LOWER MANHATTAN: The Conrad Hotel Revisited

I spent seven weeks at this fine hotel in late 2021, when my first thought upon entering my room at the Conrad Lower Manhattan was, “I may never want to leave!” By the time I did have to leave, I wasn't the least bit tired of it.

In late 2022, my wife and I returned to the facility to celebrate our 30th anniversary.  This was the same property where we had celebrated our 10th anniversary in 2002, though it was then an Embassy Suites. 

Today, the Conrad has many of the best features we look for when we're traveling: a comfortable room for sleeping, relaxing and sometimes working, an attentive staff, on-site food and beverage that doesn’t break the bank, and other amenities like a business center, fitness center and on-site barber shop.

The view of the Hudson River and New Jersey from our room

The room itself – which is actually a two-room suite – is huge, especially by NYC standards. The living room alone was easily 12 x 12 feet, which is larger than many full hotel rooms. It had a couch, chair, 48-inch flat screen TV, drawers for storage, and a desk/work station. In-room Wi-Fi was about 15 Mbps according to Speakeasy.net/speedtest, considerably faster than the 5 Mbps I generally find in hotels.

The bedroom was equally generous, at 10 x 13 feet, and had its own TV, wardrobe closets with fluffy robes and comfy slippers, and iron and ironing board.

The walk-in shower and the water closet, both off the hallway area, were each a little less than five feet square. Did I actually use the term “water closet”? I did, because the toilet and sink are in a separate room from the shower – very convenient when two people are trying to get ready at the same time. The shower features a rain showerhead – my new favorite – as well as a hand-held shower wand. 

Unfortunately, the high-end amenities I experienced on my previous visit had been replaced by bulk products in larger dispensers attached to the shower wall. 

The hallway area has its own sink (do we still call them “wet bars”?); a minibar; a Nespresso coffee machine; a system that provides freshly filtered water and two aluminum bottles to use and re-use, eliminating plastic and reducing the amount of stuff that goes into recycling or the waste stream. There is also a safe big enough to hold our traveling electronics.

In-room wet bar and coffee station

When I travel for work, I am ususally at a given location for an extended period of time, I like to have a fridge in the room for snacks and beverages. A simple request and one was at my door in literally minutes.

9/11 Memorial inside the Occulous

The property is close to the World Trade Center and the 9/11 Memorial and Museum, the Irish Hunger Memorial, plenty of shops and stores, a number of restaurants in addition to the on-site Atrio Wine Bar & Restaurant (breakfast and dinner only), stops for several subway lines, and the Hudson River. Its waterfront promenade is especially busy on sunny days, warm weather or cold.

Ice skaters in Battery Park City, near the hotel

But what really sets this hotel apart is the service. It is truly top-notch and an excellent example of Hilton’s service standards. Although it had been more than a year since my extended stay in 2021, bartenders Danny, Wayne and Juan and restaurant server Atik immediately remembered me, welcomed my wife and me warmly, and made us feel like valued guests rather than just paying customers. 

The Conrad may be a bit more expensive than other hotels nearby … or perhaps not, depending on when you’re visiting and what’s going on in the area. Either way, if you like surroundings that embody a bit of luxury and people who pamper, the Conrad is a place you’ll love to be.

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