Books. In a day and age when electronics reign supreme, it’s good to know people still pick up a book. A real book, possibly even a library book, and not just open their Kindle or device of preference, but rather hold an actual book. The smell of the pages. The feel of a faded dog-eared page marking a stopping point. And illustrations. Old-school illustrations with captions.
I have a beloved collection of books that I will never part with, or at least not for as long as humanly possible. I passed my love of books on to our son, who is building his library with books from his childhood and adolescence serving as the foundation. That’s not to say I don’t own a Kindle because let’s face it, an e-reader can’t be beat when it comes to traveling.
The New York Public Library
Depending on which source of information you believe, the New York Public Library is either the 2nd, or the 4th largest library in the United States. I know, if you’re like me the question that immediately comes to mind is, where’s the largest library? When I looked up the answer I thought, “Duh.” Nope, not telling. Find out for yourself and post your answer in a comment below.
Odd as it may sound, the day we visited the New York Public Library, we didn’t come across a single book. Well, I saw a few behind locked doors such as in private reading rooms. But I wasn’t able to get my hands on a book. The one room I had hoped to see was the Rose Main Reading Room, but wouldn’t you know it? Closed for renovations. It was a bit of a disappointment, but visiting the library is still worth the time as the architecture alone is definitely impressive. I’d love to return next year once the room is reopened. I can only imagine the grandeur. And the books. All of the books.
Cast in bronze, a collection of 96 plaques are embedded in the sidewalk on Library Way at East 41st Street between 5th Avenue and Park Avenue. It’s actually quite fun to walk along the sidewalk reading the quotations, but don’t forget to watch where you’re walking! Because just like in so many large cities, people in NYC are on the move and if you’re not moving right along with them, well…
And, following the quotations along the Library Walk is the ideal way to locate the Library Hotel, just 1 short block from the actual library.
The Library Hotel
Books. It’s the perfect backdrop for a hotel just steps away from the public library. For a lover of the written word, I can’t think of a better place to stay. From the moment we entered the lobby of the Library Hotel, we knew we were in for a fabulous stay where words soothe the soul.
The Dewey Decimal system is at the heart of the hotel, with each floor designated by one of the categories of the system. We stayed on the 4th floor, languages, which seemed to be a perfect fit. And our room, like all 60 rooms in the hotel, housed a mini library. The hotel itself has a collection of 6,000 books!
Like all properties in the Library Hotel Collection, the Library offers guests endless amenities and comfort. A lovely continental breakfast is served daily, as well as a relaxing wine and cheese reception each evening.
The Reading Room is located on the 2nd floor of the hotel and it is open 24 hours/day. It’s a comfortable place to tickle the ivories on the grand piano, pick up and read a good book, or just sit back, relax and let the time slip by. And don’t forget the rooftop garden. We picked up lunch at a nearby sandwich shop and took it up to the 14th floor rooftop garden and enjoyed our sandwiches picnic style, it was the perfect setting.
The Library Hotel is truly a lovely property with impeccable standards and a welcoming and accommodating staff. I’m hoping each of you has the opportunity to enjoy a day at the library.
- Library Hotel
- 299 Madison Avenue,
- New York City 10017
- +1 212 983 4500