The Westin New York at Times Square offers a unique experience for families, located right in the heart of Broadway. It also offers a certain level of peace and quiet, as well as luxury, that is hard to find in midtown Manhattan. The 45-story tower holds 83 rooms within walking distance of 40 theaters and dozens of shops and restaurants. It also has on-site dining, a gym, and access to E Walk, a 200,000-square-foot retail, dining and entertainment complex. Best of all, the spacious, cozy rooms offer incredible views of Manhattan, from the Empire State Building to the Hudson River and beyond.
In addition, the Westin New York at Times Square really puts families first, offering a kind staff, packages and amenities to set them at ease. It starts with a warm welcome at the front desk, along with a Westin Weekend tote bag for children under 12 to keep and use during their Big Apple exploration, and ends with a genuine, heartfelt thank you at departure.
The hotel is about to undergo a renovation, which will include the introduction of a new room category: family rooms. In order to accommodate an increase in family and leisure travelers, 65 king rooms will be converted to double/double or two-queen-bedded rooms.
The hotel is located on 8th Avenue, between 42nd and 43rd Streets, right in the heart of the Broadway district. This may not be the most beautiful part of the city, but the tradeoff is that it offers proximity to theaters and all things Broadway, from shows such as Wicked and Matilda, the Hard Rock Cafe and the David Letterman Show, to Restaurant Row, Carlos Bakery and Madame Tussaud’s. It’s surrounded by movie theaters and there are excellent, diverse ethnic restaurants up and down 8th and 9th Avenues.
The Westin also sits in close proximity to Grand Central, Penn Station and Port Authority, offering transport to points all over the city. Culture vultures will love the location and can easily skip out to TKTS for half-price theater tickets. The beauty of staying so near Broadway is that after the show ends, when kids are exhausted, you couldn’t be any closer to your beds.
The Westin New York at Times Square feels more intimate and inviting than its size suggests. All the rooms are fresh, with a warm white palette and dazzling wraparound city views. The rooms offer solid amenities, including WIFI access, top-notch linens, a computer desk, terry bathrobes, and a flat-screen TV with in-room movies.
As a bonus to eco-loving parents, the Westin has a big interest in sustainability. Guestrooms feature the brand’s signature eco-friendly materials, such as energy-conserving LED and CFL lights, water-conserving low-flow plumbing and recyclable carpet pads, energy-efficient thermostats, low-VOC finishes for case goods, and GreenGuard-certified solar shades. Children and adults alike will love the Heavenly Beds for a good night’s sleep. Larger families can opt for suites to spread out and make themselves at home.
My daughter and I both appreciated the free WIFI offered in the public areas of the hotel. We also used the complimentary access to the fitness center — a first for us as a traveling duo, which was pretty wonderful. Having a tween in tow has taken travel to a whole new dimension for me. The hotel’s concierge is available to answer questions about shows and more, so it was easy to choose our afternoon activity with their assistance (a matinee at the family-friendly New Victory Theater right down the road).
The hotel now offers Rest Well Calls, to aid guests in getting plenty of sleep. Guests who opt to use the new program will be called at night, alerting them that it is time to go to bed, and then again seven to eight hours later (the recommended amount of nightly sleep for adults).
If you’re too tired to leave the hotel, there are family-friendly dining options on property at Shula’s Steakhouse, where we had breakfast, and Bar 10, which offers coloring and activitity books. Shula’s features a pre-theatre dinner special Tuesday through Saturday from 5-7p. Bar 10 also offers a menu of snacks and small plates. There is also 24-hour in-room dining.
If you do venture out, you have an endless amount of restaurants to choose from, including Carmine’s (family-size Italian food), Ollie’s (Chinese), Dafni Greek Taverna, Schnipper’s Quality Kitchen, Virgil’s BBQ, John’s Pizzeria and Empanada Mama. Kids will love ending the night with a cupcake at Carlos Bakery.
Editor’s Note: Holly was offered a media package to review the Westin New York at Times Square. As always, our opinions on Ciao Bambino are our own. Photos by Holly Rosen Fink unless otherwise noted.
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