New York’s very own Archer Hotel, smack dab in the middle of the Garment District, isn’t even a year old. But that doesn’t stop your host – named Archer, of course – from catering to you like a long-lost friend. The gent leaves a plate of freshly baked cookies and strawberries on the desk in your guest room, with a handmade welcome card signed, “Fondly, Archer.” Peek behind your room’s 42-inch flatscreen and find two books. “One of my favorites,” a bookmark reads, tucked into a copy of The Little Prince. Chic minimalism in Manhattan hotels can teeter on the edge of sterility, but at the Archer Hotel, you and your sweetheart are given the keys to a four-star room at your friend’s Manhattan skyrise – and there happens to be a kitchen from award-winning chef David Burke downstairs. For once, the warm welcome is real.
Whisk your guest away to Spyglass on the 22nd floor, the rooftop bar where your evening begins. You sip wine in the light of the Empire State building (No, really: The Empire is right there). Glass, high-top tables are lit from below on the outdoor balcony; inside, a leather couch snakes along a back wall beneath crystal lamping, where you two enjoy a catch-up chat. Soon, your early evening table is ready at David Burke’s fabrick on the ground floor, and you lay down an Archer Hotel Destination Joker: a 10-dollar playing card, good to spend anywhere in the hotel, given to all guests who book online. Could this guy get any slicker?
At fabrick, by the bright light of two brick ovens, your waiter arrives with a WhistlePig rye old fashioned – sweet from bourbon-barrel aging, with a distinctly smokey bite. Firetruck-red chairs dot the homey kitchen with its brick walls, wooden slats, and playfully colorful quilts along the ceiling. A feast of American fare starts with an appetizer of three fat strips of candied bacon, hanging delicately from clothespins on a miniature line. First you think it’s cute, but then you unclip a piece and take a bite…and It’s bacon unlike any bacon you’ve had before. Next, you split a hearty helping of green curry mussels, brand new on the seasonal menu. Dip garlic bread squares into a sweet and oh-so-spicy coconut Thai basil sauce. Of course, the chef’s signature cheesecake lollipop tree is the finale, each dipped in white, dark, or pink chocolate. In two chomps, none of them stands a chance.
Satisfied (full, rather), the two of you retire to your room. Black and white dominates the tasteful decorating – classic photos of the city, a subway-tiled bathroom with a room-length mirror, and his-and-her bathrobes marked with stately A’s. You fall into your pillowy bed with a happy sigh. Seems your new best friend has thought of everything.