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Travel May, 26 2011

The Views from the Mondrian SOHO Hotel in N.Y.C.

There are certain advantages to staying in a hotel located in New York City’s SOHO district. Outside of the location itself, which puts the guest in the center of one of the stronger shopping experiences in the city,  SOHO hotel like the new Mondrian SOHO, guarantee some unique views of the city, not often seen from midtown or uptown hotels (see photo above from the 19 floor if you don’t believe us).

The new Mondrian SOHO, part of the Morgans Hotel Group,  provides guests with a unique hotel experience inspired by Jean Cocteau’s film, “La Bell et la Bete.” Designer, Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz used the film and theme to design a hotel experience that floats in and out of a modern “fantasy” of  blue;  a color that not only offers a calming  feeling but also one that welcomes you. I never expected a color to do so.

For those that prefer a more neighborhood-friendly hotel experience just shy of all the action, the Mondrian SOHO may be the choice for you. Mr. Noriega-Ortiz gave us a walking tour through the new Mondrian SOHO. Here’s out look.

Photography: Selectism.com

More looks after the click.

The front (and best) entrance into the Mondrian SOHO comes from Crosby Street. Through overgrown archways that retain the metal and graffiti present in the neighborhood today, the Mondrian SOHO invites visitors into their lobby and lounge. With the theme of “La Bell et la Bete” in your head, you will note the ever present “blue” throughout the hotel as well as small details that blend both a modern mix with classic accents present in the film. Look to the ceiling for details and note the glass wall behind the staircase.

Off the ground floors, their premiere dining experience, Imperial No. Nine, opens into an extended sunroom that features a large center table adorned with glass works by Beth Lipman that recall a fairy tale dinner. More of a “centerpiece” for the whole room, the Lipman installation offers visitors exploration. Be sure to walk up the table and look for the “hidden.” This sun room alone is well worth a stop in for lunch or dinner. Chandeliers and the “open” ceiling provide guests with pleasant views and natural light.

We should add that the breakfast options at Imperial No. Nine should not be skipped. A banana bread infused french toast may have been the best dishes I have sampled in some time. Period.

While the food at Imperial No. Nine is impressive, my time inside a hotel is usually spent in the room. This is where the Mondrian SOHO really shines for me. As mentioned, the views are about as good as they get for a hotel stay in SOHO. Like Andre Balaz’s The Standard Hotel in the Meatpacking District, the Mondrian offers floor to ceiling windows on as many sides of a room as they can accommodate; including the shower if you are lucky enough. The view and windows bring swelling natural light into your room as well as “opening” up the space itself. The blue on the carpeting, walls, and toile pattern found on the furniture and pillows keeps with the “La Bell et la Bete” theme.

My room provided a full stand up shower and bath with Malin + Goetz bath products which should be familiar to anyone staying in a Morgans Hotel Group property. Nothing is worse than forgetting your toiletries and being left with terrible generics. None of that at the Mondrian SOHO.

Bed-wise,  I had my best solid eight hours in a long time. The more than adequate 300-count sheets and the down comforter helped. For those that do not appreciate the sunshine at 7am,  I recommend pulling the blackout blinds closed.

Besides each bed, guests will discover not only an iPhone/iPd charging station and stereo, but also a Mondrian SOHO iPad that provides you with easy to order room service at a touch of the finger. As you can see from the photo below ( borrowed from our friends at Tasteologie), the interface is easy enough. No need to dig through paperwork on the desk. Everything is found inside the room’s personal iPad. Browse the web if you like as well. iPads will become as commonplace in other hotels in the future as HDTV’s have. The Mondrian SOHO remains a step ahead with their thinking.

^^ more French Toast options!

But back to the views. Clearly the Mondrian SOHO shines when it comes to accomidations, food, and even the ease of service through their in-room iPads, but if nothing else, the “looks” through the room’s windows speak for themselves.  This is living.

The 270 room Mondrian SOHO is located on Crosby Street in New York’s SOHO district. Those looking for a quick stay in SOHO will be hard pressed to find a more central location to stay in. Take in SOHO at your pace and return back to the Mondrian for a rest as you need.

And if you need nightlife, you do not need to travel far. Visit Mister H, a small speakeasy-like room connected to the Mondrian SOHO that brings its own unique theme to your stay experience.

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