At HD, we are always trying to come up with new, innovative ways to connect people. Our latest and greatest, SiteSeeing, was no different. One bus, one city (New York), three hotel site tours (current or past HD Awards honorees), seven hours, and 55 people? No problem.
We all met at the newly opened Time Hotel, owned and operated by the Dream Hotel Group, and designed by Rockwell Group. First order of business: lunch at Serafina, where we dined on bruschetta, calamari, pasta, and salmon. Obviously we needed fuel for the rest of the day. Afterwards, we went up to the penthouse level, where Brendan McNamara from Dream gave us an overview of the property. From there, Garrett Antin of Rockwell Group talked us through the design—all based around the idea of time—as we toured the spectacular three-level penthouse, a guestroom and suite on the 8th floor, and the second floor lobby.
Even with elevators that could only handle 10 at a time, we made it on time to our roomy Academy bus—complete with refreshments and sippy cups—and headed off to stop No. 2, the Baccarat Hotel & Residences, where we met up with Kemper Hyers of Starwood Capital, the parent company of the Baccarat hotel brand.
We were treated to a tour of the luxuriously elegant hotel, from the residentially informed guestrooms, to the awe-inspiring second floor lobby and bar area, to the underground spa and fitness area. We ended up in the bar for a few light bites and champagne.
We all boarded the bus (somewhat begrudgingly since we were having so much fun) and headed off to our last stop of the day: the Marmara Park Avenue, where more great design awaited. Designer Joe Ginsberg talked us through the painstakingly custom project (a jack of all trades, even his own artwork hangs throughout the hotel), from the sculptural lobby to the rooms, and the exceptional hammam.
Unfortunately, there was no time for a treatment, but we all gathered in the fireplace-warmed bar for final cocktails and conversations, and left with our leather passport holder—just in case there are more SiteSeeing adventures in our future! A special thanks to our attendees who left the office to spend a fabulous day with us, and the sponsors who made it a reality: Bernhardt Hospitality, Brizo, Durkan, JACLO, Kevin Barry Fine Art Associates, P/Kaufmann Contract, Kravet Contract, Samuelson, Shaw Hospitality Group, and WALTERS.