A style trailblazer with a hip clientele.
This hotel, which opened originally in the early 1980s, received a serious style boost in 2008 when owner Ian Schrager --- he of The Royalton and Miami’s Delano --- re-enlisted the original designer, Andrée Putman, to freshen up the rooms and public spaces. What happened was the equivalent of a complete fashion makeover. The effect is eclectic and dynamic but not over the top. Putnam went to town with shades of taupe, camel and ivory and such nontraditional hotel fabrics like corduroy, silk and suede. The lobby doubles as a lounge and is furnished with antique French leather club chairs culled from Paris flea markets. Typical of most contemporary boutiques, the 113 rooms are smallish --- the idea being that you’ll spend the bulk of your time in swanky bars and restaurants. But the compact spaces still manage to make room for suede window seats, club chairs and ottomans. Photographs on the walls were commissioned from the late Robert Mapplethorpe. Stainless steel bathroom sinks are set against muted accents, from Japanese tile to glass mosaics from Venezia. Standard amenities include flat-screen HDTV and complimentary continental breakfast.