Ian Schrager—cofounder of the legendary Studio 54—has a talent for creating iconic hotel brands that deliver style and chic without hefty price tags. His latest venture, the Public Hotel on the Lower East Side (215 Chrystie Street between Stanton and East Houston Streets), is no different.
A mixture of serious design (helmed by Herzog & de Meuron), high-tech amenities (Apple TVs, iPads, and custom-designed chatbots), and a floating rooftop bar make it clear that this is not your parents’ hotel. Enter the new-wave, bellhop-free entrance, adorned with concrete columns, and step on the space-age escalator that will zoom you to the lobby. What should you do once you’ve checked in? You won’t want to leave and, thankfully, you don’t have to. This hip spot is an all-in-one staycation destination.
Breakfast on the Go
Stop for a quick bite at the counter at the ground-floor Louis. “Slow food fast” is the theme of this hybrid grocery, luncheonette, and market. Order a cup of La Colombe coffee and an organic blueberry bowl, and grab a bench at one of the communal tables filled with freelancers and business travelers working on their laptops.
A Walk in the Park
You don’t have to wander far from your room to escape the concrete jungle: The hotel’s well-manicured and lovely outdoor space, called Chrystie Park, is right by the entrance. There, a blue stone walkway is surrounded by hedges and dogwood trees, while the patch of green doubles as a tranquil retreat for reading a book or playing chess on the lawn.
The Lower East Side is chock-full of venues where you can get your dose of culture, starting with the Public’s cutting-edge underground performance space—Public Arts—which doubles as a club à la Studio 54. Nearby, Marc Straus Gallery hosts world-renowned artists, including Neo-Expressionist Sandro Chia and realist sculptor Chris Jones, while the New Museum showcases thought-provoking exhibitions on a revolving basis.
Let’s Do Lunch
Having a meal at Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Public Kitchen is a taste of the chef’s worldly travels: Sample creamy burrata straight from Tuscany, New Age latkes even a babushka would love, and an Asian-inspired soy-garlic marinated steak topped with a drizzling of fermented black bean dressing.
Have an Aperitif
Chic, sophisticated, and stylish, Diego combines the perfect balance of comfort and luxury in one elegant place. In keeping with its London gentlemen’s club aesthetic, acclaimed mixologists shake and stir world-class libations that aim to please. Sink into a blue velvet bench or silk damask armchair and admire the handwoven tapestries, Roman-style marble mosaics, roaring fireplace, and pewter bar.
Dance on the Roof
Public’s rooftop bar is just an elevator ride away from breathtaking 360-degree skyline views. A part-outdoor, part-indoor space, the swanky evening hot spot is swathed in black and lined with velvet banquettes. The terrace hosts complimentary yoga sessions and weekend barbecues during the day, but morphs into a late-night lounge with live music when the sun goes down.