A vacation in New York City doesn't exactly conjure up thoughts of quaint bed and breakfasts, but there are dozens of charming inns and B&Bs for those looking for accommodations a little more intimate than a 300-room hotel. Every borough* has something to offeryes, even Staten Islandbut there are plenty of options in well-traveled neighborhoods, too, like the Inn on 23rd Street in Chelsea, pictured above. Located in a five-story townhouse built around 1880, the Inn offers 14 individually styled rooms. The ceiling of the Maritime Room looks like billowing sails, while the Bamboo Room features Asian art and printed silk furniture. Breakfast is served daily in the library, and guests enjoy hotel-esque amenities like free wifi, in-room hairdryers, toiletries, and satellite TV.
The Sterling Bed and Breakfast just off of Franklin Avenue in Crown Heights is the type of place where neighborhood residents would want to spend their time relaxing. The B&B is owned and operated by an author and a photographer, and there's a large private garden and sitting lounge for all guests. The home boasts the type of details home-buyers drool over in historic townhouses, like original herringbone floors, French doors, and fireplaces. There are just three rooms, two in the main house and one in a separate private cottage that has its own porch, and rates range from $145 to $245 per night.
The city may be trying to lure tourists to Staten Island with a giant ferris wheel, but some people are ahead of the trend. On TripAdvisor, visitors praise St. George's Fort Place Bed and Breakfast, located just a few blocks from the ferry terminal. It's situated in a gorgeous Victorian home, features a lovely enclosed porch, and offers views of the harbor and the Verazzano Bridge. It's ideal for budget travelersrates for single occupancy start at $85 per night.
Upper Manhattan is littered with small inns and B&Bs, and one of the most well-reviewed locales is the Mount Morris House. An 1888 Gilded Age townhouse holds four spacious suites featuring parquet floors, carved ceilings, and original fireplaces. Lonely Planet says the breakfasts are "varied and bountiful," and the owners are present, friendly, and well-liked. Smaller suites start at $175, while the six-person apartment on the top floor, complete with a full kitchen, goes for $295 to $425.
The Akwaaba Mansion in Bed-Stuy's historic Stuyvesant Heights is arguably one of the most beautiful and unique homes in all of New York. The landmarked 1860s Italianate villa features an enclosed wrap-around porch and interiors with 14-foot ceilings, crown moldings, and carved fireplaces. Akwaaba sets itself apart from the city's other B&Bs by offering luxe services including in-room massages and jacuzzi soaks, plus the inn has a private yard with beautiful (and huge) chestnut and beech trees. A traditional southern breakfast is served every morning, and rates start at $185 for weeknights, $195 for weekends.
Located on a quiet tree-lined street just a few blocks from Prospect Park, the Lefferts Manor Bed & Breakfast brings country charm to Brooklyn. The five rooms in the main brownstone feature 1898 details like ornamental fireplaces, quarter-sawn oak parquet flooring, and gaslight medallions. Even the bathrooms feature original (but restored) elements like clawfoot tubs and antique glass shower doors. One downside: bathrooms are not en suite, but shared on each floor. That said, the Manor partnered with nearby friends in Prospect-Lefferts Gardens to offer full apartments in other townhouses. In the off season, rooms in the main house rent for as low as $79 per night, but during holidays they only go as high as $169.
On Avenue C between 7th and 8th Streets, there's a fun and funky B&C, the East Village Bed and Coffee. The ground floor, where the owner lives with her friendly dog, looks very much like a New York loft with exposed brick and high ceilings, but the seven themed guest rooms, from French to Dutch to Mexican, feel more like a cozy townhouse. Bathrooms are shared on each floor, but toiletries, hair dryers, and towels are provided. Each floor also has a full kitchen, there's a private garden, and guests are welcome to borrow the three house bicycles. Breakfast isn't provided, but dinner parties aren't unheard of.
The four-room Canal Park Inn opened on the northern border of Tribeca just over three years ago. Since then, it's wooed visitors from California to Canada and received glowing reviews from the Times of London and Huffington Post. The rooms in the 1826 house are named after the families who have lived there, and the beds and end tables in the rooms were built by the current owner. Exposed brick, beamed ceilings, fireplaces, and skylights add character, and ever room has a private bathroom. The top floor suite is a full apartment, with a kitchen, washer/dryer, and a private deck.
Prospect Heights is a friendly, unpretentious neighborhood, and the Sofia Inn on Park Place embodies those characteristics. Owner Billy Tashman has welcomed guests for 14 years, expanding his accommodations from just one room to four plus a garden apartment. The latter offers two-bedrooms, a full kitchen, a private bathroom, and has its own entrance, while the four guest rooms are outfitted with homey, comfortable furnishings and decor and share two bathrooms. The proximity to Prospect Park, multiple subway lines, and the Brooklyn Museum can't be beat, and rates in the off-season start as low as $100.
The Andrew Freedman Home on the Grand Concourse in the Bronx isn't exactly the most convenient of accommodations in New York City, but it's one of the most interesting. The grand French and Italian Renaissance-style building opened in 1924 as a private residence for the elderly and remained that way until 1984 when escalating costs forced it to close. Today, the landmark complex is an arts and cultural community center that offers five programs through the Andrew Freedman Complex Initiatives, including a 10-room bed-and breakfast called Freedman on the Concourse. The rooms pay homage to the building's 1920 heritage and feature lovingly restored furniture that was original to the house. Guests can visit the library and three event spaces, two of which host revolving art exhibits.
· Hotels Week 2014 [Curbed]
*Just because every borough has a few B&Bs doesn't mean they are the nicest B&Bs in the city. The options in Queens weren't that appealing, so none made the cut. Beg to differ? Leave your comments below.