Almost Worth Traveling To

Sunni's picture

Just when I needed it, along comes proof that the world isn’t an entirely batshit–insane place.

Behold the Library Hotel. I’m not sure which would be worse these days, driving or flying to NYC, but spending a night there might just make it worth it. The real dilemma is, which room to choose? Can any of you seven whittle down a room list? I guess I’m officially a bibliophile, because I cannot.

Must we stay on one floor?

I went through them all, and picked what I responded to, without thinking too hard about it — and found myself on all floors: Literature (all), Language (4), Religion (4), History (3), Philosophy (3), General Knowledge (3), Social Sciences (3), The Arts (2), Technology (2), Math and Science (2).

I’m afraid I wouldn’t come home for awhile! (Nor would I have time to eat or sleep.)

My thought

I didn’t look at the price of any of the rooms, but I assumed I’d only be able to afford one night. That’s why my thoughts immediately turned to attempting to winnow floors or rooms.

If you had just one night, Pat, which room would you choose?

Choices, choices, choices!

You’re determined to make it tough, aren’t you?

Floor (which is what the website asks for): Literature – for pure pleasure, relaxation, and to put my imagination to work.

Room: Philosophy or Ethics - Being a good atheist, I can’t separate the two, so I wouldn’t be able to decide till I got there. But probably Philosophy, to encompass all.

(And I wouldn't eat there; I'd go to the pushcarts and delis during the day for hotdogs, pretzels, fresh-roasted peanuts, reuben and hot pastrami sandwiches, and New York cheesecake.)

Not tough ... but not fiscally draining

The choice is difficult by default, unless one can afford a night in almost every room.

(And I wouldn't eat there; I'd go to the pushcarts and delis during the day for hotdogs, pretzels, fresh-roasted peanuts, reuben and hot pastrami sandwiches, and New York cheesecake.)

But that would take time away from all the glorious boooooks! Maybe one could hire a runner to fetch the pushcart delicacies for one ... since we’re dreaming, why not?

Ah, but the page provided by

Ah, but the page provided by your first link says:

The Library Hotel's signature style of hospitality and value is unmatched. As a guest of Library Hotel in New York City you are welcome to enjoy these complimentary amenities valued at $105 savings per person or $210 per couple per day...

* A lavish European style breakfast including pastries, muffins, fresh fruit, cold and hot cereals, boiled eggs, yogurt, juices, freshly brewed coffee, tea, espresso served daily in Reading Room along with daily newspapers and magazines (value $20 per person)
* Selection of coffee, tea, juices, cookies and fruits throughout the day (value $15 per person)
* Prosecco, fine wines, imported and domestic cheeses, and hors d'oeuvres each evening from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. (value $30 per person)
* Complimentary wireless high speed Internet access (value $15 per person)
* Daily passes to the nearby New York Sports Club, which features a full range of cardio and strength-training equipment, aerobic cycling and body-sculpting classes and sauna (value $25 per person)

I'm sure that all of us could survive (and maybe thrive) on fruit, yogurt, cheeses, and not TOO many cookies.-SRS

How quickly I forget!

Being a Snake of small brain, I guess that shouldn’t be too surprising, though.

I do think I could “make do” with those offerings. Heh.


I don't think I'm one of the seven, but obviously the best plan is to stay at least 60 days, and browse each of them, though there may be a long waiting list for some (e.g., the erotic lit room).

I didn't even look to see what it costs to "save $105 per day" and live in a historical museum/library, but I was already aware that Manhattan can be a wonderful place, if you have the money.-SRS


“Save $105 per day”? I think I’m glad I didn’t look at the prices—it’s still a doable fantasy in my mind.

I like your plan, SRS! And of course you’re one of the seven!


I looked around, and the cheapest thing I could find there started at a mere $235/night. That ain't doable on my budget. As for fantasy...

Bloomberg's high-crime, no-cholesterol, no-sodium, no-smoking, no-guns-for-honest-folk, over-priced, over-crowded rat trap isn't my idea of a fantasy. I got stuck overnight in NYC once. It sucked.

For $235 dollars (plus, think taxes!) I can buy a lot of books; more than even I can read in one night. That I actually get to keep. Without the risk of getting mugged by a freelancer, or gunned down by one of Bloomies' finest.

A company I worked for lost its NYC tech, and tried to force me to relocate there. I told 'em to think again because I'd quit before I went back there.

Other memories

Yes, my memories of NYC are quite different, and (I'm certain) much older. I grew up in the Albany/Schenectady area, and my parents would take us on daytrips to NYC. We would all get up at about 2am, eat little pot pies for pre-breakfast, and drive to the city (for me, this meant napping in the back seat with my siblings). Then we would go to the Museum of Natural History (or Art), or Hayden Planetarium, or Radio City Music Hall, have a picnic lunch in Central (or some other) Park, then drive home, because, of course, my family would not have considered paying to stay in a hotel. One day we left EXTRA early so that my parents could show us the trucks coming into the produce markets and the sun rising on one of the bridges (Brooklyn, maybe).

Anyway, I'm certain that my attitude toward NYC (as toward the Public Library, the only gov't agency for which I feel unalloyed affection) is undeservedly warm & fuzzy, but that's the way it is (Phht...).-SRS

I agree.

I've been to NYC four times at different periods in my life, and each time was pure fun, and a learning experience -- people, places, food, and things to do. But the last time was during Ed Koch's tenure. Things have changed radically, and I wouldn't want to visit now, let alone live there.

But dreaming... now THAT I can do -- and in my dream of the Library Hotel, Mayor Bloomberg doesn't exist.


Bloomberg is just one of the current crop of NYC problems. While I only got trapped there once, I've been through there more times than I can easily count, all pre-Bloomie. At best, the experience was merely neutral (I'll take a cheating Athenian cabbie over a NYC a-hole cabbie any day).

That's probably just a matter of personal preference. By choice, I live in a wood-heated house on a dirt road in the woods. I don't like cities, and NYC is just one of the worst I've dealt with.

I rather enjoy Wilson's Repairman Jack series of books, but one problem I have with them is identifying with a protagonist who not only loves the city, but dislikes ever leaving it for even the briefest time.

What fun

I wouldn't go to NYC for anything, actually, but as a fantasy adventure I'd love to spend 24 hours with all the fairy tales. The goodies and room service would be a lot of fun besides! :)

Most of my lifetime reading has been technical, political, medical/botanical and herbal. Currently I'm enjoying mysteries when I get tired of that. I especially love children's stories and those for "young adults."

This hotel would never let me in armed, but my local library has no problems with it. Guess I'll stay here. :)