In a city known for its theatrics, CIVILIAN is a new character to add to the hotel story of the Big Apple. So, bring your support act, embrace the setting and join in the theatre that is a stay at CIVILIAN.
Traveller: Caroline Smith
Address: 305 West 48th Street, New York, NY
Date: June 2022
Price range: from $325
Best for: Visitors to Manhattan looking for the whole Broadway experience
Location, location, location…
In New York City, show business is synonymous with Broadway in Midtown Manhattan, with most visitors taking in at least one Broadway show. Staying at CIVILIAN, on the edge of the Theatre District in Hell’s Kitchen, offers all this excitement on your doorstep.
The opening act
An understated awning set with marquee lighting and theatre-style signage is the only giveaway you have arrived at CIVILIAN. No grand entry, no sweeping driveway; it’s blink, and you’ll miss its entrance. Once inside the double doors, you are welcomed into a dimly-lit respite from the hectic New York streets. It has the air of an exclusive, theatre-themed club that is found throughout its 27 floors. An electronic contactless self-check-in kiosk system is smoothly efficient.
Clever use of space is essential in a Manhattan hotel, and CIVILIAN succeeds in its guest rooms. Our Spacious Room with twin double beds is chic and sophisticated. Dramatic matt navy and white walls with unmistakable references to a theatre dressing-room are its theme. Think heavy, gold-tasselled drapes framing the bed, brass-rimmed lighting, and stylised vintage prints of glamorous Broadway performers from the past. Jim Thompson’s non-allergic pillows and Okeo-Tex certified Egyptian satin and cotton sheets add a luxe style touch.
The bathroom is compact and functional; white-tiled with brass fittings and a power shower. A bedside safe, hairdryer and hand-held garment steamer is provided as standard, along with fast WiFi. A luggage-trolley style hanging rail and under-bed storage is practical for stowing clothes and luggage.
Public Goods organic bath products supplied in large pump dispenser bottles are sustainable, wholesome and flavoured with fresh grapefruit, juicy mandarin, and Mediterranean herbs.
Beyond the room
In the absence of a lobby, the lounge on the second floor, with a charming adjoining garden courtyard, doubles as a workspace or simply a place to relax with a classic cocktail in hand. It’s a testament to the renowned architect David Rothwell’s theatre design background offering an intimate backstage charm. Or head to the ground-floor Rosevale Kitchen and Cocktail Room for a pre-or post-performance bite that serves up substantial Manhattan-style dinner from a classic American menu.
At the top of the bill is Starchild, the hotel’s roof-top cocktail bar housed over two terraces that is slated to opened this autumn. Take in the sunset over the Hudson River and soak up the atmosphere, and one or two craft cocktails, drinking in the real-life theatrical backdrop of New York City.
Within a short walk, you can find…
The buzz of Times Square’s high-rise, hypnotic billboards, while Penn Station and the new Hudson Yards precinct are both an easy walk.
Framing the mesmerising views of the Hudson River across the New York City skyline, expansive windows feature a wide windowsill that doubles as a seat to contemplate the city flooding the room with light.
The roof-top bar will provide the perfect dining and drinking options, plus stunning views of Manhattan, without leaving the hotel.
The helpful check-in staff, Franc and Michael, are happy to provide generous local tips on where to dine pre-show. Try Dolly Varden, with its streetcar-style diner feel that continues the theatre theme. For cocktail hour, Dutch Fred’s is a buzzing bar in Midtown decorated in a prohibition style that’s open until 2am. If feeling peckish, order a plate of their truffle fries which are out of this world.
I wish I could take it home…
One of the fine-detailed models of historic theatres and current productions on display, along with over 350 pieces of Broadway memorabilia, curated by the hotel’s architect David Rockwell.
A social hour each afternoon offers guests a glass of complimentary wine or champagne. Plus, download the CIVILIAN app to customise your needs and act as your personal butler during your stay.
V&T expert rating
9 out of 10 – Start spreading the news… this new hotel in Hell’s Kitchen is a star addition to New York City’s accommodation playlist.
For all there is to see and do across New York City’s five boroughs, visit NYCGO.com.
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