Well, there’s a doorway in the Bowery that goes for less than $100 a night, if you’re willing to share it with a dozen homeless citizens. Of course, Friday and Saturday nights are higher, but the Salvation Army ladies bring in a hot breakfast each morning. In other words, there ain’t no more cheap hotels in New York City, especially if you want to stay within easy access to the traditional theater, restaurants and sights of Manhattan.
One of our kids recently left NYC for sunny California after renting in the NYC Chelsea area for five years. The little one-bedroom apartment cost $2,500 a month. When I lived in the area just after the Korean War, the same rather nice place went for a relatively high $75. The young TV writer-producer had been considering buying a teenie townhouse just a short walk toward Greenwich Village for a million bucks, but after moving to LA, instead bought a one-bedroom condo for the bargain price of $450,000.
When I worked in that same West Hollywood neighborhood in the 1960s, the entire condo building comples … which had been a sixteen-apartment spread at the time, could have been bought for less than $100,000. What’s my point? If you’re going to a popular destination like NYC, expect inflation, inflation and inflation!
Most New York City hotels with two- or three-star ratings offer rooms starting at $150 a night, and up, some way, way up, depending on the neighborhood and access to the Times Square area. Even at those supposedly bargain prices, you can expect another 20 percent of all kinds of add-ons, such as city taxes, room extras and such. Below are recommendations from my NYC friends, relatives and TV producer child. The posted hotel ratings range from two to four star, but you’ll have to do some deeper research and checking on quality and location convenience before you’ll see any you may decide to try:
Crowne Plaza United Nations, $220; Hotel Pennsylvania, $175; Belleclaire, $170; Woogo Central Park, $189; Holiday Inn Wall Street, $220; Quality Times Square, $199; Edison Times Square, $202; Latham, $142; Manhattan Broadway, $208; New York Inn Times Square, $187; and Gershwin Grammercy Park, $200.
I found three listed at prices less than $100, but maybe my eyes were playing tricks on me. You may want to check them out, just to see if the prices are not just a bait-and-switch routine. West Side Inn, $86; Columbus Studios, $74; and West End Studios, $74.
Good luck, and if you can’t find a hotel room to rent in NYC, remember the Bowery doorway isn’t too crowded, except on weekends and special cheap wine-tasting events.