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Reviews (6,754)
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5,244 - 5,249 of 6,754 reviews
Reviewed 6 December 2012

I'm not the most seasoned traveller, but I've managed to stay in quite a wide spectrum of places, from Youth Hostels in the Australian Outback, through ex-Soviet apartment blocks in Ukraine, through to £350 per night Cotswold Hotels in the UK, and I can safely say that the Empire Hotel has given me the worse two nights sleep in my entire history of travelling.

My room was on the first floor, and fronted the busy Columbus Avenue. The window might as well not have been there - I heard everything, to people shouting, to bins being emptied, to cars accelerating from the junctions. No peace was found when the outside noise stopped for a few seconds, as the walls in the hotel are so thin one would assume rubbing a hummingbird feather on one side of a wall would be audible on the other. in addition, every few seconds a large click was heard from somewhere inside the wall - like a poorly configured grandfather clock's pendulum. I tried to turn off the 'vintage' air conditioner to see if that was the root cause, but no luck. Still click, click, click, like some kind of Chinese dripping-tea torture when you're trying to nod off.

And to add insult to injury, I noticed that yesterday all the pillowcases had brown or black smudges on them. Lovely!

As a business traveller, I simply cannot recommend this hotel to anyone who's planning to spend the day after doing something productive; I write this review bleary-eyed in my office with about 8 hours of sleep in total over the past couple of nights.

Good points? The burger from room service was pretty damn good, and the front-of-house staff were reasonably polite.

Room Tip: Sleep in the Subway Station instead. You'll get a better night's sleep.
  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Dave T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Joseph R, Manager at Empire Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2012

Dear Dave T

Thank you for the feedback from your most recent stay at The Empire. We take our guests feedback seriously and use it to improve the product and service we offer. I am disappointed to hear of the challenges you experienced during your time with us and sincerely apologize for the noise inconvenience. I have also shared your comments with our housekeeping management team. Please do not hesitate to contact me directly at jrauer@empirehotelnyc.com if I can be of any assistance. I sincerely hope we have an opportunity to welcome you back as I am confident your next stay will be a positive one.


Sincerely,

Joseph Rauer
Assistant General Manager
The Empire Hotel

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Reviewed 6 December 2012 via mobile

I booked a non smoking room and when I checked in they told me only smoking rooms were available. Then when I went to close the curtains before I went to sleep I noticed stains all over the place. This was not the quality that I expected at all.

  • Stayed: December 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Stephanyj328
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 December 2012

I was just about to write the hotel a letter about my recent stay, but thought it might be more effective to simply warn others away.

I recently had a one-night stay at The Empire. It was my second stay at the property, which is one of the preferred properties of my company. My first stay was unfortunate, loud, and tainted by really lackluster service. However, last week's stay was tear-inducing.

Like @alsmith031's post below, I showed up for my non-smoking reservation and was "tricked" into a smoking room on the 4th floor. When I called to ask to be switched, I was told that no other rooms were available. (Even though I had checked in late, and had a mere one-night reservation.)

When I physically went to the front desk with my luggage, they miraculously found another room. This time, I was placed in a shoddy room on their first floor. Shoddy, dark, and depressing. But, hey, it's just for one night - what could go wrong?

Well, the room was so dark that I had to download the flashlight app to my iPad in order to just work the thermostat. And, in trying to get the temperature right, I learned that a window was open. I closed the window, and then learned that it didn't lock. Neither did the other window. Did I mention that I was on the 1st floor? (The 1st floor is actually their 3rd floor, but the windows here open directly onto a rooftop that is easily accessible.)

I called down about this. Maintenance came to my room and had to physically bend the window frames so that they would close and lock. They said, disbelievingly, "these windows have never been locked." Which means that the hundreds of other people who have used that room - let alone the other rooms on that floor - have had their personal safety, and the security of their property, at risk over this shoddy construction and oversight. I get it that buildings settle, and windows shift; but do something to secure the safety of your clients.

I also believe that my deadbolt didn't work. They sent maintenance down about that, and he assured me it was working. But I didn't have confidence in the explanation, and wound up moving furniture to block the door so I could sleep.

I will never stay here again. My traveling companion also had a horrible stay. Staff did not seem to have empathy (though I did get a nice note from the overnight manager), and certainly did not have the empowerment needed to make customers happy.

I would prefer sleeping on a friend's couch over staying here ever again.

Room Tip: Avoid the whole property. Certainly avoid the 1st floor. And, if you're a non-smoking, don't let them trick you into the 4th floor (which is smoking).
  • Stayed: November 2012, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Gemutlichkeit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Joseph R, Manager at Empire Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2012

Dear Gemutlichkeit,

Thank you for taking the time to review your recent stay on Trip Advisor. As Assistant General Manager, your experience is a concern to me. I can assure you that guest safety and comfort is our highest priority at The Empire. Please email me directly at jrauer@empirehotelnyc.com to discuss your experience further. I look forward to your reply.

Sincerely,

Joseph Rauer
Assistant General Manager
The Empire Hotel

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Reviewed 5 December 2012

I stayed at the empire for a week. The room was a good size, but they were very hot. The maid service was very gd every day. We went up to the rooftop bar on the Friday night where there was a fashion show and it was a very gd night, just very expensive. The hotel is only a couple of minutes away from Central Park and about 15 mins walk to Times Square. Subway just outside the hotel goes straight to Times Square, penn station and battery park. All in all I was very happy with the hotel.

Stayed: November 2012, travelled with friends
Thank Steve M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Joseph R, Manager at Empire Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 12 December 2012

Steve M,

Thank you for sharing feedback from your most recent stay at The Empire. I am delighted to hear you enjoyed the location of the hotel, the size of your room, and the service provided by our housekeeping team. I will certainly share your comments with our staff. I look forward to welcoming you back to The Empire.

Regards,

Joseph Rauer
Assistant General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 December 2012

During my two night stay at this property (invited by a New-York company so I will not comment prices), I suffered from the noise coming from corridors. Room doors are very old, and there is a free space between the bottom of the door and the floor, making all the noise freely flow from corridor to room, or the other way. Room doors also make a lot of noise when guests close them. Although check-out time is noon, housekeeper knocked at my door at 8 am on departure day to see whether she could handle my room. I should have placed the "do not disturb" sign on the door but... such sign was missing in my room. Also a lot of noise coming from outside (AC and so on). To sum up, I have found it difficult to rest and have privacy in my room.
Otherwise, the bathroom was rather small and the shower lacked pressure while water temperature kept changing . Breakfast buffet was pretty basic. Elevators were working but as I was on the 10th floor I had to wait long to get one. Bedding was very good.
I was surprised to see as the hotel tries to charge for everything, but I guess it is usual in NYC... 7$ for a very small bottle of water in the room? Electric adaptators that are usually lent for free at other properties have to be bought here (and of course, there is no non US plugs in the room even for an electric shave in the bathroom). I bought WiFi access in the room but notice that free Wi-Fi is available in the hall.
To sum up, I doubt I would come back to this hotel especially should I pay for it.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled on business
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Eric_Beylon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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