How about staying at this 4-room B&B in downtown Brooklyn called 3B? It's run by a group of creative locals who live downstairs. They've received rave reviews from the New YorkTimes and many of its pastguests (who have written up glowing blog posts about their stays). A bit of a novel option for a visit to the Big Apple that I'd be excited to try. Ya, you have to share a bathroom with the other guests, but it's the sort of place that's meant to be communal, so you go into it with a communal mindset.