The Crosby Hotel opens officialy today

At NY for Insiders we are always on the lookout for new stylish hotels in Manhattan, and I was very pleased to visit The Crosby Street Hotel today. Open on preview mode for a week, and officially open today, the hotel is simply lovely. Owned by husband/wife-builder/designer team Tim and Kit Kemp, the Crosby is the 7th hotel of a chainlet of luxury small boutique hotels in London.

The décor has a curiously organized clutter feel to it, which results in an incredibly cozy but totally un-kitsch charm. From artworks collected around the world, to the large plank flooring and the warehouse style oversized windows, the very textured and sometimes quirky good taste is in every corner.

What makes this hotel feel like your second home away from home is the attention to details: from the bespoke toiletries by Miller Harris to the personal details and furnishings in each of its 86 rooms to the pleasant drawing room that faces the courtyard (reserved for guests only.) Other amenities include a 99 seat movie theater with the funkiest and most comfortable Poltrona Frau orange wide cinema chairs. Guests can peruse the Blue Ray DVD collection for their private screening.

The hotel was built following the strict rules of LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).

Until the end of October the hotel is offering a promotional rate of $495 for all rooms. Starting in November, regular rates will be in place: superior room for 525, luxury $650, deluxe 695. For a real splurge, you can have one of the three Crosby Suites, on the 9th, 10th or 11th floors. That space is a kingdom in itself of 1,100 sf of an impeccable living room, bedroom and incredible Soho sunset views for 3,000 a night.

To get a feeling of this unique hotel, try out their restaurant on the ground floor which opened its doors to the public today! Whimsical fabrics, peculiar art pieces, great lighting, large French doors that open to the sculpture internal garden makes the dining room look, hmm, stimulating. At least when I was walking around, I felt a curious appetite to experience more of that agreeable ambiance.

The hotel’s location is in the heart of bustling SoHo, but smartly tucked on a quiet block. How great to see such an inviting and creative atmosphere in a neighborhood that was in need of a breath of fresh air in the hotel department (the other alternatives in SoHo are the tiny rooms of Soho Grand and the stale Mercer Hotel – which, I just have to say it, is a tad past its best). Let's welcome this imaginative Brit to the hood.

79 Crosby Street, btw. Prince & Spring

212 226 6400

SpaWeek in NYC

Take a deep breath. You deserve some pampering. Today is the first day of SpaWeek NY, which lasts until the 18th of October. That means you can get treatments for $50! Already feel the neck muscles relaxing? Good. Several participating venues are offering a myriad of services as a prix-fixe SpaWeek promotion. I have selected a few of my favorite spa spots for your pleasure. Act fast, book with them directly. For a complete list of all participating spas go here. No excuses, it's a good opportunity to treat yourself to a zen moment.

Caudalie Vinotherapie Spa at The Plaza

Brand new and sparkly, this temple of beauty and relaxation at the newly renovated NYC landmark hotel offers facials (usually $185), pedicures or body wraps (usually $95) for $50. Being French as they are, a complimentary glass of Bordeaux is part of the detox. Cheers to your sante.

4th Floor of The Plaza Hotel 1 West 58th Street, 212-265-3182

Clarins Skin Spa

Ok, the second spa on my list is also French… But we all know they are experts when it comes to skin care, lotions, and self-indulgence. This luxurious brand has one of the world’s best body product lines. Besides, their product fragrances are fantastique. You will leave the 45 minute massage or facial, not just shining, but smelling great.

212-734-6100 247 Columbus Avenue, 212-360-0190


Get a 50 minute facial with the brand’s best seller soy face cleanser for $50 instead of the usual $125.

Two locations:

57 Spring Street between Mulberry St and Lafayette St, 212 925 0099 1367

Third Avenue corner of 78th St and Third Ave, 212 585 3400

Indulge, enjoy.

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New York turns pink this October

It is nice to see how many businesses are adhering to the Breast Cancer Awareness month, which is celebrating 25 years. The city is pink with posters scattered throughout stores and venues offering promotions that support the cause. Last Saturday Union Square was an ocean of white and pink tents offering Pilates lessons, an initiative organized by Shape Magazine in partnership with The Breast Cancer Research Foundation. With a donation of $25 to the foundation you received a great work out, a pink Pilates mat as well as a product-packed canvas goody bag filed with items from supporting businesses. Before each class, a fit breast cancer survivor would speak for a few minutes and thank the filled up classes for their support. I was running errands, and unfortunately felt guilty of not sweating for the cure, but I was impressed by the amount of participants. A few minutes later and not too far from there, as I was buying the house stuff I needed to get at Bed Bath & Beyond I stumbled onto a product display of pink products! From mixers and toasters to chip clips, everything was pink, and the sign said “Support Breast Cancer Awareness Month.” Ok, so I could not miss out on that opportunity to do a good deed, and ended up getting a very girly rosy Brita pitcher. On my way home, I saw the (yes, pink) sign in the subway announcing Avon’s Walk for Breast Cancer this Saturday and Sunday, October 11th and 12th. This is an incredible opportunity to do good, feel great, experience several neighborhoods in a different vibe, and see the city in a new light: (you know the color!).

As I was writing this, I received an email from Fine Stationary, where the proceeds of some cute cards go towards organizations that support breast cancer research and education. No more excuses. If you can;t walk, just buy and spread the love!

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Über gallerist Larry Gagosian opens a store in the Upper East Side

by Alexandra Forbes

It is often said - including here, on this blog - that most of the stuff that matters happens below Midtown. That's where all the cooler restaurants and hotels are: Village, Soho, Bowery, Lower East Side, Tribeca, etc.

But.... there's something brewing in the once staid Upper East Side. First, The Mark reopened totally redone by celeb designer Jacques Grange (more on that later). Then Taj Hotels poured millions into a complete refurbishment of the dusty ole The Pierre, now swank.

Recently, über gallerist Larry Gagosian opened a store - where else? - on Madison Avenue, right next to his Upper East Side gallery, selling books, posters and limited edition pieces by the artists he represents. Must we name them? Damien Hirst, Takashi Murakami, Cindy Sherman - the list of boldface names is nearly endless!

So heck, turns out the UES ain't so staid after all!

Gagosian Shop: 988 Madison, tel. (212) 744-9200

Michelin Guide 2010 is out: Daniel awarded top rating of 3 stars

This blog visitted Daniel recently and had a wonderful dinner, pictured above. So we weren't all that surprised to find out that, at last, the restaurant has deservedly entered the pantheon of 3-star restaurants in the newly-released 2010 edition of the Michelin Guide. As the site noted, Daniel

"has joined Jean Georges, Le Bernardin, Masa and Per Se in the guide’s list of top eateries bringing New York’s three-star restaurants to five.

Meanwhile fellow French chef Alain Ducasse’s Adour restaurant at Manhattan’s St Regis hotel has lost a star and dropped from two- to one-Michelin-star status. (...) Gordon Ramsay’s eponymous restaurant at the London hotel in Manhattan’s Midtown retained its two stars, despite recently reported problems of food hygiene."

Here is the complete listing of the restaurants starred in the Michelin Guide New York:

Daniel: 60 E 65th St, tel. (212) 288-0033

And more about dining in New York on this blog:

  1. Minetta Tavern in the Greenwich Village
  2. Montenapo and Monkey Bar restaurants, in Midtown
  3. Chef Michael White's new restaurant Marea, on Central Park South
  4. Three new Italians: Sora Lella, Kesté Pizza&Vino, Tonda
  5. DBGB Kitchen and Bar: Daniel Boulud's luxe burger & souffles
  6. Miss Favela: Brazilian fare in Brooklyn
  7. Danny Meyer of Union Square Café opens the Maialino trattoria at the Gramercy Park Hotel
  8. Paris chef Pascal Barbot cooks alongside David Chang at Momofuku Ko
  9. The Standard Grill, hot restaurant at The Standard hotel, in the Meatpacking