Everything to Know About Staying at Arlo Hotel – New York City for Cheap
It’s a question I get asked a lot. Where should I stay when I visit New York City on a budget? Nine out of 10 times, my answer is Arlo Hotel New York City or an Airbnb. I’d know… Since that’s where I’ve lived for the past three months after moving out of my New York City apartment (long story for another day). Instead of moving into a new home, I decided to live nomadically. 1. To experience different neighborhoods in the city before deciding on the best place to settle down and 2. a part of me wants to just randomly pack up and move to a different country, but Covid… So we wait.
While I figure out which route to take, I’ve been living my best life, experiencing some of the city’s beautiful short and long-term accommodations. If you want to know more about living nomadically in New York City during a pandemic, comment below and I’ll share my experience with you all. For now, let’s talk about Arlo Hotel New York City and how to stay there, even if you’re visiting NYC on a budget.
how many Arlo Hotels are there?
There are three different Arlo locations in New York City — SoHo (South of Houston Street), NoMad (North of Madison Square Park) and Midtown (opening May 27, 2021). I’ve visited the SoHo and NoMad locations and though they both offer something a little different throughout the properties, there’s a familiarity in the rooms, which is nice. Both locations are very solid options for affordable to higher end rooms, depending on how and when you book your reservation and what kind of view you’re going for. Pro Tip: The sky rooms tend to be on the pricier end, upwards of $300+ a night, because the elevated city views are remarkable, but don’t worry, I said there would be affordable options right? Keep reading!
A boutique micro-hotel
Arlo Hotel New York City is a boutique micro-hotel, meaning the rooms are smaller than your traditional hotel room. Much like how many apartments in New York City are known for being smaller than those found in other places, so go the rooms at Arlo. They’re all about a design aesthetic that saves on space, but doesn’t skimp on personality. What some would call small, I’d consider cozy. The average size of a hotel room in the United States is between 300 and 400 square feet, but at Arlo, they’re between a humble 140 and 170 square feet. This includes the sky rooms. You’ll get the best view in the house, but not necessarily more space.
Arlo NoMad & soho location details
- Near the very walkable Koreatown and close to a ton of authentic restaurants
- The 6 train is the closest train to get you here
- Cafes, stores and pharmacies nearby
- Parking is available to guests
- Near lots of trendy restaurants and bars
- Cafes and pharmacies walking distance
- Near the Holland Tunnel
- The 1 train is a stone’s throw away
- Parking is available to guests
Now, let’s talk affordable hotel rooms at these locations and how to land them.
how much does it cost to stay at Arlo Hotel New york city?
Remember I said you could score a nicely priced reservation based on when and how you book? Well, as someone who has stayed at Arlo during various times of the week, I’ve noticed that weekdays are the best days to reserve rooms, because once the weekend hits, prices go up along with demand. I usually go for bookings between Tuesday through Friday. At least once a month, I treat myself to a stay from Wednesday to Friday, because that’s when the prices tend to be lowest.
Here’s the key though, I don’t book through Arlo’s site, I use Airbnb to make my reservation. Before I started living nomadically, I had no idea you could book hotel rooms through Airbnb. It’s since been a game changer! According to Statista, a market and consumer data statistics portal, the average cost for overnight accommodations in New York is around $166 a night. At both Arlo Hotel New York City locations, I paid about $75 a night for my stays. Cha-ching!
what to know before you book
I probably sold you on the $75 a night thing, huh? However, here’s something worth noting: there’s a $30 a night urban fee. Stay with me though, it comes with some perks. It gives you access to hotel amenities like the rooftop bar, digital magazines, and before Covid, it also included being able to use complimentary bikes, free passes to New York Sports Club, a Tone Up Club class and a daily complimentary happy hour. I didn’t experience any of these, besides the rooftop bar, because I visited during Covid and these amenities were halted until further notice. However, now that things are opening back up, they may be available again. Just make sure to ask the front desk so you can take full advantage of the extra add-ons. After all, you’re paying for them.
While some people might be turned off by the urban fee, which makes the nightly price go from $75 to about $105 a night, that to me isn’t so bad in a city like New York, where things tend to be pricey. Especially considering the fact that the Arlo Hotels are in prime locations. Also, if you take advantage of all of the extra add-ons (when they become fully available again), it’s quite worth the fee, as one fitness drop-in class ALONE could cost $30 (or more) in the city. Drinks in NYC can also easily run you more than $30 for a couple of glasses, so paying just $30 for all of the extras, suddenly doesn’t seem so bad.
What’s up with the airbnb reservation?
Airbnb started allowing hotels to list their rooms on the platform in 2015 and since then, hotels have used the website to fill rooms last minute and increase their short-term bookings. Since perception is reality, instead of listing the lower prices on their website and seemingly bringing down the property value, some hotels will list on Airbnb, so their cheaper rooms can be seen and booked there. These rooms are the same rooms you’d get if you booked regularly. Don’t worry, it’s not a situation where you’re getting a discount and a bad room. Just don’t think you’ll land a sky room. I’ve only seen the queen rooms listed on there.
what are the rooms at arlo hotel like?
At both SoHo and NoMad, I stayed in the Courtyard Queen rooms, so those are the ones I’ll speak on, but the other options are king, two twin bed, bunk bed and accessible bunk rooms. These options come either with city/ “urban” views, a courtyard view, sky views or an outdoor terrace. The rooms with the terraces give a welcomed illusion of more space in the room, while the double twin bed rooms (naturally) tend to have a tiny bit more square footage than many of the other rooms, which are only about 150 square feet. The quarters, which are non-smoking, include amenities like air conditioning, a flat screen tv, on-demand movies, a refrigerator and a safe.
How many people can fit in a room at arlo hotel?
One person can comfortably fit into the smallest Arlo rooms, especially if they don’t have many items with them. I’d even go as far as saying that two people who are comfortable with one another– think: couples, best friends, family– could share this room too. The small sized rooms always worked for me, because I’m a one-woman show and never plan on staying in my room the entire time anyways. After all, I’m in New York City, there’s a big world out there to explore.
However, when I did retreat back to my room, I loved the cozy, comfortable vibe. It almost felt as though I had my own little nook in the big city. When I wanted more space, I visited the beautiful common areas like the lounges, the colorful courtyard (pictured below) or the studio spaces where there are tables and couches to get work done or just hang out with friends. Pro Tip: You’ll need a key to get into the studio rooms. It’s a guests-only perk.
Things that Make the Rooms feel bigger
- Huge floor to ceiling Windows
- Mounted TV takes up less space (pro tip: you can connect your Netflix, Google Chromecast, etc. to it- which I did and loved)
- Toilet and shower share a space that’s enclosed by glass, which gives it a private and chic feel
- Storage is tucked away up above in a cupboard (depending on your room) or you can use the open hanging rack to hang clothes
- Refrigerator is tucked away behind a low cabinet, so it doesn’t stick out
- Pull-out desk that’s otherwise hidden when it’s not in use
- A small sofa chair that’s attached to the bed (depending on the room you get)
- Shoe rack tucked below the sink
Favorite small details
- Blind Barber toilettres– these are top tier products that smell and feel great. I look forward to staying at the Arlo Hotels for this sweet little detail
- Pull-out desk – really convenient for work-from-home or enjoying a meal, without taking up very much space
- Coasters made of recycled tires. It’s the environmental consciousness for me
- Skip room service (because there’s none) and opt for the 24-hour, 7 day a week “bodega” snack bar downstairs (at the Nomad location), which serves drinks, pastries, etc. or the Candy Shop (at the Soho location) that’s a fun and colorful store filled with sweet treats and late-night eats, provided by the popular Dylan’s Candy Bar
- Steamer – loved that there was a steamer (instead of an iron) in the room
- Floor to ceiling windows with a cool view of the courtyard, city, etc. depending on what side of the hotel you end up on. During one of my stays, my room was facing a barbershop in another building (which I didn’t love), but for the price I paid for the room, I didn’t sweat it too much
- Many outlets – as a millennial who is always on my electronics, that means they’re always on the verge of dying, so I love that no matter where I am in the room, there’s an outlet close by
things to note | possible deal breakers
- No room service available – I never use it anyways so it wasn’t a big deal
- No in-room coffee maker – I don’t drink coffee, so this didn’t bother me one bit, but I know some of you do
- No on-site gym, but you can attend free classes with your Arlo reservation (double check before you go— the gyms may or may not still be closed due to Covid)
- No complimentary breakfast
- The common areas are open to the public, so if you have friends you want to invite over for drinks or just to hang (like I did) you can do that. These public spaces are also used by many people who don’t have a reservation, but just live or work nearby. This didn’t bother me, because it was a cool place to connect with other locals who happened to be stopping in. Some of the public spaces include the rooftop bar, on-site restaurant (Harold’s at the SoHo location), the lobby bar, courtyard and lounge areas (pictured below).
arlo New York city rooftop
NoMad– you step off the elevator on the 31st floor, turn the corner and behold, the rooftop is before you. You feast your eyes on a massive outdoor space, featuring a large bar, lots of comfortable seating and an incredible view. The star of the 360 degree view, is One World Trade Center, New York City’s tallest building. Also on the rooftop is a historic mural in honor of WorldPride Day and the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.
Fun fact: When the installation went up in 2019, it was one of only 50 murals that had been created around the city to honor the LGBTQIA+ community.
SoHo– you step off the elevator, turn the corner and walk into a sharp indoor dining room with sexy dark walls, a fully stocked bar, leather couches and gold accents on the lights and furniture. You can choose to be seated in this area or keep walking and you’ll step into the outside rooftop. It features lounge seating, solid views, and a mural that reads “every night should end with a good story.” Touchè!
If you plan on visiting the rooftop area during restaurant/ bar hours, make a reservation, because it gets crowded fast (even during the week). At the SoHo location, they won’t seat you when it’s busy, unless you have a res. At least that was my experience. I didn’t face any reservation hurdles at the NoMad location when I visited, because the bar area of the rooftop was closed, so people were free to go in and out freely.
conclusion | should you visit arlo hotel nyc?
Read the writings on the wall… Literally. Downstairs by the elevators, there are cork boards where guests leave notes and doodles sharing what their experience was like at Arlo. It’s a fun way to pass the time and see what others think about the hotel, as you wait on the elevator to come down and whisk you away to your room.
In my opinion, Arlo is a great hotel for solo travelers, a local staycation or a pair traveling together who don’t mind a cozy, shared space. It’s extremely millennial friendly and caters to work-from-home and a social life, while giving you a nice spot to rest your head at the end of the day. The staff during my visits were friendly, the hotels are located in trendy neighborhoods and there are opportunities to meet other cool people during your stay.
Would you visit a micro-hotel like Arlo Hotel New York City? Comment below! If you’re planning a trip to NYC, check out these dining recommendations for some of the best food spots to try around the city.