Running around the city means more than fulfilling special requests to Melissa Andrade. Concierge to The NoMad Hotel, Melissa doesn't just create memorable experiences for her guests, she’s training for the upcoming TCS New York City Marathon which can seen from her Instagram, and has usually completed her WOD before she starts creating her magic at The NoMad. Melissa is absolutely stunning, has a smile as bright as the sun, and somehow manages to add a flicker of inspiration for everyone she comes across. She even moonlights as a ghostwriter for beloved strangers (really, she is, just keep reading). If Wonder Woman had a sequel, Melissa would be a shoe in for the part. This young star won my attention for today’s feature and will undoubtedly save anyone from having anything less than an unforgettable experience.Read More
Chatting with Sanam was pure joy! She is extremely funny and witty, and her delivery brings you into her world as if you’re best friends catching up over a cocktail. She even shares her hilarious inner dialog of the countless NYC moments of her day to day on her Instagram. Sanam is also a talented photographer and has quite the knack for capturing the brilliance of the human experience. The Royal Treatments wouldn’t have the same meaning if Sanam were not in NYC at The Lotte New York Palace Hotel.Read More
Conrad New York’s Guest Relations Manager, Andrea Achunde, is the reason why so many people smile in Battery Park City. She wakes up to the world with clouds in her morning cup of coffee, and vanity is hardly her game. A woman about town, this humble spirit is guaranteed to make you laugh from the belly and is always on the lookout for the newest restaurant in NYC. Andrea is extra special to our series this week because she not only handles the general guests of the hotel but is the point person for all of Conrad’s VIP guests, and manages to make sure everyone feels her extraordinary energy. Find out why in our interview below:
What would you say is a secret to your formula of bringing the magic that comes with your role? If I were a visitor in NYC, why would I call Angela first?
I am such a New York fanatic that anyone who meets me knows this in an instant. I wanted to live here my whole life, and now that I do, l truly love being a part of it. Dorky, but true. I still listen to Carly Simon’s, “Let the River Run” every morning on the train because it makes me feel really cool and really excited to go to work. Again, dorky, but true. But I know my guests appreciate the passion and enthusiasm I have for them to love New York as much as I do.Read More
There’s nothing new under the sun. History repeats itself. Cliché’ Cliché Cliché. It seems more often than ever what’s deemed something new and fresh is often a recycled idea from a previous generation glossed over. I’ve always admired visionaries whose creations not only continue to stand apart from the successions of inspiration but continue to evolve from their monumental points of fame. Where am I going with all of this? Well, this week I ventured down to Tribeca to visit the art gallery, Bortolami, and experienced a trifecta of timeless creativity from Barbara Kasten. A well-respected octogenarian, Barbara has been pushing the envelope of space since the early 1970’s.Read More
There is no reality in hospitality without people to create the interaction. Of course, beautiful spaces and well-curated scenes are part of it, but ultimately it’s the people you engage with that make the difference in your experience. The entire staff ofPublic was lovely. However, two specific moments during my visit created a lasting memory for me.
Upon entering Public, I was initially Trade by the tiers of Dahlias bursting with a vibrant warm fall pallet. The faint aroma ofCinnamon Projects Incense is noticeable only after crossing the threshold. Front and center was a brass bicycle, custom and handcrafted, making me think twice about the bike I keep in my flat. Hector Perez, Trade’s boutique manager was extremely welcoming. Casually chic with black and gold frames, Hector gave the type of greeting where you know he’s not just sales clerk, but genuinely friendly.Read More
James Perse - California Dreamer
This week I’ve been inspired by warm, luxurious minimalism and mixing unexpected textures. The first person that came to mind when planning my visit to Public was James Perse. Why? He’s a master at creating every day, comfortable clothing that’s not too fussy and incredibly luxe. Comfortable? Absolutely. Frumpy? Impossible.
What I most appreciate about James Perse is the way he uses architectural inspiration to make his signature clean lines from plush, soft fabric. It’s almost as if he took a page from Luis Barragán’s handbook when designing his clothes. I’m a man about town, and while I love a well-tailored suit, I often prefer to wear things that can keep up with my pace of riding the waves of my day-to-day. It’s hard to find men’s clothing with the structure and softness of Perse.Read More
Anyone who knows me understands my affinity to Ian Schrager and his vision over his career. I’ve enjoyed being his hotels around the world over the years and was anticipating experiencing his newest project, Public Hotel. Overlooking Sara Delano Roosevelt Park, the hotel pairs the gritty characteristics you’d expect from the Lower East Side of Manhattan with a luxe gloss only Mr. Schrager can deliver.Read More
One of my favorite places in New York City, hands down, is the Four Seasons Hotel. It’s known all over the world for delivering the best service and accommodations you’ll find. It was no surprise that after speaking with their Concierge, Clancy O’Connor, the magic only the Four Seasons offers comes from the collaboration of experience and the creative thinking of their team. If you’re as lucky as I was when talking with him, Clancy may even sing a freestyle melody right on the spot. It’s one of the added talents he discovered while studying at Juilliard. If anything, you’ll surely be glad to read the insight Clancy gives in delivering a charmed New York experience.Read More
Franziska Maeder – Hotel Concierge at The Beekman Hotel
This week I took a venture down to one of the most historic downtown neighborhoods in New York City to spend time talking to Franziska Maeder of the Beekman Hotel. The Beekman is one of the most amazing restorations you’ll ever see in the city. It is the ultimate display of time traveling between spaces. I knew Franziska, affectionately known as Ziska, would be a joy to chat with. Ziska personifies what loving life is really all about. She starts her mornings with meditations and finds daily inspiration through the power of love, music, and traveling. She’s not afraid of enjoying the best pasta and loves the color red as much as she does children. Ziska shared some gems as to why she is one name that you should definitely remember!
What would you say is a secret to your formula of bringing the magic that comes with your role? If I were a visitor in NYC, why would I call Ziska first?
To be honest the magic is to be able to read the people that you have in front of you. Regardless of what kind of connection you have on a personal level you know exactly how to make them happy and that’s why we are “magicians”. I am able to provide the guests with options they haven’t even thought about. Not just because of the inside information I have, but also from the information I’ve gained after living here for so long.Read More
Whenever traveling to a new city, regardless of whether I’m staying at a luxury hotel with an upscale concierge or not, I always make a point to call the best concierge in the city. It doesn’t matter if I’m a guest in their hotel or not, I always ask for recommendations. I’ve yet to be steered wrong as they are always on point.
Hotels have a number of ways to make the most of your stay and most have some form of an app to help you prepare everything before you even arrive. However, there’s something to be said about knowing the lay of the land with the intention of making the most of your trip that personal touch that only a concierge can deliver.
I took some time to chat with Waldo Hernandez of the Carlyle Hotel in New York City. He is one of my favorite concierges in the city and even contributes weekly recommendations to the hotel’s Instagram account @thecarlyle. I was lucky enough even to charm him into sharing one of his secrets to the magic he’s known to deliver for his guests.Read More