Hilton Hotels 
IC Hotelgroup 
Hyatt Hotels 
Carlson Hotels 

Doubletree Metropolitan

The Doubletree Metropolitan is located at Lexington Avenue / 51st Street, only three blocks from Grand Central Station. Right at the corner is the entrance to the subway station Lexington Avenue / 53rd street and 51st Street; the E-trains from Jamaica (JFK) are stopping at Lexington Ave/53rd St, so JFK is reachable by public transportation in app. 45 to 60 minutes from the hotel, depending on the time of the day. From LGA one could take the M60 to Astoria and change into N/W trains to Queensboro Plaza and change there into the “7” to Grand Central and walk the three blocks. From ERW one should take Amtrak to Penn Station and connect to the E Train to Lexington Avenue.

Fifth Avenue and Central Park are in walkable distance and one could also reach the theatre district quite easy. For sightseeing in Downtown is a good spot, if you have business in the finance district, the location is sub-optimal.

The hotel is a twenty storey building built in the style of the sixties with smaller than usual windows, the front is curved and so the hotel is not looking like a “brick”. The entrance of the hotel is at Lexington Avenue, while the building is along 51st Street.
You enter the hotel from Lexington Avenue. The lobby is small; a few lounge chairs are available on the right side. They are mostly occupied by guests using the free Wi-Fi in the hotel lobby. On the left side is the concierge desk, followed by the check in desks. Four places area available to check in guest, one is a marked as HHonors desk. Behind the lobby is a corridor to the elevators. Along this corridor are the “Met Bar” and the Concierge desk and also, some stairs up, the meeting rooms and some stairs down some shops and the restaurant “Met Grill”.

The style of the interior is in the style of the sixties, though there are some modern decorations as well. However, the hotels public area looked partly a bit run down and there are several scratches along the wall.

The gym is located in the 3rd floor. It is big and the equipment though not state of the art, really new and in good shape. Towels and water are provided and during my visits there were at least two other guests doing some work out, though I was unable to take pictures.

The hotel has separate Hilton HHonors floors on the 16th to 18th floor, while on the both top floors are Penthouse room. The rooms located on these two floors seem to have balconies and are bigger than the rooms on the lower floors.

The Executive Lounge is located on the 17th floor and of smaller seize. The lounge is only open during morning and the breakfast selection is limited to bagels, packed fruits, coffee and tea, a small selection of pastries, cereals and marmalade / Jam / Peanut butter and some juice in small bottles. Members of the HHonors Guest Program got a voucher for the breakfast in the lounge. So it’s free, but I have had better selections. The American Breakfast Buffet served in the “Met Grill” is definitively better, but one has to pay for it. And if you only need a quick and fast breakfast the selection of the lounge is okay. Coffee is also available for take away. Lounge staff is not very attentive, tables of those guests, who did not put their used plates to the designated area were not cleared by staff.

The service in the “Met Bar” is attentive and the prices are though a bit higher than outside of hotels are reasonable.

Although the hotel clearly shows its age, I like the style and interior. It not the usual hotel style, it has some chic and is a nice contrast to the usual hotel interior.

stays 30 March 2008

visited on Family Business in NYC

Arrival Date: 30 March 2008
Departure Date: 31 March 2008
Room type booked: Queen Bed Non-smoking
Rate Plan: Net direct rates
Room Number: 1625
Room Rate: 151.20 USD (excl. taxes)

Status of Guest Program: Gold

I checked in around noon and was told I was upgraded to Executive Floor due to my HHonors Gold Status. They looked if there was a room available at this time and found one for me. Check in took a bit longer, due to the search of an available room, but that was okay for me, since this means I was able to store my belongings and relax a few minutes. The room key along with the voucher for the breakfast in the lounge and the usual cookie were given to me and the way to my room was explained. However, no explanation of the location of gym and restaurant were given. I was addressed by name. Overall this was a good first impression and definitively better than at the IC Barclay I have stayed the two nights before.

The room was facing the back of the hotel with a nice view to the Chrysler Building. At this point and as a side note, there is a fire station at 51st Street facing the rooms with the higher even numbers. If you prefer a more quiet room, go for the rooms with the odd numbers.

After one had entered the rooms one is standing right in the room. The room has not the usual small corridor like so many hotel rooms. The entrance to the bathroom is on the right side with a small closet right at the door. Room safe, iron and ironing board are placed in the closet.

The bathroom is of medium size. It has a bath, toilet and sunk and is not really in good shape. The wall had several scratches and the wall paper was loose at some places and the paint on the ceiling was missing on some places. Shower head and curtain were okay, but I have had better ones in the past. The bathroom was in an urgent need for a renovation. Towels were provided for two persons and bathroom amenities by Neutrogena were available.
(The hotel was undergoing renovation during this stay and rooms on the third floor seem to be renovated)

The room consisted of a queen bed along with two bedside tables on the right side. The bed was okay and I slept surprisingly well. On the bedside tables were two reading lamps, the Hilton signature alarm clock and a phone. Opposite the bed were the minibar, the desk with a mirror and the LCD flat screen TV. Another lamp and a chaise longue were in front of the window.
Like the bathroom, the room had several scratches at the wall and in the carpet. Also the lamps were partly damaged, but all worked properly. Overall, the room was in better condition than the bathroom, but also in the strong need of a renovation. The style was the style of the sixties, which was a nice change from the usual hotel room furniture. The light brown furniture was nice, though one could see some damages, too. The flat TV set a modern accent in the room. The room was clean and everything was working (despite the alarm clock still in winter time)

I have a mixed impression. The room was in the need of a renovation, but I like the style of the room very much. I hope that the hotel does not change the style of the rooms during renovation. The rates are okay for Manhattan and especially during the weekend the rates are often very low and so this hotel could be a bargain. Status recognition is okay, however I have heard different things in the past. The lounge on the other hand is small and the breakfast selection rather limited, but as it is free for HHonors Gold and Diamond, one should not complain too much, but I would not want to pay for it.

I will stay there again, if the rates are okay.