The SoHotel is centered in the pulsing heart of downtown New York. Photo: SoHotel
It’s no secret that hotel rooms in New York are expensive, but there are deals to be had if you know where to look. And these deals are not limited to far-flung locations or flea-bag motels.
In fact, even in the city’s most popular areas, you can find nice accommodations that won’t break the bank—and because these cheap hotels tend to be small outfits, they often offer homey charms or funky quirks that will make your stay even more memorable.
Here, the best cheap hotels in New York, by neighborhood.
Once a palace for Broadway royalty, the Mayfair maintains hints of its former glamour. Photo: The Mayfair
Doubles from $100
Bustling Times Square is often top on the lists of visitors to New York, and although many locals avoid its chaos, the area has a lot to offer as a home base: It’s central, well connected for transport, and then there are those bright lights of Broadway.
For that reason, it’s also chock-full of overpriced hotels, but there are a few gems in the mix that will let you sleep in the action and still be able to afford tickets to a show. Formerly a haunt of Broadway starlets, the Mayfair today is a bit frayed around the edges, but it’s also a comfortable, friendly, affordable sleep—and one that shares a block from two Broadway theaters.
The Hotel 17 enjoys an enviable location in the quiet of Gramercy and near busy Union Square. Photo: Hotel 17
Doubles from $79
Not only is Union Square an incredibly central and convenient home base (within walking distance of some the city’s most popular areas and with access to myriad major subway lines), but it’s also an attraction in itself—home to a fabulous Farmers Market, a Christmas Market around the holidays and great people-watching throughout the year.
Tucked away among the Victorian mansions of tony Gramercy Park, the Hotel 17 offers a quiet respite with cozy, old-fashioned rooms (and shared bathrooms) within blocks of the action. On your way to Union Square you can stop for a stroll along Irving Place, a charming street lined with restaurants and cafés (stop for a treat or affordable lunch at Irving Farm Coffee Roasters).
The Hotel @ Times Square is a friendly Midtown base. Photo: Hotel @ Times Square
Doubles from $119
While it’s only a few blocks from Times Square, The Hotel @ Times Square is actually closer to Rockefeller Center than it is to its eponymous attraction. A straightforward hotel with a few fun details (like a historic letter shoot and free breakfast) is a great base for exploring all things Midtown, including Grand Central Terminal, Bryant Park, Radio City Music Hall and the Museum of Modern Art.
The SoHotel has a cool vibe to go along with its cool location. Photo: SoHotel
Doubles from $100
Centered in the beating heart of Downtown Manhattan, the SoHotel is a cheery spot with exposed-brick walls and pops of color. From here you have easy access to the shops of Soho and the nightlife and restaurants of the Lower East Side, plus Little Italy and Chinatown.
The Comfort Inn Central Park West places you within steps of Central Park. Photo: Comfort Inn
Doubles from $89
It may not be high on style, but what it lacks in atmosphere the Comfort Inn Central Park West makes up for in location. Situated just off of Central Park, the budget hotel is surrounded by the opulent homes of the Upper West Side, as well as major attractions like Lincoln Center, the American Museum of Natural History and the New York Historical Society. The quiet, tree-lined streets will give you a taste of living like a local, and there are many great restaurants nearby too.
A block from the High Line, the Chelsea Highline is both fun and funky. Photo: EuroCheapo
Doubles from $75
Offering both shared dorms and private doubles, the Chelsea Highline is simple with a dash of style. It’s also well placed for strolling the High Line Park or running (and sunning) at Hudson River Park by day, and dining and partying in Chelsea and the Meatpacking District by night.