The NoMad – New York / by Jacques Garcia

Since 2012 Sydell Groups NoMad New York has held the crown as probably the cities finest hotel. There a few establishments the can compete with its incredibly designed interiors or food and beverage offering. So many great design hotels simply don’t taste as good as they look, or fantastic menus are offered in settings that do not live up to the quality of the food.

If your a patron coming to a hotel for food your experience starts when you enter the front door not just what’s on the plate and likewise if your a guest staying at the hotel, the F&B is a fundamental part of your stay. The NoMad has found the secret formula to this equation.

Teaming up with Make it Nice restaurateurs Daniel Humm and Will Guidara (also behind Elevan Madison Park, voted the best restaurant in the world 2017 by ‘The world’s 50 best restaurant list’) the NoMad was in a safe pare of hands.

The menus created in each of the NoMad’s signature spaces are sublime, whether it’s their famous spit cock chicken in the opulent parlor, a more relaxed burger & cocktail in the guest library or a fresh strawberry & hazelnut salad in the signature NoMad Atrium, every plate is near perfection and works in harmony with the mood of space you have chosen to eat in.

Part of the success of these menus boils down to the fact they mirror the spaces they are eaten in. Jacques Garcia’s concept for the hotel was to create old world French luxury combined with a bohemian distressed twist that creates a tension or emotion in every space, but with a definitive homely feeling through out. This juxtaposition of extremes creates a balance to the interiors so a guest is not left feeling uncomfortable, something commonly associated with most super high end hotels.

Jacques treats each area as if it was a room in your house (or someone else’s rather grand house). More formal entertaining spaces like the parlor are reminiscent of a royal French dining room, while the library takes on the persona of a more comfortable American collectors stately home. The carefully chosen vintage pieces mixed with opulent and comfortable manufactured furniture really add to the character of each space.

Upon arrival into the hotel, you are immediately taken into a dark and mysterious interior. Jacques uses Ebonised timber, thick black & cream patterned rugs and drapes, and black leather wall panels to create an arrival that cloaks you in opulence as you go further into the reception.

The original plaster ceiling is bathed with a warm glow from the period chandeliers expressing the detailed plasterwork with shadows.

Original mosaic pathways cut through the rich darkness and lead you to curtained openings giving glimpses through to Atrium Restaurant and Elephant Bar beyond.

The main Atrium space with its lush hanging planters and plush red drapes reminiscent of a European courtyard, acts as a link to the hotels other feature areas, guests and patrons entering the space are met with decision as to where they want spend their day or evening.

The Elephant Bar beyond for casual drinks. It’s dark timbers, elephant statues and Asian objects throw back to the hotels idea of travel and collection that you might find in someone’s home, obtained over a life time of exploration.

The decadent parlour for formal dining

Or the fire place room for a snug whiskey cocktail. The enormous mantel and surround was taken from a French château and completely dominates the space.

Testament to the early success of the hotel as a night time destination the adjacent premises was obtained and converted into a period style sophisticated public house. Green leather banquets seating, dark stained timbers and brass detailing adorn the interiors reminiscent of an old European gentlemen’s club. Again the clever use of paintings that’s depictions (bare footed Africans or 19 century boxing matches) jar with the scene set by the bar’s interiors, attempting to evoke a reaction from the patrons and pull you away from the pure essence of luxury.


The decor is very much Parisian in its style, and the 168 bedrooms are no different. The original building benefits from grand ceiling heights and double bay windows with views out towards the iconic Empire State Building.

Jacques’ selection of materials and furniture are incredibly well considered, he uses reclaimed maple hardwood floors,  opulent textured furnishings, exquisite handmade vintage Heriz rugs, intricately embossed leather and felt accents.

Perhaps one of the biggest successes of the bedrooms are hand-selected original artwork, that manage to create a Bohemian vibe that balances the luxuriously selected materials. This tension between Bohemia and luxury within the spaces is what the hotel is all about. 

The other defining elements are the signature NoMad fabric dividing screen that conceals the WC and shower and the free standing bath positioned for views out over the city.

All in all Sydell Group have managed to combine three great talents of hospitality in their stunning turn of the century Beaux-Arts building; Jacques Garcia plush Parisian interiors and Daniel Humm and Will Guidara’s innovative food and drinks offering have resulted in what can only be described as a truly timeless hotel; The NoMad, New York.

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