In attempting a count of hotel stays we’ve called home in New York over the years, it’s easy to loose count, (though admittedly it’s likely somewhere in the hundreds). While most blend into the homogeny of hospitality, become worn and irrelevant over the years, every once in a while one hotel stand out above them all.
Created with the introvert traveller in mind, Sister City is Atelier Ace’s latest hotel concept that’s “distilled to its most beautiful parts.” The concept, which launched back in May of this year, boils down what the modern traveller needs today in a hotel. In essence, it goes like this: a roof, power outlets, plants, soft feeling, courage, and spirit, according to their online manifesto, it’s “less, but better.”
Set inside a former Salvation Army building on The Bowery in the Lower East Side, a couple doors down from The New Museum, Sister City is perfectly located for a quick jaunt to neighbouring Nolita, SoHo, or Chinatown neighbourhoods. The space feels modern in vibe and thought of, in terms of design, influenced by Finnish saunas, rock-cut cliff dwellings, Japanese bento boxes, and John Cage’s silent 4’33”.
There’s no check in desk, but rather a self service check in area located just off Freeman Alley, with a small shop carefully integrated in case you forget any essentials or grab a quick snack. It’s also a block away from Morgenstern’s Finest Ice Cream in case you fancy dashing out for a treat. The lobby features vintage furniture, mismatched plants, wire maps of the property handmade by Paul Smotrys in Brooklyn, custom terrazzo floors, and custom birch screens that separate it from the restaurant space. The lobby also features an installation by composer Julianna Barwick that creates music based on the weather outside through Microsoft AI technology.
Floret their seasonal restaurant opens at 7am daily, and features an all day menu inspired by local purveyors with Mediterranean, East Asian, North African, Australian and Californian influences, along side a list of craft cocktails, and a number of natural wines. On the roof is Last Light, one of the cities coolest cocktail bars featuring small plates and amazing views of lower Manhattan. Do not miss the frozen cocktails which are particularly refreshing yet simple.
The rooms are spacious for New York standards with design forward elements like custom built in cherry wood furniture, a hand-stamped Isamu Noguchi light fixture, luxurious pillows and stripped bed linens, a Bang & Olufsen speaker, and custom sconces by Canadian design firm Rich Brilliant Willing.
A tin cup with an eco-friendly refillable glass bottle for water sits on the bedside table which can be refilled at the communal utility closet on each floor where you’ll also find a handy clothes steamer, iron and ironing board, plus extra towels.
The rooms also feature a flat screen TV, a small desk with cute stool, a fold out valet to hang a few items, as well as Malin+Goetz toiletries and heated floors in the terrazzo accented bathroom. Aside for an opening below the bed, there’s a definite lack of storage space in the rooms so it’s not the greatest option for longer stays or those of you heavy packers out there.
Sister City is a truly unique essentialist take on hotel culture and representative of Atelier Ace’s ability to disrupt and innovate in the hospitality space.
Click here to book your stay at Sister City.