One Hotel Brooklyn Bridge has so many touch points the gal keeps on thinking in retrospect of yet more things. This is a new-build 11-floor structure, an exterior that is square, glass and metal and unpolished wood: it is flat-roofed, to catch what will be 5,000 gallons of rainwater a year, to be fed down, through massive pipes that form columns in the two-floor lobby below, and on out to water the adjacent Brooklyn Bridge Park. It is thanks to Michael Bloomberg, by the way, who, as Mayor of New York, helped make this gorgeous park, replacing what had been warehouses in times past. Today, those lucky enough to stay here can look across the Hudson to the Statue of Liberty, and lower Manhattan.
Interiors, by INC of New York, feature concrete, reclaimed wood, steel doors, thousands of real green plants (Harrison Green landscapers have at least two specialists on-site two days a week to water). There is some amazing art, including Rachel Mica Weiss’ Unbounded, also known as a ‘pile’ of 6,000 uniquely-shaped obsidian rocks tied with orange string. You can see some of it in the photo above, where, pre-wedding, a bride poses for her official photos. Over front desk is a gathering of black rubber strips, Jarrod Beck’s All OVEREACHOTHER. In my gorgeous suite 907, I had two memorable wall ‘art’ pieces. One is a display of 750ml-sized glass bottles, some holding living greenery – the bottles have been made by Edison Zapata and Romina Gonzales, of OffCentre. The other ‘art work’ is the distilled water dispenser, shown.
My suite is one of 26 in the 195-room hotel to have a hammock, as well as a remarkably comfy bed. Closets look as if they are fashioned from old packing crates, and coat hangers are marked ‘made from old maps’, ‘made from papers’, as appropriate. I know that all electricity is purchased, by One Hotels on a corporate basis, from windfarms. My linens are laundered by companies that are as organic as possible. Having been out for dinner last night, I only had breakfast here. The choice was Neighbors, a grab-n-go outlet with the menu projected on to the wall behind the servers, or Osprey, a large space that flows out to the park-set terrace. Osprey is own-run, overseen by Ivy Stark, who is also sommelier: the omelette here comes with heirloom tomatoes, feta and oregano, and the butter is whipped with pumpkin.
There are rush baskets of apples and a wooden urn of apple cider by elevators, and all the seating in the lobby, both at low-down collapse-type chairs as well as high-set communal tables, appears to be unofficial WeWork offerings, perhaps for those who work in one of the myriad of tech studios around (there are many buildings, also, currently being brought to 2018 style). GM Hans Schaepman says that, summer long, the rooftop with the pool that seems to be a ubiquitous feature of US new-builds these days is venue for early-evening networking: a bar on the tenth floor perhaps suffices when winter weather sets in. Oh there is so much to say about this unforgettable hotel. Schaepman also explained that his 300 team members are rewarded not only for hotel-run community projects but also for anything that a team member organises in own time: spend a day cleaning up a local school’s garden, for instance, and you get a day’s salary. SEE FIRST SUITE 907, THEN A LOBBY TOUR