There are fancy hotels out there that are kind to you because you pay for it. You get the impression that as soon as you turn your head, the staff is showing their real impression of you.
That certainly isn’t the case at the Marmara Park Avenue. Carlos may greet you at the door with a smile so genuine, you first feel suspicious. You quickly realize that the whole staff has an honestly relaxed demeanor. It's as if they have all just returned from a yoga class and it will take everything in you not to say, “Namaste.”
Your uniquely New York room awaits — Photo courtesy of Marmara Park Avenue
The lobby of the Marmara is grandiose, with giant iron doors taking you inside to a place where design is obviously key. It's an intriguing blend of Turkish décor with New York chicness and it works, especially in the Park Avenue neighborhood that it resides.
New York native and artist Joe Ginsberg designed original art for each of the 128 rooms. There's a rare amount of generous square footage in even the most basic guest rooms, although the hotel works hard to keep the word “basic” out of their vocabulary.
Long-term guests may appreciate a stay in one of the suites with fully equipped kitchens. Many rooms have balconies overlooking the Empire State Building, books that specifically highlight New York history and wallpaper that was inspired by the Third Avenue bridge. It's hard to forget where you are. It's the hotel representation of the song, “New York, New York.”
The sparkly bathroom is perfect for dousing yourself in their fancy bath products — Photo courtesy of Marmara Park Avenue
All rooms have a delightful assortment of bath and body products made from the New York beauty brand C.O. Bigelow. With fragrances like lavender and peppermint, toothbrushes and Marvis toothpaste, you'll be especially grateful if you're the type of person who chronically forgets travel toiletries.
From the hammam and pool to the elevators, Marmara Park Avenue does not smell like a new hotel. Rather than a musty newness, there is a pervading smell of lemongrass that makes a trip up to your suite seem delightful. We have never wanted to spend so much time in an elevator.
Turndown service makes the room into a organized space, with the addition of inviting slippers and corners of the bed folded down like origami. Rooms are remarkably dark and silent, a refuge in the heart of New York City.
Paltry New York square footage? Not in this hotel — Photo courtesy of Marmara Park Avenue
The continental breakfast includes organic yogurts, Keurig coffee and a fresh supply of pastries. The breakfast nook is modern with a hanging art instillation, and Turkish music lulling you into a slower state of being. You may find yourself devouring the newspaper section by section, as if savoring a fine box of chocolates.
VIP Parking is available and they will have your car ready for you in the front as soon as you need it. Carlos may wave to you from the front.
Come for the luxury. Stay for the people.