for families and rollaway beds can be added to all room categories (except King and Queen Guestrooms) for US$40. Neutral furnishings keep it soothing without being a snoozer.
Activities Kids are welcome at the rooftop plunge pool, which has lifeguards, and is most family-friendly midweek. It’s more of a bar scene on the weekends, so set out for a sunset walk over the Brooklyn Bridge to queue up for pizza at Grimaldi’s instead. Young artists will be inspired at the Children’s Museum of the Arts hands-on classes and exhibitions, at 182 Lafayette Street, less than a 10-minute walk from the hotel.
Feasting Although there isn’t a set children’s menu at rustic-chic restaurant David Burke Kitchen, the staff are happy to make simple pastas, pizza and mac-n-cheese for little guests; they’ll also heat prepared items for you, and the mini fridge in your room can be emptied to store milk and food.
Why now? The James offers a host of sweet seasonal deals – book a summer stay through Smith and you could save up to 20 per cent.
Style Mad Men modern
Setting Tailored triangle below Canal
The stylish scene may be more Mad Men-chic than laid-back family lodge, but Smyth Tribeca courts all ages with interconnecting rooms, babysitting on request, and the shops, galleries and snap-worthy landmarks of trendy Tribeca on its doorstep.
Sleeping We love the airy corner rooms as they share a corridor, ideal if you want to stretch out and have older kids bunk down in the neighbouring room. Both have ample space, modern, polished chrome lighting fixtures, comfy couches and stunning views of the cityscape. Baby cots can be added for free.
Activities From this privileged patch in Tribeca between the Financial District, SoHo and the West Village, trundle to the Brooklyn Bridge or visit the 92nd St Y arts and entertainment complex for a cutting-edge culture hit.
Feasting Cosy brasserie Plein Sud Restaurant offers French-leaning breakfast, lunch, dinner and brunch on the weekends. Kid-friendly tastes from Top Chef’s Ed Cotton include club sandwiches, croque monsieur and buttermilk pancakes.
Why now? Smyth Tribeca has a stack of Smith-approved offers, including 15 per cent off weekend stays.
To book a child-friendly Smith stay visit www.mrandmrssmith.com or call the expert Travel Team on 800 905 326. What’s more, BlackSmith membership is now free for life, so book through Smith to receive life-enhancing extras and exclusive offers at more than 900 hotels and holiday houses around the world.