Intercontinental Barclay New York Review

Through Hotwire booking, I stayed by chance at the Intercontinental Barclay in New York City.  Given the Intercontinental brand name and its association with quality, I had certain expectations for this hotel.  Note that there’re actually two Intercontinental chain locations in New York City:  Intercontinental Times Square (the nicer and more expensive one) and the Intercontinental Barclay (the subject of today’s review).

The hotel was built in 1926 of a neo-Federal style, so it has an older traditional charm.  Free wi-fi was available for guests in the lobby.

Location

The Intercontinental Barclay is located at point A

The Intercontinental Barclay is conveniently located right in the middle of the city at 111 East 48th Street, just steps away from the nearest subway station (51st Station) at 51st Street and Lexington Avenue.  The station is on the Lexington subway line, which runs North South, so it was relatively easy to get from one end of the city to the other.

The hotel is also walking distance to numerous attractions:

  • Rockefeller Centre (10 minutes)
  • Barney’s New York, Saks on 5th Avenue, Sephora (10 minutes)
  • Magnolia Bakery – famed cupcakes from Sex in the City (11 minutes)
  • Moma (12 minutes)
  • Times Square (15 minutes)

Note that that the area around the hotel is pretty quiet at night as there’s a ton of office buildings in the area, so on one hand you can get good quality sleep, but if you’re looking for happening nightlife, you may need to cab elsewhere to find it!

Rooms

A view of our room... it is huge!

Given the expensive real estate prices in the city, our hotel room was pretty good size for what we paid for.  The older hotel probably played a factor too.  Our room wasn’t the most modern, but it felt nice and it matched the style and décor of the rest of the hotel.  It could use some upgrades like LCD TVs (vs. the black boxes) complimentary in-room wi-fi, and more modernized bathrooms, but they aren’t deal breakers.  There’s so much to do in the city, and it was honestly a nice place to crash after a long day out.  Most importantly, my room was clean!

A view from the other side

Service

The service was excellent from the front desk to the cleaning staff.  One example that really stood out was when we were locked out of our safe on our last night in the city.  In our panic, we called hotel management and though we didn’t need our belongings right away, someone was sent to our room within 5 minutes to crack the code and open the safe, free of charge!

The front lobby

Value

At $170/night on average, it’s a pretty competitive for a 4* hotel in the middle of Manhattan.  For its quality service, excellent location, and clean and decent sized rooms, I’d definitely consider staying here again.

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