Last week, the much-anticipated TWA Hotel opened in the old TWA terminal at JFK. It’s supposed to be an amazing place to stay—and the hotel scene immediately around JFK really needed one of those—but word is trickling in that the hotel, while beautiful and full of 60s accents like Tab soda in the minibars and a sunken hotel lobby bar, is not quite ready yet.
A reader wrote in over the weekend to share this sentiment, saying that after paying $300 a night, he “expected the bars and restaurants to be up and running…a functioning television in [his] room and room service options” and “it would not have been crazy to have also expected to use the much-photographed and anticipated pool. However, none of these things were available.” He added that the Paris Cafe—a Jean-Georges Vongerichten restaurant—”was operating at low capacity and would not fill all tables or bar spaces…and won’t serve food in the drinks bar of the restaurant.”
After being “told that the only food was at the food court in the lobby,” Miles and his friend found that “the gauntlet of small counters serve nothing more than chic food truck food” and at barely 7pm “all the stands were already on the verge of closing for the night.” There is currently “no hotel kitchen,” so no room service, and “the sunken bar has nibbles but no real food. And you have to book a table even there.”
But make no mistake, Miles added, “the design is amazing.” The hotel “has potential. If you want to take a step back to 1962 and take in the vibe of the era, TWA Hotel is a hot ticket. The staff are also extremely friendly and understanding of the growing pains at the hotel.” He also added that when he brought his complaints to staff he was offered a discounted rate. He went so far as to say he “will try TWA Hotel again” and “believe[s] it will be a worthwhile place to stay….maybe in six months.”
In the meantime, Ben Schlappig (“Lucky”) wrote for One Mile at a Time that the TWA Hotel is offering day stays, which let you experience the hotel as a guest without staying the night. You can book stays for four to 12 hours, specifically these blocks: 7am-11am, 8am-8pm, 10am-4pm, and 12pm-6pm. The four- and six-hour blocks cost $149 plus taxes and fees ($185.37 all-in), and the 12-hour block costs $209 plus taxes and fees ($254.22 all-in). Lucky writes that, “The day stay rates don’t show up under the usual search page, but rather you have to search on this page to find them. Just select your desired check-in date as your arrival date. While the departure date will automatically appear as the following day, the reservation will be for the day you show as checking in.”
When reached for comment, a representative of the hotel clarified that the pool is expected to open at the end of this week and the Sunken Lounge and Connie are up and running (the Sunken Lounge serves drinks as well as small bites). Room service, however, is not and was never a part of the hotel’s plans.
Personally, I can’t wait to stay at the TWA Hotel, but I’ll be keeping this in mind. Have you stayed at the TWA Hotel? Do you want to, for a night or a few hours?
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