Subject: Re: NYC hotels
HI Nelly,

If memory serves me right, you're coming to NYC and will have some Dr. appt's on the East side, right? I also don't recall if you'll be travelling alone. It sounds as if you're very unfamiliar with NYC, so I'm going to give you recommendations based on that.

First off, let me compliment you on your research. You've done a great job of selecting some fine NYC hotels.

I'd eliminate the Beacon, the Michelangelo and the Mayflower. I think they're all in inconvenient locations for you and I've heard some not great reviews about the Mayflower.

So, we're down to 3 excellent choices. I looked them all up on a NYC website.

The best thing about them all is that all three are on Lexington or 3rd ave. What's nice about this is that there are many buses that go up 3rd and down Lexington Ave. So even if you're planning on taking cabs, if you can't get one (rush hour, bad weather, etc) you can always hop the bus. Additionally, all of these hotels are on the upper east side and in pricey real estate area's hence I think you'll feel safe here. Again, anything can happen anywhere and you should always be on guard, but these area's are quite good.

The Franklin - 87th between 3rd and Lex. Personally, l loved the look of the rooms. I like the fact that there is free cappuccino and bottled water and movies. Saves you a lot of money in incidentals.

You're within walking distance of Central Park, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney and the Guggenheim Museums. You are not that close to any of the big department stores - easily accessible by bus or taxi, but too far to walk with packages. This area is the most residential of the three.

The Melrose - 63rd and 3rd. 3 blocks from Bloomingdales and near lots of restaurants - both upscale, cafe's and little take-away spots. Hotel is on top of one the best gyms in NYC (the Equinox). The hotel is formally the famous Barbizon Hotel for Women and was always popular because of it's location. The 57th Street bus runs crosstown so it's easy to get to the west side if you like. This area will probably have the most people and foot traffic on the streets.

Kimberly - 50th between 3rd & Lex. Also a good area, but because it's more midtown, will have more office buidings and less people walking around at night. Less nice little cafe's and more business restaurants and cheap lunch take-out for office workers. But still a good area. Only 2 Ave blocks to Sak's 5th Ave and Rockefeller Center. 49th Street bus runs west and 50th Street bus runs east. You're near the NY Health &Racquet Club which is a very nice gym though not as chic at the Equinox.

I think your choice might be made on how much time you'll be spending in your room too. If you'll be having some medical procedures and spending a lot of time in your room, then you might prefer the Franklin. I also thought their rooms were gorgeous while the rooms at the Melrose looked a bit cold. But then, that's just an opinion based on personal taste. The Franklin looks like the kind of place where you'll get a lot of personal attention. However, if you're going to a few Dr. appt's and then running around the city shopping, eating, and doing the town I think I'd choose the Melrose.

Again, all three are excellent choices and I don't think you could go wrong with any of them.

Re: Airports. LaGuardia is the closest to the city, however, it's also the one with the most flights cancelled for bad weather due to it's short runway. My advice is take the airline that's most convenient for you and don't worry about the airport. You can get into the city via taxi easily from any of them. DO NOT use one of the touts at baggage claim asking if you want a taxi. Taxi's are not allowed to solicit customers. Walk outside and get on the taxi line. From Kennedy, the price is a flat $35. + toll ($4.00) and tip - about $6/$7. La Guardia will be less and Newark will be more.

Sat night stayover varies from airline to airline. You have to ask.

Hope this helps. Candice NYC