Taking a Chance on a New York Hotel

By: Loolwa Khazzoom, Founder, Dancing with Pain

July 24th, 2009 • Living with Chronic PainPrint Print

I broke my cardinal rule. I didn’t stay at the Marriott, or at another hotel I already knew was good, when I scheduled my trip to New York this past week. I used up all my Marriott rewards points for another trip, and the Marriott in New York is really fucking expensive.

So I checked out some discount hotel services and chose Hotwire. It promised that if I chose a 3.5 star hotel, I would get the likes of Crowne Plaza and other chains I was familiar with and knew would have decent beds, jacuzzis, and exercise rooms, all of which I needed. What’s more, Hotwire confirmed that the hotels would have those amenities (it didn’t mention the bed but did mention the others).

The thing about Hotwire is that it doesn’t disclose the hotel name until you’ve already booked the reservation. When I found out I was staying at the Hudson in midtown Manhattan, I looked up reviews on Yelp. And I freaked. It was supposedly the. worst. hotel. ever. Teeny tiny rooms, cantankerous staff, and nearly pitch-black reception area.

Well I ended up loving the hotel, and all but one of the staff was super friendly and helpful, accommodating my gagillion needs – feather-free room, refrigerator/freezer to hold my ice pack, high up in the hotel to avoid the noise from the bar, extra blankets.

Staying at the Hudson is basically like staying in a New York night club. Seems to me that the people giving it bad reviews just didn’t get New York, whereas I lived there for four years and have visited many times since. The only thing was that there was no Jacuzzi or hot tub, and the bed was crap. With my handy-dandy eggshell sleeping mat from REI, however, the bed was just fine.

I did have one long hell of a night freezing my ass off, because the heater was off for the summer; it was freezing cold outside; and although I was given four blankets, they were all flimsy. I finally asked them to bring me a feather comforter, however, wrapped in a duvet — to minimize my contact with the feathers, and while they didn’t get it right the first time, eventually they did; and I slept like a baby for two whole hours before waking up to hit the pavement.

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