Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Hotel Review: Hyatt Place Flushing/LaGuardia Airport, New York

Last weekend, my family of 5 traveled to New York City on a quick "miles and points" getaway. I could not find a hotel in Manhattan for a reasonable amount of hotel points that would allow 5 of us to stay in one room, so I booked the Hyatt Place in Flushing (Queens) near LaGuardia Airport. It cost 12,000 Hyatt Gold Passport points a night (or it would have cost around $230 in cash per night). This is a bargain compared to the hotels in Manhattan that start at ~$600 a night for a room that fits 5.

This hotel just opened last year. It's located in Queens' original Chinatown.

Image from asianfusion-mag.com

When we arrived at LaGuardia Airport, I called the Hyatt Place for a free shuttle to the hotel. It arrived in ~10 minutes.

We ran into a major traffic jam leaving the airport, so the ride to the hotel took closer to 30 minutes. Check-in went quickly, and we headed up to our room that had 2 queen-size beds and a sofa bed.

Our room was on the 7th floor, and we could not hear any airport noise and hardly any street noise. When we looked outside our window to the left, we could see Manhattan.

Our view of Manhattan in the morning:

The hotel offers a free breakfast buffet that is standard at all Hyatt Place hotels. In addition to the standard breakfast fare of eggs, sausage, oatmeal, cereal, fruit, yogurt, toast, etc, the buffet also has an Asian food section. The breakfast seating area spans across two levels.

One of the coolest things about this hotel is the rooftop pool and lounge area. We went up to look on our first morning.

The pool is enclosed and heated and has a view of the city. (After two long days on our feet, we really wished the hotel had a hot tub!)

The hotel is located very close to a few baseball stadiums. This is the view from the window near the elevator.

The hotel is located just a 5-minute walk from the subway station (the 7 line) that goes directly to Times Square. It's about a 40-minute train ride. Easy peasy.

In addition to the numerous Asian restaurants nearby, there is also a shopping center 5 minutes away with an Applebees restaurant and a Subway restaurant. A McDonald's and Burger King are located right by the subway station. Plenty of food options nearby for picky kids.

During our stay we had a minor housekeeping issue. The housekeeping staff took away all the sheets and blankets from our beds, and they were still gone when we came back from Manhattan. When we returned from dinner, the two queen beds were put back together, but the blanket was missing from the sofa bed. We called down to the front desk to get another blanket. After 30 minutes went by, we called again for the blanket. It never came. I didn't want to keep calling because my kids were really tired and wanted to sleep. I turned up the temperature in the room and hoped for the best. Of course, my son who was sleeping on the sofa bed woke up in the middle of the night complaining of being cold. All of our towels were wet, so I covered him in his jacket and a small hand towel. Needless to say, I was up for 2 hours in the middle of the night and was grumpy the next morning.

I talked to the front desk staff about it in the morning. They were not sure what happened, but they sent a blanket up right away and gave me some hotel points and free drinks for our inconvenience. I really wasn't expecting anything except a new blanket, so I was really impressed with the customer service there.

The hotel's free airport shuttle runs back to the airport once every hour, so we reserved our time slot the evening before our flight.

If you have a family of 4 or less, you will probably find it more convenient to stay in Manhattan. But if you have a family of 5 or 6, the Hyatt Place Flushing/LaGuardia Airport is a great choice in terms of comfort, space and price. The 40-minute subway ride is really easy to do, but it does become cumbersome after a long day walking around Manhattan, and it makes it difficult to go back to your room to change for an evening show.

I'm glad we could stay at this hotel on points for free on this trip to New York City, and I would stay here again on a future trip.

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