Weekend At The Carlyle: A Variation on the Staycation

(my room 805)

Sometimes you just need to get away, especially when you are pounded by the worst winter in resent history.  Fortunately, when you don’t have the time to jet off to Palm Springs or Dubai you can still find a fix of luxury, locally.  It’s always nice to stay at home for a traditional staycation, but why not boost the relaxation by checking into a nearby hotel.  A short-hop weekend jaunt can give you all the rejuvenation of a vacation while limiting the stress and cost of winter travel.  I recently fled the snow-ravaged streets of NYC by staying high and dry at the Carlyle hotel.

The Carlyle is a NYC landmark, originating in 1930 as a residential hotel.  It is one of the few old-school New York institutions dedicated to retaining a refined period elegance while maintaining a fresh veneer.  Thankfully, the Carlyle has stood strong against the current trend of mid-century modern remodels.  The Art Deco interiors remain relatively the same since its heyday when John F. Kennedy owned an apartment on the 34th floor.  It was in this apartment the secret service orchestrated a clandestine rendezvous between the newly inaugurated president and Marilyn Monroe.  The blond bombshell was famously sneaked in the service entrance on 77th after her “Happy Birthday Mr. President” performance.  The Hotel has played host to every president since Harry S. Truman in 1948, one can speculate on which of these great men required the use of the service entrance.

I arrived at 1pm on Saturday.  The lobby is an Art Deco black and white marble masterpiece.

I requested an early check-in, so my room was ready even though check-in is normally 3pm.

I’m a shower man, but my female companion loved the bathtub.  The black and white marble echoes the hotel’s lobby and reinforces the Art Deco feel.

Kiehl’s toiletries in the bathroom, it’s what I use at home.

My Ghurka Steward I is the perfect one-suit packing case, it holds everything you need for a weekend getaway.  Room 805 had a large walk-in closet, I wish my apartment closet was as big.

I like to bring a candle in my bag.  This Diptyque Feu de Bois smells like firewood, it’s what I burn at home in the winter and gives the room a cozy feel.

There is nothing like the New York City skyline at night.

I love getting dressed up for cocktails at Bemelmans Bar, it has a very old New York feel and live music every night.  Across the hall in the Café Carlyle you can see Woody Allen play clarinet every Monday night.

Nothing says “vacation” like room service.  My morning coffee arrives promptly at 8:45am.

The New York Times comes every morning, the Sunday edition in bed.  What will we do in five years when they stop printing?

12pm means it’s time to checkout and return to our normal lives.  Goodbye room 805, hope to see you again soon.

Whether you live in New York or travel from far away the Carlyle is a destination unto itself.  It’s a hotel where a single night can feel like a week and everything feels like an event.  Much of travel has been drained of luxury, so when you can get a good dose of lavish leisure take it…and enjoy.



Categories: Travel

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