An affordable comfortable hotel, smack dab in the middle of one of America’s most bustling cities, offers amenities and a location for a price that few of its nearby competitors can match. Its 168 non-smoking rooms are distributed among 20 floors. Since rooms were renovated in 2015, electrical receptacles have been added. There is no shortage of ways to recharge portable electronics and free wifi is consistent in all rooms. What this hotel lacks in frills it more than makes up for with its central location, gym and complimentary breakfast bar. The location is excellent: one block from the Broad Street subway, near the theater and shopping district, and three blocks from the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Thin walls and a highly concentrated neighborhood of bars and restos make for a light sleeper's need to bring your mask and earplugs.
All beds have triple sheeting bedding and four pillows, all nonallergenic memory foam. Each room contains a lounge chair with an ottoman along with a work desk complete with lamp (with electric receptacle built in) and ergonomic chair. Blackout shades provide privacy but not noise protection and an iron and iron board in a separate hanging closet is available. An in roomsafe provides security for valuables and each room has its own microwave, mini refrigerator, coffee maker, and 32 inch flat screen television with cable and some premium channels. Each room is also equipped with its own heating and air conditioning controls as the windows do not open.
Views from rooms are scattered between various exposures. Your best alternative is a southern view which overlooks Walnut Street as opposed to an alley.
Bathrooms are small so each room has a granite vanity outside the toilet to conserve space. However, each room has a shower and bathtub setup.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Tall people might want to avoid taking baths as the bathtub has a diameter of approximately 4 feet. Also, the only mirror in the bathroom happens to be in the vanity area outside. Also, the bathrooms have no venting system.
The main entrance for the hotel is off Walnut Street on the north side. Architecture tends to be 50’s spare De Stijl and there is no valet service. The lobby is relatively small for a hotel this size so it can get crowded and it's pretty nondescript.
An outdoor pool is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. during summer hours (Memorial Day to Labor Day.) It's on the roof, 6'9" deep and has lounge chairs and umbrellas.
The hotel offers excellent amenities for fitness. The gym is open 12 a.m. to 12 p.m. and offers Precor machines (two elliptical, three treadmills, one stationary bike) along with a stretch area with free weights and stability balls. Guests also have the option of doing their own laundry for a nominal fee.
Adjacent to the lobby is the breakfast area where a complimentary full American breakfast is served for all guests from 6:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m., consisting of pre-made omelets, cereal, fruit, juice, coffee, tea, and a waffle maker. There is no restaurant on the premises although the front desk can set up room service from various local establishments.
Tip: Breakfast seating is somewhat limited so be prepared to queue up. Kids eat for free, sweet.
Mass transit options are less than a ten-minute walk away at Jefferson Station at 11th and Filbert. From there SEPTA’s regional rail can provide you with quick, direct, stress-free access to AMTRAK’s 30th Street Station (8 minutes $3.75 one way) and Philadelphia International Airport (30 minutes $6.75 one way.) The front desk can help you out with directions and ubers/lyfts and cabs abound.
Restaurants and nightlife in the area are extremely plentiful which depending on your tolerance for noise can be a blessing or a curse. There are at least ten dining options within a five minute walk from the front door on Walnut Street. Recommended options are Opa (2-minute walk)is an affordable Greek restaurant with both standard and tapas style plates. Sampan (1-minute walk), an Asian fusion bistro serving a variety of Chinese, Korean, and Thai dishes. Its companion Japanese sushi parlor next door, The Double Knot, is locally known for their sake cocktails.
A raucous crowd adds to a burgeoning nightlife environment in the immediate area. Options again are extremely plentiful and are not even a five-minute stroll away. For craft beer enthusiasts, try Bru Craft & Wurst (3-minute walk) with its rotating taps of craft beer and German style food. Cocktail purists head for El Vez (2-minute walk) with its Mexican food and kitsch and boast of the best margarita in the city. For those bar traditionalists, you need to visit McGillin’s Olde Ale House (2-minute walk), the oldest continuously operating bar in Philadelphia, known for their chicken wings, lively crowds and karaoke nights.
WHY WE LIKE IT
The price for the location and amenities make up for its urban downsides (size, parking.) It's simple and clean and centrally located with a nice gym and fun large roof-top outdoor pool. It uses green technology (IHG Green Engage System) to keep it eco. Despite Lilliputian bathroom and thin walls, this hotel provides a quality budget option for travelers who prefer the sounds and sights of the city to their rooms.