There are many hotels, and resorts in Philadelphia. Philadelphia has developed as a thriving metropolis, home to award-winning restaurants, world-class historic sites, and an exciting young-professional culture, finally moving out of the shadow cast by a particular city a few hours up I-95. The city’s lodgings have expanded along with it.
The best hotels no longer limit themselves to accommodating overnight school groups and instead provide conveniently placed luxurious accommodations. A new breed of micro hotels is available, appealing to the part who prefers the anonymity of Airbnb but can’t live without thousand-thread-count sheets or concierge service. The possibilities range from chic, big-name hotels to boutique independents. Whatever point on the amenity continuum you are on, there is an amenity that will meet your demands. These are the top 10 Philadelphia top hotels.
1. Hotel Lokal Fishtown (Fishtown)
The Lokal Fishtown was only the neighborhood’s second hotel when it first opened its doors at the beginning of 2019. Surprising, taking into consideration that the locality remains one of the most popular places in the city to dine, drink, shop, and watch live music performances. This hotel is one of four in the collection of “invisible service” hotels owned by the indigenous brand; this means that there is neither a front desk nor a concierge.
Everything in this outpost, from the stylish spaces to the plants from the 2nd Street greenery shop Stump, to the custom beds made by neighborhood furniture maker Farmhaus Modern, to each framed artwork, block-printed pillowcase, and ceramic mug, was built by local makers from Philadelphia. Before you even leave the room, you will have experienced a stunning and well-coordinated space that exudes the spirit of the surrounding neighborhood.
Prices: Estimate $258-$330
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2. The Mulherin’s Sons Hotel
Wm. Mulherin’s Sons is a design-forward alternative to name-brand hotels located in Center City. It is ideal if you are willing to forego conveniences such as elevators and bellhops to experience more of what it is like to live like a local in the neighborhood of Fishtown. The hotel has only four rooms, each of which is uniquely decorated in an industrial-chic style (think concrete floors, exposed brick walls, and a neutral color palette punctuated by Persian rugs), but the primary benefit is that it is located above an excellent restaurant and bar with the same name that is driven by the seasons.
It is more likely that you will be elbowing other restaurant patrons for a taste of plates such as porcini cavatelli with fontina and taleggio fonduta and scallops with butternut squash format and mushroom vinaigrette rather than exchanging awkward greetings with your fellow hallmates. Those bragging rights are yours to keep, though, as each guest room is stocked with La Colombe coffee beans (and a Baratza Virtuoso grinder to prepare them), Aesop bath treatments, and a record player (you can borrow some vintage music from the “lending library”).
Prices: Estimate $295-$355
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3. The Rooms at Fitler Club
Finding the Fitler Club won’t be difficult at all. The enormous concrete and glass fortress is stationed on the banks of the Schuylkill, between the Chestnut and Market Street bridges. It is just across the street from Philadelphia’s 30th Street Station, which places it almost directly in the path of traffic on Interstate 76. The most difficult part, however, is figuring out how to get inside, as both the front and the back doors are somewhat concealed.
Once inside, the establishment exudes a posh and understated allure, giving off the vibe of an urban country club catering to the city’s high-achieving crowd. It is the first location to implement a lifestyle concept that was conceived by the company’s creator, David Gutstadt. It is obvious that Gutstadt, who formerly oversaw the hotel strategy for the fitness brand Equinox, has taken some of his alma mater’s devotion to physical fitness to heart in his creation of Fitler Club; see Field House, Fitler’s 25,000-square-foot exercise area, which is one of the club’s most impressive selling points.
He clearly understands what high-paying members expect from their amenities, and he has made sure that Fitler Club delivers on those expectations by ensuring that there are few to no wait times for machines, plenty of staff support in the form of trainers and instructors, a food and beverage program led by Marc Vetri, who is from Philadelphia, and a smashing cocktail programs.
The method for selecting new members is, at best, murky, but the club’s overarching goal is to gather the region’s most influential people—athletes, doctors, investors, and others like them—together under one roof that has been thoughtfully created. You won’t have to deal with that because, fortunately, all 14 of Fitler’s hotel rooms are open to the general public. This just increases the likelihood that you’ll be doing Pilates next to someone who can help you advance in your career.
Prices: Estimate $350-$870
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4. Roost East Market Hotel
The luxurious apartments here are intended for extended stays ranging from one week to several months in length. They are located on the upper floors of a high-end residential building in the Midtown Village neighborhood of the city, which is located in the geographic center of the city. It isn’t hard to picture yourself staying longer when the accommodations include brightly lighted rooms, spacious kitchens, full-size washers and dryers, and weekly maid service.
Roost is a superbly handy spot to stay while you are in town due to its ideal location in Center City, which is just stepping away from City Hall, the historic Old City neighborhood, the business sector, and a wide variety of food and retail options. The historic Reading Terminal Market can be reached on foot in less than five minutes and offers Pennsylvania Dutch doughnuts as well as one of the most delicious roast pork sandwiches in the city.
Prices: Estimate $210-$420
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5. The Study at University City
Because of the lobby’s light wood finishes, muted color palette, clean lines, and comfortable wingback leather chairs, you can get the impression that you’ve been transported to a country in Northern Europe at first glance. This 212-room hotel on the busy junction of 33rd and Chestnut streets in Philadelphia was given a modern yet approachable design thanks to the efforts of award-winning local architecture company Digsau, which was commissioned by Hospitality 3 hotelier Paul McGowan, a former executive for Starwood.
Inside the contemporary building with 10 stories, each of the guest rooms has a cozy bed, a wide workstation, a leather armchair and ottoman, and a Scandinavian-modern aesthetic that carries over from the building’s common areas. The rooms’ decor is simple, but they include all of the necessities. Most significantly, the fact that you are located on not one but two college campuses does not imply that the employees or the concierge are overly relaxed: McGowan’s extensive experience working in high-level hospitality ensures that providing excellent service is a primary focus.
Prices: Estimate $508-$788
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6. Kimpton Hotel Monaco Philadelphia
The charming Washington Square West sits just in front of the Kimpton Hotel Monaco, which is located in the historic Lafayette Building in Philadelphia’s Old City neighborhood. From the outside, the building has the appearance of a typical Greek Revival structure; yet, once you go inside the lobby, you will find that it is full of whimsical color: Wainscoting, vaulted ceilings, and Millwork treatments that look like they were influenced by the eighteenth century are juxtaposed with brightly colored walls, federal-nouveau furnishings, and a wall of ancient calligraphy pens located behind the front desk.
The entertaining, yet at times overwhelming, a combination of printed wallpaper, patterned draperies, and glossy red dressers can be seen throughout the 268 guest rooms.
This confluence of the old and the new continues throughout the hotel. To its credit, the hotel is firmly rooted in the present by providing guests with wellness-focused amenities such as in-room yoga mats, weekly evening yoga classes, and bikes that have been specifically designed for the hotel.
Prices: Estimate $512-$840
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7. AKA University City
Before you had two kids, adopted a golden doodle, and relocated to the suburbs, you may have fantasized about living in a swanky bachelor pad that resembled AKA’s guest rooms. This may have been before you rescued a golden doodle. The mirrored, all-glass structure rises above the surrounding West Philadelphia skyline, providing residents with some of the city’s highest residential vantage points.
Convenience is the primary selling point, not the ambiance of the surrounding neighborhood: If you cross the Walnut Street bridge, you’ll arrive at Rittenhouse Square in a matter of minutes. If you walk just a few blocks to the west, you’ll find yourself navigating your way through the co-eds of the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University. If you drive half a mile down Schuylkill Avenue, you’ll be able to board a train at the 30th Street Station.
Prices: Estimate $275-$815
8. Pod Philly Hotel
The retail establishments and eateries of Rittenhouse Square are linked to the office-packed high-rises of Market Street by Pod Philly, which can be found on a section of 19th Street that is located in the middle of the street. The lobby of the hotel has something of an Ace Hotel feel to it, which makes perfect sense given the presence of the sunlit cafe, an abundance of couches and communal tables, and guests grabbing coffee and working remotely at the same time.
Stonehill Taylor, an architectural firm located in New York City, was also responsible for designing Pod Philly. Stonehill Taylor was also involved in the design of Manhattan’s Ace. It is a micro-hotel, so the rooms won’t feel particularly spacious, but floor-to-ceiling windows let in plenty of light, and supremely well-designed elements, such as custom benches that double as storage, nightstands that become desks, and lots of Danish-made wall hooks, make the square footage feel as though it is more than sufficient.
Prices: Estimate $149-$250
9. Hotel Suites at The Touraine
The Touraine is a historic residential building located on Spruce Street in the heart of Center City. It is not a hotel in the traditional sense. We are very fortunate that the building, which reportedly has a waitlist of ten years to get into it, has converted two apartments into hotel rooms; apartment number 105 was a studio apartment, and apartment number 108 was an apartment with one bedroom.
Every one of them feels like your ultra-chic friend’s apartment, whose design you attempted to imitate but were unable to pull off successfully. (Cue the eclectic mix of contemporary and mid-century modern-inspired furniture, refinished wood flooring, handcrafted ceramics, and a wonderfully comfortable bed heaped high with pillows and linen sheets.) Aromatherapy and crystals in the bathroom, Rival Bros. coffee in the kitchen, and daily newspaper delivery every morning are some of the small, thoughtful touches that make the hotel room feel like home. Guests can expect upscale apartment-style finishes, such as a washer/dryer and a brightly-hued Smeg refrigerator.
Prices: Estimate $350-$675
10. Sofitel Philadelphia
When you approach the 306-room and suite Sofitel, which is situated on a cross street in Center City Philadelphia that is always congested, this is probably the first thing that will come to your mind. However, the moment you enter the hotel and are greeted by the kind bellmen and step into the spacious lobby, which is decorated with a geometric-print stone floor, unique artwork, and comfortable lounge seating, all of the mayhem that you saw outside will begin to go away.
Check-in is speedy and hassle-free, much to the satisfaction of the vacationers and business travelers who stay at the hotel. This makes it possible for you to enjoy your specialty Sofitel bed that much sooner. Visit Chez Colette for a breakfast or weekend brunch that is influenced by French cuisine, and then, when it’s time for dinner, take advantage of the hotel’s excellent location, which is right near Michael Solomonov’s Abe Fisher and Dizengoff as well as Stephen Starr’s The Dandelion and The Love.
Prices: Estimate $224-$640
The best hotels no longer just cater to overnight school groups. Instead, they offer stays that are convenient, focused on service, and anything but basic. There are slick, well-known hotels, small, independent boutique hotels, and a new breed of micro hotels for people who like the anonymity of Airbnb but can’t live without thousand-thread-count sheets or concierge service. No matter where you are on the spectrum of amenities, there is something for you. These are Philadelphia’s best hotels that will help you enjoy your vacation.