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Over the past five years I have had the pleasure of visiting New York City on two occasions. My wife and I included a few days there as part of our honeymoon, and we returned for a second time at the beginning of 2016. (SEE ALSO: 5 awesome things to do in New York City)

I’ve always found New York immensely enjoyable. The bustle and feel of America’s largest city is exhilarating. Granted, I would never want to live there; it is a completely different world than where we live in rural northern California. But it has been one of my favorite places to visit.

Central Park in the Fall

I’d love to stay near Central Park next time I’m in NYC

Even though we don’t yet have a third trip in the works, I’ve already identified where I would like to stay if and when my wife and I return to New York: The Residence Inn Central Park. There are oodles of choices when it comes to hotels in the city, so let me give you 5 reasons this hotel tops my list:

  1. It’s the tallest hotel in the U.S. – This is not to be confused with the *highest* hotel. The title for tallest hotel goes to the tallest building used strictly for hotel purposes. I think staying in the tallest hotel in the country would be awesome, not just for the record books, but for the amazing views of New York City that the Residence Inn Central Park offers.
  2. Very uniquely, the hotel contains 2 Marriott brands – The building actually houses a Courtyard in addition to the Residence Inn Central Park. The Courtyard occupies floors 6 through 33, while the Residence Inn occupies floors 37-65. I am more than happy with this arrangement, as I prefer the facilities of the Residence Inn brand, and its rooms will have the better views. I also think it would be cool to tried out both brands in the same building.
  3. Location – Maybe this is just me, but staying just a few blocks from Central Park sounds lovely. My wife and I have only ever stayed near Times Square, and I’ve now realized it really isn’t the “must be” location. The Residence Inn Central Park is only a couple subway stops from Times Square, so getting there is still easy. Now that we have visited NYC a couple times, staying near the park sounds better (plus, it’s my wife’s favorite place in the city). There are also enough other subway options within a few blocks of the hotel that you can easily get everywhere else. (PWaC – my daughter and I stayed at the Sheraton Times Square which is a few blocks away on 53rd and 7th and I agree it’s a great location)
  4. Rates are very reasonable in the off-season – Both the Courtyard and Residence Inn Central Park require 40,000 Marriott points per night, which may be the way to go in peak season. Still seems relatively steep considering you can get the JW Marriott nearby for 45,000. So cash may be the way to go. For a 5-night stay in late January 2017, the rates for both hotels are less than $200 per night. Playing around with the dates a bit, I could find the Residence Inn for as low as $155 per night (advance purchase before tax). I would try to use Arrival+ miles or cashback to cover the cost.
  5. It’s a solid extended stay brand – This may just be a personal preference, but my wife and I much prefer extended stay hotels, in general. Especially Residence Inn and Hyatt House. My wife has been battling some digestive difficulties over the past few years, so having a full kitchen and being able to cook for ourselves is huge. Our last NYC stay was at the Element in Midtown, and we loved it. My guess is we would feel the same about the Residence Inn Central Park, if not even more so. They even have free breakfast! (SEE: 3 reasons “budget” hotels DESTROY nice ones)

Something to note: the Residence Inn Central Park says you can only book stays of 5 nights or more. However, this didn’t hinder me when trying to make a reservation. Maybe it’s only enforced during peak times?

[4 mistakes my Dad made in New York City]

What do you think? Are there far better choices in NYC?

Header image courtesy of Anthony Quintano under CC 2.0 license

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