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Hotel Bar That Doesn’t Feel Like One

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The Bar Downstairs
Andaz 5th Avenue, 485 Fifth Ave., at 41st St.; 212-601-1234
Dark walls, minimal signage, and a gorgeous twenty-foot walnut slab bar make it easy to forget you’re in a hotel and not some subterranean speakeasy downtown. But the cocktail bar in the Andaz 5th Avenue hotel is no mindless Prohibition rip-off either—its no-reservation policy, communal seating, and bustling open kitchen staffed with bantering cooks lend it a convivial vibe all its own. Rare for a hotel bar, it’s both airy and intimate, sleek but with a sense of humor—the best drink is a deadly tequila-and-pomegranate concoction called the Mexican Firing Squad ($15).


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