Earlier, our secret spy told us all about the check-in and lobby situation at the Lower East Side's new hotel hotness. Now: the guest room.
Sidewalks for ceilings! Old-fashioned light bulbs! Acres of zebra wood! Welcome to one of the 42 rooms currently serving non-American tourists at the Thompson LES. Hard to believe, but the place has come a very long way from the original model room, with creepy bedside space heater and dirty-talking pillows. And even though the whole "industrial" thing is a bit cold, there's enough detail that she just manages to pull it off.
Access to guest floors is via keyed elevator, which means getting past the three bellmen, two security guys, and the desk clerk is the least of your problems. Once upstairs, the hallways are long and dark. Could it be a nod to the tenement hallways of the neighborhood's past? More likely a dimmer needs adjusting, as the place is far from nostalgic. Each floor has 14 rooms done up in a neutral palette of grays, blacks and browns, with a hefty amount of zebra wood thrown in. Do the Pomerancs own a zebra tree farm? If this wood isn't endangered yet, it may be soon, given the quantity used in this project. Walls are covered in some kind of shiny black material, which looks innocent enough but turns into one gigantic mirror in the right light.
Bathrooms are also black and grey, and again with the zebra wood. Toilet is Japanese (Toto), sink is Italian (Flaminia), and what is likely the best shower between Houston and Stanton comes from Germany (AXOR).
As best we can tell, there are two types of rooms: "Superior" and "Studio." The larger Studio rooms indeed come very close to the rendering pictured when you reserve a room online, save a missing frosted-glass bathroom wall. Too bad, because it looks sexy in the drawings, but in reality the bathroom is separated by a very normal, very opaque wall.
The velvety pull-out couch and smoky glass coffee table are separated from the king-size bed by a chain curtain; essentially a floor-to-ceiling version of what neighborhood kids wear on their pants. On the couch, a funky pleather cushion is propped next to a conservative corduroy one. Obviously this is a metaphor for the transformation of the Lower East Side, designed to fuel debate among guests. Discuss.
· The desk chair is by Arper, the sheets are Sferra and the towels are Columbian cotton.
· Many light fixtures are on a dimmer. This is good.
· Ice bucket gets filled at turndown.
· Fat Witch brownies on the bed. Not exactly a neighborhood treat, since they're made in Chelsea. Candy cigarettes would make more sense, right? Would it kill them to hit up Economy Candy?