W Hotels officially opened the W New York Downtown August 18, a towering structure just steps away from the planned Freedom Tower on Ground Zero.

The 58 floor tower features 217 guest rooms in the new hotel and more in private condos, both offering views of the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Hudson River and Battery Park.

Starwood says that the interior has been designed around the creative notion of a “ripple effect”, featuring a light installation by UK artist Bruce Munro which features 1,260 hanging lights capable of changing color to create glowing waves of energy.

This effect extends all the way into the Living Room Bar & Terrace, which serves cocktails created by mixologist Charlotte Voisey and includes an outdoor terrace.

Other restaurants include the BLT Bar and Grill restaurant, a new concept split over two floors and offering “flavorful American classics”.

The hotel’s rooms are standard to the W Hotels chain, featuring the Munchie Box (W’s take on the minibar), walk-in showers and iPod connectivity.

The W New York Downtown was one of the year’s most anticipated openings, as the first luxury hotel and residential tower to be built in Lower Manhattan and the first new project not part of the WTC complex to begin construction since 9/11.