As you walk through the atmospheric streets of the Upper East Side of Manhattan, you could easily miss New York City’s number one hotel. It’s entrance isn’t grand or demanding attention from all corners. Quite the opposite, actually. The Lowell is tucked amongst some of the wealthiest homes in the city, just off Central Park, with an entrance that could easily be mistaken for a stack of luxury apartments with a beautifully dressed doorman.
Rising 17 floors from the pavement, the hotel is made up of only 74 rooms. Read that to mean that each room is palatial, for New York City sizes, right from the entry level rate. And when guests come to stay, and they do again and again, they have their favourite rooms and request them each and every time. It’s easy to see why repeat visits are absolutely normal and expected. Although this was my first stay in the hotel, every member of staff remembered my name and greeted me when seeing me out and about in any area of the hotel. Common areas felt intimate and almost speak-easy like. There are dark corners everywhere begging you to tuck in for an afternoon and forget the hustle and bustle of the city outside. But, let us not forget the beautiful and bright outdoor spaces that capture the magic of the city in a way only The Lowell could do. From shared patios for drink service, to private balconies on select suites, The Lowell allows you to choose whether you’d like to worship the beautiful skyline or slink away from the city entirely.
For us, the room was our absolute escape and one which made us feel as if we were escaping to another era entirely. It’s easy to feel like you are a descendant of a great American family while in residence here. A Rockefeller for the weekend, perhaps? I kept imagining a sneaky retreat from the family compound for a bit of peace and quiet with a long lounging bath in a bathroom so loaded with marble you wonder how the building holds the weight of it all. A fully loaded fridge and 24 room service on demand make it easy to think there’s no need to leave the room at all. But leave the room we did, eventually. And the first time was to visit Majorelle, the hotel’s esteemed restaurant, which was reopening on that night.
Think French classics with a Mediterranean twist at Majorelle. From seared Foie Gras to fluffy souffles, this was definitely a highlight and a must go for anyone visiting New York City, if you are seeking out a truly special culinary experience. The staff are attentive, almost anticipating every demand before we could imagine it. The food was swiftly served and explained with such poetry we weren’t sure if we were dining or attending a “food lovers anonymous” meeting. It was truly beautiful and all considered with such care for every moment and every mouthful. One tip, however. If you fancy sitting outside in the majestic terrace, book those seats early! I looked on with great adoration for a seat in the sun. But, with the first course served, I forgot all about where we were sitting and instead concentrated on the firework display taking place on my tongue.
While The Lowell might not be easy to spot, just off the street, it’s easy enough to see very clearly why this is New York’s most treasured, beloved and number one ranked hotel. I will be back. These Upper East Side adventures most continue and I can’t imagine calling anywhere else home.
28 East 63rd Street
New York, New York
Note: Fashion Foie Gras was a guest of The Lowell for two nights.