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Would you rather spend the night in midtown and get VIP services at Saks, or sleep over on the Upper East Side and get "exceedingly generous gift cards" to Madison Avenue stores? This is the tough choice facing New York tourists over the month of March, as both The Benjamin Hotel and the Carlyle are offering special shopping deals to guests.
At the Benjamin in midtown, visitors who buy the shopping package will be treated to a personal shopping session with a Saks Fifth Avenue specialist, who will style them based on fall 2011 Fashion Week trends. They'll also get a beauty make-over, a Saks goodie bag, and two free cocktails at new restaurant The National. Oh, and to help them unwind from the stress of all this shopping and drinking, they'll be treated to a 25-minute massage at the Wellness Spa.
Buy the shopping package at the Carlyle uptown, on the other hand, and you'll get a special key to "unlock" VIP privileges—gift cards and discounts—at Carolina Herrera, Luca Luca, Intermix, Steuben, Stubbs & Wootton, Manrico Cashmere, Yves Delorme and LampeBerger. You'll also get a free upgrade, if it's available, 20% off the best available rates, and, um, free breakfast.
Neither of these deals are cheap, of course, but the Benjamin's starting rate of $274 definitely beats the Carlye's starting rate of $480. Of course, there's always a third option: Live in New York City, pay an exorbitant amount of rent, and get to go shopping at both Saks and Madison Avenue boutiques whenever the spirit moves you.
· The Benjamin [Official Site]
· The Carlyle [Official Site]