I'd like to share the photos from a recent trip to New York City. Specifically, I'd like to share my negative review with supporting photographic evidence for the Howard Johnson on West 34th Street.

Take a photo tour: Hotel from Hell

Complaints regarding Howard Johnson on West 34th St:



  • Only 1 elevator. Serves dual purpose for cargo/trash and guests. Smells like ripe trash. Watch out for the puddles from the leaky trash.

  • Hallways very narrow, need to carry bags lengthwise to pass
  • Rooms exceptionally small, perhaps just 7x 15', plus a room they refer to as a bathroom.
  • Map of fire escape route doesn't show you where your room is on the map.
  • Advertises internet access in hotel. In reality this means a coin operated kiosk in lobby. Bring a napkin to wipe the snot and greasy fingerprints off it.

  • Advertises desk/work area. In reality there is a narrow desk opposite the door and cluttered with coffee maker, telephone books, etc... No chair provided
  • Air conditioner did not work. The cold setting just blew hot air. Windows did not open.
  • View from window to a dark, inner courtyard consisting of concrete, trash, and views to other guestrooms. Very depressing.
  • Television marred with many cigarrette burns where the plastic was burned. No remote control.
  • Dorm-like shower stall had no lights, a flimsy plastic curtain with rusting hangers, and tile floor infested with god knows what fungus.
  • Toilet paper 5 feet away from toilet. Picture this in your mind for a second...

  • Sink positioned in tiny alcove only shoulder-wide.
  • One wash rag. Two towels. That's it. Material was thin enough to see through.
  • Ventilation system had something like spanish moss hanging from it or growing out of it. Last I checked spanish moss does not grow in New York City.
  • Ceiling tiles ajar and water stained with yellow tint. You may want to consider moving the bed under a tile that does not have leak stains, but you may be torn between that and moving the bed towards the hot air coming from "air conditioner" just to have a breeze of any type.

  • Coffee maker was clogged. Coffee (dark water) ran over and onto desk. Saturated personal items on desk.


Any hotel in NYC is going to be much more expensive than hotels in most other small cities, and the Hojo charged about $100+ for this dump. What a hell hole. After one night in the Hojo we cancelled the remaining 5 days and went somewhere else. Just say No Go to the HoJo!

For about $240 we stayed at the Hilton. The Hilton is immaculate, elegant, and professional. The rooms were spacious, well appointed, and had spectacular view of the Hudson in the distance and 42nd street below. Take my advice, stay at the Hilton in Times Square instead!!!

See also Eric's Guide to Hotels in NYC