Tucked away on a quiet cobblestoned street one block from Broadway in the heart of SoHo, the 86-room, 11-story Crosby Street Hotel is the latest addition to lower Manhattan's increasingly crowded market of downtown boutiques. Opened in October 2009, the hotel was built on a prime piece of real estate that was previosuly a parking garage.
The Crosby Street is the first property outside of London for Firmdale Hotels, a small boutique chain that's privately owned by husband-and-wife team Tim and Kit Kemp. The hotel is beautiful, and manages to feel both sophisticated and accessible -- you can actually sit on the velvet tuxedo-style sofa in the "drawing room" without feeling like you're violating some kind of design etiquette. Kit Kemp serves as the design director, and she and her team clearly paid obsessive attention to color, texture, and detail: from the 10-foot-high Jaume Plensa sculpture in the lobby to the deep sofas in the drawing room to the textured wallpaper in the rooms. The overall effect is as whimsical as it is comfortable, a combination that's often absent from the monochrome glass-walled design hotels that have sprouted in the vicinity