The mark of a great hotel is that it’s woven into the fabric of its surroundings, serving as a social hub not just for its itinerant global community, but also for neighborhood residents and nine-to-fivers. Take The Beekman, a 287-room downtown Manhattan destination in itself inside the 1883 Temple Court building, where high-design, low-ego spaces such as The Bar Room beg to be lived in. Leather and mohair-velvet seating, a portrait of Edgar Allan Poe, and bookcases of curios warm its salonlike setting beneath the hotel’s pyramidal glass atrium and nine floors of intricate wrought-iron railings with balustrades sporting dragons and sunbursts. “Layers of history have been draped with layers of exquisite materials,” says London-based interior designer Martin Brudnizki, who helped lead the historic building’s restoration. “The result is a space which feels as though it has always been there, like a world traveler’s home which has been added to over the years.” In essence, a place of many great stories to tell.

Top photo courtesy of The Beekman.