The celebs: John Travolta and Bill Clinton
The place: Adare, County
The celebs: David and Victoria Beckham
The place: New York, New York
The hotel: SoHo and TriBeCa often overshadow the Upper East Side in terms of social scene. So it’s a testament to the timeless cool of The Mark Hotel that it regularly competes with its downtown contemporaries. The landmark building on 77th and Madison is home to one of the most quintessentially Upper East destinations around. Yet it’s where fashion-forward celebs like Posh and Becks come to disappear as paparazzi clamor outside.
The scoop: The Mark’s not-so-secret formula is integrating Art Deco history with cutting-edge style and technology. The eclectic 2009 redesign by Jacques Grange juxtaposes classic details against mod, one-of-a-kind amenities. Think Ron Arad chairs and Bang & Olufsen audio systems on an iconic black-and-white palette. Then there are the luxurious, cream-colored suites, à la Paris’s Grand Hotel, with nickel-fitted marble baths (also black and white, natch). With that kind of ‘30s Paris style, it’s no wonder that celebs pick this place to hole up.
But enjoying the scene doesn’t require an overnight stay. The hotel’s highlights, like kumquat mojitos at the classic Mark Bar, are available upfront. The restaurant features the Mark Cheeseburger with black truffle dressing and Brie, created by Jean-Georges, and you can pop in and out of the Assouline branch in minutes. (That is, if you don’t get carried away as you browse all the colorful books.) If you’re in a hurry, drop by the ground-floor Mark Shine for a John Lobb shoe polish. Just keep your eyes open – blink, and you’ll miss the next A-lister slipping by.