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Big Apple offers bed-and-breakfast alternatives New York Habitat Featured in Houston Chronicle

Houston Chronicle
Sunday, May 3, 1998
Section: TRAVEL Tips & Trips

By CHRISTOPHER REYNOLDS, Los Angeles Times

NEW YORK - Looking to save money and find a more individualized big-city experience, an increasing number of travelers are trying bed-and-breakfast operations in New York.

These are not gingerbread houses stuffed full of quilts and doll collections. Many are unhosted apartments where a guest may get no maid service but enjoy use of a kitchen. Other rental spaces are "hosted" rooms in brownstone residential buildings, high-rise apartment buildings or other large properties. Many require minimum stays of three nights. Rooms are usually more affordable than apartments.

Just as New Yorkers do, you'll pay more for a central location, for a building with a doorman and for a balcony or (rarity of rarities) a backyard garden.

Some options:

Abode Ltd., 800-835-8880. About 35 unhosted apartments (four-night minimum), $135-$400 nightly.

Bed & Breakfast (& Books), 212-865-8740. Reservation service for 40 unhosted apartments and hosted rooms in brownstones and high-rises. Rates are roughly $100-$130 a night for double rooms, more for larger places.

Bed & Breakfast Network of New York, 800-900-8134. About 100 unhosted apartments, $115-$350 nightly.

City Lights Bed & Breakfast, 212-737-7049; fax 212-535-2755. Service handling about 400 unhosted short-term apartments and hosted B&B rooms in brownstones and high-rises. Rates are roughly $85-$110 a night for a room, $125-$300 for apartments of one to three bedrooms.

New York Habitat, 212-647-9365; Web site http://www.nyhabitat.com. About 500 unhosted apartments and a handful that are hosted, $85-$500 per night. Three-night minimum or more during holiday seasons.

Urban Ventures, 212-594-5650. About 600 unhosted apartments and 350 hosted rooms in brownstones and high-rises. Rates for rooms run $95-$115 a night with a three-night minimum. For apartments, rates are $125-$325 for studios to three bedrooms, with a four-night minimum.