36-hour Shopping Spree with a stay at The James

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The James Hotel

It’s the little things in life that make the biggest difference: a power strip for all your plug-ins, windows that open outward, free wi-fi, a carafe of fresh water, a fancy shaving mirror and a profound bedside book by Matteo Pericoli called “The City Out My Window.” Human touches that make The James Hotel so special.

I spent Friday night in room 503, a queen-size corner with ceiling-to-floor windows overlooking the rising of the One World Trade Center, formerly known as the Freedom Tower.

I enter the room exhausted from crawling through bottleneck traffic during rush hour. I drop my bags, toss open the shades and gape at the unobstructed cityscape of lower Manhattan.

Here I am in a sleek, new, minimalist hotel that’s proving to be anything but basic. Green initiatives surround me including in-room recycling, reclaimed wood floors and eco-friendly pillows.

The Anti-Minibar at The James Hotel

I turn around and take immediate notice of the bar.

No tacky mini-samples here, instead, a corner shelf of libations beckons my inner-mixologist. My choices include the locally-produced Tuthilltown’s Hudson Bourbon Whiskey, international favorite Grey Goose Vodka and Silver Patrón Tequila with a vintage cocktail shaker and other bar accouterments. Delicious perks include potato chips from the North Fork and haute candy bars.

Even with a shopping trip looming through Soho I’m reluctant to leave this upscale niche.

Now on cloud nine, I float into a high-tech bathroom with a glass wall overlooking the bed. With a touch of a button a computer-driven nature print by Dutch artist Nienke Sybrandy unfurls between the glass for privacy.

Other innovative art includes a Qwerty key installation in the lobby with an Urban Garden playing out the hotel’s environmental philosophies.

Guest Room with Shade
Guest Room with Shade

Located on the corner of Thompson and Grand, the pool deck and lounge on the 18th floor rooftop are popular places for guests and locals. It’s really swanky so access is limited to a ‘first-come, first serve’ basis.

Sound pretentious? Think again.

There’s a complimentary ‘pet-friendly’ dog dish in the lobby, bright orange bikes free to use and a hyper-helpful staff encouraging you to enjoy the cheese and wine happy hour. With everything that awaits you at The James Hotel including dinner at the adjoining David Burke Kitchen believe it or not, there’s little reason to go anywhere else when in Soho.

Complimentary Orange Bikes to See Soho