HOTEL DEALS

New York at a Price That's Right

We've picked seven hotels as reliable, affordable places to stay in New York City.

New York City hotels charge nearly $300 a night on average. But with some persistence, it's possible to book a far more affordable place that's central, comfortable, and—sometimes—even charming. Be sure to plan well in advance. Most hotels recommend you make reservations at least one month before your arrival. Others encourage you to book months ahead. Some hotels require a certain minimum-night stay.

Some booking strategies
While not new, the blind-booking websites Priceline and Hotwire are terrific sources for discounted rooms in Manhattan (and elsewhere). These sites won't name the hotel (or airline or car-rental company) you're working with until your bid has been accepted and your credit card has been charged. But rest assured, these websites work with respected hotels, so you should receive a quality room in Manhattan if you bid on three- and four-star hotels. For help with your bidding, check out biddingfortravel.com and betterbidding.com, which are user's guides to Priceline and Hotwire.

Be sure to consider mid-market national chains such as Hampton Inn and Courtyard by Marriott, which have been moving into New York City. These hotels offer newly constructed buildings and often provide substantial breakfasts, unlimited local calls, and free Internet access in their lobbies. Best of all, these mid-market chains charge up to 30 percent less than comparable local independents. For more info, read our article New Hotels in New York City.

Still, there's the obvious trade-off: try as they might, hotel chains lack local character. If independently owned lodging with some personality is what you want, consider Budget Travel's picks for affordable New York City hotels.

ABINGDON GUEST HOUSE
'Hood The West Village, a downtown area with tree-lined streets and no skyscrapers. Landmarks include the Village Vanguard jazz club and chef Mario Batali's Babbo.
First Impression The English countryside meets the city in these two dainty, 19th-century town houses.
The Rooms Each of the nine rooms has tasteful features; the Garden Room, for example, has green walls, exposed brick, and an adjoining outdoor garden. Bathrooms are private, whether en suite or adjacent to a room.
Plus Quiet and discreet, with no lobby or front desk, the Abingdon feels more like your own pad than a temporary stopover.
Minus The Abingdon has a strict check-in policy; you must arrive by your appointed time. There's a two-night minimum stay on weeknights, and a four-night minimum stay on weekends.
Free Wi-Fi? Yes, in all rooms. (There's no public lounge.)
Credit Cards Accepted AmEx, MC, Visa.
Details 21 Eighth Ave., 212/243-5384, abingdonguesthouse.com, doubles from $189.
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THE CHELSEA LODGE
'Hood Chelsea is a midtown, semi-residential district best known for its galleries that showcase contemporary visual art.
First Impression This picturesque, 22-room town house charms with its quirky decor, including large wooden geese mounted to lobby walls.
The Rooms The immaculate rooms feel like country-chic escapes because of their rustic furniture and polished wood floors.
Plus Large windows, high ceilings, and soothing colors open up the small rooms.
Minus While there is a shower and a sink in every room, toilets are shared.
Free Wi-Fi? Yes, in guest rooms and public spaces.
Credit Cards Accepted AmEx, MC, Visa.
Details 318 W. 20th St., 800/373-1116, chelsealodge.com, doubles from $129.

THE COSMOPOLITAN HOTEL
'Hood Tribeca, the Triangle Below Canal Street, is an area defined by residential lofts. It lures fewer tourists than nearby, better-known SoHo.
First Impression This hotel works well for travelers who care more about their accommodations' address than the ambience. The hotel feels generic and suburban, despite its name.
The Rooms The 125 small rooms have basic furnishings and just enough space to be comfortable without feeling puny.
Plus The rooms' high ceiling fans add a homey touch to otherwise ordinary digs.
Minus Chambers Street can be noisy. Ask for a room in the back of the hotel.
Free Wi-Fi? Yes, in guest rooms and public spaces.
Credit Cards Accepted AmEx, MC, Visa.
Details 95 W. Broadway, 888/895-9400, cosmohotel.com, doubles from $190.
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AFFORDABLE NEW YORK

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Note:This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.
 

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