A Stylish Stay: 11 Howard, New York

Living in New York for the past few months have been so incredible and with my twin sister coming for her first official visit I wanted to surprise her with a stay at my latest design obsession - Hotel 11 Howard. Pressing our little faces up to Oliver Gustav's shop front on Howard Street in Soho New York, we salivated over each piece, daydreaming of a space that encompassed them all. A few more steps and surprisingly we found ourselves at the double-glass entrance doors of 11 Howard, which was right next door.

With a bag just big enough for two, a little confusion lingered as the doors seamlessly opened and we found ourselves in what we could only assume was the lobby of the hotel.

The minimalist space was styled perfectly and if it wasn't for the neatly stacked box of guest key cards in the middle of the round wooden table - we wouldn't have believed this was the place to 'check-in'.

No detail was lost on us as we gazed up and found ourselves absolutely memorized by a suspended metal sculpture. I immediately start to take mental design notes and this first impression has me pondering what other design inspiration is this urban oasis going to provide.

A perfectly positioned architectural designed spiral staircase leads us up to the second floor. A communal space designed for hotel guests and visitors. Creatives gathered around the large oversized table, whispering plans for their entrepreneurial visions that lie within a suite of artisan notebooks and charged laptops.

We already find ourselves searching for any and every excuse to turn our New York staycation into a permanent residency and we haven't even seen our room. Love can be quick and we fell hard for this boutique hotel situated in the busting streets of downtown New York.

We bump into the creative duo behind Kapito Muller Interiors - a NYC based interior design firm. Alyssa and Vivian live on opposite sides of New York and call 11 Howard home/middle ground to their mobile office. An open workspace for all ( not just hotel guests) to gather. Stay for lunch, host a business meeting or just sip on a perfectly brewed latte ( hard to find in this city) as you navigate your crowded inbox.

To our pleasant surprise, the entire property also had Gustav's pieces peppered throughout which led me to constantly touch the interiors, a permanent habit of mine, and go searching for the markers detail engraved on the bottom. Something which may be frowned upon at a traditional hotel.

Doing minimal research before our stay I had already forgotten that this iconic New York building used to be home to a humble New York City post office. With almost empty, dimly lit hallways, we struggled to believe that this hotel was home to 221 guest rooms with a lucky few facing the tinted windows of Rhianna’s downtown penthouse..

We finally drag ourselves away from the library and up to the 12th floor. We make our way through what seemed like our very own private hallway to our terrace suite. Opening the door to our beautiful room, the sunshine beckons us to our private terrace as the white sheer curtains billow in the summer breeze. As we glided through the room to the our private outdoor space, I mentally noted some of my favorite design elements with linen bedding by French Design house Society, bespoke ceramic artworks by Katie Yang and accessories from Melbourne design studio Lightly.

With custom designed wall lights in brass, shaded floor lamps and a palette revolving around oak, marble, rose and indigo. Our room was providing me with so much more inspiration then I had expected - It has been going over my future client projects, desperate to incorporate these perfectly poised design elements.

After some much anticipated pavement pounding and shopping in Soho - our feet are sore, we are tired and its way past the acceptable hour for an afternoon cocktail. We retreat back to the hotel and step through the steel framed glass doors to the The Blonde - a bar by 11 Howard, this elegant seductive space adds just another star against this remarkable hotel.

Indigo velvet upholstered banket seating lined the walls and mood lighting highlighted the diagonal natural oak floors. Arched windows and brass accents make my heart melt just a little as we slump into a corner booth and contemplate the cocktail menu.

As the evening rolls in and a dinner reservation booked, we head back to our suite for a quick shower and an even quicker outfit change. Refreshed and smelling likes daisies, we slowly descend down the spiral staircase and through the adjoining doors to the recently opened Le Coucou. A space equally as grand and well designed as every nook in this Danish inspired property.

Single tall candles decorate the tables with overhead French inspired chandeliers. The forever Instagramer in me emerges as I start to snap images of exposed brick walls encased in something I can only describe as a glass box. After a glass of wine we start to draw focus to the menu created by accomplished restauranteur Stephen Starr. With a combination of Lobster Tail, Lamb and Duck, this French inspired eatery was equally as authentic in its cuisine as was the exceptional service.

As the streets of Soho start to get blackened with the night, we head back up our room ready for bed.

With morning views of lower Manhattan, we are feeling rested over a light breakfast of fresh fruit and yogurt accompanied by an English Breakfast tea, we are so thankful we have another full day and night in this design wanderlust.

We are left with one thought about our experience at 11 Howard. From the service to the interiors. Everything about this hotel was quintessentially New York, true understated perfection.

Ohh 11 Howard - we will be back!  Steph x


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