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General question about hotel location

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Syracuse, New York
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General question about hotel location

I am planning a trip & am considering hotel locations (I'm not at specific hotels yet.)

The 3 parts of town I will probably be in the most are the historic district, the performing arts centers & museums. My probable budget will be approximately $200/night if that's feasible.

I will be driving so I need to find a place with parking close by & I am a 60 some female who will be traveling alone. My general thought is that the 1st day I'll do the Big Bus & the historic district, and days two & perhaps 3 I'll be going to museums with my nights either treating myself to the two "Iron Chef" restaurants in town or seeing classical or jazz music or theater (dramas or musicals, it doesn't matter.) I will also be seeing a show in the northern suburbs but I'm planning on doing a matinee & then heading straight home.

Any ideas as to areas I might find a safe area for a hotel that is close to what I want to do that is not an arm & a leg to stay in?

Philadelphia
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1. Re: General question about hotel location

Given your plans, I don't think there is any clear choice, though if by Iron Chef restaurants you mean Morimoto and Amada, it might make sense to stay in the historic area.

Hotel prices vary greatly depending on dates of stay so you will have to price them. Some of the recommended hotels in the historic area are: Hotel Monaco (opened 2012), Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District (formerly a Holiday Inn), Omni Independence Park, Society Hill Sheraton, Best Western Independence Park Inn.

If your evening activities turn out to be not walkable from hotel (eg you stay in the historic area and decide to go to a show on the Avenue of the Arts, you can always take a taxi.

Edited: 06 December 2013, 21:53
Cherry Hill, NJ
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2. Re: General question about hotel location

Please check out our Where to Stay FAQ as well for additional info.

It's worth noting that Iron Chef Garces has I think 7 restaurants in the city itself (Distrito, Amada, Chifa, JG Domestic, Rosa Blance, Tinto and Village Whiskey). There is also Morimotos as noted. Bobby Flay has a burger joint over in Cherry Hill. Rumor has it Mario Batali may bring an Eatlay to Philly at some point as well

We also have Top Chef season 7 winner Kevin Sbraga, Marc Vetri who beat Mychael Symon and Michael Solomonov who barely lost to Chef Garces in a philly battle.

I'm missing some in there.

Philadelphia...
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3. Re: General question about hotel location

All three areas you mentioned are good options for your plans. Really, anywhere in Center City would work for you. The FAQ on where to stay that Loonbeam referred to describes the different neighborhoods. Center City is compact. It's easy to get around by walking, using public transportation, or taking cabs.

What are your dates? I don't remember if you said in your other thread. Hotel rates vary a lot day to day. You can try Priceline or Hotwire for deals.

Some of the hotels charge quite a lot (as in $40-$50 a night) for parking, but you can find alternatives at Best Parking: philadelphia.bestparking.com

Bobby Flay has a Bobby's Burger Palace in University City.

Philadelphia...
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4. Re: General question about hotel location

Philadelphia is such a compact city, that a hotel in either the historic or Rittenhouse area district would probably work fine for you.

FYI, one of this season's Top Chef contestants has a new restaurant on E. Passyunk Ave. called Laurel. It's very small so reservations are pretty much required. You might also want to look at Vernick Food & Drink or Serpicos for one of your meals.

Syracuse, New York
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5. Re: General question about hotel location

Thanks for all your replies. Hope you all didn't have too much trouble in yesterday's snow.

My apologies for not mentioning dates but I don't have a good handle on the exact dates yet. Partly, it depends on whether there are any work schedule conflicts but Woody Sez is playing from 5/7 - 5/25 so it will be somewhere in that time frame.

As for the restaurants, I've been to Bar Americain, one of Bobby Flay's restaurants in NYC & I will more than likely go back there so I don't really have an interest in his restaurants in Philly. I understand that Amada is in or near the historic district & so that temps me as I was thinking of staying close to the hotel the 1st night & I could do a quick scope out of at least some of the historic district & also have a good meal. I do also love sushi so I'd like to try Morimoto's restaurant. Those 2 probably have NYC outposts but I tend to stay in Times Square as I am a bit of a theater nut.

Are there a lot of hotels in the Avenue of the Arts area or some cheap ways of getting from the Avenue of the Arts to the historic district like a bus? If the weekend I pick has a performance by the Philadelphia Orchestra (& I realize that it is towards the end of the arts season), I'd like to take in a concert.

Thanks for your help.

Philadelphia
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6. Re: General question about hotel location

For information on how to get around on public transit please see this article. tripadvisor.com/Travel-g60795-s302/Philadelp… After a show I personally would only take a cab and not public transit. Cab fare is generally about $10. Given that you are considering restaurants like Morimoto, Amada, and entertainment such as the Orchestra (all of which are pricey), cab fare should not significantly add to the cost of your night's entertainments.

You will need to price the hotels once you decide your dates of stay, if you are price sensitive there is really no way to do it without dates of stay. Once you have that nailed down, try the internet hotel booking sites. If you need to narrow down your choices further after that, let us know which hotels you are deciding between.

Philadelphia...
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7. Re: General question about hotel location

May is a very busy time of year for the hotels. Lots of graduations, weddings, proms, etc. Book early.

Syracuse, New York
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8. Re: General question about hotel location

Are the cabs reliable? I ask because when I would go to Baltimore to here a friend perform in opera productions, I'd go hear the symphony on his off night &, when I'd call for a cab, they'd never come.

As for booking a hotel, I want to get my hands on a hard copy map (I don't like online maps because the "pushpins" always seem to obscure each other. I am waiting for the Pennsylvania tourism office to send me a packet where I hope to find a map.

Thanks for your help.

Philadelphia
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9. Re: General question about hotel location

Try google maps for hotel locations. In addition, you have the link to our hotel FAQ which pretty much covers th options in each neighborhood. If you are price sensitive, it doesn't really make that much sense to pick a hotel first. It works better (esp in a month like May) to find out which hotels are available in your price range, then choose from there.

Taxi's should be very available on Ave of the Arts after a show. They also should be very available at hotels. You can also bring along phone numbers for cab companies just in case. I would not really recommend navigating public transit late at night by your self as a solo woman traveler not familiar with the city.

Philadelphia...
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10. Re: General question about hotel location

As Lynn said, May is very busy and very expensive for hotels because of college graduations and other events. Definitely avoid the third weekend in May. Temple's graduation is May 15, and Penn's is May 19 (with lots of activities -- and people -- in the few days before). Play around with other dates to figure out which are the least expensive, and make a reservation early.

I agree that finding a cab on Broad Street after a show shouldn't be a problem.