Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Forums Hotel loyalty schemes IHG One Rewards InterContinental New York – which one?

  • Richard Peters 171 posts

    Peeps looking to book a surprise trip to NYC for wife’s birthday.

    Which is better the I/C in Times Square or the I/C Barclay and why based on your experience?

    TIA

    TGLoyalty 484 posts

    Any reason why it must be an IC rather than other IHG property?

    Also what’s your expectation of better?

    Do you have Royal Ambassador for example that gets you lounge benefits etc

    Rob
    HfP Staff
    2,196 posts

    Time Square has decent views if you are high up. However the owner is desperate to leave IHG – it has filed lawsuits to break the management agreement, which have been rejected I think – and I’m not sure what state it is in.

    Biggest issue = zero public space. It is the definition of a bed factory.

    You walk in, there is a reception desk and the lifts. That’s it. You probably have more circulation space in your living room.

    Barclay was refurbed recently and is ‘old school’ – a huge lobby, big open areas across the ground floor etc. No real views as its fairly low rise compared to neighbours. Quieter location (just north of Grand Central, close to Waldorf Astoria) with no Times Square madness, although the IC is not directly on Times Square.

    I might take a top floor room at TS, for the views, over the Barclay but otherwise it would be the latter.

    Richie 966 posts

    IC Ts Sq is good for the edgy night life in Hell’s Kitchen, IC B’clay is good for Grand Central high end drinking opportunities and flexing the credit cards along Fifth Avenue.

    I have not stayed at the IC B’clay since the refurbishment.

    BA Flyer IHG Stayer 2,033 posts

    Rob wrote a review of the Barclay but it’s from 2016 so take that into account.

    https://www.headforpoints.com/2016/07/15/review-intercontinental-barclay-new-york-hotel/

    Phil H 11 posts

    I stayed at IC The Barclay in June last year and really enjoyed it, for the reasons already mentioned. Traditional hotel, large public spaces, good location. I would stay there again. Free breakfast as Diamond was excellent.

    Parklife 6 posts

    Any experience of connecting rooms at either of these?

    Richard Peters 171 posts

    Any reason why it must be an IC rather than other IHG property?

    Also what’s your expectation of better?

    Do you have Royal Ambassador for example that gets you lounge benefits etc

    OH likes the IC brand and have Diamond Status

    NorthernLass 7,420 posts

    Any experience of connecting rooms at either of these?

    If you’re travelling with children, my experiences at the ICs in Boston and Washington DC have been that if you can wangle an upgrade (paid or otherwise) they have immense one-bedroom suites which are ideal for families and much cheaper than booking 2 separate rooms. Not sure how the NYC properties would match up here as rooms might be smaller and management less generous!

    Richard Peters 171 posts

    IC Ts Sq is good for the edgy night life in Hell’s Kitchen, IC B’clay is good for Grand Central high end drinking opportunities and flexing the credit cards along Fifth Avenue.

    I have not stayed at the IC B’clay since the refurbishment.

    Thanks for the inside knowledge Rob and feedback from others and methinks it will be B’clay. Probably make a points booking and see if any crazy offers come out between now and November

    Parklife 6 posts

    Any experience of connecting rooms at either of these?

    If you’re travelling with children, my experiences at the ICs in Boston and Washington DC have been that if you can wangle an upgrade (paid or otherwise) they have immense one-bedroom suites which are ideal for families and much cheaper than booking 2 separate rooms. Not sure how the NYC properties would match up here as rooms might be smaller and management less generous!

    Older children so even a suite upgrade would not be workable as sharing a bed would be intolerable for me!

    NorthernLass 7,420 posts

    You don’t need to share beds if there’s a sofa bed in the (separate) living room, which is often the case. If 2 older children don’t want to share, ask them to put an additional rollaway in. The suite we got in BOS was bigger than some apartments people live in and had 2 bathrooms. Cost me roughly 60k points per night plus $160 pn night upgrade fee, which was still loads cheaper than the cash price of a 2nd room.

    Aston100 1,370 posts

    Stayed at the IC Times Square at New Years 2021.
    Would not stay again.
    Cold & indifferent robot-like staff; stingy about everything; rooms are dated (but in good condition).

    Though to be fair, Rob is exaggerating about the space, unless of course he is comparing it to the country estate that HfPrs obviously all own.

    K3v 27 posts

    I’m staying at the ic times square later in the year. Chose it over the barclay for the views and that I had read the sound proofing at the barclay could be an issue.

    Richard Peters 171 posts

    IHG website only offering lower floors so relying on upgrade for a decent view so gone with B’clay for now until summer sale 🙂

    Shazza12 47 posts

    Stayed 4 nights last April at IC Times Square using points, bookd standard room, emailed manager to say it was a birthday trip and got upgraded to King Premium Corner Midtown View on the top floor. Views were amazing. No resort fee charged on points stay.

    Richard Peters 171 posts

    Safely back from NYC and the IC at Barclay certainly delivered though as Veterans weekend, the only upgrade was up to a top room! As Diamond Elite we were given breakfast in the club lounge which was great and access in the evening for drinks and pre dinner snacks which were also very pleasant. Great room and location though lifts painfully slow,

    Only issue was the “Amenity Fee” 0f 39.50US$ plus taxes which in my jet lagged state I agreed to! Queried the following morning only to have the benefits restated which I explained were of no real benefit as I was Diamond Elite but no movement.

    On checking out, I again explained that this “amenity fee” was just additional hotel revenue of no benefit to me! This time having seen our limited use of the bar was only on arrival (why would you go there if free wine and nibbles in the lounge) they agreed to waive the daily fee apart from the night we used the bar!

    On the basis that shy bairns get nowt, don’t just accept it if you have status. All booked with points and no local taxes applied.

    Fwiw the fee bought you:
    $25 fnb daily credit
    $20 laundry credit
    $50 club credit
    Free local calls
    10% off local bakery
    10% off local chocolate shop
    15% discount at Bloomingdales

    which may be useful to some but not us on our short splash n dash.

    Went to NYC on 241 ex NCL and very impressed with ease of NY check in (comfy chair anyone?) and the Soho lounge

    Guernsey Globetrotter 583 posts

    Glad you had a good trip and avoided the legionnaire’s disease Richard!

    These resort fees are getting out of hand, so well done for standing up to this gouging 👏

    Richard Peters 171 posts

    Glad you had a good trip and avoided the legionnaire’s disease Richard!

    These resort fees are getting out of hand, so well done for standing up to this gouging 👏

    I did email about 6 weeks before and they confirmed that hotel had been given clean bill of health by whoever deals with that in NYC

    NorthernLass 7,420 posts

    I think Rob or Rhys did an article once on staying at an NYC hotel and managing to use everything which was included in the resort fee!

    Richard Peters 171 posts

    @northernLass as they say over there I did the math but couldn’t make it work! As an update the first day amenity charge has now been waived as well.

    Forgot to add to post that best bit of trip was approval for global entry! Applied UK27/10, US form completed 1/11 and interview on arrival at JFK 9/11 for verification of basic details so farewell long airport queues 🙂

    HM007 27 posts

    Nice work 👍👍

    Mutley 9 posts

    Currently sitting in IC Times Square, upgraded to 33 floor corner room, free brekkie, late checkout till 16.00 and a $20 F&B credit, not bad for 53000 points per night, the IC Berkeley for the same nights was 100000. The reception area, bar, seems to have been enlarged in recent years, though not as grand as the Berkeley.

    Blair Waldorf Salad 1,080 posts

    I’ve just left the IC Barclay after a 5-night stay. With the club lounge access, it really is representing great value for me in New York. It’s 3 food spreads a day and since self-service, no tipping opportunity arises. Always booked on points and on this occasion averaging 43K pn. I also managed to treat local friends to dinner there as a way of burning through IHG F&B milestone rewards due to expire. Burning feels the right word as the modest cheesecake dessert was $17.

    BA Flyer IHG Stayer 2,033 posts

    What’s the alcohol policy there BWS?

  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.