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The nightly rate for an average hotel room in New York City for four people can be anywhere from expensive to astronomical. Points can certainly help, but when it came time to find a hotel room for our family of six, we just didn’t think staying in NYC was going to be an option. We’re traveling the country in an RV for a year or two on a budget, and since we’d have to budget for two pricy NYC hotel rooms to accommodate everyone, we just weren’t sure it was going to happen. Not to mention, since we have young kids, my husband and I would have to sleep in separate rooms as chaperones.
TRYP’s Premium Family Room Saved the Day
What saved the day was the family room at the TRYP New York City Times Square South. Since this is a Wyndham property, award rooms are just a flat 15,000 points per night — yes, even this room. While the room wasn’t overly massive at 360 square feet, it was certainly big for NYC and the use of space was perfect for a larger family.
Update: The room now costs 30k Wyndham points per night as of April 2019.
Yes, that is a hotel room in NYC with bunk beds! Not just bunk beds, of course. There were also two comfortable queen beds.
There was also a sofa bed and two 42-inch LED TVs.
Additionally, the room included two bathrooms with walk-in showers. We were technically in the premium Family Room, but the regular Family Room still includes all these amenities, just with just one bathroom instead of two. Both room types cost 15,000 Wyndham Rewards points per night when they are available.
In total, the TRYP Premium Family room is actually rated for eight people. That is just virtually unheard of for a standard award room in any other program in NYC.
What It Costs for a Family Room
You might be thinking that surely this room must be on the “astronomical” end of pricing, and I’m delighted to shock you by telling you that right now you can get this room for $259/night for a weeknight in February. Of course, pricing will vary based on demand, time of year and day of the week. We’ve seen rates go around double that during peak times, but that’s still probably less than paying for two hotel rooms.
Of course, the best deal is using points. Spending 15,000 Wyndham Rewards points per night will score you a Premium, Theatre, Family or Premium Family room. That’s an insane bargain for a well-appointed hotel room in New York City. If you don’t have the Wyndham credit card or any Wyndham Rewards points, stay on the lookout for the annual Daily Getaways sale in the spring as Wyndham Rewards points are usually available for a discount on that once-per-year sale. Last year, 15,000 Wyndham points cost a flat $175 via the sale.
If the pricing is great, the hotel must be in an undesirable location, right? Not really. Not in my opinion, at least. The hotel — on 35th Street between 8th and 9th avenues — is on the southeast edge of the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood, next to Chelsea. We easily walked there, luggage, stroller and four children in tow, from Penn Station in five minutes.
And when we ventured out, it only took about 15 minutes to walk to Bryant Park for ice skating. (Which is better and cheaper than ice staking at Rockefeller).
Google Maps says it’s about a 15-minute walk to the heart of Times Square, but it took us a little closer to 20 minutes — probably because we were walking through a snowstorm. Pro tip: Don’t forget to pack gloves, extra pairs of socks and even an extra pair of shoes if you’re expecting cold, wet weather during your visit. Here’s a helpful packing list for those not used to the cold.
The Friendly Factor
The hotel was welcoming and cozy upon arrival. The decor is fresh, updated and simple with TV screens in the lobby displayed weather info and flight info. This isn’t St. Regis opulence, but with kids, sometimes less is more.
The staff at the TRYP NYC Times Square South were very friendly. We were able to check in a few hours earlier than expected, and they happily held our luggage for us when we checked out so we could explore the city for the day before heading back to the train station.
The lobby area isn’t large and could feel crowded at peak check-in and checkout times, but there’s some extra room over in front of the bar. This is where we wound up during the check-in process so we could stay out of the snow and out of the way.
On-Site Dining Options
The Gastro Bar is more than just a bar, it’s also an on-site restaurant. Prices are in the $10 to $17 range for lunch and dinner entrees and 12-inch pizzas are only $11. Kids breakfasts are about $8 and adult breakfasts are closer to $16.
What We Liked and What We Didn’t
The TRYP Times Square South might seem a little too good to be true, but there were very few downsides for us — just don’t go here expecting plush luxury. The room was very spacious for NYC, but also a bit echoey due to its 10-foot ceiling. Some room types have ceilings even higher than that. There is no carpet on the floors, the couch is covered in what feels like plastic and the metal bunk beds are what I’d call “industrial.”
None of that was an issue for us. In fact, it all made for easier cleanups when spills and messes happened. And with multiple young children, those things do happen.
The only part of the room that felt like it had been neglected was a wall by the bunk beds where the baseboards had come off, or maybe were never put up in the first place.
You’re not going to stay here for a view, unless you consider the Midtown Precinct to be exciting. Our 5-year-old actually did love seeing the police cars parked below our window.
All things considered — location, price and amenities — I would 100% recommend the TRYP New York City Times Square South for families, especially families of five or more who have some Wyndham Rewards points at their disposal, or who can grab a decent cash rate.
Planning a New York City getaway with the family? Here are more resources:
- 5 Family-Friendly Hotels in New York City Where You Can Use Your Points
- Best Marriott Category 5 Hotels in New York City for Families
- Affordable Activities for Families Visiting New York City
- Tips for Navigating NYC With Kids
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