Best small hotel/BB in or near Phila?

Old Jan 21st, 2009, 06:40 AM
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HKP
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Best small hotel/BB in or near Phila?

Am thinking about a short week in Phila - all art (Chadds Ford, Barnes Collection, Phila. museums, Longwood Gardens, maybe Winterthur) and wondering where to stay. First: in Phila and "commute" to museums outside city, or somewhere to west or sw of city?
Second: prefer smaller and/or boutique hotels or B&Bs, budget is mid-range (not cheapo, not luxe).

What is your favorite lodging in the City - or what neighborhood? Or do you have a favorite out in suburbs, exurbs, rural area?
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Old Jan 21st, 2009, 07:07 AM
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I've stayed only in the city, not outside; my favorites are the Sofitel, Warwick, and Four Seasons, all in or near the Rittenhouse Square area. Stayed once at the Hyatt but it was a little off the beaten path for me, but would be fine for the usual historic sites.
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Old Jan 21st, 2009, 07:29 AM
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Will you have a car? If yes, parking can get expensive if you stay in the city. If you don't have a car though, then I'm not sure how you can get to all these places.

Inside the city, you can check out Alexander Inn. I think several fodorites have stayed there and gave a good review. Also, the Independent hotel is a new boutique hotel in a renovated building.
http://theindependenthotel.com/

If you are staying outside of the city, I guess it'll be somewhere along the Main Line.
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Old Jan 21st, 2009, 08:13 AM
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I agree with the recommendation of Alexander Inn for within the city. I had a friend stay there and she was pleased with it.

I personally don't know a place outside of the city, but I know that Swarthmore College has a link to some b&b's on their site, and that area would put you in close driving distance to the museums you mentioned that are outside of the city. Then if you're comfortable with it, you could use the regional rail system to go into the city for the museums there.

Finally, I believe that tripadvisor.com has some b&b's listed in Philly, if you click on the inn's tab.

Good luck!
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Old Jan 21st, 2009, 01:03 PM
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Since a lot of your itinerary is in the "Brandywine Valley" strongly suggest the Inn at Montchanin in Delaware. Very close to Winterthur and an easy (and beautiful) drive to Longwood Gardens and Chadds Ford. It's a very nice small hotel -they've converted a series of converted Dupont mill workers row houses. So some of the rooms have a downstairs living room and upstairs bedroom. Watch those low ceilings thouhg!

http://www.montchanin.com/



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Old Jan 21st, 2009, 01:20 PM
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I think you are planning a great trip. The art collections of the Philadlephia area have a lot to offer. When you are IN the city do not overloook the mural art. www.muralarts.org/
I would find lodging to the southwest of the city. The suggestion of the Inn at Montchanin Village is a great one. It enjoys very good comment on www.tripadvisor.com which you should check. When you do, you will also find other Inns in the area.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2009, 12:10 AM
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I would 3rd the rec for the Inn at Montchanin. It has a wonderful restaurant and is a great base for the Brandywine Valley. It isn't inexpensive, but you might be able to get a good package deal.

Make sure you don't miss the Barnes before it moves. It's definitely worth the hassle of getting tickets to see this amazing collection in its natural habitat.

If you want to stay in the city, I'd priceline a 4 star hotel in Center City. There are lots of nice ones, although they may be bigger than you're looking for.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2009, 04:54 AM
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If you decide to stay in the city, I would consider the Rittenhouse 1715, which is small and has a great location. You can walk to the Art Museum, Rodin Museum, the PAFA (my favorite art museum in the city), the galleries around Rittenhouse Square and in Old City, the Rosenbach Museum, and everything else (especially outstanding dining) that Philadelphia has to offer.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2009, 05:06 AM
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We were in Philly in October and stayed at both Alexander Inn and The Independent Hotel.

The Alexander Inn was somewhat disappointing. The room was small, the carpet in our room needed a good cleaning and one of our chairs was rather dirty. The bed was also very hard and uncomfortable. On the plus side the location was great, the price was quite reasonable, and the staff (with one exception) was friendly and helpful. Also the free breakfast was good.

The Independent Hotel was much more luxurious and we actually got it for less due to a deal on TravelZoo. The room was beautiful, the bed very comfortable, and the double shower head was fabulous. The staff wasn't all that friendly and it seemed like they were still working a lot of the bugs out. The ice maker in the room didn't work, the toilet paper roll kept falling off the wall, little stuff like that. The continental breakfast wasn't much, the only drinks were coffee and warm juice. If I was able to get a deal I might stay there again.
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Old Jan 23rd, 2009, 05:45 AM
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You people are great - am checking out your suggestions now. The Montchanin looks lovely.

Have come across recommendations for a couple of other places near Rittenhouse Sq. (although I like the recs here - the 1715 looks nice but pricey for us) - the Latham and the Lippincott House, as well as the La Reserve (what is it with places beginning with "L"?) Any experience with any of these?

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Old Jan 25th, 2009, 03:57 AM
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I stayed at the Latham one Army-Navy weekend when everything else was full (in fact I think I was the only person in the hotel not going to the game); it was just fine, nothing fancy, a little bit tired, but the staff was great, as is the location. It does not have a restaurant or room service.
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Old Jan 27th, 2009, 08:24 AM
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HKP - I've never heard of the Lippincott or the La Reserve B&B. Did you look up reviews on those? Purely based on location, I would choose La Reserve over Lippincott.

When are you going on your trip? The Independent Hotel is offering $109/n for Jan & Feb stays.
http://hotels.travelzoo.com/lodging-hotels/506769

Also, the Philly Overnight promo is back, which offers FREE parking if you stay for 2 nights at participating hotels - now thru March 16. You can find more details about this promo at www.gophila.com and click on "Special Offers".
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