by Karon Warren
Built in 1926 as The Berkshire Hotel, the Omni Berkshire Place has undergone some changes through the years, including a $9.5-million facelift in 1979, a complete historic restoration worth more than $70 million in 1995, and a $4 million enhancement in 2003. Most recently, in 2010, all 396 guestrooms and suites received a fresh, modern look that included soothing paint and rug colors paired with classic artwork and mirrors that resulted in a clean, plush environment. English sycamore wood furnishings only added to this appearance.
Located on East 52 Street at Madison Avenue, the Omni Berkshire Place sits in the heart of Midtown Manhattan, near Central Park, Fifth Avenue and Times Square. As a result, the hotel is conveniently located to many of New York’s most popular family-friendly sites and attractions, including Radio City Music Hall, Rockefeller Center and MoMA, The Museum of Modern Art. Guests can reach these and other sites in minutes by walking or taking a cab. The subway is also just two blocks away, and can take guests all across Manhattan. The Omni Berkshire Place is the ideal hub for every family vacation.
Our Editor Loves
- Kids 12 and under stay free
- Kid's program and teen concierge
- Convenient location New York's attractions
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The Omni Berkshire Place features seven different non-smoking room types to accommodate families. All are decorated in a contemporary, yet comfortable style that is welcoming to families. The smallest room, the Deluxe Guest Room, comes with either two double beds or a king bed, in more than 271 square feet of space. It also includes a reading chair, table and built-in wall unit with closets and a work desk. This room can be quite crowded with a family of four, especially if using a crib. On the other hand, if you have older children or your family shares space without much trouble, it should be a good fit.
The Premier Rooms are similar to the Deluxe Guest Rooms, but with a bit more space -- approximately 360 square feet. This could be a more comfortable fit for a family of four. Please note the closets in both the Premier and Deluxe Guest Rooms are small. However, given there is not much space to spread suitcases around the floor, it is recommended to take advantage of the closets and drawer spaces to store your clothes.
Surprisingly, the bathrooms are more spacious than expected, with an adequate amount of counter and shelf space for toiletries, hairbrushes and other bathroom necessities. As anyone who has shared a bathroom with other adults and children knows, this is a major plus.
With 400 square feet, the Executive Suite has one king bed and more seating in a studio-style apartment layout. In the Berkshire Suites, a separate parlor and work area contains a pullout sofa bed, club chair and desk. Behind glass-paned French doors, you'll find a king bedroom. The entire suite comes in at 445 square feet.
The Madison Suites feature a large master bedroom and oversized bath with a separate shower, soaking tub and lots of counter space. In the remaining space of the 781-square-foot suite, there is also a separate living area with a pullout sofa bed, club chair and desk.
The hotel's largest guest room is the Rodgers & Hammerstein Suite, measuring 1,000 square feet. Here, you'll find living space with a work desk and decorative fireplace, a full bath with a spa tub and a powder room, and a walk-out, wrap-around terrace.
The Omni Berkshire Place also offers ADA-accessible rooms with king beds, enlarged door openings and either roll-in shower or standard showers and tubs. Both come with a handheld showerhead and grab bars.
All guest rooms feature robes, lighted vanity mirrors, hair dryers, in-room laptop safes, irons and ironing boards, 37-inch LCD HDTVs, and AM/FM alarm clocks. In addition, feather or non-allergenic pillows are available.
Members of the hotel's Select Guest program will enjoy additional benefits, including complimentary Wi-Fi, complimentary morning beverage delivery, complimentary bottled water on the night of arrival, complimentary clothing pressings (two items) and a complimentary shoe shine.
This hotel is in a great location. There is construction going on and scaffolding out front but it did not hinder our arrival or departure. All the staff were helpful and friendly. We had a room on the 12th floor with a view up 5th Avenue, not too much street noise, room was spacious and very comfortable. Bathroom is a good size and the shower had fabulous water pressure. Did not eat in the dining room but did have drinks and an app in the bar, both were excellent, nice atmosphere a little loud once it filled up but that's to be expected.
Amazing hotel and even better location. Stayed here for 4 nights for Thanksgiving upon check in I wasn't happy with my room and so asked to be moved. This was done very quickly and my new room was very clean and a decent size for standard NY rooms. I have been to NY a number of times and I have to say the location of this hotel was amazing located just off 5th ave and a great location if you want to go and visit the Macy's thanksgiving parade. Would stay here again in a heart beat. Lovely staff and good service.
From the moment families check in at the Omni Berkshire Place, the kids will receive a special welcome. Each child receives a welcome bag (more like a backpack) that contains fun toys such as an activity map, Frisbee, crayons, a magnifying glass, ball and candy treat. Also, on the evening of arrival, room service delivers milk and cookies as a special turndown amenity. For children (and adults) celebrating a birthday during their stay, the Omni Berkshire Place will send a slice of homemade cake to your room.
At the Omni Berkshire Place, the Omni Teen Concierge is available to help teenagers make the most of their visit to New York. Available in the hotel lobby every Friday and Saturday, the Omni Teen Concierge shares her "weekly picks" of things to see and do in New York City. She also offers recommendations of where to shop, eat and have fun. The Omni Teen Concierge strives to stay available to teens via Twitter (@BerkshireTeenNY), email, phone and text. Guests can even make arrangements for their stay with the Omni Teen Concierge before arrival.
Throughout the year, the Omni Berkshire Place offers special family-themed packages. For example, families taking advantage of the "American GirlÂ® Dream Package" will receive accommodations, breakfast for two at the hotel's Fireside restaurant, cookies and milk on the night of arrival, one American GirlÂ® specialty bed for the child's doll, turndown service, an Omni Sensational Kids backpack, and one entry into a quarterly American GirlÂ® giveaway. Another family-themed package, "Camp Omni" includes a summer kid's bag (similar to a camping bag) and a scavenger hunt that ends with a final prize of a special dessert in the Fireside Restaurant.
Guests at the Omni Berkshire Place can eat onsite at Fireside on the hotel's first floor. Serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night meals, Fireside is a casual, yet contemporary restaurant that is comfortable for families. There's even a separate kid's menu that offers grilled cheese sandwiches (without the crust!), pizza, chicken bites and fries, spaghetti and meatballs, PB&J sandwiches, miniature cheeseburgers and fries, ice cream, and molten hot chocolate with homemade "'Smallows."
For those who want to dine in their room, 24-hour room service -- including a kid's menu -- is also available.
The Omni Berkshire Place is also convenient to many New York eateries, including the city's popular food trucks. Finding something that appeals to every family member, as well as the family pocketbook, is just a matter of exploring the area.
Planning & Tips
All about the Extras
The Omni Berkshire Place has many amenities that appeal to families. For instance, there are the complimentary apples in the lobby that make for a great afternoon snack. Mom, dad and the teens may like the fully equipped, 24-hour fitness center or the Get Fit Kits available at the front desk. The hotel can also assist with special services, such as in-room massages, personal trainer and exercise class referrals and babysitting services.
The Art of Smart Timing
Because New York City is a popular destination year-round, the Omni Berkshire Place stays busy on a continual basis. However, the winter -- exclusive of the holidays -- could be a better choice than spring and fall, when the city experiences some of its best weather. You also may take the city's special events (i.e. Chinese New Year, New York City Marathon, Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, Times Square New Year's Eve) into consideration when planning your visit, in order to avoid extra-large crowds.
If traveling by train, the Omni Berkshire Place is just 10 blocks from Grand Central Station and one mile from Penn Station. The hotel is also convenient to the city's three main airports: LaGuardia International Airport (10 miles), JFK International Airport (18 miles) and Newark International Airport (17 miles). One-way taxi service from each ranges from approximately $35 to $65. One-way shuttle service can start at approximately $15 and is offered by a number of providers. One-way town car service can cost between approximately $178 and $193.
Keep in mind the cost of parking if you plan to drive to the hotel. Valet parking is available for a pricey, per-day fee. Offsite self-parking (approximately one block from hotel) is also available, but not cheap.
For Mom and Dad
The concierge at the Omni Hotel Berkshire can assist parents with arranging a day or evening out so they, too, can enjoy all that New York City has to offer. From a romantic picnic in Central Park to an evening of quiet dinner conversation followed by a Broadway show, the hotel concierge can handle all the arrangements and even assist you with securing a qualified babysitter to watch the kids.