New York's literary legends live on in this bastion of time honored-classicism.
This hotel is inextricably linked to the famous (and, at times, infamous) Round Table antics of the "Vicious Circle" writers, including Dorothy Parker, Robert Benchley and Alexander Woolcott. Starting in 1919, the group spent a decade's worth of daily gatherings swapping bon mots in the Rose Room here. Their lunches guaranteed the hotel a place in the imaginations of generations of writers to come. Creative types --- and travelers, business execs or anybody else who likes a good clubby atmosphere that feels more jazz age than jet age --- love to relax on the many couches in the hotel's lobby bar with a finely mixed Manhattan (or other back-in-time cocktail). This midtown hotel features Arts and Crafts-era textiles, carpets and wall coverings. A $3 million renovation gave the property a modern boost without doing a whiff of damage to the historic character. The refurbishment included guest rooms and one-bedroom suites featuring king beds and separate living rooms with convertible queen sofas. Several suites are also adaptable to become two- or three-bedroom suites for guests in need of larger adjoining accommodations. Of note is the seventh-floor Simon & Schuster Suite featuring memorabilia from the venerable publishing house. The refurbishment extended to the stunning public spaces, as well, including the Oak Room cabaret (still one of the city's best, having launched the likes of Harry Connick Jr.), Round Table Room and lobby, which is equipped with wireless Internet access. And not to worry, lit fans: the hotel kept the Robert Mankoff-designed "New Yorker" wallpaper that lines the corridors. All guest rooms have complimentary Internet, large work stations and designer window treatments and bedding, and most also have flat-screen TVs. Insider services include delivery of the "New Yorker," which was conceived in the hotel by Harold Ross in 1924.