The Baccarat New York opened its doors in March 2015 to much fanfare and celebration in town, where its arrival had been eagerly awaited for several years.
The hotel, with the same name and heritage as the French crystal manufacturer, is the brainchild of Barry Sternlicht, founder and previous head honcho at Starwood Hotels (St Regis, W Hotels, Luxury Collection) and now Chairman of Starwood Capital. With oceans of cash at his disposal, Mr Sternlicht really pushed the boat out with the Baccarat brand and the New York property (the first in the group) was a ‘no expense spared’ exercise in hotel development.
And ‘oh là là’, if you can manage to make it through the hotel’s heavy-handed marketing hype and actually book a room (excusez moi, une chambre) you will discover a hotel that is quite exquisite. The Baccarat will most certainly not be to everyone’s taste, but no one can deny the exceptional design and craftsmanship that has created a venue that is extravagantly glamorous and quite unique at the same time.
In contrast, the rooms are somewhat restrained and are effortlessly elegant and sophisticated. They are quite simply the smartest hotel rooms in New York City. And when combined with a sensational location on 53rd Street between 5th and 6th Avenues, you have a luxury hotel offering that’s very hard to beat.
But not everything is perfect in this crystal wonderland; there are some considerable service glitches which, in a hotel of this calibre and given what the Baccarat brand promises to deliver, fall way short of the mark. And whilst staff are pleasant and well meaning, they appear to be unsure of what they should be doing at times.
Nonetheless, this is a magnificent property and if the service shortcomings can be solved then I would venture to say the Baccarat brand is destined for greatness.
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