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Moxy Lower East hotel embraces colourful history of Manhattan's Lower East

Travel News from Stuff - 23-01-2023 stuff.co.nz

Vaudeville, burlesque, and all manner of other whimsical entertainments take centre stage at Moxy Lower East in New York City. The hotel doesn't hold back in taking inspiration from the neighbourhood's colourful and cosmopolitan history.

Now gentrified, the Lower East maintains plenty of its past – , New York's oldest being amongst its revered relics amidst a Bohemian, innovative culture and a nightlife scene that's world famous.

Manhattan Island's Lower East was once filled with tenements housing immigrants, with its Jewish influence still strong and remnants of Chinese, other European, Latino, Caribbean and African influences thankfully persisting. Theatres, picture palaces and nightclubs which sprang up to entertain the lower classes, though mostly defunct, today still provide a colourful streetscape.

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Reflecting the playful ethos of the Moxy boutique chain that's part of Marriott International, the new 303-bedroom Moxy Lower East Side also aims to add to the district's amusements with Sake No Hana, a Japanese restaurant; Silver Lining, a piano lounge; The Highlight Room, a rooftop bar; The Fix, an all-day cafe and lobby bar; and Loosie's, a subterranean club.

Moxy Lower East Side's five drinking and dining establishments were created by Tao Group Hospitality, a New York-based dining and nightlife operator that is behind many successful entertainment spaces in cities from Oslo to Singapore, in partnership with the hotel's developer, Lightstone.

“New York City is experiencing a huge renaissance right now, with locals and visitors coming to experience the city in waves,” says Noah Tepperberg, co-chief executive of Tao Group Hospitality.

On the corner of Bowery and Broome streets, the fourth Moxy hotel in New York City features interiors by international firms Michaelis Boyd (Battersea Power Station London) and Rockwell Group (Nobu Hotel Barcelona, Civilian Hotel New York) and architecture by Stonehill Taylor, which counts work on the TWA Hotel at JFK Airport amongst its many hospitality projects.

Spaces reference such historical sites as the Vauxhall Gardens and German Winter Garden of the 1800s, the vaudeville theatres and burlesque houses of last century and the circuses and old-time menageries that once lined the Bowery to create "a funhouse vibe".

It's not all smoke and mirrors though: 303 bedrooms combine the requisite playfulness with a strong tech game while well-thought-out co-working spaces invite serious brainstorming.

And for when the work is done, up on the 16th floor The Highlight Room, designed by Michaelis Boyd, is a glamorous rooftop bar that evokes a 19th-century pleasure garden and features a glass wall that spans the entire width of the room and folds back to connect to the outdoor terrace. It has expansive views – north to the Empire State Building, south to the Freedom Tower.

A program of cultural and wellness events promises to connect guests of Moxy Lower East Side with the hotel's community, bringing in the neighbourhood's creators, tastemakers, and independent businesses.

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