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Mark Alyn

Host & Reporter | Mark Alyn Communications, Inc.
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As a host, reporter and writer Mark has talked about and scribbled about food, wine and travel. ...Read More

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Travel
Understated Elegance
By: Mark Alyn   |    September 10, 2012   |   0 Comments (0) (0)

Berkshire Place Omni Hotel

Traveling is stressful. There are delays, problems at airports and even cranky taxi drivers. When traveling for business stress increases with maintaining a schedule, meetings, and the need to get things done. Itís nice to have a hotel that understands the difference.

Omni Hotels and Resorts Berkshire Place in New York gets the difference. Elegant, stylish, updated, friendly staff and a knowing about why youíre staying make the Omni a standout establishment.

In real estate, the watchwords are location, location location! Location is everything. In New York City, this is especially true for hotels. I want to be located near easy transportation (Grand Central Station is only a few minutes away) in a great Midtown Manhattan neighborhood. I want a place where I can meet for an easy meal or have a drink. The Omni Berkshire Place fits the bill.

The lobby is simple luxury. There are fresh flowers, staff attentive without hovering, and very easy check in.

Outstanding concierge service is available early to late, with very knowledgeable professionals. Locating a great bagel was one challenge; finding an easy way to a meeting was another.

The various concierge staff provides a quick good morning or good evening always with a smile. The desk staff provided equally friendly service. I prefer a live person wake up call, rather than an automated computer call. Easy to set up, just call the front desk and the call is on time. Itís nice to get a warm good morning hello from a real person. My backup alarm on my iphone not used once because of trust. And I wasnít late to my early meeting.††

What I believe is a super perk is free Internet service for guests. It irks me to see a charge as high as $18 a day to get and send emails. Many hotels do charge and I resent it. It shows a high disregard for guests. Corporate policy at Omni is FREE Internet.

As I was on business, I used the 24-hour business center several times. Just to sit, collect my thoughts for the day and to write. I should have used the 24-hour fitness center too, but I walked lots during my stay.

Rooms employ understated luxury. There are simple, elegant furnishings, a comfortable bed, attention to detail and a nice place to work and sleep. Peaking into a suite while a maid cleaned, the same feeling carried through. Nothing is over the top or over done. Yet you have the feeling of superior comfort and luxury.†

Hotel bathrooms are a big deal to me. First, I always check on the amenities such as soap, shampoo and conditioner. Traveling lets me try new products which is just fun! Some places donít offer this service, but the Omni does. High end products are available to use while staying at the hotel.†††††††††††††††††††††††

Spacious, the bathroom would have been large enough for my wife and myself. Deep, rich feeling towels are available. A very nice bathrobe (actually two) is available to relax in. Funny, I never use a bathrobe at home, but when traveling I usually sit around in one if available.

Plenty of hot water with good pressure makes the shower great. Housekeeping keeps the bath spotless. I do check for hairs (and other stuff) all over, from the carpeting to the bed. Didnít find any. The Berkshire Place is really clean. A pet peeve is warn and old carpeting. Throughout the facility, the carpeting looks new.

Historic hotels are a favorite of mine. Sure I like new too, but a place with history appeals to me more. The Berkshire Place was built in the mid 1920s. Rogers and Hammerstein celebrated the opening of ďOklahomaĒ here in 1942. There have been several renovations keeping the hotel fresh and modern.

Owned by Omni Hotels and Resorts, the Berkshire Place is run like a boutique hotel. There are almost 400 rooms, with space for meetings. A friendly bar restaurant is perfect (Fireside) for informal get togethers. There is not a corporate feel to the place. The staff and management are friendly, helpful and really like their work. Service staff offer warm hellos in the halls, the lobby and even the front desk.

This is an ideal stop over in New York City. Great staff, a great atmosphere, and superior location; make it ideal for both business and pleasure travelers.

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