Each new New York City hotel is anticipated with unbridled enthusiasm by locals since there are only so many times you can go to stuffy iconic establishments without getting bored. The Nolitan on Kenmare and Elizabeth is no exception. Frequent delays—think more than a year—didn’t damper my enthusiasm for its eventual opening this summer. Since August 1, the kitschy yet funky hotel has greeted guests with sterling service and great amenities.
Enter through the blue doors and you’re greeted by a small lobby area with a golden tufted leather couch, books and hardwood floors. The small reception desk fits in perfectly with the boutique property. At only 55 rooms, The Nolitan towers over other buildings in the area but remains cozy and intimate. Employees are attired in J. Crew and Banana Republic designs—there’s not a suit and tie in sight—giving an overall casual and friendly vibe. Ellabess, the hotel’s onsite restaurant, features continental cuisine with Asian touches (we loved the roasted lamb sirloin with black cardamom and baby fennel). The rooftop is a welcome addition to the already burgeoning bars-with-altitude scene, offering 2,400-square-feet of space overlooking Manhattan and Brooklyn.
Rooms are small but the floor-to-ceiling windows and balconies make up for the lack of space. Guests can choose from Neighborhood or Cityscape rooms, with either room offering vistas of the busy environs. The king or queen sized beds are comfortable enough to sink into and after a day shopping nearby, you’ll be glad for the luxury. The oak floors and Corian bathrooms with rainforest showers offer quite a bit of luxury in such a compact space. Toilets are in a separate room near the closet. The only drawback is you have to wash your hands at the basin near the shower. Envelope yourself in a plush robe and take home the signature bright red slippers. They’re the chicest and most comfortable pair we’ve come across at any city hotel.
Unlike other city hotels, the Nolitan offers a standard 2 p.m. checkout. Great for anyone who wants to sleep in after a night on the town. Wifi is complimentary as is a Equinox guest pass, local calls, New York Times and on-site bicycles and skateboards. Guests also receive discounts to local business such as Sigerson Morrison, Calypso and John Varvatos.