I found leaving The Paper Factory Hotel difficult and this coming from someone who didn’t necessarily spend the night, so I can’t imagine how much more melancholic the departure might have been if I did. Recently, I had the satisfaction of being invited along with other fellow and local Instagrammers to tour the grounds of a hotel that doesn’t at all betray the industrial setting of the neighborhood in which it’s set (Long Island City, Queens).
The building itself has so much history. A century ago it was indeed a paper factory but now it’s a 122-room hotel that’s super modern and homely all while preserving a historic manufacturing vibe all throughout such as original wood flooring on the 5th floor, exposed brick walls in various corners of the hotel, metal sliding elevators and huge front doors made out of adaptively reused elements to name a few. This is not to mention the array of eclectic objects dispersed around the hotel such as a British telephone booth, a thai rickshaw, a Vespa scooter and even a vintage kid-sized automobile.
I read somewhere that in the past 5 years, there’s been a considerable shift in the hospitality industry in favor of boutique hotels and it’s expected to continue in years to come in which it will outpace the growth of traditionally bland yet efficient hotels in where they all practically look the same therefore you’re likely to barely notice anything special in any of them. To me these type of hotels have no interest in creating an emotional arousal in the guest. I pay attention to design. I enjoy and appreciate things that are different and offbeat and so I’m willing to pay more to stay in hotel to experience something that’s distinctive, memorable and most of all, pleasurable.
A basic rule of happiness for me goes like this; don’t buy things, buy experiences and so I can tell you that I’ve never really given much thought to how much of a memorable experience one can gain based on where you choose to lodge because I’ve always seen it as a place to sleep and nothing else. At The Paper Factory you’re literally paying more for just a bed to sleep in. It’s an experience you immediately begin to grasp the moment you allow yourself to explore every creative inch of the place.
At the end of the tour, we spent some time at the very enjoyable restaurant Mundo which recently opened it’s doors within The Paper Factory Hotel. Mundo’s menu highlights the best of earthy Mediterranean and unique Latin Influences.
Having worked in Astoria, Queens before which is practically the neighboring town, I’m almost embarrassed to say I wasn’t aware of the existence of the hotel but I can tell you I certainly have more of a reason to visit both Mundo and The Paper Factory Hotel.
The Paper Factory Hotel
37-06 36th Street, Long Island City, NY 11101