Confessions of an Office Nomad: The Hotel Edition
A few weeks back I shared a professional confession with the Role Mommy community, I am officially without an office. This decision was made by choice, after many years with swanky offices, corner offices, a midtown temporary office rental and a cubicle option last year which felt strange since I was so used to being off on my own with a desk, chair, and a door to close when the noise level got a bit to loud.
And so, in 2010 I have decided to live the fly by the seat of my pants approach to office space and instead have sought out locations that are conducive to writing, conference calls and meeting with other nomads who have given up the financial trappings of monthly office rentals in favor of free wifi and several cups of Starbucks coffee.
This week's edition of the Office Nomad will focus on the hotels I've been crashing while occupying temporary space in Manhattan. For those of you interested in knowing which hotels have become my instant favorites, here is a scorecard.
The Roosevelt Hotel - this option is fabulous for metronorth commuters. Located at 45th and Madison Avenue, this old world hotel offers a coffee bar (with Starbucks), a few munchable items (I had Dannon yogurt but the parfaits looked delish) and comfy leather couches, chairs and tables conducive to writing and taking conference calls without interruption. Plus, the muzak playing in the background actually gets the creative juices flowing. In fact, I'm tempted to break out into a be bop rift in a minute if the couple sitting next to me vacates their table. Only downside - no free wifi, but thanks to my wireless card, I'm cruising along with no interruptions. Oh - and a very friendly waiter even cleared away my yogurt when he saw I was finished with it.
The W Hotel - Situated in two convenient locations, I have been frequenting the W in Union Square with the fabulous Julia Beck . While the W does not have free wifi, they too have cozy couches and tables where you can sip coffee, tea and wine if you're there during happy hour (I've been there all three times of day and Julia and I have claimed the couch right in front. Plus, the head of VIP services at the W bears a striking resemblance to Taye Diggs and treats Julia and her guests as if we were celebrities. Gotta love that one. I also got a chance to check out Olives - which features a gorgeous wine room. Love it when a hotel has unique spaces for entertaining and schmoozing.
The Carlton Hotel - If you have meeting near Madison and 28th Street, then the Carlton is an ideal location to either grab a coffee, pop open your laptop and enjoy free wifi! The Carlton is an elegant and cozy hotel - not that many nooks and crannies to disappear but enough space to find a corner and relax. Plus, the mezzanine area, which sports tons of cozy couches and tables are also great for events and relaxing. There's a bar on the mezzanine level as well and while I was there in the morning, I can only imagine the scene in the evenings!
The Marriott Marquis - Straight in the heart of Times Square, all you need to do is slip inside, take the elevator or escalator to the 8th floor, grab a Starbucks coffee, a comfy leather chair, rest your laptop on a marble table and you are good to go. Even though the place does say it has free wifi, my laptop wouldn't cooperate so I used my own (always good to have a back-up). The Marriott Marquis is totally modern, huge and open. Not as good for conference calls because there is a ton of background noise but writing is a breeze. I'm actually starting to enjoy the background noise. Yes, I am strange and I am not afraid to admit it.
The Sheraton Hotel - The Sheraton on 52nd and 7th Avenue also has a great coffee bar (Starbucks proudly served) with tables where you can access wifi. Plus, across the way is a lounge and bar so if you're there all day, you can start out with coffee and end with cocktails...I'm just sayin'. I used my wifi again so can't say if the Internet was free but I did like the comfy tables and benches in the coffee bar. Great place for writing and having coffee meetings.
The Hudson Hotel - The Hudson is dark, has a terrible wifi connection - which means unless you're a hotel guest, you are out of luck. However, if you happen to visit the Hudson in the spring and summer time, the meeting places are gorgeous! There's a rooftop terrace and another outdoor location near check in and both are amazing. The Hudson is the place to meet and be seen - so wear a nice outfit while you're at it.
The Ritz Carlton - Battery Park or Central Park South - One of my favorite hotels in New York City is the Ritz - I guess I hold a special place for that hotel because I spearheaded the "Everybody Loves Raymond" finale campaign out of the Battery Park City location and used so many spaces with amazing views, I was in heaven. Battery Park has a gorgeous space called Rise that's great for a cocktail meeting. There are sweeping views of the skyline and you can even walk outside on a terrace (when the weather warms up of course). At the CPS location there's always 4 pm tea with comfy places to sit, meet and write. Wifi is not free but nothing at the Ritz ever is!
More hotels to come - so many office nomad days ahead of me and so many locations to cover. Gotta bolt for a lunch meeting at Juniors. Ah, the life of a nomadic Jewish American Princess. Gotta love it.