Trendy LIC hotel offers luxury at low cost

TimesLedger Newspapers

Henry Zilberman, owner of the newly opened Z Hotel at 11-01 43rd Ave. in Long Island City, designed the 10-story building with comfort and coolness in mind.

“I wanted to create a different kind of hotel in Long Island City,” said Zilberman, a native of Israel who described his clientele as “people that go with Apple, not with PC.

“I thought if I give something cool and interesting, I thought, ‘Build it and they will come,’ and they have been coming,” he said.

Zilberman has been an investor in Long Island City for 15 years and wanted to stake his claim on the neighborhood’s transformation from an industrial area to a trendy spot for artists and young professionals.

“New York is really growing and I see the area of Long Island City becoming a completely different place than it was 10 years ago,” he said.

Employees at the Z Hotel do not wear uniforms and are known to high-five guests, Zilberman said.

Guests are encouraged to put their feet up while sitting down for drinks at the hotel’s downstairs lounge.

“Our attitude is we don’t have a uniform. Our people wear sneakers. We can do a high-five to one of our customers and it’s OK,” Zilberman said. “If you put your feet up, we don’t call security. It’s like a living room.”

A night at the Z Hotel costs $200 and its single corridor style allows for great views of Manhattan from any room.

“We are 100 percent wonderful value,” Zilberman said. “All the amenities are first-class. All the other hotels in the area don’t have someone open the door for you.”

Each room has heated floors, spacious showers and 300-thread-count linens.

“It’s about value,” Zilberman said. “Our minibars are $2 or $3 for water, not like $7 or $8 in other hotels. We’re not trying to rob the people. We have free Internet, free international phone calls. We believe that if you give to the customer, we get back more.”

Guests are also given free flip-flops and bathrobes in their rooms, where the walls are styled with stencils of either the Rockettes, iconic taxi cabs or Billie Holiday.

In the summer, the Z Hotel’s rooftop opens to guests and the public and provides two bars and a pizza oven.

“We give exactly what a person needs,” Zilberman said.

The Z Hotel also offers free shuttle bus service to Manhattan until 11 p.m., seven days a week.

“They love it,” Zilberman said. “This is the ultimate view of New York.”

Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e-mail at hkoplowitz@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.

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