Location Hilton Westchester lies in southern New York State, just 30 minutes north of New York City. The hotel is a couple of minutes drive off the Merritt Parkway at the Rye Brook exit. This is where is gets confusing because the hotel lies in the town of Rye, yet there is a Rye city, which is actually smaller than the town. Hence, it is often referred to as Rye Town and it incorporates two villages: Rye Brook and Port Chester, which lies on the Long Island Sound. The historic Hudson Valley includes many attractions such as the Van Cortlandt Manor, Lyndhurst, and Sleepy Hollow.
Lodging The 445-room hotel is classic Third Quarter design, built circa 1973, and indebted to the simple, modern visual principles of the Gropius school and Lloyd Wright’s, too. The hotel has undergone tasteful refurbished that honors the original design while adding a large open-plan dining, bar, and lobby lounge area, which includes a communications center. For all its exterior boxy angularity, the hotel harmoniously blends with a backdrop of trees and rocks. As with modernist principles, the outdoors is emphasized as part of the living area: That is particularly true of the lovely patio leading off the restaurant. The landscape is lovingly preened and enhanced with pathways for guests to fully appreciate the hotel’s concept. There is also an outdoor pool, shuffleboard deck, which doubles as a volleyball court, and tennis courts. The tennis courts are now indoor and ran by a local concern as a community resource. However, hotel guests can use them. The Hilton also boasts Westchester County’s largest ballroom, which makes it a popular wedding venue. Even if the hum from I95 is constant, you cannot help but think of the hotel as a suburban retreat with nature a partner in its design.
View of a Room: 175 This standard ground floor room truly honors those Gropius principles and brings the outdoors in via a glass wall created by the patio doors. The interior color palette echoes the outside with beige, muted moss, and browns. Spacious and with a large armchair and footstool, and a large desk, too, the room has livability. The fridge is bare and striped of the usual expensive libations and snacks. The bathroom has Peter Thomas Roth toiletries, certainly a big plus there. A small patio with two sun loungers looks onto the shuffleboard court and the pool. The loungers are the new generation of relaxation, though, and have not only a drink holder but a cell phone one too.
Restaurants and bars Härth is among the new breed of restaurants that emphasize usability, whether it is an intimate dinner, a group gathering, casual snacking, or a good cocktail. Opened in 2012 under the keen watch of Executive Chef Rafael Velazquez, the bar and kitchen are well stocked with local beers, spirits, produce, meats, and more. Velazquez passion for local ingredients means even a simple tomato and burrata salad, or the breakfast fruit plate with freshly baked carrot cake sing with flavor. It also means that steak from beef cows raised naturally on a New York farm is not only tender and tasty, but like all of this astute shopping, lessons the carbon footprint. Such foresight is rare in a suburban hotel. Primarily, though, Velazquez aims for dining quality and Härth is as comfortable as it is conscientious. During the summer months, the patio is made good use of. In colder times, the visible wood-burning oven, which is used for flatbreads, adds a warm glow.
Fitness rooms, pools, and spas There is a fitness room and both indoor and outdoor pools.
Tech Wi-Fi is free to Hilton Honors members. A charge applies to others.
Info Hilton Westchester, 699 Westchester Ave., Rye Brook, NY. 914-939-6300. www.westchester.hilton.com
Photo credit: Hotel Junkie/Hilton Westchester