Hotel Openings / Renovations

Sonesta International Hotels Corporation Adds Four New York City Hotels

Hotel Exterior: The Benjamin

Sonesta Adds 918 Guest Rooms, Including 524 Suites, Across Four Sonesta Brands

Newton, MA (April 27, 2022) – Sonesta International Hotels Corporation (Sonesta), one of the fastest-growing hotel companies in the U.S., today announced an investment in four boutique and lifestyle hotels in New York City. The hotels are all located in Midtown and were formerly known as The Benjamin, The Shelburne Hotel & Suites, the Gardens Suites Hotel and the Fifty Hotel & Suites. Each hotel will be rebranded under Sonesta’s portfolio of dynamic brands and operate as The Benjamin Royal Sonesta New York, The Shelburne Sonesta New York, The Gardens Sonesta ES Suites New York and The Fifty Sonesta Select New York. The hotels were previously owned by Denihan Hospitality Group, which will continue to own a minority interest in the hotels.

With the addition of these four properties, totaling 918 keys, Sonesta continues its exponential growth, having increased the number of its U.S. managed hotels by approximately 350% since August 2020. Along with launching Sonesta’s four brands into New York City, the intellectual property for The James Hotels brand, a renowned hospitality icon that is synonymous with sophisticated, artistically inspired luxury boutique hotels, was also added. Sonesta intends to scale The James Hotels within the Sonesta portfolio, leveraging its extensive industry-wide recognition. The James Hotels provides Sonesta a platform to build upon a lifestyle brand that is well-known for providing a memorable, luxury experience with a focus on design and exceptional guest service.

“For Sonesta, this investment marks a significant milestone in our growth as we re-enter the New York City market, which is one of the largest and most dynamic markets in the world,” said John Murray, President and Chief Executive Officer, Sonesta. “As we considered opportunities to grow the Sonesta brand and raise awareness, a strong presence in New York City has been a long-term objective.”


“We are excited that Sonesta, the eighth largest hotel company in the U.S., has chosen to become the steward of the portfolio of hotels founded by our father, Benjamin Denihan, in 1963,” said Brooke Barrett and Patrick Denihan, Co-CEO’s and owners of Denihan Hospitality Group. “Sonesta is an experienced operator and knows how to increase long-term value, and we’re excited about the future that lies ahead for the four New York City properties and The James Hotel brand.”

New Sonesta New York City Properties

This brings Sonesta’s four most dynamic hotel brands into Manhattan, one of the most popular travel destinations in the world and a center for banking and finance, arts and culture, world class shopping and international relations. The four hotels comprising Sonesta’s New York City hotel portfolio are:

The Benjamin Royal Sonesta New York

The Benjamin Royal Sonesta New York represents Sonesta’s first distinctive full-service property in Manhattan. A New York City landmark and storied boutique-style hotel, it is located on East

50th Street in Midtown and in the heart of the world’s best shopping, dining, architecture and entertainment. The 209-room Benjamin was originally designed as a residential-style hotel with terraces. Designed by famed architect Emery Roth, the hotel’s edifice inspired artist Georgia O’Keefe’s painting “New York—Night.”  The Benjamin offers guest rooms and suites ranging from deluxe rooms, studios and one-bedroom suites to suites with terraces. The hotel features thoughtful services and amenities, including an onsite restaurant, a 24-hour fitness center and 2,200 square feet of event space.

Sonesta is planning to make a multi-million-dollar investment to renovate the lobby and guest rooms at The Benjamin Royal Sonesta within the next 18 months.

The Shelburne Sonesta New York

The Shelburne Sonesta New York is a full-service property that provides a launchpad to explore the city. Guests will receive warm, personalized service at the recently renovated hotel, located on Lexington Avenue in the Murray Hill neighborhood. Steps away from Grand Central Station, the hotel offers 325 spacious guest rooms and suites, ranging from studios to two bedroom apartments. The rooms feature warm interior designs, rich woods, layered textures, spa-inspired bathrooms, and art inspired by the community. Many of the rooms have large terraces and views of the Empire State Building.

Sonesta is planning substantial enhancements to the food and beverage operation at The Shelburne Sonesta New York, including transforming the seasonal rooftop lounge with 360-degree views of the Manhattan skyline into an outdoor oasis for guests.

The Gardens Sonesta ES Suites New York

Conveniently located on the Upper East Side’s East 64th Street on an intimate, tree-lined street, The Gardens Sonesta ES Suites, a premier extended stay property, offers guests a refreshing, homelike space in an elegant and tranquil setting. Ideal for extended stays, the hotel offers 132 spacious suites, each featuring open living spaces and full kitchens. Some suites are available with private terraces and patios. The hotel is located near many world-renowned medical facilities and within walking distance of Central Park and Madison Avenue, and is also near Museum Mile’s cultural attractions.

The Fifty Sonesta Select New York

The Fifty Sonesta Select New York represents Sonesta’s newest upscale focused-service brand that brings guests a feeling of warmth and belonging with a neighborhood vibe. Located at the corner of Third Avenue and 50th Street, the hotel recently underwent a multi-million-dollar renovation and offers 252 guest rooms and suites that include kitchens and private terraces. The décor evokes the spirit and energy of the Midtown neighborhood with a collection of local artwork and eclectic treasures. The hotel is in a contemporary neighborhood, near many famous New York City attractions such as Rockefeller Center, Central Park, Radio City Music Hall and Fifth and Madison Avenues.

Sonesta has a rich history that includes previously owning and managing The Plaza Hotel and The Roosevelt Hotel in New York.

Moelis & Company LLC acted as Denihan’s advisor.

* High-resolution images are available at the Sonesta Digital Asset Library that can be found here.


Sonesta is one of the fastest-growing hospitality companies in the U.S., currently ranked 8th by Smith Travel Research (STR) with 1,200 properties totaling 100,000 guest rooms across 15 brands in eight countries. You will find nearly 300 hotels under one of Sonesta’s seven brands – Royal Sonesta ; Sonesta Hotels & Resorts ; Sonesta Select ; Sonesta ES Suites ; Sonesta Simply Suites ; Sonesta Posadas del Inca ; Sonesta Cruise Collection – operating in the U.S., Canada, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Egypt, Peru, and St. Maarten.

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