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A New Hotel Above a Levitating Broadway Theatre

The Tempo by Hilton New York Times Square’s birth might have been complicated and steeped in drama, but the resulting hotel is remarkably simple in its intentions and design.

It’s not loaded down with pretension, velvet-rope restaurants, spas, or even significant lounge areas. Essentially, the common areas amount to a modest 11th-floor lobby situated above the Palace Theatre, and, connected to the lobby, a counter-service eatery and bar with a narrow outdoor terrace. Other than a fitness center on another floor, that’s it. This is not a hotel angling to be a hot nightspot or event space.

After all, there’s no sense in trying to compete with the attractions of Times Square. The hotel’s owners know guests will spend most of their time out exploring. Fittingly, the rooms reflect the on-the-go, easy-to-clean functionality that such tourists demand: laminate floors instead of carpeting (rooms are pet-friendly, with a fee), hooks and racks instead of closets, and, in bathrooms, showers instead of tubs. A lot of money clearly went into the very comfortable, pillow-laden beds.

This is room 3103. Automatic motorized blackout curtains come down whenever the room senses you’re not inside.

Televisions are truly representative of the leading edge in corporate hotels—you can stream your own content or use the Netflix app with your own login, plus there’s a huge slate of channels that goes far beyond the handful you usually get in a hotel room.