Concierge.com's insider take:
The first hotel to open near the World Trade Center after the September 11 attack, this Ritz was guaranteed the affection of New Yorkers. But it has more than sentiment to recommend it: The rooms facing the harbor have postcard views of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, plus telescopes to take full advantage—get a corner Liberty Suite for the best views. The lighter wood, fabrics in shades of sage and beige, and contemporary art by about 100 New York artists, including April Gornik and Ross Bleckner, make it fresher than the typical Ritz. The only drawback: If you're not arriving and departing by taxi, car, or the hotel's shuttle service, you have to cross several lanes of traffic and walk a sizable distance to the Wall Street area for the nearest subway. The hotel's uptown sibling is more convenient: a conventionally plush midtown Ritz with stellar views of Central Park and a La Prairie spa.