With internationally acclaimed holiday attractions such as South Philly’s streetlights and Christmas-themed bars/restaurants such as U-Ville (like Dr. Seuss’ “Who-Ville”) across from City Hall , Philadelphia, everywhere, has become highly regarded. and renowned for the way it uniquely deals winter holidays, from Thanksgiving Day to New Year’s Day and its Mummies Parade.
Whether you have out-of-town friends or family that you’d rather not stay home, or if you have out-of-town friends and family that means you need to get out of Dodge for a mini-vacation of your own, here’s a list of some of the swankiest and coolest motels-hotels-inns in the area for your trip. (Also, see AD Amorosi “The mark of a great city comes with the sophistication of its hotel restaurants” for more information)
Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia at Comcast Technology Center, 1 N 19th St, Philadelphia, PA, 215 419-5000
Moved and transformed from its original location along Benjamin Franklin Drive to Logan Square, the new luxury 4S, designed by world-renowned architect Norman Foster of Foster + Partners for the city’s tallest building is a open-air, steel-and-glass marvel made even more spectrally elegant, even avant-garde, thanks to Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s upscale restaurant, Jean-Georges Philadelphia, atop the 59th floor of the Four Seasons. If you can’t afford its expensive American cuisine, you can admire its panoramic views at the Sky Bar with plenty of cocktails.
The Logan Philadelphia, Curio Collection by Hilton, One Logan Square, Philadelphia, PA, 215-963-1500
What replaced the old Four Seasons (above) is nothing to sneeze at, as the 5-star Logan Philadelphia has nearly as much dark vibe as The W (below), is hotter than the new Four Seasons and has a hearty, sustainability-focused steakhouse (Urban Farmer) downstairs and a towering private bar (the Assembly Lounge) high up in the sky.
Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia, 900 Packer Avenue, Philadelphia, PA, 1 833 472 5483
The concept of a large room, a high-ceilinged hotel within a casino – or a casino within a hotel – is selling. Games, concerts. Game. Comedians. Game. A premier steakhouse in the Prime Rib. Thurs. All quite a way off the main drag in South Philly. Yes. And yes.
Guild House Hotel, 1307 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA, 855 484 5333
Opened in 2021 in what was/is a 19e A century-working women’s advocacy and support group known as the New Century Guild, the 12-suite lounge in the Washington Square West area has that abolitionist, activist, suffragist vibe about the space, especially more than the name of its founder Eliza Turner is placed above the front door of the GHH. Yet the Guild House feels like a home, a cluttered artists’ lair perfect for downtime and work. Plus, GHH was named one of the best new hotels in the world by Travel + Leisure in 2021, if that sort of thing is important to you.
Hyatt Centric Center City, 1620 Chancellor Street, Philadelphia, PA, 215 985 1234
The Hyatt chain has just found a way to “shop” with its new brand’s flagship location in Philadelphia, the Hyatt Centric Center City, on the very spot that once housed the legendary late-night restaurant, Little Pete’s. At 332 rooms with views of Rittenhouse Square, plus one of Marc Vetri’s pizzerias, this upscale hotel has a restaurant and bar dubbed Patchwork that serves a stiff drink at happy hour, a Patchwork take-out market for anti-social closed-ins and pet-friendly accommodations – crucial as I’m not going anywhere without my pharaoh dog.
Alexander Inn, 301 S. 12th Street, Philadelphia, PA, 215 923 3535
As one of the oldest original intimate hotels in Mid Town Village / The Gayborhood, the Alexander Inn puts the “boo” in boutique accommodations. OK, there are no ghosts at the inn. There are, however, cool stained glass windows, original oak moldings, and a dignified tree-lined setting toward the end of the Spruce Street block.
The W Philadelphia Hotel, 1439 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA, 215-273-3030
Still connected to nightlife and tequila entrepreneur Rande Gerber through his Whiskey Park at the W Hotel, The W Philadelphia — a long-awaited spot as far as downtown hotels go — is a destination space dimly lit and atmospheric whose Fellini-esque Italian restaurant, Dolce, doubles down on the hotel’s overall feeling of panache.
The Dwight D Hotel (A City House Hotel), 256 S. 16th Street, Philadelphia, PA, 215 772 1901
This brownstone, 11-room former private residence in Philadelphia’s Rittenhouse Square neighborhood is chic and artsy, with American Abstract Expressionist painting and vintage brewery posters dotting its walls. Plus, in addition to being within walking distance of restaurants such as a. kitchen and Parc, the hotel’s recent expansion named for Eisenhower has created a huge private garden and a new chef’s kitchen. Yet, who named this thing after a war general and a former Republican president?
Lokal Hotel Fishtown, 1421 N Front St, Philadelphia, PA, 267 702 4345
if John “Jawn” Morgan ever books a hotel stay in Philadelphia, he’ll want to do it at Fishtown’s Lokal. Here, in its six lofts, the room names coincide with Philly’s own possessive lingo – the jawn. So you get Baller Jawn, Big Jawn, Front Jawn, Garden Jawn, Your Jawn and My Jawn, all created by the True Hand Society who asked their 30 local artisans and makers to create 21st Century styled blond wood furnishings, earthenware and original Modern Impressionist art for naturally lit spaces. Hey, the fact that Fishtown has a boutique hotel to begin with, let alone something so conceptual, shows how far Philly has gotten in terms of reform.
The Morris House Hotel, 225 S. 8th Street, Philadelphia, PA, 215-922-2446
The granddaddy of Washington West’s boutique hotel scene, its grounds alone — perfect for gatherings, weddings, divorce parties — are worth the price of admission. Beyond that, this Georgian-style mansion on the corner of Independence National Historical Park and the Liberty Bell, thankfully doesn’t look all hokey, patriotic, and ancient. Instead, the heart of Morris House’s pine floors and Colonial Revival facade are fresh, modern, airy and luxurious.
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