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Wi-Fi at the Annual Conference

posted by Christopher Howard — Feb 02, 2011

Connecting to the internet at the CAA Annual Conference is essential, whether you are searching for a job, contacting friends in New York, or communicating with your school or institution back home. From the conference hotels to the ever-reliable Starbucks, CAA has researched the various ways to get Wi-Fi quickly, easily, and at low or no cost. The information below may be subject to change but should be reliable.

Hilton New York

The Hilton New York offers three types of wireless internet service to its guests and thus has three prices: $14.99 per twenty-four hours for a 1 MB download speed; $16.99 for 2 MB; and $18.99 for 4 MB. The Hilton also allows nonguests to log onto its network in the lobby areas on a pay-per-use basis, at $5.99 an hour. No connection speed is specified. Users must pay by credit card upon opening a browser on their laptop. For full details in advance, please contact the Hilton, not CAA. While onsite, ask a hotel representative from the concierge or check-in desk for more information.

Sheraton New York

The Sheraton New York is generously offering free internet access—both in rooms and in the lobby—to all guests who are attending the conference. When you check in, tell the hotel representative that you are here for CAA and need an access code. The Sheraton also provides free wireless connection to anyone inside the hotel—you need not be a guest (so be nice). To gain access, simply request the log-in information from the check-in desk, as you cannot automatically connect just by opening a browser. For full details in advance, please contact the Sheraton, not CAA. While onsite, ask a hotel representative from the concierge or check-in desk for more information.

The Sheraton has graciously extended its special room-reservation rates for CAA conference attendees to February 6, 2011. To reserve a room by phone, call 800-325-3535 and mention “College Art Association Annual Conference.” Please be sure to request a confirmation number, email, or fax.

Park Central Hotel

The Park Central Hotel, the conference hotel for students, charges $15 a day for a wireless connection that can be used by guests throughout the building. For full details in advance, please contact the Park Central, not CAA. While onsite, ask a hotel representative at the concierge or check-in desk for more information.

SEP Lounge

Thanks to a generous contribution from the Courtauld Institute of Art, the SEP Lounge provides free wireless internet during its opening hours: Wednesday–Friday, 9:00 AM–8:00 PM; and Saturday, 9:00 AM–5:00 PM. The lounge is located on Concourse B, Concourse Level, Hilton New York.

Hosted by CAA’s Student and Emerging Professionals Committee, the SEP Lounge is a space that allows its constituents to convene and converse freely, away from the conference hustle and bustle. On several days, the committee will present special interactive programming, where you can practice your interviewing skills, talk candidly about completing your thesis or dissertation, or get advice on what to do after earning your degree.

Candidate Center

As part of the conference’s Career Services, the Candidate Center—located in Concourse A, Concourse Level, Hilton New York—houses a bank of computers that CAA members may use only for the Online Career Center. No other internet use is allowed. Hours are Wednesday, February 9–Friday, February 11, 9:00 AM–7:00 PM. You must have a CAA membership card to enter the Candidate Center.


Bottoms up, coffee drinkers! A smallish Starbucks—located directly across the street from the Hilton, at the northeast corner of Avenue of the Americas (Sixth Avenue) and West Fifty-third Street—offers free wireless internet to its guests. No special password is needed—just connect when you open a browser. This location may be closed on Saturday and Sunday, according to the company. Another Starbucks a few blocks north, on Sixth Avenue between West Fifty-sixth and Fifty-seventh, has free access according to the company, but this is unconfirmed (meaning I did not enter the store and ask).

Other Area Hot Spots

OpenWiFiSpots, which calls itself a comprehensive directory of free wireless hot spots, lists eighty-two free sources near the Hilton in midtown Manhattan, including hotels, cafés, and restaurants. This website, however, includes the Hilton, which we know is not free.

Revised on February 4, 2011.

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