The Benjamin Royal Sonesta New York

Midtown, New York

Virgin rating

The hotel

The Benjamin Royal Sonesta Hotel, a landmark hotel located in Midtown Manhattan with it’s classic décor and intimate boutique setting provides a sense of sophisticated glamour in New York City.  Located at 50th and Lexington Avenue, The Benjamin Royal Sonesta New York exudes old-world Manhattan with oversized rooms and suites (many with kitchenettes). The hotel offers quick access to the best luxury boutiques on 5th Avenue, Rockefeller Centre and St. Patrick’s Cathedral and array of fine dining options. Fitness Center located on the 3rd floor open 24 hours. Laundry and pressing services available. Complimentary newspapers available in the lobby. The Cupboard conveniently located in the lobby provides snacks, beverages and sundries for purchase without going far.

Amenities

  • Fitness Centre/Gym
  • Internet Access
  • Laundry Service
  • Close to City Centre

Where is it

Situated on the corner of East 50th Street and Lexington Avenue in Midtown Manhattan; close to Fifth Avenue, Grand Central Terminal, the Rockefeller Centre and Bloomingdales. Transfer time from John F. Kennedy International Airport: 40 minutes.

Hotel information

209 guest rooms and suites. All with air-conditioning, 42” HD flat-screen cable TV, iPod alarm clock, kitchenette, mini-fridge, bathrobes, WiFi access*. Guest Rooms are 250–275 sq ft and have 1 queen-size bed, sleeping maximum 2 adults.

Deluxe Studios are 300–350 sq ft, and have 1 king-size bed or 2 queen-size beds, sleeping maximum 4 adults or 2 adults and 2 children.

One Bedroom Suites are 450–550 sq ft with a separate living area with 1 queen-size sleeper sofa, and 1 queen-size or 1 king-size bed in the bedroom, sleeping maximum 4 adults or 2 adults and 2 children.

The National Bar & Dining Rooms (classic NYC bistro dishes served for breakfast, lunch and dinner, temporarily closed). 

Winks’ Kidzzz Club. 24-hour state-of-the-art fitness room and steam room. 

Laundry/dry-cleaning services*. 24/7 reception team, concierge and shoe shine services. Complimentary WiFi in public areas.

This hotel has a facility fee of $39 plus tax, per room per day (payable locally, subject to change).

Fee includes: $15 daily credit to our Cupboard, complimentary Wi-Fi access, unlimited local/long distance calls (excluding international), complimentary use of the Fitness Center, a one-time $15 laundry credit for the stay. (inclusions are subject to availability and change).

One person must be aged 21 years and over in each room at check-in.

*Denotes local charge.

Please note: Building work will be taking place Weekdays, Monday-Friday from  8;00am – 5:00pm untill June '24.

Please note: Due to the temporary closure of the hotel restaurant and room service, staff will provide detailed information at check-in of local dining options for breakfast, lunch and dinner (including order-in options). There is also a lobby market available for guests craving a quick snack, with items including chips/crisps, cookies, nuts, water, assorted soft drinks and juices.

Rating summary

  • Location Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Sleep Quality Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Rooms Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Service Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Value Image of the Tripadvisor rating
  • Cleanliness Image of the Tripadvisor rating

Traveller rating

  • Excellent (2109)
  • Very good (885)
  • Average (333)
  • Poor (130)
  • Terrible (94)
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Anya the ConciergeNYC@sonesta.com

May 26, 2024 Melinda N

Anya is a consierres at the Benjamin Royal Sonesta Hotel. Even before I arrived at the hotel, I wrote emails to Anya, who wrote me back each time very quickly with suggestions for restaurants, jazz clubs, siteseeing, and so on. I got wonderful recommendations each time. Many of the places were within walking distance as well. If you stay at the… Read more
Anya is a consierres at the Benjamin Royal Sonesta Hotel. Even before I arrived at the hotel, I wrote emails to Anya, who wrote me back each time very quickly with suggestions for restaurants, jazz clubs, siteseeing, and so on. I got wonderful recommendations each time. Many of the places were within walking distance as well. If you stay at the Benjamin, know you are in good hands with Anya and any direction you need! Qick responses with detailed and links to all venues. Anya was efficient, thorough, accurate, and friendly! Highly recommend! Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating The worst hotel stay ever.

May 12, 2024 mariegA8592QP

I had a booking in another hotel for 6 night's on April 3rd 2024. Easter weekend. At the last minute My airline changed my flight to get in the night of April 2nd. My hotel was fully booked for the day. I choose the Benjamin since it was only 2 blocks away. My plane arrived at JFK around 10:35pm. Since I booked it with American Express the hotel… Read more
I had a booking in another hotel for 6 night's on April 3rd 2024. Easter weekend. At the last minute My airline changed my flight to get in the night of April 2nd. My hotel was fully booked for the day. I choose the Benjamin since it was only 2 blocks away. My plane arrived at JFK around 10:35pm. Since I booked it with American Express the hotel gave me an upgrade. When I walked into my room at 12.45am on April 3rd exhausted I was shocked to walk into this so-called upgrade. A filthy carpet and only one filthy chair, sticky tile floor in bathroom and a broken airstream. The air system was so loud I had to turn it off and open my window to A very loud Lexington ave. Garbage trucks and all the other traffic noise. See photos below . I am in NYC 5 times a year for work and I was born and raised in NYC. I requested a full refund of $407 but they only gave me $175. This was so uncomfortable . It is far from a 4 star hotel. I have proof with a email to the manager that this was not execrable. If it wasn’t 1;00am in the morning and raining I would have left.. finally I left at 9;00am and went to the hotel I had my 6 night booking at. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating The potential is there once the construction is done

May 10, 2024 Bonzer34 New Paltz, New York

I want to start by saying the staff here is excellent. This review is in NO way a negative review of the hardworking employees at the Benjamin- this is about the accommodations This hotel comes as a partner hotel for patients receiving treatment at memorial Sloan Kettering. We checked in late and were greeted by a very friendly front desk… Read more
I want to start by saying the staff here is excellent. This review is in NO way a negative review of the hardworking employees at the Benjamin- this is about the accommodations This hotel comes as a partner hotel for patients receiving treatment at memorial Sloan Kettering. We checked in late and were greeted by a very friendly front desk person, bellhop and car valet. The lobby did not have AC. It was very neatly appointed- cool art work lighting and decor. Upon entering room 709 my husband and I were accosted by an aggressive and relentless stench. It was something comprable to bleach mixed with mold. The suite by NYC standards was a decent size. The carpets were stained. The sofa was also dirty, worn out and uncomfortable. The king size bed had a thin duvet but no sheet or blanket. The bathroom sink was awkwardly situated and sprayed water everywhere when washing hands or brushing teeth At 7:20 the next morning the racket started. Banging, sawing, drilling, hammering. The building is being renovated. The contractors are not supposed to start work until after 9 am but they violated this order and startled us awake on chemo infusion day at 7:20 Lastly- when our car came back from valet the entire passenger side rear door was covered in vomit Again, the staff went well above to make this experience the best they could with the issues they have to deal with during this transitional period at the hotel My advice is to hold off on staying here until the construction is complete Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating Longtime guest unlikely to return — The Benjamin falls short at every turn

May 6, 2024 tessmcnair Louisville, Kentucky

After years of being one of my favorite midtown hotels, The Benjamin is undergoing a full renovation. What used to be a lovely retreat where details were attended to and the staff exhibited professionalism on par with that taught at the Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration is now an exercise in amateurishness, negligence, and rudeness. We… Read more
After years of being one of my favorite midtown hotels, The Benjamin is undergoing a full renovation. What used to be a lovely retreat where details were attended to and the staff exhibited professionalism on par with that taught at the Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration is now an exercise in amateurishness, negligence, and rudeness. We arrived on a Thursday evening. At the reception desk, we were greeted by an eager young woman who spoke loudly and didactically, as if I were either in kindergarten or had never stayed in a hotel before. I softened my voice to signal that, perhaps, the whole lobby did not need to hear every detail of our conversation. But she was not a student of the art of subtlety. Upon accepting my credit card to pay for the room, she announced the total amount of my bill to any and all who were within extended earshot. Apparently, the Benjamin’s renovation also includes removing all tact and discretion from the front desk. We were given two room keys and cautioned to keep them away from vital organs or they would become demagnetized. Perhaps, that’s an exaggeration. But cell phones, Apple Watches, AirPods, and all manner of personal technology. Effectively, vital organs. How is this even a reasonable expectation in 2024? Needless to say, in less than 24 hours I had accidentally demagnetized one of our keys and advised another guest, who was not sufficiently warned, why he could not enter his room. The Benjamin’s lobby is a mess, with most of its space closed off to visitors, and the rooms are being transformed from well appointed spaces in calming neutrals to dark hipster spaces with hard surfaces and a spartan vibe. After riding up in the one working elevator, we opened the door to a renovated suite with a queen bed. Since we had reserved a king suite, we returned frustrated to the lobby and were redirected to an older room. While its decoration matched our expectations and our preferences (The Benjamin’s website still shows pictures of the old rooms), its readiness for any guest’s arrival did not. No wash cloths, no hand soap, no bottle opener/corkscrew in the kitchenette… for that matter, no coffee table in the middle of a generously sized living room, which is standard in the floor plan. Broken window treatments, stained furniture, and crumbs on the couch. I understand that some of this is attributable to a room awaiting renovation. However much is due to the negligence and inattentiveness of staff. Underwhelmed but tired from a long day of work and travel, we decided to accept. The room would have sufficed with some sense of compromise and disappointment on our part, but only 24 hours into our stay, our refrigerator failed, taking with it to its grave the contents we had purchased. When it could not be fixed, the staff offered us another room down the hall. At 10:00 pm while on vacation, there is nothing I’d rather do than move the entirety of my belongings from one hotel room to another. It’s truly the height of any luxury experience. While the new room came with washcloths and a coffee table, we discovered an assortment of new shortcomings that confirm The Benjamin’s standards for the guest experience are sorely inconsistent and lacking. Long gone, and perhaps not returning… I don’t know, is the delightful cafe and bar that used to warm and enliven the lobby. That unscrupulous “resort fee” that NYC hotels use to camouflage higher room rates would get you a cocktail each afternoon at the bar. No more. Now, you are obliged to choose $10 of snacks from a case in the lobby if you want to enjoy the value of the amenities supported by your $50 per day resort fee. The staff are almost giddy with disproportionate enthusiasm as you “shop” from the snack armoire in the lobby. Their emotions might be better suited for children choosing a trinket gift during their annual holiday visit to Santa’s Workshop at Bloomingdale’s. After all, these are Pringles and Swedish Fish that are you encouraged to think of as free and exotic. I’ve enjoyed more extravagant yields from vending machines and could recommend any number of gourmet options were I named snack bar tsar, but why lose $10 when you could have overpriced rest stop food from the lobby of a luxury boutique hotel in the heart of midtown? Pringles, please. On the last evening of our stay, we returned to our room to find a memo slipped under our door. Buried in paragraphs of awkward and profuse marketing lingo that described the luxury we used to enjoy during our stays at The Benjamin was notice that the hotel would not have water the next day between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Dear Lord. At $600 a night after fees and taxes, one would think the availability of running water could be presumed. Our check-out experience the next morning only reinforced the shortcomings that plague The Benjamin these days. When I visited the front desk to check out, the manager on duty asked my room number, handed me my bill, and only uttered another word when I thanked him and he replied, “You’re welcome.” No “thank you for staying with us.” No “how was your stay?” No hospitality. What The Benjamin is attempting with the renovation of its physical space… presumably to remain relevant as a luxury hotel in midtown Manhattan… is undermined by the lack of professionalism, warmth, and precision of its staff and by the hotel’s insistence on continuing to charge fees for amenities that are undermined or unavailable in light of the current state of the hotel. When guests are predictably inconvenienced by construction in progress, continued assessment of a resort fee shows an unbecoming crassness and lack of self awareness that are incongruent with the vision and hospitality of a legitimate luxury hotel. As does a proctored snack armoire in place of a proper cafe. Recently, I recommended The Benjamin to my father for his next stay in New York. Today, I retracted that recommendation and offered a different one. There are simply too many wonderful places to stay in midtown to stay at The Benjamin. I don’t expect I’ll ever return. Read less
Image of the Tripadvisor rating The Benjamin isn’t what it used to be. Tired, Dated, Terrible reception Staff

Apr 7, 2024 David T Wigan, England

It is a shame I’m writing this review as this was the first hotel we visited in New York in 2005 and we actually got married in this Hotel during that stay we loved it that much. We decided to bring our 10 year old daughter for Christmas and New Year to NYC and thought it would be a lovely idea to stay at the hotel we loved to show her where we… Read more
It is a shame I’m writing this review as this was the first hotel we visited in New York in 2005 and we actually got married in this Hotel during that stay we loved it that much. We decided to bring our 10 year old daughter for Christmas and New Year to NYC and thought it would be a lovely idea to stay at the hotel we loved to show her where we got married and to experience the quality hotel as it was - Unfortunately, this is not the case anymore……. 1) The staff on reception were very abrupt, had an attitude problem and they seemed like they didn’t want to be there. 2) Previous visits, there was always 1 and sometimes 2 very helpful doormen on shift who would open the door on your way into the hotel and on your way out. This time we visited most times there wasn’t anybody on the door and when there was, there was no good morning or good evening and they just stood at the door and waited for the door sensor to do its job. 3) Our room was on a high floor which was great but I can honestly say the decor is probably the same as it was in 2005 and looks very very dated. Two of the window blinds were broken and couldn’t be closed fully or opened in a straight line and one of the windows wouldn’t open. 4) The toilet had a bad leak where we would leave the trash can underneath so that the water would drip into that instead of onto the floor - we didn’t report this as we really liked the high floor we were on but regardless, the cleaner emptied the bin on a couple of occasions and then put the bin back under the leak. On the same issue, one day we flushed the toilet and it just filled up with water and wouldn’t drain. We went downstairs to inform reception as the phone in the room didn’t work and the ignorant woman said “what have you done to it!!!!” “You must have done something to it???” I couldn’t believe what I was hearing?? And then, when I told her we had simply flushed the toilet and it didn’t empty, she didn’t send maintenance, she sent a door man up to have look who then sent a maintenance man????? 5) We stayed 11 nights at this hotel and spent over $5800 which I’m not complaining about as we chose to stay here expecting it to be like it used to be but during those 11 nights we only had a cleaner 6 of the 11 days and on previous visits you would always get a turn down service at approx 6pm where they would lower the blinds and turn the lights on but that doesn’t happen anymore. The hotel is very very dated, the staff (the ones we dealt with) were horrible, the restaurant doesn't exist anymore and the nice lounge that used to be on the 2nd floor is now meeting rooms. It just doesn’t feel like a luxury hotel anymore. I can honestly say that I don’t think we will ever return to this hotel which makes me sad as we always used to try and visit on our anniversary as a nice memory of our wedding in that hotel. I wouldn’t recommend this hotel anymore Read less