New York has some of the world’s ritziest and most expensive hotels, but that doesn’t mean you have to break the bank to visit—or even sacrifice style
Lefferts Manor

Affordable New York City Inns You've Never Heard About

New York City has some of the world’s ritziest and most expensive hotels, but that doesn’t mean you have to break the bank to visit—or even sacrifice style. Tucked away in the city’s neighborhoods are some pleasantly welcoming inns and bed and breakfasts. These places are not only legit—that is, a stay won’t embroil you in an apartment sublet, which can be illegal in New York City—but they come with perks that might include breakfast, use of a kitchen, and lots of ambiance and homey hospitality. Best of all, a stay costs a fraction of what you’d pay in a larger city hotel. Note that rates are lowest January through March.

Photo: Dining room at Lefferts Manor
Stay the Night
Stay the Night
Stay the Night
The East 90s just off Fifth are prime Manhattan real estate, and little wonder: The Metropolitan, Guggenheim, and other fantastic collections line so-called Museum Mile while Central Park beckons to the west. Among the swanky apartment houses and grand townhouses lining the refined streets is this handsome manse, once the home of a German brewer and now a charmingly quirky inn with six large, sun-filled bedrooms, several with private baths, and an apartment—all embellished with elaborate plaster work, fireplaces, paneling, and other original 19th-century fittings. Furnishings are a friendly mix of worn-but-homey pieces that evoke a stay in a friends’ place, and baths and other facilities are kept in tip-top shape.

18 E. 93rd St., 212/722–8300, staythenight.com; from $170
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A room at the Colonial House Inn in New York City
Colonial House Inn
Colonial House Inn
Bright white rooms, cheered by bold paintings by the original (now deceased) owner help make these modest, small digs quite pleasant. The least expensive rooms share bathrooms; deluxe ones have their own and, sometimes, a working fireplace. Though the building wasn't around during colonial times, it does have potent history: this was the first headquarters for Gay Men's Health Crisis. The clientele today is larger LGBTQ, though all are welcome. And the location can't be beat: on a quiet, tree-lined street in the heart of arsty Chelsea.

318 W. 22nd St., 212/243-9669, www.colonialhouseinn.com, from $130/night including breakfast
Off SoHo Suites
Off SoHo Suites
Off SoHo Suites
The surrounding Lower East Side neighborhood couldn’t be more hip, but this quietly stylish inn is all about practical comfort.  Suites are family-perfect, with a kitchen, eating area, a large bedroom, and a living room with a queen-sized sofa bed. Other options are economical but a little less commodious: good-sized bedrooms share baths, and kitchens. Furnishings throughout are cool and contemporary, and handy conveniences include a coin-operated laundry, small fitness room, and a lobby lounge that’s a gathering spot for international guests who are genuinely interesting. For serious socializing, some of New York’s trendiest bars and clubs are just outside the door.

11 Rivington St., 800/633–7646 or 212/979–9815, www.offsoho.com; from $109
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Sofia Inn
Sofia Inn
Sofia Inn
If you’ve been wondering what the buzz about Brooklyn is about, you’ll discover the borough’s charms in this gracious old brownstone on a leafy street at the edge of Park Slope. The Brooklyn Museum and Prospect Park are just a few steps away, as are shops, restaurants, and easy subway connections to Manhattan. Homey accommodations include a ground-floor apartment with two bedrooms, kitchen, and access to a garden; upstairs are four commodious guest rooms, two to a floor, sharing two beautifully maintained vintage bathrooms. Rooms in front have large, sun-filled bow windows, while those in back overlook the quiet garden. Owner Billy Tashman is on hand to share his encyclopedic knowledge of all matters relating to New York.

288 Park Pl., Brooklyn, 917/865–7428, www.brooklynbedandbreakfast.net; from $99
Lefferts Manor
Lefferts Manor
Lefferts Manor
With street after street of handsome row houses and free-standing homes, Brooklyn’s Prospect Lefferts Gardens neighborhood is chockablock with Victorian ambiance. So are these character-filled guest quarters—five in the main house, plus a two-bedroom garden suite and two more rooms around the corner—where parquet floors, elaborate plaster, and handsome fireplaces in almost every room suggest a retreat to a different time. The easy subway trip to Manhattan will whisk you into the present day, while the large, airily furnished quarters overlooking gardens and quiet residential streets are equipped with good beds, comfy arm chairs, and the other comforts you’ll need to rest up from adventures in the big city. Plus, the lawns and shaded paths of Prospect Park are just steps away. Aside from the suites, baths are shared, but they come with claw-foot tubs and other vintage fixtures. A homey parlor is the setting for a hearty breakfast.

80 Rutland Rd., Brooklyn, 347/351–9065, leffertsmanorbedandbreakfast.com; from $89 including breakfast
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Fort Place Bed and Breakfast
Fort Place Bed and Breakfast
Fort Place Bed and Breakfast
Manhattan is just a free boat ride away from this roomy Victorian house high on a hill on Staten Island above New York Harbor—and your commute will glide you past the feet of the Statue of Liberty for perfect snapshots. Accommodations are homily furnished with original artworks and some fine antique pieces and spread over three floors, one unit to each floor. They offer an amenity rare in New York lodgings: plenty of room. Two big bedrooms with bay windows on the upper floors have private baths as well as a small extra bedroom that’s great for kids or for just emptying a suitcase without cluttering the living space; a lower-floor apartment has a sitting room and large eat-in kitchen.

22 Fort Pl., Staten Island, 718/722–2112, www.fortplace.com; from $85
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