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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Review of The Waldorf Astoria NYC

Earlier this month, I decided to use my Two FREE weekend nights that came with my Citibank Hilton card.  The two free nights are valid for almost any Hilton Hotel worldwide. They can be used for consecutive nights or they can be used individually.  As a newly appointed Hilton HHonors Diamond, I was curious to see what kind of room we would be assigned.  I earned my Diamond status strictly through credit card spending.  Hilton is the ONLY hotel chain to assign TOP tier status strictly for meeting a spending requirement.

I chose to use my two free nights for a family weekend in NYC in celebration of my oldest child’s  25th birthday.  We treated the “kids” to a Broadway show as well as some great family meals.  As the children get older, it becomes more difficult to spend quality family time. (Unless of course I’m paying for it!)  That’s one of the great things about the miles and points game.  It makes it so easy to bring others along with you in your travels. 

We stayed at the Waldorf Astoria on Park Avenue in the heart of the shopping district.  The Waldorf Astoria is like an older woman.  I might even go so far as to say that she is the MILF of the NYC hotels.  While she might not be as sexy as some of the younger boutique hotels, there’s just something about the grace and charm of an older woman.  Yes, maybe her cushions are a little worn, maybe they aren’t as firm as they once were, and she may be showing a few creases around the eyes when she smiles at you, but there is just something about her that makes you want to keep coming back for more of her classic beauty.

I reserved two rooms for a Saturday night in January.  The ride up to NYC from Philadelphia was an easy one.  There was no traffic.  I had a Groupon for $19 overnight parking in NYC.  We arrived at the hotel around 11 AM and headed straight for the Diamond check-in desk.  It was a private room off the main lobby where we were immediately taken care of. I had written an email in advance of our stay to the PR manager of the property.  I told Meg that I was a new  Hilton HHonors Diamond member and was hoping to get an upgrade to a suite or at least a room on a club floor.  To my surprise, we were assigned a 2 BDRM corner suite on the 24th floor facing Park Avenue.  Now that’s what I call sweet!  To top it off, the room was ready at 11:00AM when we got there.  Our Diamond host also gave us eight drink coupons for the four of us to celebrate my daughter’s birthday dinner that night. Drinks at the hotel were on the pricey side, but again this is NYC.  

The living room area was quite spacious, especially by NY standards.  There were two large couches, a large flat screen TV, a writing desk and what used to be a fireplace.  (Too bad it wasn’t a working one). 

I walked into the BDRM and was slightly disappointed that it was a Queen bed and not a King.  It was a very comfortable bed however.  

 The bath was again on the smaller side, but again this is NYC where space is at a premium.  Overall, the room was wonderful.

We dropped our bags and headed out to have lunch before the afternoon show.  We saw a show called “Old Jews Telling Jokes.”  The show originally started out as a website, that gained in popularity enough to make an off Broadway show out of it.  It was very funny and all of us had some great laughs. 

When we arrived back at the Waldorf after the show, to my surprise was a bottle of the Waldorf brand sparkling wine compliments of Meg.  Wow, what a nice surprise!

We decided that we were going to have dinner in the Hotel that evening at the highly rated Bull and Bear restaurant.  The kids were in heaven as soon as they brought out the fresh baked biscuits.  My son and I both ordered steaks and my wife and daughter both had seafood.  The steaks were done perfectly.  My daughter who is not a meat eater asked to try both our steaks!  She said it was so good, she was open to the possibility of eating steak again. 

We each had a couple of drinks with dinner courtesy of the eight drink coupons which we received at check-in.  I like free.  Dinner was around $350 for the four of us including taxes and tip.  Not bad considering it is a top rated steakhouse in NYC.  We didn’t stay for brunch the next morning at the hotel, but as they were setting it up, it looked fabulous.  

Overall, it was a wonderful time at the grand hotel.  My total cost for the overnight was solely related to our dinner.  The two BDRM suite, the 8 drink coupons, and the bottle of sparkling wine, all free.  We still have two free weekend nights from my wife’s sign up bonus on her Citibank Hilton card.  We may have to spend two more nights at the Waldorf in the Spring.  Next time it will be without kids and for two nights!


  1. Nice report. I just got the Hilton card myself. I will get the Diamond status. Not sure if I am as excited as you are on the Waldorf but I like the detailed review. I may use those nights overseas somewhere. Just got the Hyatt Chase card for the two nights in one of the very expensive Park Hyatts. I already stayed at Park Hyatt Tokyo and got a 1500 sq ft suite. Did a trade with another flyertalk member who was Hyatt Diamond. I stay alot at in NY at the Element Times Square Starwood property. You get a full kitchen in those rooms. Full stove, fridge etc. King beds only. Free breakfast for all. Good location near port authority between 38-39th st.

    1. I will parlay the Hilton Diamond status as I will be doing the Hyatt Diamond challenge in March