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Prime location, spacious rooms, friendly staff: Why I can't wait to return to the Hyatt Union Square

June 05, 2021
12 min read
Hyatt Union Square room
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On a recent visit to New York, I decided to split my time between two hotels to get easy access to all the neighborhoods I enjoy exploring. After two nights at the Moxy East Village, which I enjoyed, I moved to the Hotel Indigo Lower East Side, where I experienced a few issues. In fact, I decided to check out of the Hotel Indigo after just 15 minutes due to a series of three egregious mistakes as soon as I arrived.

Since the Moxy's location was so great, the nearby Hyatt Union Square, just a few blocks north, seemed like a good alternative.

Luckily, my experience at the Hyatt Union Square was much more positive and exceeded my expectations.

Hyatt has 18 hotels in Manhattan, offering lots of choices depending on what you're looking for. If you enjoy being near Washington Square Park and having easy access to the rest of the city via public transportation, the Hyatt Union Square is the best way to go; here's why

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Booking

The Hyatt Union Square is a Category 6 Hyatt hotel, requiring 25,000 points per night. TPG values Hyatt points at 1.7 cents each, so the best of use points is when nightly rates are $425 or higher. A standard room here features 220-275 square feet of space and a courtyard view.

For 40,000 points per night, you can book a slightly larger room with a private terrace or a 325 square feet Junior Suite with a seating area and city views.

When I searched for a two-night stay, the rate came to $220 per night, but I managed to save about $50 by booking each night separately. That's because the first night priced out separately at $238 and the second came to $149. This worked out great because I got a decent average rate, stayed at a great property and even earned Hyatt Globalist status.

Related: 6 ways to redeem points with the World of Hyatt program

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Location

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

The Hyatt Union Square is located near, you guessed it, Union Square. Of all the Hyatt hotels in New York City, I would argue this one has the best location. Just off the southeast corner of the square, it's walking distance to Greenwich Village and Alphabet City and just steps from a multi-line subway station that can get you pretty much anywhere else you might want to go in the city.

The iconic Strand Bookstore is right around the corner and there are lots of places to shop and eat nearby.

Related: What is World of Hyatt elite status worth in 2021?

Check-in

I arrived at the hotel around noon, not expecting them to have a room ready. Check-in is normally at 3 p.m., but I figured I'd drop my bag off and head out to lunch.

The hotel lobby had a dark and cozy vibe, with plush leather seating and decorative curtains covering the window separating the lobby from the Bowery Road restaurant.

There was a separate check-in area for Hyatt elite members, but since no one else was around, I walked up to the only agent staffing the front desk, which was decorated with stacks of books and plastic partitions as a distancing safety measure.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

The check-in process was quick and easy, thanks to a great agent named Jennifer. She was friendly and welcoming and gave me a room despite my early arrival. When I mentioned what happened at the other hotel (among the issues, I was given a room that was already occupied), she assured me I wouldn't have to worry about that here.

She thanked me for being a Hyatt Explorist member and offered me a bag containing two water bottles, explaining there would be two additional bottles in the room.

She took care of everything quickly, handed me the keys and told me to call her if I needed anything else. A few minutes after I arrived in the room, she called me to check that everything was ok, which I appreciated.

Related: Here’s how to quickly stock up on Hyatt points for your next vacation

Room

My room was on the 12th floor and I was pleasantly surprised at how spacious it was. Looking at the photos on the hotel website, I expected a much smaller space. It wasn't just large by New York City standards either – I felt there was lots of room to store my things and move around freely.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

While this room was an upgrade, with its views of Park Avenue South (as opposed to a courtyard view), it was the same size as a standard room.

It reminded me very much of the Andaz 5th Avenue, with wood floors and a contrasting black-and-white color scheme. It was clean, modern, with a slightly moody vibe.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

Immediately, I noticed the room was in immaculate shape: No dust covering the furniture and the linens were clean (unfortunately, that can't be said of every hotel I've stayed at during the pandemic). There was a small card explaining Hyatt's cleaning procedures and the remote control on the nightstand was wrapped with a paper sleeve stating the same thing.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

There were plenty of power outlets and light controls on both sides of the bed.

The room was equipped with a King bed facing a desk and lots of power outlets for electronics. There were two bottles of water on the desk, with a sign informing guests these were free of charge for Hyatt elites and $3 for everyone else. The front desk agent had already informed me that as an Explorist member, these were complimentary.

Next to the desk was a circular table that awkwardly took up space near the entrance. I soon realized this contained both a coffee machine with provisions on one side and a refrigerator on the other.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

When I walked in, the TV was on and playing an ad for Las Vegas. The remote was on the nightstand and wrapped up in a paper sleeve, with a message attesting to its cleanliness.

The window let in lots of natural light and offered a view of Park Avenue South.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

The room was spacious and I appreciated all the storage space in the closet. It also contained an umbrella (not needed on this trip, with nothing but blue skies) and complimentary pair of slippers. This is always a nice touch since barefoot isn't an option for me in a hotel and I don't want to walk around the room in shoes I've been wearing outside all day long.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

The only negative thing about the room was that the TV didn’t have Netflix. It's minor, but it would have been convenient to settle down at the end of each day and re-watch Schitt's Creek on a bigger screen.

The bathroom

The bathroom was set up like a corridor, containing the shower and sink opposite from each other and the toilet at the far end.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

The shower had shiplap accents and was stocked with Pharmacopia amenities. The shower door opened both inward and outward. That was actually helpful because the knob was located opposite from the showerhead.

If you like to run the water ahead of time and need to adjust the temperature, it's much easier to access the knob without getting soaked with too hot/cold water if you open the shower door outwards.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

The sink was outfitted with a magnifying mirror and stocked with plenty of towels, soap and a tissue box. I did find the sink and faucet to be way too close together. It made it impossible to wash your hands without touching the bottom of the sink.

Food and beverage

During my stay at the Grand Hyatt Union Square, the hotel restaurant was closed for breakfast and in-room dining wasn't available until 4 p.m. Normally, Hyatt Globalist members would receive complimentary breakfast. Since the hotel isn't serving breakfast at the moment, Globalist members instead get 500 points per day.

Amenities

The Hyatt Union Square has an on-site gym that is currently open and accessible to guests. You need to obtain a special key at the front desk to access it.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

I'm not a gym person, so I can't exactly judge the equipment, but there was lots of variety. There was a rowing machine, stationary bikes, treadmills and weights. The gym did seem a bit cramped to me, but only one other person was using it, which likely doesn't change even during normal operations.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

Overall, the gym was in good condition and the bathroom next door was too. I expected there to be a shower for guests to use after a workout but didn't see one. Then again, this is a hotel and guests can just shower in their rooms.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

In addition to the gym, the hotel also had four bikes available for guests to borrow, free of charge.

(Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)

The Hyatt Union Square also offers meeting facilities, which were closed down during the pandemic. At the moment, they are accommodating "micro events" for up to 40 guests.

Related: The most award-friendly hotel program: Everything you need to know about World of Hyatt

Service

The service at the Hyatt Union Square was excellent all around. For starters, the front desk agent checking me in was very reassuring when I told her about my previous hotel, where I was given the keys to an occupied room.

She not only made me feel like I'd be safe here and a higher cleaning standard was upheld, but she checked on me after I got to my room to make sure everything was ok.

All the staff at this hotel were great throughout my stay. Any time I came downstairs, the front desk staff would smile and say hello. At one point, I went to the front desk to get a new room key and was holding a small bag of trash. The front desk agent, Anton, spotted the bag and proactively offered to throw it out for me.

Any time I had a question or any interaction, every staff member was helpful and courteous.

Note on accessibility

The Hyatt Union Square has ADA accessible rooms available, offering both King and Queen sized beds. At 300 square feet, these rooms have wide doors and offer 50-80 more square feet of space than a standard room. The lighting, climate controls and door latch are positioned lower to accommodate wheelchair users and the bathroom features a 60-inch turning radius bathroom with roll-in shower.

It's worth mentioning that the King ADA room has a courtyard view, while the Queen ADA offers city views.

You can book an ADA-accessible room using the standard 25,000 points per night.

Related: These are the most wheelchair-accessible cities around the world

Overall impression

Overall, I had a great stay at the Hyatt Union Square and recommend this hotel if you want a solid place to stay with an excellent location. In fact, I'd argue this property has the best location of any Hyatt in the city. You're walking distance from Greenwich Village and near the Union Square subway station, which can take you virtually anywhere you want to go in the city. That makes it ideal for both business and leisure travelers.

The room was comfortable and much more spacious than I had anticipated, considering how small the photos on the website appear. Cleaning standards were also high here. I would gladly book the same room for a longer stay next time.

But most importantly, the staff members were great and made me feel safe and comfortable. After my ordeal at the Hotel Indigo, I realized how important it is to trust the hotel staff. Their level of professionalism and care for their job is what affects the comfort and safety of guests. I definitely sensed that was a priority here.

Featured image by Hyatt Union Square. (Photo by Ariana Arghandewal/The Points Guy)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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  • The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
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Rewards Rate

5XGet 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com
1.5XEarn 1.5X points on eligible purchases at US construction material & hardware suppliers, electronic goods retailers and software & cloud system providers, and shipping providers, as well as on purchases of $5,000 or more everywhere else, on up to $2 million of these purchases per calendar year
1X1X points for each dollar you spend on eligible purchases.
  • Intro Offer
    The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.

    Earn 150,000 points
    120,000 points
  • Annual Fee

    $695
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Good, Excellent

Why We Chose It

It's hard to find a card that competes with the mile-long list of benefits that come with the Amex Business Platinum. While it's certainly not the card for the average consumer, a business owner with tons of expenses -- especially related to travel -- will find this card incredibly valuable. This card is similar to the consumer version that Amex offers, but with more business-oriented perks around statement credits and earning rates that are a better fit for business owners.

Pros

  • An up to $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee every four to five years
  • Up to $400 annual credit for eligible U.S. Dell purchases (enrollment required)
  • Gold status at Marriott and Hilton hotels (enrollment required)
  • Access to the Fine Hotels & Resorts program and Hotel Collection
  • Extended warranty protection
  • International Airline Program and Cruise Privileges Program

Cons

  • Steep annual fee
  • Difficulty meeting $15,000 welcome offer for smaller businesses
  • Limited high-bonus categories outside of travel
  • The Points Guy Exclusive Offer: Earn 150,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card® within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com, and 1X points for each dollar you spend on eligible purchases.
  • Earn 1.5X points (that’s an extra half point per dollar) on eligible purchases at US construction material & hardware suppliers, electronic goods retailers and software & cloud system providers, and shipping providers, as well as on purchases of $5,000 or more everywhere else, on up to $2 million of these purchases per calendar year.
  • Unlock over $1,000 in annual statement credits on a curation of business purchases, including select purchases made with Dell Technologies, Indeed, Adobe, and U.S. wireless service providers.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year for checked baggage fees, lounge day passes, and more at one selected airline.
  • $189 CLEAR® Credit: Use your Card and get up to $189 back per year on your CLEAR® membership. CLEAR® is available at more than 50 U.S. airports and stadiums.
  • The American Express Global Lounge Collection® can provide an escape at the airport. With more than 1,400 airport lounges across 140 countries and counting, you have more lounge location options than any other credit card on the market as of 9/2021.
  • $695 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.