A new luxury, eco-friendly hotel about to open its doors near New York’s Central Park will offer yoga mats in every room, a lobby farmstand, even a sand timer that gently encourages guests to take short, five-minute showers.
The new brand, 1 Hotels, is a big departure for parent company Starwood, whose portfolio includes opulent chains like W Hotels, the St. Regis and Le Meridien, for which sustainability is an after-thought behind luxurious guest experiences.
When the 1 Hotels Central Park opens at the end of the month, the location will mark the flagship for the brand, whose other properties include South Beach and Brooklyn Bridge Park.
Designed by AvroKo Hospitality, the hotel is built with natural and repurposed materials and will be immediately identifiable on the streets of New York by a three-storey living wall of English ivy climbing the exterior of the building.
Materials used include beams and timbers sourced from local barns and factories, brick, marble, stone and glass, while natural fabrics and earth tones throughout the hotel aim to create a zen-like atmosphere.
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Yoga mats are made available in every room, which is stocked with hangers made from recycled paper and conspicuously absent of plastic, in-room phones and paper.
Instead, small chalkboard tablets - the old-fashioned kind, not of the digital variety - are placed on the bedside table for note-taking.
Guests sleep on hemp-blend Keesta mattresses covered with hypoallergenic, organic linens, and bathrooms come with five-minute sand timers to help eco-minded guests conserve water.
In its attempt to attract wealthy but environmentally conscientious travellers, the hotel also offers Tesla electric car services, a complimentary bike valet and complimentary parking for guests who drive electric cars themselves.
And celebrity US chef Jonathan Waxman will bring his signature California cuisine to the hotel at JAMS restaurant, while a lobby farmstand will set up shop in the hotel to bring local, seasonal fruits and vegetables to guests in the middle of the city.
Rates for 1 Hotel Central Park start at $525 USD (A$715).
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