Our New York City digs

With an abundance of accommodation options spread out over a city of 302 square miles (that’s 486 square kilometres for us Aussies), deciding where to stay in Manhattan can be overwhelming. There’s budget hostel accommodation with dorm rooms, right up to luxurious penthouses in fancy hotels overlooking Bryant Park.  We wanted something in between in a good location, so we booked a week at the Hotel Beacon.

Located on the Upper West Side, Hotel Beacon is a 260-roomed property that is also home to a bunch of permanent residents. A short cab ride to the Meatpacking District and walking distance to Central Park and the Lincoln Centre, the hotel is in a great location for guests wanting to explore the city. Unlike the edgier hotels that attract the cool crowd, the Hotel Beacon caters for everyone. Families headed out in the morning for a day of sightseeing, while we were able to rock in from a night out, free from front desk judgement.

One of the best things about the Hotel Beacon is Fairway – the huge gourmet grocer across the road. Open 7am to 1am each day, you’ll find everything from fruit and veggies, organic coconut water and imported tea, to fresh sushi, deli delicacies and every single snack food available to mankind. Do yourself a favour and grab a few packs of dark-chocolate coated cranberries and cashew nuts.

We stayed in a corner apartment one floor from the top that had views of the city and the Hudson River from every room. With a fully equipped kitchen, a spacious lounge and dining room with a study nook, two flat screen TVs, a bedroom with two of the comfiest beds around, an iPod dock and soft fluffy hotel towels, we didn’t want to leave.