Need a Philly hotel review? We’ve got our pick! The minute we pulled up to Hotel Monaco Philadelphia on Chestnut Street in the heart of Philly’s historic center and met T, the hotel’s most lively and friendly doorman, we knew we were going to love our stay. T offered high fives all around, then challenged Tobias (age 9) to some air boxing on the sidewalk. Turns out, T is Hotel Monaco’s boxing expert, leading fitness classes weekly, so Tobias hardly stood a chance.
Inside, we were met by more friendly faces at Hotel Monaco’s charming front desk (it’s shaped like a set of dresser drawers) and a glass of lemonade from the stand in the lobby’s ‘living room’. We’re no strangers to Hotel Monacos (a division of Kimpton hotels) and were glad to see Philly’s Hotel Monaco follow suit with the ones we love in Portland and Seattle: the decor is eclectic and fun, the staff warm, and the service outstanding.
We reserved two rooms for our two-night stay, and ended up with 414 and 814, both with stunning Liberty Bell and Independence Hall views. The hotel is literally steps from both attractions, and only a block from the Constitution Center. Local dining is in walking distance in all directions as well, which means you can give your car keys to the valet and forget about it.
Tip: When booking at Hotel Monaco, be on the lookout for seasonal packages or promotions. We tried out the “Where the Wild Things Are” package, which included two tickets (per room) to the Philadelphia Duck Tour. Using the tickets was easy, and we would have bought them separately anyway!
One of the biggest draws of Philadelphia Hotel Monaco may be the location, but room amenities abound as well. We love the high ceilings (a trademark of Kimpton and Hotel Monaco), the lovely structural design of the historic building, and the spacious bathrooms. We had two queen beds (both uber comfy) and both a shower and tub in the bathroom. We used the flatscreen TV to catch World Cup games (we visited in June 2014) and appreciated the mini fridge for storing leftovers. Note: the mini fridge does store minibar items, but there’s still room for your own snacks (or you can ask for the minibar items to be removed). We also appreciated the security measure in place for the elevators: guests must use room key cards to access all guest floors. Bonus: here’s our view…
The Red Owl Tavern is located at the ground level of the Hotel Monaco. This upscale pub offers the usual fare: salads, burgers, and the like, and room service is available. Breakfasts here are especially good, but if it’s out of your budget, the doormen are happy to point you in the direction of additional Philly dining. Every morning, coffee, tea, water, and a treat (we had donuts) are served in the ‘lLving Room’, an inviting lobby space with couches, board games, windows, tables, and a fireplace. In the evenings, a complimentary wine service is available in the Living Room from 5 pm to 6 pm. When our son seemed bored during this ‘happy hour’, a front desk staff member quickly supplied him with a cup of colorful candy. It’s the small touches such as this that bring us back to Hotel Monaco again and again.
Fitness Center, WiFi, and Parking:
Hotel Monaco does not have a pool, but the fitness center is the Kimpton standard; that is to say, excellent. WiFi is free for Kimpton InTouch members (membership is free, and I recommend joining). Otherwise, it’s $12 per day. Parking is expensive in cities, and unfortunately, there’s no exception at Hotel Monaco Philadelphia: valet parking is $40 per day. There’s an off-site self-park lot available for approximately $25-30 per day, but for the difference, we opted for the extreme convenience of valet parking.
At the time of our visit, room rates averaged $199 per night for Liberty Bell center views. Check for current rates.
Hotel Monaco Philadelphia is located at 433 Chestnut, directly adjacent to Independence Hall. It’s only five minutes off I-95 or I-76.
Do you have a favorite Hotel Monaco? Do tell!
As I disclose whenever applicable, our stay at Hotel Monaco was complimentary, for the purpose of review. Comped stays are essential to bringing up-to-date reviews to Pit Stops for Kids. All opinions are our own.