In perhaps the most prime of prime locations, in the absolute heart of Midtown, a block from Rockefeller Center, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, fashionable Fifth Avenue, and adorned by the magnificent, 19th-century Villard Mansion on Madison Avenue and 50th Street, the Lotte New York Palace has undergone many transformations in the past decade. Now a member of the prestigious, Lotte group of hotels, the Palace was spruced up with a $140 million redesign in 2013 and early 2014. Rooms have always been grand, some with amazing views of Rockefeller Center and St. Patrick’s, but now they have added a sleeker, more contemporary look along with high-tech amenities such as iPod docking stations and high-definition flatscreen televisions. Still, for a hotel this opulent, better window soundproofing should have been part of the renovations; I could hear, clearly, trucks and construction from my room on the 49th floor.