There are two types of travellers: the tourist and the inhabitor. The tourist is everything that one would suspect them to be: a keen out-of-towner armed with camera, map, itinerary, and of course their trusty guide book — whether it is a Lonely Planet or Forbes depends on age, income, and social-sub group. The inhabitor, on the other hand, belongs to a sect that shuns traditional “vacations” as they were; for them, a weekend getaway to the Big Apple is as novel as a wander about an undiscovered area of their city. “Their” being the operative word. For the inhabitor, it’s all about stumbling upon local haunts and hanging with regulars — the dream is to be stopped and asked for directions by a tourist.
Whether you be a tourist or a inhabitor, the 414 Hotel is a gateway to your New York.
If your goal for New York is to surrender to the magnetic pull of the city’s prerequisites — Central Park, Broadway, Empire State Building, Carnegie Hall, Rockefeller Centre — then get your pencil out because this hotel’s prime location in Hell’s Kitchen is just the spot to begin crossing off items on your attractions list. Added bonus: not having to mortgage your home afterwards.
An ideal home base for the most overzealous of New York tourists, 414 Hotel’s reasonable rates makes this an incomparable place to lay your head.
Even more impressive than its proximity to Times Square is the surrounding Hell’s Kitchen sights. Having retained an appealing hint of the grittiness from its past (it was once a notorious Irish slum), the neighbourhood has been more or less gentrified, rendering it a safe but authentic-feeling escape from Midtown’s glitz and glam.
Speckled with galleries, the area is a must-visit for those on the hunt for a culture-fix. Take a peek into Hosfelt Gallery, a 7500-square-foot venue known for highlighting emerging artists. If controversial social and political issues are more your thing, pop by Exit Art. Or check out both, and while you’re at it add Heskin Contemporary to the gallery crawl, which is more classical in terms of its collection. And those are just the bigger, better-known establishments in an area teeming with artistry. Inhabitors rejoice.
On a less contemplative level, but arguably equally enjoyable, the neighbourhood is also home to innumerable bars. There’s the Pony Bar, literally right around the corner from 414 Hotel, which serves up a wide selection of micro-brewed American beers, while Rudy’s Bar and Grill has all the fixings (or more lack thereof) to satisfy the hipster and experienced boozer alike, i.e. cheap pints and an authentic dive bar aesthetic. On the other end of the spectrum, ladies and dandies will delight in indulging in a glass or two at The Hudson Hotel Library — a local and tourist favourite.
Despite the multitude of bars and galleries, though, the neighbourhood’s crowning characteristic might be its entertainment venues. From noteworthy off-Broadway theatres to the legendary and eternally cool Birdland Jazz Club, to drinks, jokes, and music at Don’t Tell Mama cabaret to Medicine Show Theatre‘s provocative, philosophically-driven performances, even if you stayed the whole of your stay in 414’s neighbourhood you’d be hard pressed not to spend each night at a different venue, immersed in a different vibe.
414 Hotel straddles the boundary between over-done New York and at-home New York — the little big neighbourhood known and loved by New Yorkers the world around.
414 West 46th Street
New York, NY