The vibe: High-class pampering in an emerging neighborhood
Location: 25 W 28th St, New York City | View on Google Maps
Book now: Website
The AFAR take
This 50-story hotel—the second Ritz-Carlton in New York City after the Ritz-Carlton New York, Central Park—is urban luxury at its finest. The Ritz-Carlton New York, NoMad, which opened in July 2022, is situated in the up-and-coming NoMad neighborhood (so named for its location north of Madison Square Park), once the city’s flower district. As a nod to that past, the NoMad reflects nature from the moment you are ushered into the building by black-suited doormen. First, you step into a chamber filled with lush palms and fig trees, and then into the vast lobby, which offers a peek into the equally plant-filled lobby area. They set the tone for this hotel, which has raised the bar on luxury hospitality in NoMad for both New Yorkers and visitors, with its three restaurants and bars—including a dazzling rooftop locale—and its sleek guest rooms with some of the best views in the city.
Who’s it for?
The hotel is well-suited for business travelers who need proximity to Midtown. They’ll appreciate the newspaper delivery, complimentary garment pressing, and the option to book one of the rooms on floors 33 through 37, which come with access to the Ritz-Carlton Club Lounge and its round-the-clock food and work space. Leisure travelers will appreciate access to such nearby attractions as the Empire State Building and Madison Square Park, and find plenty to do within the hotel itself, from the energetic rooftop bar scene to pampering at the enormous spa. Families can easily settle in, too—the hotel offers 31 adjoining suites. Pet owners can bring a maximum of two pets—which must, combined, weigh less than 60 pounds. The hotel charges a $250 pet fee, and requires that pets be on leash (or cuddled in your arms) while in the common areas.
Even if you were to somehow miss the plants in the lobby antechamber, there’s no chance of missing the NoMad’s tie to the one-time flower district: In the lobby, an overflowing flower cart rotates monthly (when I visited in March, lilies were on display).
Times Square is a 15-minute walk away, and some of New York City’s most exciting pockets, including the museums and galleries of the Chelsea neighborhood and the restaurants and bars of Flatiron, are within easy walking or cabbing distance.
Runners and walkers, no need to use the treadmill here: In the lobby, on the flower cart, you’ll find QR codes for various guided neighborhood paths, and towels and water for post-activity hydration.
Make sure to book an evening at the rooftop Nubeluz . . . . In Spanish, “nube” means “cloud” and “luz” means “light,” and indeed, it delivers on both.
The 219 guest rooms and 31 suites are on floors 14 through 37; 16 one and two–bedroom penthouse residences vary in size from 950 to 1,850 square feet and include kitchens, screening rooms, and wellness rooms outfitted with Peloton bikes and mats. Residences—which guests can also book—are on floors 40 through 43. All guest rooms begin on the 14th floor, which translates into stellar Manhattan views (I spent my evenings gazing out over the twinkling lights of the city from my 37th-floor room).
The design— by Susurrus International—aspires to appeal to a modern traveler in search of unfussy design and a residential, home-away-from-home feel. A neutral palette of soothing browns on the rugs and curtains reflects the nature found in nearby Madison Square Park. Brass chandeliers evoke flowers petals, and carefully selected floral art hangs on the walls. The bathrooms are large and clad in terrazo marble; many have deep soaking tubs.
Book one of the Club Lounge rooms that occupy floors 33 to 37, and the amenities grow richer. On floor 36, the Ritz-Carlton Club Lounge is open to all Club Level guests. In a bright space with views of the city, travelers can work and eat delicious bites, from baked eggs in the morning to elaborate chocolate cakes in the evening. The José Andrés Group oversees five meal and snack services each day, including and hors d’oeuvres and cocktail hour from 5 to 8 p.m. and a dessert and cordials hour from 8 to 10 p.m. Club Level rooms also include two garments pressed daily.
The food and drink
The José Andrés Group helms the hotel’s four restaurants and bars, including the ground-level restaurant, Zaytinya, a mezzo-style place with a bright, showstopping bar that draws on Greek, Lebanese, and Turkish influences (and an offshot of Andrés’s D.C. restaurant). The highlights of my dinner included a noteworthy hummus (how can something so simple be so good?) and za’atar pide, a flatbread topped with the namesake spice, kasar cheese, and a gently poached egg.
The Lobby Bar is ideal for a glass of afternoon Champagne or an evening cocktail. It also offers breakfast bites, such as chia and coconut pudding, and that classic New York City staple of bagels and lox. A curved staircase leads to the soon-to-open Bazaar restaurant—another of Andrés’ flagships, with outposts in Vegas and Miami—which plays to his Spanish roots. Designed by Spain’s Lázaro Rosa-Violán Studio (known for designing some of Europe’s top hotels, including the Maison Delano in Paris and the Barcelona Edition), the restaurant is decorated in rust hues and indigo, with touches of gold, and accented with sketches of sailing vessels and curvy, sea-creature-like chandeliers.
Make sure to book an evening at the rooftop Nubeluz (reservations are required; guests get priority booking and can often secure last-minute reservations). In Spanish, “nube” means “cloud” and “luz” means “light,” and indeed, it delivers on both. Done up in a rich teal and rose palette, with a bar and wall accents made out of onyx with LED lighting panels and 270 degree views of the city, it’s a stop-you-in-your-tracks setting, especially at sunset. Try a Floral Cloud (gin, lemon, maraschino, crème de violette, topped with aromatic hibiscus, orange blossom, and rose) or a spirit-free Emerald Coin (Seedlip’s citrusy Grove “spirit,” honeydew, lemongrass, lime, and celery). Pair your libations with a wickedly good labneh topped with salmon roe, za’atar, herbs, and housemade potato chips for scooping.
Staff and service
As is the Ritz-Carlton way, there is a team of fully resourced, helpful staff on hand from the moment you walk in. My first morning at the hotel, the concierge helpfully walked me through the local runs and how to use the QR code to find the perfect one for me. Guests staying at the Club Level have a dedicated staff at the Club Lounge.
Rooms here are designed with both mobility and hearing in mind. The hotel’s ADA rooms feature visual alarms, visual notification devices for doorbells, closed captioning on televisions. TTY is also available upon request.
When the pace of the city gets overwhelming, the 6,800-square-foot spa is a worthy cocoon. As you walk in, you’re greeted by a soothing setting of Cipollino Ondulato floors—a type of swirled green-and-white Tuscan marble that looks like the sea—back-lit wood shelves filled with elegant products, and greenery in the form of cut flowers and plants that spill down the shelves. Located right next to the spa is the fitness center, equipped with Peloton bikes, kettle bells, and yoga blocks.
If you’ve booked a spa treatment, try to get there early to take advantage of the luxurious steam room, sauna, and lounge area. I opted for the Celebrate Me treatment, which included 15 minutes in a Wellness Pod (picture a cabana outfitted with a Calm-like app screen featuring meditations and breathing exercises) a rose-quartz massage, and the best facial I’ve ever had (courtesy of Natalia). The spa also offers CBD-oil massages and a traveler-specific package intended to ease jet lag through a combo of aromatherapy massage and hydrating facial.