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“Utterly refined and unique experience” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Surrey

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The Surrey
Ranked #54 of 467 Hotels in New York City
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
toronto
Level Contributor
24 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Utterly refined and unique experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 July 2012

I had the pleasure of staying at the Surrey recently for 3 evenings at the end of June.

The reservation process was frankly torture - they were running a 'promotion' online which, when you actually looked at it, was asking you to pay more than the regular room rate. This was perhaps an error, perhaps intended deception... However, once I raised the error with the manager, it was confirmed there was a pricing problem and the manager offered to assist. They didn't honour the appropriate rate, but did try to make it up all the same.

Regardless, this is an exceptional hotel. The public spaces are limited in scope, but provide a sense of intimacy that is a welcome relief to the 'grandeur' of other hotels in the area. The rooms themselves (we booked two) are utterly stylish, abundantly comfortable, spacious without fault and a perfect balance between decadence and comfort.

Service is beyond reproach. Yes, the bartenders in the main bar could use a less or two in politeness (and perhaps should avoid the use of the "f word" in front of patrons!) but this was utterly out of step with the rest of the service. Concierge was impeccable, and set up numerous reservations and appointments swiftly. Check in staff were gracious and pleasant. Doormen where cheerful and full of personality. Not stiff service, but friendly and immensely efficient.

New York hotels are a riot - and while this space certainly wouldn't appeal to scenesters seeking a downtown vibe, anyone looking for a glamorous and superb hotel on the upper east side can truly do no better. The management should be very proud of the level of service, and the owners of this property should appreciate just how special this hotel is. Bravo.

Room Tip: a "grand deluxe salon" is perfectly-sized, but try and get a corner one on the west side o...
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank pauljToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
skanagasingham, General Manager at The Surrey, responded to this review, 6 August 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your high praise and recommendation of The Surrey. We were truly delighted that we exceeded your expectations from our tastefully appointed décor, spacious accommodations and luxurious amenities.

Thank you for taking the time to speak with me and for allowing me to better understand the issue. We pride ourselves on providing our guests with a seamless reservation experience and I regret that we did not meet this standard with you. I was pleased to have spoken with you and correct our error as well as update our site so that we may avoid future such repeat occurrences.

I was extremely pleased to learn that you were so considerately and well-attended to during your time with us despite your less than stellar Bar Pleiades experience. I have shared your comments with Mr Dominique Paulin, General Manager of Café Boulud so that the appropriate training be provided to the team. I have personally thanked our Les Clefs d’Or Concierge team for having been able to cater to your needs with ease as well as our Door and Guest Services teams for having been successful in touching your heart and soul.

Once again, thank you for your recommendation, and we look forward to welcoming you back soon. In the interim, we remain at your service.

Sincerely,


Shan Kanagasingham
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (281)
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Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
20 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 July 2012 via mobile

I loved the private penthouse deck /bar for in house guests only. Wonderful place to relax in the summer. Overall excellent ,hotel that has improved greatly since reopening. Shan the GM is terrific. She gets it .

Stayed June 2012, travelled on business
Helpful?
4 Thank JamesSterlingTravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
, General Manager at The Surrey, responded to this review, 13 July 2012
Dear Guest,

I am humbled by your high praise and thank you for taking the time to share your comments from your recent stay with us.

Our interior architect, Lauren Rottet intended for our design to be reflective of our Upper East Side neighborhood, evoking the ambiance of a residential townhouse that has evolved over time and we are truly delighted that our tastefully appointed décor has exceeded your expectations.

We look forward to welcoming you home soon and in the interim, we remain at your service.

Sincerely,


Shan Kanagasingham
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
skip93
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 July 2012

was whisked away for a romantic night at this exquisite small boutique hotel on the upper west side of NYC, quiet, elegant service from the moment we drove up. All the staff were friendly and welcoming and we were surprised by the comfort and familiarity that we felt in just one evening. A perfect get away from the usual over done, large hotels in the city. Great location, with a beautiful intimate bar and rooftop setting, the room was stylishly furnished, with all the amenities, and we were pleasantly surprised by the champagne and chocolates left when they discovered our reason for the visit.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank skip93
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
skanagasingham, General Manager at The Surrey, responded to this review, 31 July 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for your glowing feedback from your recent romantic stay with us. We were pleased to learn that you have become such a fan of our Upper East Side gem.

We were truly delighted that you were most impressed with our prime location, tastefully appointed accommodations, luxurious amenities and Private Roof Garden. We pride ourselves on providing superior levels of intuitive and personalized service and I am proud to learn that our team members were so successful in touching your heart and soul.

We look forward to welcoming you home soon and in the interim, we remain at your service.

Sincerely,


Shan Kanagasingham
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
45 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 101 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 July 2012

We spent the last three days of June here, and absolutely loved the hotel building itself, and the location. But holes in the overall level of service left us less than 100% satisfied.

First of all, the hotel building. It is beautiful. There are nice little details in the room. Fine, Italian made toiletries. Great thick, large towels and robes. A fully stocked bar. A vast, deep array of cable channels with every movie channel you can imagine. The newspaper of your choice at your door every morning. Awesome hot water pressure in the shower. Windows that you can open. Two separate window shades – one for privacy, and one for complete blackout. All very nice.

But here’s our laundry list of annoyances:

1) Internet connection that is $15/day, or $60/week. For a room in this price range, it should be included. After paying this, you start to feel nickel and dimed.

2) Concierge not there when you need him. Our first night, we stopped by the concierge desk with a few basic questions. He was busy helping a non-guest of the hotel get onto the elevator, and then didn’t return to his desk. After standing there for over 5 minutes, on empty stomachs, waiting for him to return, we gave up and left. And shouldn’t a guest have a higher level of priority than a non-guest?

3) Doormen always otherwise engaged. It’s not that there’s an absence of doormen. But they always seem to be doing things other than opening the doors. Right after waiting for the Concierge to return, when we exited the hotel, I opened the door and other guests proceeded to enter the hotel – bags in tow – while I got stuck standing there, holding the door for them. Ten guest entries later, I was able to actually exit the hotel myself. No, I was not a doorman in a previous life. Nor do I desire to be one in this life.

4) Doormen who are not courteous in their use of the elevator. The next morning, after returning to the hotel after and early outdoor run, I entered the hotel visibly sweaty and hot. I got on the elevator, and pressed the button for my floor. The doorman quickly ran over and put his hand in front of the elevator door. I thought he was doing something helpful, like maybe hand me a towel. He then proceeded to, in slow and laggardly fashion, drag a very full baggage cart into this smallish elevator while I stood, waited, and sweated. We went up two floors, then I got to wait for him to go through the entire process in reverse as he unloaded. After all that, I was finally able to get up to my room. Now… there are TWO elevators. Why was it so important that he make me stand there waiting, dripping sweat in the elevator, while he went through this whole process. Seriously. Where is the courtesy and consideration for me as a guest who was simply wanting to get up to my room so I could towel off?

5) The roof deck doesn’t service the appropriate type of food, at the appropriate time of day. That night we stopped by the roof deck after dinner for a coffee and dessert. The roof deck is incredible, by the way, but more on that in a moment. We were informed that they could serve us coffee on the deck, but not dessert. But here’s the thing – they had to go downstairs to get the coffee. The location of the dessert? Downstairs as well. Why was it not possible to bring up desserts while bringing up coffee? It doesn’t make sense. Especially in a hotel that supposedly is “five star,” and is all about going “above and beyond” to service you as guests. So instead, we were offered “sliders.” Who in their right mind wants sliders with their coffee at 9:30 pm?

6) Our room request was essentially unmet. A few days before our stay, we received an email from the hotel, requesting our room preferences. We very clearly indicated that we preferred a room on an upper floor. When we checked in, we reiterated this request. Our room was located on the 8th floor (out of 16 floors). Not exactly an “upper floor.” If they are going to go to the effort of requesting preferences, they should go through an equal amount of effort in SATISFYING preferences. Otherwise, it really makes you feel like they are just going through the motions to make you FEEL like you’re going to get your preferences, even though you’re really not. (Note: To make matters worse, we had friends check in a day later. They did NOT request a high floor, and were shown to a room on the 16th floor.)

The mere fact that this is a beautiful hotel located on the Upper East Side does NOT necessarily this a five star hotel make! Yes, it’s a solid four star. But it is NOT a five star. If you go here with that expectation, you will, like us, be disappointed with the obvious holes in the service.

Having said all this, it must be mentioned that this hotel has one of the most spectacular roof top decks you will find anywhere in New York. Actually, it could be one of the best rooftop decks you will find in any large metropolitan area. The cityscape up there is incredible, day or night. There are rooftop gardens full of herbs, some of which are used in making various drinks. Bumblebees frequent the flowers, and make you feel like you are someplace completely removed from the concrete jungle below. The music is light and not too loud, creating a very pleasant environment. They do serve snacks – including the aforementioned “sliders.” Not exactly “five star” food, by the way. A serious upgrade in the level of food served up there is something this hotel should really consider.

If you are more successful in your effort to get the hotel to satisfy your requests than we were, you’ll end up in a room that ends in “09”. This will put you in a corner room that faces northwest. You’ll see the trees down the street in Central Park, and have tons of light in your room. The light in our room, and the rooftop deck, were probably the two things we enjoyed most about our stay in The Surrey.

To summarize: 5 star hotel building. 5 star location. 3 star service. Resulting in a net overall 4 star rating. That’s an HONEST assessment of this hotel.

Room Tip: Request a room ending in "09" to be on a well-lit corner, with exposure to both the north...
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank eilig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
, General Manager at The Surrey, responded to this review, 13 July 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to share your candid feedback from your recent visit. Please allow me to personally extend my sincere apologies for the service lapses and disappointment you experienced during your stay with us.

Rest assured I have discussed your feedback at length with our leadership team. This is certainly not indicative of the service levels that we pride ourselves on and we hope that you are able to forgive us for our shortcomings.

We will certainly take your feedback into consideration as we periodically review our pricing strategy for internet services. Mr Michael Dunbar, Director of Front Office is working on the consistency of door and concierge services to prevent future such guest dissatisfaction.

We regret that you were not offered dessert with your coffee. Mr Raymond Goulbourne, Food & Beverage Manager has since re-trained his team to ensure that we are intuitive to our guests’ needs at all times.

Please be advised that we do our best to honor guest preferences, but it is subject to availability.

I welcome the opportunity to further discuss this with you as I would welcome the opportunity to restore your faith and regain your confidence in us. I may be reached at 646.358.3605; I look forward to hearing from you and in the interim, we remain at your service.

Sincerely,


Shan Kanagasingham
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Quechee, Vermont
Level Contributor
162 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 June 2012 via mobile

Restaurant average, lounge better than average, roof-top lounge crowded, service quite good, friendly and capable staff. Rooms are spacious, comfortable and, actually, luxurious.
I might describe it as a Junior Carlyle Hotel. The real version is in the neighborhood, across Madison.

Stayed June 2012, travelled with family
Helpful?
2 Thank Norman W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
, General Manager at The Surrey, responded to this review, 2 July 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback from your recent stay with us. We were pleased that our close proximity to Central Park, tastefully appointed and luxurious accommodations were in keeping with your expectations. We pride ourselves on the gracious and warm service extended by our team members and we were incredibly proud to learn that we were so successful in achieving this with you.

We shared your feedback on Café Boulud and Bar Pleiades with Mr Dominique Paulin, General Manager so that he may address to ensure consistent service levels. WE appreciate your recognition of our team on our Private Roof Garden and they were pleased that they exceeded your expectations.

We look forward to welcoming you back soon. In the interim, we remain at your service.

Sincerely,


Shan Kanagasingham
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Surrey

Property: The Surrey
Address: 20 E. 76th Street, New York City, NY 10021-2643
Phone Number:
Region: United States > New York > New York City > Upper East Side
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Business Hotel in New York City
#12 Spa Hotel in New York City
#12 Romantic Hotel in New York City
#19 Green Hotel in New York City
#27 Family Hotel in New York City
#46 Luxury Hotel in New York City
Price range (per night): ₹ 26,988 - ₹ 57,841
Hotel Class:5 star — The Surrey 5*
Number of rooms: 189
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The #1 hotel in New York City as voted by the readers of Conde Nast Traveler, The Surrey is a discreet escape on Manhattan's Upper East Side Steps from Central Park, world-class museums, and Madison Avenue shopping, the hotel features Cornelia Spa and Daniel Boulud's Michelin-starred Café Boulud. It is New York City's only Relais & Châteaux hotel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Surrey Hotel New York City
Surrey Hotel New York City
Surrey Suite Hotel
Surrey New York City

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