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NEW YORK, NYEscape the madness of Times Square’s New Year’s Eve activities with the smooth sounds of jazz at the tranquil Kitano New York, the city’s first and only Japanese-owned hotel. On Monday, December 31, The Kitano New York’s Bar Lounge will host a New Year’s Eve Party featuring a live jazz performance by the renowned Joe Locke & “Force of Four,” with Robert Rodriguez on piano, Andres Patrick Forero on drums and Ricky Rodriguez on bass. Guests will also ring in the New Year with a Champagne toast at midnight. The jazz performance will be one show from 9 p.m. until 1 a.m. and tickets can be reserved for $75 per person, plus a $20 food and beverage minimum.  As space is limited, reservations are required and can be made by calling (212) 885-7119.

Joe Locke, who is considered one of the city’s most preeminent jazz performers, is credited with being one of the most gifted vibraphonists of his generation by London’s The Times newspaper. Locke is a self-taught improviser that studied at the Eastman School of Music. He has appeared on more than 65 recordings and was recently voted number-one vibraphonist by DownBeat Magazine.

      The classy and serene Bar Lounge, located on the mezzanine level of the hotel, offers an experience that is both Japanese and American.  Blending the refined beauty of Japanese culture with American jazz music, the Bar Lounge makes for a sophisticated holiday hangout.  The Bar Lounge overlooks The Kitano’s grand entrance and lobby with its grandiose, central staircase. Throughout the evening, guests are invited to enjoy the Bar Lounge’s relaxing setting while they listen to the smooth beats and dine on a variety of light fare such as pizzas and appetizers. In addition, the lounge also features an extensive and innovative drink menu featuring new selections including Q Tonic, which is all natural and has 60 percent fewer calories than regular tonic water and Absolut New Orleans, which is mango flavored vodka with a black pepper kick that profits benefit several Gulf Coast charities.

Guests are also invited to extend their New Year’s celebration at The Kitano New York. The luxurious hotel features 149 spacious guestrooms and suites with custom-made furniture, flat screen plasma televisions and luxurious marble bathrooms, allowing guests to feel at ease during their stay. In addition, the hotel’s double-paned windows ensure that the sounds of the city’s New Year’s celebrations do not disturb a good night’s rest. For the hotel’s New Year’s Eve room rates, call (800) 548-2666.

The Kitano New York’s New Year’s celebration will continue on January 1, 2008, as the hotel’s Michelin-rated restaurant, Hakubai, will feature Osechi, a traditional Japanese New Year’s meal. This distinctive meal consists of a variety of dishes, each having their own significant meaning to wish you good health, fertility, a good harvest, happiness or a long life. 

The Kitano features traditional East and West services and amenities that are unmatched anywhere in the world.  Asian hospitality merges seamlessly with New York style for an ambience that is pure Kitano.  Awarded the AAA Four-Diamond rating, The Kitano New York is distinguished by a contemporary interior that is both elegant and supremely comfortable.  The newly-refurbished guestrooms feature custom-made mahogany and cherry furniture, down comforters, exquisite artwork and Roman pleated shades with windows that open to views of the historic Murray Hill, Grand Central Terminal, the Empire State Building and other New York landmarks. The renovation was designed to bring the same sense of serenity combined with the maximum level of comfort and service for which the hotel is known to the guestrooms. The hotel is also home to the Michelin-rated Hakubai, which serves traditional Japanese Kaiseki delicacies. For hotel reservations, visit or call 212-885-7000.

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For more information and reservations, please contact The Kitano New York Hotel at 1-800-548-2666 or log onto

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The Kitano New York opened its doors in 1973 as New York’s first Japanese hotel. Thirty-four years later it remains the first and only Japanese owned hotel and has become an integral part of one of Manhattan’s historic neighborhoods, Murray Hill.  Located on fashionable Park Avenue at 38th Street, the 18-story hotel towers over some of New York City’s most magnificent turn-of-the-century dwellings, offering spectacular views of some of city landmarks. The hotel features 149 guestrooms, including 17 contemporary suites and a one-of-a-kind Japanese Tatami Suite.  The Kitano New York is home to the critically acclaimed Michelin-rated Hakubai Restaurant where traditional Kaiseki delicacies are served. The Kitano New York is also home to live Jazz music featuring live performances by legendary Jazz musicians who descend upon the hotel’s bar lounge weekly to perform classic and contemporary Jazz music.  The Kitano New York is a member of Summit Hotels & Resorts, a consortium of deluxe hotels worldwide.  For more information, contact The Kitano New York at 212-885-7000, 1-800-548-2666 or log onto

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