New York Airport – TWA Hotel
Traveling is never really easy for me. I have a fear of flying, a fear of being late and missing my plane, a fear of forgetting something, or losing my passport, or not turning the curling iron off…I’m sure my anxiety friends understand. Heck, that’s why this blog exists.
When B and I ventured from LA back home, we had a layover in NYC at JFK. To avoid a red-eye flight, we took a flight earlier in the morning. It left us about 15 hours between flights. B was also flying out on a different plane in the morning, and I’d have to venture through an unfamiliar airport, including security and finding my gate. It’s not my worst travel nightmare (that is discovering I not only lost all of my forms of identification along with leaving my phone and luggage in the bathroom when I had to nervous pee), but it wasn’t ideal.
So we decided to stay at the TWA Hotel. Y’all, this hotel is ATTACHED to the airport. We landed smoothly from our 5 hour LA to JFK flight (Terminal 5, Jet Blue), and then walked to an elevator that TOOK US TO THE HOTEL. We didn’t have to go outside and get a taxi. We didn’t have to get on the subway. It was barely a 10 minute walk from our flight to this retro-fantastic hotel, which again was attached to the airport.
Straight from the site: Reignited the magic of Eero Saarinen’s landmark 1962 TWA Flight Center at JFK Airport, restoring and reimagining it as a first-class hotel.
It feels like you’ve walked back in time to a dreamy, fun, redcarpet experience. There’s a wide variety of classic NY fare at the food court, and the pool has a view of the runway. There’s even an old airplane-turned-bar that serves fun cocktais and gives you a neat glimpse into an old cockpit.
You can even book hourly rooms, if you’re just looking for a catnap in between flights, or just go check it out on a long layover! There was a roller skating rink set up, and some sort of childs camp advertised but we checked in too late to really see that portion of the hotel.
And while the nighttime food court and fun airplane cocktails were delightful, the best part was the next morning. I woke up AT THE AIRPORT. I didn’t have to worry about traffic, or delays, or my uber not showing up, or my car not starting. I just rolled my suitcase out of my room, back through the hotel and then directly into Terminal 5. I was at my gate in 15 minutes, which included checking my bag and getting through security with TSA Plus.
If you are anxious about a NYC flight, or experiencing a longer layover, I would highly suggest checking out the TWA Hotel.
Crowds / Loud Noises – ***
The hotel was pretty empty, and the staff was wonderful. They were playing some retro bops, and the whole place had such a fun vibe.
Tight Spaces / Lack of Exit – *
The hallways were huge, curved, and full of vintage TWA signs. There was a huge glass doorway that stretched around the entire exit to get to cars and taxis, and the elevator to the terminal was easily accessed.
Negative Self Talk – **
We saw mostly pilots and staff, as well as some people clearly on business trips, but I could see larger families enjoying the space, especially with the rooftop pool that looked out at the runway. Everyone was more focused on the historical vignettes than paying attention to other people. It was easy to feel optimistic in this space.
Monetary Fears – $$$$
I would say we spent about double ($300) than we would have at another hotel, but once we calculated the uber and travel, it didn’t seem like a stretch. Plus, considering we were traveling separately the next day, I was really relieved (and slept better) knowing I was already at the airport.
I cannot express how much (did you see the ALL CAPS above?) I loved that we were already at the airport. The relief, y’all. I didn’t even panic at all getting through security and to my proper gate, because I was already there.
If my flight wasn’t JetBlue, or at Terminal 5, I would have to navigate farther into the airport or to a different terminal by going outside. So even though I’d have been at the airport, it wouldn’t have been as easy. I think it was still worthwhile to BE THERE already, just give yourself more time to get to your correct terminal.
Beer of Choice
I had the Montauk Brewing Co Wave Chaser IPA, which I purchased on the Connie, the plane/cocktail lounge. It was great to be on a plane without feeling terrified, and getting a drink in this retro-style was really fun.