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The Family Friendly Hotel NYC Guide
I’m not going to lie to you. I obsess over finding the best NYC hotels for families. In fact, it is not unusual for me to be making changes to our NYC family hotel 2 days before hitting the Big Apple (canceling and rebooking into something I’ve decided is ever so slightly better). I just like to make sure that I am getting the best bang for my buck.
Now, I fully realize that spending hours (or days) researching family friendly hotels in NYC might not be everyone’s cup of tea. You are probably way too busy to obsess over it like I do. In the following post, I have tried to simplify things by sharing my list of the best hotels for kids in NYC, tips on where to stay in New York City with family, and how to save money.
In the wrong place? Please see the following:
Family Hotels NYC – Top Tips
- Get your head around the fact that New York hotel rooms are extremely pricey in comparison to most North American cities. You are paying for prime real estate in one of the world’s most expensive cities. That said, there are always deals to be found on popular NYC hotels for kids (especially if you book way ahead).
- New York hotels rooms are quite small by North American standards. l’ve also noticed that many of the new hotel builds have rooms that are smaller than ever (think bunkbeds – but not necessarily for kids). Most hotel sites list the square footage of a room. When looking for suitable family accommodation in NYC, personally, I look for a hotel room that is greater than 300 sq. ft (around 29 sq. meters).
- Consider how much time you will be spending in your hotel room. If it is a first New York City family vacation, you may not spend much time in your room at all. This should be weighed when you considering how much you want to pay for a hotel room. Will a comfortable bed and a decent pillow at the end of a long day of sightseeing do the trick? Or, is this a once-in-a-lifetime experience where you want to splurge on a gorgeous room one of the absolute best New York hotels for families.
- When researching family hotels in New York City, please take a little time to read recent reviews. One of the most common annoyances in New York City is noisy construction. A hotel property is unlikely to mention this when you book, but recent reviewers will sure let you know!I generally use TripAdvisor when narrowing down my search of family hotels in NYC. I filter for reviews by families and then type kids into the search bar to narrow those reviews down even further. I also like to look at TripAdvisor’s Room Tips. All rooms are not created equal and requesting a high floor or a room away from the elevator could dramatically improve your experience, while usually costing you nothing.
- Book early to secure the best rate. Sites such as Booking.com usually offer a no deposit / flexible cancellation policy. I tend to book my chosen New York family hotel as soon as my flights are booked and check back periodically to see if rates have improved. If they have, I cancel and rebook at the lower rate.
- Location. Location. Location. Take into consideration which New York City attractions you most want to see. When my kids were really little, I loved being close to Central Park (Upper East Side or Upper West Side) because it was the one place that they could run, jump and play freely. With older children, I now prefer family friendly hotels in NYC’s Midtown or Midtown East, giving us easy access to Times Square, Broadway shows and Rockefeller Center.
12 Family Friendly Hotels NYC
The Hotel Beacon – Upper West Side 4★
The Beacon is one of the best family hotels in Manhattan for those looking to stay close to Central Park (which is just block away). Its large rooms and suites (all with kitchenettes) are great for families up to 6 people. It also has a grocery store across the street and is very close to a Metro station.
Loews Regency – Upper East Side 5★
Loews has a reputation for treating families right and the Regency is one of the best hotels for kids in NYC, especially if you would like to be based close to Central Park. Their family amenities include complimentary cribs, baby toiletries, board games, toys, coloring books and PlayStations for loan. They even have a downloadable guide to NYC for kids. Families love the double/double rooms (spacious by NYC standards at 350 sq. ft+) and the one bedroom suites (with sofa bed in living room).
Affinia Gardens – Upper East Side 4★
Like its sister hotel the Affinia Shelburne (listed below), the Affinia Gardens is a very suitable hotel for families. Self catering is a breeze with the well equipped kitchens and optional grocery delivery service. The Upper East Side location is quite nice for families as the area is very quiet and yet close to many family attractions such as Central Park, The Museum of Natural History and the Children’s Museum.
Note: I stayed at this hotel when my children were 1 and 4 years respectively. I liked the fact that it was in such a quiet area but still within an easy stroller roll of Central Park. Our room was spacious enough to have some friends over for a glass of wine while the kids watched a movie.
LUMA Hotel – Times Square 4★
If you are struggling over where to stay in New York City with family, the LUMA boutique hotel is in an excellent location – nestled between Times Square and Bryant Park. What makes this one of the best hotels in Times Square for families? It is one of just a handful of Manhattan hotel properties offering rooms with 2 king beds (very rare in NYC). What makes this one fo the best hotels for kids in New York? Alina – the little robot that delivers towels and other goodies right to your room. See her in action in this short video.
The Kimpton Muse – Times Square 4★
Kimpton Hotels have long made families a priority and The Muse in no exception. Through their Kimpton Kids program they offer a children’s welcome gift, kids robes and often other nice surprises. Popular with mom and dad is the morning tea/coffee service in the lobby as well as the hosted evening wine reception. The Kimpton Muse has double queen rooms as well as one bedroom king bed suites (with a sofa bed in a separate living room).
Moxy NYC – Times Square South 3.5★
What this hotel lacks in room size (many rooms are less than 300 sq. ft.) it makes up in fun. Kids love having their own bed with the quadruple bunk rooms and hanging out in the funky 2nd floor lounge. Room have free Wi-Fi, oversized rain showers, and smart streaming TVs. The property has a fitness centre, on-site restaurant and a rooftop bar.
Tryp by Wyndham – Times Square South 4 ★
Looking for a NYC hotel for family a family of 5 or more? The Wyndham Tryp Times Square South is very popular with large families as they have rooms that can sleep up to 8 guests! They also have fun Media Room options that include a 55″ TVs, surround sound, popcorn makers, Nintendo Wii, iPod “dock,” 3D glasses, and a multiple media connectivity panel.
The Library Hotel – Midtown 4★
This literary-themed boutique hotel is renowned for its excellent service, consistently ranking as one of the top hotels in New York. Families enjoy the continental breakfast, free wifi, evening wine and cheese reception, and the complimentary refreshments in the Reading Lounge. Their junior suite room (shown above) is perfect for a small family.
Note: For lovers of boutique hotels, The Library Collection has two other suitable NYC hotels for kids that are worth taking a peek at – The Hotel Giraffe (NoMad 4★) and The Casablanca (Midtown 3.5★).
The San Carlos – East Midtown 4★
The San Carlos is conveniently located in Midtown East, just a 10 minute walk to Rockefeller Center (the new FAO Schwarz, LEGO store, Top of the Rock, winter skating rink etc.). This property offer spacious rooms and suites (starting at 350 sq. ft.), each with, at minimum, a microwave, coffee/tea maker and mini refrigerator.
Their larger suites that can sleep a family of up to 6, making it one of the most popular family hotels in Manhattan. Room amenities include plush terry robes, Aveda bath products, newspaper delivery (Mon-Fri), and iPod docking station.
Affinia Shelburne – East Midtown 4★
From my first family stay in an Affinia property in NYC (there are 3), I was hooked. The newly renovated Shelburne is close to both Grand Central Station and Bryant Park. The property offers studio, one and 2 bedroom suites that can sleep up to 6 people. Parents love the complimentary wine in the lobby each evening.
The Sohotel – Soho 3★
The moderately priced Sohotel has a great location within Soho which is perfect for shoppers. The property offers several options of family rooms, sleeping up to 5 guests. Rooms include free WiFi, a flat-screen TVs, hardwood floors and an iPod docking station.
The Beekman – Lower Manhattan 5★
This luxury Thompson-branded boutique hotel is located close to the Brooklyn Bridge and the World Trade Center. The rooms include custom beds, leather headboards, oak floors, craft cocktail tables and marble bathrooms. Top room choices for families include the double queen or king suite configurations.