Wyndham Garden Chinatown – Manhattan, NYC Review

image from Wyndham's website
Destination: Chinatown in Manhattan, NYC
Date: July 2016
Hotel: Wyndham
Brand: Wyndham
Elite Status: none (booked on TravelZoo)
# of travelers: 2
nights: 2

Making the Decision

I saw a great deal for a hotel on Extreme Hotel Deals for a hotel in NYC on July 4th, 2016 and I jumped! :) But then they cancelled on me. :( I wasn't prepared for my trip to be abruptly cancelled like that, so I scoured the web for other awesome deals and stumbled across the Wyndham Garden in Chinatown, and decided to go for it. A room with a balcony in NYC for approximately $200 a night during a holiday weekend? Sure! Why not? I like views from my hotel room! :)


Getting There, Location

We flew into Newark Liberty Airport and subway-ed our way from New Jersey to Manhattan. With our stay lasting only a few days, we had very little luggage, so the experience wasn't too much of a hassle. The worst part was getting off at our last subway stop and walking what seemed like forever to find our hotel.

Yes, the hotel is a little ways away from the subway, but it's not that far. Actually it just seems pretty far when you don't know where you are going. Luckily, we found the hotel, so that was good. :)

The hotel itself doesn't really stand out in Chinatown, apart from the neon green sign displayed over the doorway and even that seems kind of fitting for the area. As you arrive at the corner of Hester and Bowery, you will notice (and possibly hear) people eating at the hotel's outdoor restaurant located just to the left of the entryway.

Of course, the hotel's outdoor restaurant (or even the indoor bar) aren't your only options in the Manhattan area of Chinatown. You will also find various markets along the street, Chinese restaurants (of course!) and cute little bakeries where coffee and pastries are sold for pennies on the dollar. If you are visiting NYC on a budget, this area of town is a great place to go! :)


There wasn't much to the whole check-in process. I had printed the receipt, so we showed the front desk clerk and then were given the key to our room.
We passed by an ornate cat decoration that was the size of a person(!) and a lotto poster as we headed to the elevator and stairway. (They are side by side. It took us forever to figure out exactly where the stairway was!)

Room, View, Amenities

Because we had paid for a room with a balcony, I wasn't surprised to have an outdoor space connected to the room; I was, however, surprised to find that the outdoor space was large and spacious and going the full length of the hotel with doors all along the way leading to other hotel rooms. (In other words, if you are concerned about privacy or worry that your luggage may be stolen, use the curtains the hotel provides and make sure to lock your glass door, so that no unwelcome guests enter your

Note: In our entire time at the hotel, we never noticed anyone else out on the balcony. We also never saw anyone sneaking a peek into our room. Really it just comes down to preparing for the worst and hoping for the best. Just because we didn't experience it, doesn't mean it doesn't happen.

Our hotel room was big and spacious. We had plenty of room to spread out. And while we were fairly certain it wouldn't be a problem, we even took the time to look for bed bugs, of which none were found. YAY! :)

The hotel provided soaps and shampoos in the bathroom as well as a fridge, closet space, hair dryer, iron + board, and safe. They even had coffee and tea!

It should be mentioned though that this is one of those "environmentally conscious" hotels. Unless necessary, they remade the bed with the same sheets and did not change out your bath towels for new unless you informed them you needed new. It didn't effect our stay (for all of two nights!), but if that kind of thing effects your stay, you may want to think twice before coming here.

Also, one more tip, for families, the shower lights can be seen in the bedroom. Basically this means that the shower itself has a film on it preventing people from seeing EVERYTHING, but you can still see a vague shadow of where people are in the bathroom (based on the light). Of course, we were in a king bedroom. If you find yourself in a room with double beds, this may not even be an issue. Just keep it in mind when you are booking. On the bright side, if everyone showers during the day no bathroom light is needed … and no shadows! Voila! Problem solved! :)

Check Out

The Wyndham Garden Chinatown charges a fee for holding luggage, and since Justin and I were just transferring to another hotel, we decided against late check out, and, instead, checked out early. Like check-in, everything went smoothly. We had the man at the front desk our key and he asked if everything was alright? We responded yes, he gave us a receipt, and we were on our way, lugging our luggage through the city for the second time since our arrival to New York City.

view from room (without going out onto balcony)

Overall Review

★★★ (average)

One of the most charming aspects of this hotel was it's location which could easily be accessed via subway, taxi, bus, or even rental car (though they do not offer free parking! … or any parking, really, aside from typical NYC street parking.) We were within a couple hundred feet of a park, and we loved getting up in the morning and having $5 worth of pastries and coffee between the two of us, enough to keep us full and going until practically dinner! :) Downtown Manhattan was easy to access (even walkable) and Little Italy (with some of the best tasting pizza!) is closer than I can even describe. Even the lovely balcony added it's own unique charm to the hotel (though definitely not luxurious. If you want chairs, bring your own. And the view, depending on how up in the building you are, may or may not be worth it.

As for the rest of the hotel "package", it was mostly mediocre. Neither amazing and life-changing nor a dump.

My guess is, if you want a hotel with a balcony in NYC, you probably want a view. And you have a chance at getting a "poor-man's view" if that's all you can afford, at this hotel, which is not bad, but it's not a view of the Hudson, the New York/New Jersey skyline, or even the Empire State building. It is just a view of a bunch of other buildings…

And the room, while large, is just a place where you sleep. There are no luxurious, expensive furniture pieces in the room. Just plain Jane, run-of-the-mill, necessary hotel furniture.
For the right price, sometimes that's all you need.

NYC art

Your Turn

When I was growing up, my dad always chose the cheapest rooms at the cheapest hotels, claiming "it's just a place where you lay your head". However, I think in times since, hotel sanitation has come into question with things like bed bugs, for example, and whether or not a hotel actually cleans the sheets between each hotel guest. Of course, they have not proven that more expensive hotels are cleaner than cheap hotels.

Given the change in people's interests and the question of whether or not the price of a hotel makes a difference in how sanitary a hotel is, would you consider staying in a cheaper area of town so that you could afford a better room? … or experience a city's way of life more uniquely? Do you think there is a risk involved in staying in a cheaper hotel in a big city? What are some positives and negatives you can think of for staying in, for example, New York's Chinatown, versus somewhere closer to Manhattan? (Or maybe you can think of a better example closer to where you live?)

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