Every New Year’s Eve, millions of eyes turn to the bustling hub of Times Square, as the iconic ball drop signals the start of a fresh year. This tradition, steeped in over a century’s worth of history, offers a unique experience that’s best savored up close.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: The Marriott Marquis, Casablanca Hotel, The Knickerbocker, Renaissance New York Times Square Hotel, and DoubleTree Suites by Hilton New York City-Times Square are some of the best hotels that offer an exclusive view of this dazzling event.

In this article, we’ll explore the history of the ball drop, criteria for choosing the best hotel, evaluate our top picks, and also take into account other important considerations like pricing, family-friendliness, accessibility, and dining options.

History of the Ball Drop in NYC

If you’re planning to see the ball drop in NYC, it’s important to know about the history of this iconic event. The ball drop is a New Year’s Eve tradition that has been taking place in Times Square for over a century. Millions of people gather every year to witness this spectacle and ring in the New Year with joy and celebration.

Origin of the ball drop

The first ball drop event took place on December 31, 1907, in Times Square. The idea of the ball drop was inspired by the time balls that were used in the 19th century by ships to synchronize their clocks. In 1907, the first time ball was made of iron and wood and weighed 700 pounds. It was covered in 100 light bulbs and was lowered from a flagpole at the stroke of midnight.

Over the years, the ball has undergone several changes and upgrades. Today, the ball is made of Waterford crystal, weighs 11,875 pounds, and is covered in over 32,000 LED lights. It is 12 feet in diameter and is lowered from a flagpole on top of One Times Square.

Evolution and changes of the ball drop event over the years

Since its inception, the ball drop event has evolved and changed to become the world-renowned celebration it is today. In the early years, the ball drop was a simple affair, with a few hundred people gathering to watch the ball descend from the flagpole. Today, the event draws millions of people from around the world and is broadcast live on television.

Over the years, the ball drop event has featured various celebrity hosts and performers, including Dick Clark, Ryan Seacrest, and Mariah Carey. The event has also seen changes in technology, with the introduction of LED lights and social media integration.

Despite the changes, the ball drop remains a beloved New Year’s Eve tradition. Whether you’re watching from home or in Times Square, the ball drop is a symbol of hope, renewal, and the endless possibilities of the New Year.

For more information on the history of the ball drop in NYC, you can visit timessquarenyc.org.

Evaluation Criteria for Best Hotels

Views of the Times Square Ball Drop

The most important factor in choosing a hotel for New Year’s Eve in New York City is undoubtedly the view of the ball drop in Times Square. A hotel room with a clear view of the ball drop will provide an unforgettable experience. Some hotels may offer views from their rooftop bars or restaurants, but be sure to confirm that the view is unobstructed and not partially blocked.

Proximity to the Event

The closer the hotel is to Times Square, the better. A hotel within walking distance of the event will allow you to avoid the crowds and chaos of public transportation, making it much easier to get to and from the festivities. Keep in mind that some streets may be closed off on New Year’s Eve, so be sure to confirm the hotel’s accessibility before booking.

Quality of Accommodation and Service

While the view and location are important, the quality of the hotel’s accommodations and service should not be overlooked. Check reviews from previous guests to ensure that the hotel is clean, comfortable, and provides excellent service. Consider the hotel’s amenities, such as a fitness center, spa, or room service, to make your stay as enjoyable as possible.

Additional Amenities for New Year’s Eve Celebrations

Some hotels offer additional amenities specifically for New Year’s Eve celebrations. This may include access to rooftop parties or exclusive viewing areas, complimentary champagne, or even a private balcony to watch the ball drop from your own room. Be sure to inquire about any special packages or deals that the hotel may offer for the holiday.

When considering your options for the best hotels to see the ball drop in NYC, keep in mind the above evaluation criteria. By doing so, you will ensure a memorable and enjoyable New Year’s Eve experience.

Top Recommended Hotels for Viewing the Ball Drop

Watching the ball drop in Times Square on New Year’s Eve is an iconic experience, but finding the perfect spot to view it can be a challenge. Luckily, there are several hotels located in Times Square that offer prime viewing locations. Here are our top recommended hotels for viewing the ball drop:

Marriott Marquis

The Marriott Marquis is a popular hotel for New Year’s Eve due to its prime location at the heart of Times Square. The hotel offers exclusive access to the Broadway Plaza, which provides a clear view of the ball drop. In addition to the view, guests can enjoy a New Year’s Eve buffet dinner and live entertainment.

Casablanca Hotel

The Casablanca Hotel is a boutique hotel located just steps away from Times Square. While the hotel does not offer a direct view of the ball drop, it does provide a cozy and intimate atmosphere for guests to enjoy the festivities. The hotel offers a complimentary wine and cheese reception on New Year’s Eve, which is a great way to ring in the new year.

The Knickerbocker

The Knickerbocker is a luxury hotel located in the heart of Times Square. The hotel offers a New Year’s Eve package that includes a private viewing area for the ball drop, a four-course dinner, and an open bar. The hotel also offers a rooftop bar with panoramic views of the city, making it a great spot to watch the fireworks after the ball drops.

Renaissance New York Times Square Hotel

The Renaissance New York Times Square Hotel offers a prime viewing location for the ball drop. The hotel’s R Lounge provides a panoramic view of Times Square, and guests can enjoy a New Year’s Eve dinner and open bar. The hotel also offers a New Year’s Day brunch for guests to enjoy.

DoubleTree Suites by Hilton New York City-Times Square

The DoubleTree Suites by Hilton New York City-Times Square is a popular hotel for families due to its spacious suites. The hotel offers a New Year’s Eve package that includes a view of the ball drop from the hotel’s Sky Lounge, a dinner buffet, and an open bar. The hotel also offers a New Year’s Day brunch for guests to enjoy.

Hotel Viewing Location Special Features
Marriott Marquis Broadway Plaza New Year’s Eve buffet dinner and live entertainment
Casablanca Hotel N/A Complimentary wine and cheese reception
The Knickerbocker Private viewing area Four-course dinner and open bar
Renaissance New York Times Square Hotel R Lounge New Year’s Eve dinner and open bar
DoubleTree Suites by Hilton New York City-Times Square Sky Lounge New Year’s Eve dinner buffet and open bar

Whichever hotel you choose, be sure to book early as these hotels fill up quickly for New Year’s Eve. Happy New Year!

Other Factors to Consider when Choosing a Hotel

Pricing and Availability

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a hotel for the New Year’s Eve ball drop in New York City is pricing and availability. As this is a highly sought-after event, hotels tend to fill up quickly and prices can be steep. It’s important to book well in advance and look for deals or packages that can help you save money. You can also consider staying in nearby neighborhoods or boroughs, which may have more affordable options and still offer easy access to Times Square. Checking online booking sites and comparison tools can also help you find the best deals and availability.

Family-friendliness

If you’re traveling with children, family-friendliness is an important factor to consider. Some hotels may offer special amenities or activities for kids, such as game rooms or babysitting services, while others may have strict policies on noise or partying. Look for hotels that cater to families and have a reputation for being welcoming to children. You can also consider staying in neighborhoods that are quieter and more residential, such as the Upper West Side or Brooklyn.

Accessibility

When choosing a hotel for the ball drop, accessibility is key. You’ll want to be within walking distance of Times Square or have easy access to public transportation. Look for hotels that are near subway or bus stations, or that offer shuttle services to and from Times Square. Keep in mind that traffic and street closures can make getting around on New Year’s Eve more challenging, so it’s best to plan ahead and leave plenty of time to travel.

Dining Options

Dining options can also be an important factor when choosing a hotel for the ball drop. Some hotels may offer special New Year’s Eve packages that include dinner or drinks, while others may have on-site restaurants or bars that offer views of the celebrations. You can also consider staying in neighborhoods that have a variety of dining options, such as Hell’s Kitchen or the Lower East Side. Keep in mind that many restaurants may require reservations well in advance, so it’s best to plan ahead.

Conclusion

Choosing the right hotel to witness the magnificent ball drop event in NYC could significantly enhance your New Year’s Eve experience. While the Marriott Marquis, Casablanca Hotel, The Knickerbocker, Renaissance New York Times Square Hotel, and DoubleTree Suites by Hilton New York City-Times Square are our top picks, your choice would ultimately depend on your specific requirements and preferences.

Each hotel brings its own unique blend of service, amenities, and views. However, remember to plan and book early, as these coveted spots get filled up pretty fast. In closing, wherever you choose to stay, may your New Year’s Eve in New York City be a memorable one, filled with joy, celebration, and the thrilling anticipation of the year to come.

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