The five Affinia hotels in New York City now offer room service delivery of supermarket orders. The deliveries are from Fresh Direct, NYC’s delivery-only virtual supermarket, and the orders are packages chosen by the hotel, including microwaveable meals, snacks, and fresh fruit that can be stored and prepared in the mini-kitchens in most Affinia hotel rooms. There are pros and cons to this new arrangement:
Pro – you can order the delivery for your arrival, which is especially convenient if you arrive tired and hungry, especially with kids who are tired and hungry and cranky. Just like traditional room service, the charge is added to your bill.
Con – the prepackaged orders are $50 to $80, of items selected by the hotel. The so called Business Kit includes baked Ziti, chicken Marsala, Greek yogurt, bananas, cheddar cheese and crackers and chocolate chip cookies, according to Crain’s New York business.
That’s a package of things to eat that’s at least double or triple what those same things would cost in one of the neighborhood grocery stores like D’Agostino’s, just a block or two from the Affinia Dumont at 150 East 34th St., where room rates start at $211 a night.
Ditto the Affinia Manhattan, on Seventh Avenue and 31st Street, where room rates start at $199. This is just a couple of blocks from Penn Station, Madison Square Garden, Macy’s, and even a KMart, where there are dozens of small local groceries and sandwich shops serving commuters, sports fans and shoppers, some of them open 24/7.
Convenience costs, we all know that. And room service is a convenience. But $50 to $80 for a couple of microwave meals, some snacks and some fruit? That’s definitely not New York City on the Cheap.