Living oasis in the heart of New York City

THE roads are gridlocked. Its 35 degrees and tempers are flaring. Not least of all mine as I sit in a taxi on New Yorks Sixth Avenue. Welcome to New York.

1 Hotel Central Park offers double rooms from 356

THE roads are gridlocked. Its 35 degrees and tempers are flaring. Not least of all mine as I sit in a taxi on New Yorks Sixth Avenue. Welcome to New York.

Its Fashion Week but are there really that many models, journalists, buyers and hangers-on all sitting in taxis trying to get to their next show?

Im a block away from New Yorks newest green hotel, 1 Hotel Central Park. And Im hankering for a glass of wine to pep me up after a three-train journey from Washington.

After an indeterminable amount of shuffling along the avenue, I see it. The whole of the hotels faade is alive.

All three storeys of it, covered in English ivy. What a welcome oasis in the concrete jungle that is Manhattan.

Created by hoteliers SH Group, it is hoping to highlight the need for environmental protection, to make us think about where the furniture, the toiletries and the food comes from while making certain, by using recycled materials, it creates a minimum carbon footprint.

They must have been on a serious mission of consciousness the day I arrived.

At check-in I was told the bar and restaurant were closed for a private function for two nights!

Eco retreat: A contemporary suite with a rustic touch

A super-skinny, scarlet-lipped PR girl, clutching the all-important clipboard with an InStyle magazine logo emblazoned on the front, confirmed theyd given it over for a Fashion Week party.

Thats all very well but Im no supermodel. What a pity I wouldnt be able to try out Jonathan Waxmans farmstand fresh produce in Jams restaurant.

Not a spoonful of roasted butternut squash soup, crispy kale salad or mouthwatering Maine lobster gnocchi would pass my lips.

But I have it on good authority that hes a genius. As a distraction from my groaning stomach, I turned my attention to the environment, metaphorically and literally.

The bed, made from hemp, is glorious and almost takes up the entire room