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“But for the owners' neglect, this could be the best hotel in Philadelphia”

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Hyatt at The Bellevue
Ranked #32 of 89 Hotels in Philadelphia
Reviewed 8 October 2013

This could be Philadelphia’s best hotel--with some vision, attention to detail, and an infusion of renovation money. Until those things happen, Hyatt at The Bellevue suffers from a baffling amount of neglect. Still, if you cut the hotel slack--or get a good price here, you are likely to enjoy this Philadelphia landmark.

Of course, for many of the past 110 years, this hotel was Philadelphia’s best. Then it was The Bellevue-Stratford, and until the mid 1970s, this is where Presidents and celebrities stayed when in Philadelphia. After Legionnaires’ Disease closed the hotel in 1976, any number of managers took over--Cunard Cruise Line, Fairmont, Westin--until finally the hotel got carved up into retail, office space and a top level boutique hotel managed as a Park Hyatt.

Thing is, much of the hotel hasn’t changed a great deal since it opened in the 1990s as a Park Hyatt. . .at least as far as the hallways and rooms go. (In fact, the last time I stayed here I watched the 2000 Bush-Gore presidential debate in my room. Decor, other than a flat screen TV, is still largely the same. . .) The style is most kindly referred to as “Grandma’s living room”. That said, things are in fairly good shape, and given the age of the building, the dated decor sort of fits. However, this is all rather erratic. My room, 1216, wasn’t any different from the mid 1990s Park Hyatt. 1217 next door had been completely renovated. Hallways are grand, but dated. But the public areas on the 19th floor have been updated beautifully (though tablecloths should come back to the dining room, which is a gorgeous space).

Clearly, the owners’ failure to keep this hotel updated led to the rebranding of the hotel from a Park Hyatt to a Hyatt (if you have stayed in Chicago, or Tokyo, or Buenos Aires at a Park Hyatt, you realize this hotel--however quaint--just isn’t in the same league). Torn hallway carpeting and beat-up elevators aren't acceptable in any hotel, frankly.


That said, there are many things to recommend this hotel:

--The location at Broad and Walnut is the most central in the city. There are several upscale shops in the building lobby, including Tiffany. And the subway is very convenient.

--The public spaces are lovely, and worth visiting. And the Grand Ballroom is The place for a formal Philadelphia wedding.

--One of the best gyms in the city, The Sporting Club, is connected to the hotel by skybridge, and available to hotel guests free of charge. If you regularly workout/lift, this is a great amenity.

In my instance, I got this hotel room at $81 on Priceline, and that constitutes quite a bargain.

So my advice. . .sure, stay here. Just don’t pay too much. And think about just how wonderful this hotel could be if the owners of the hotel gave it the attention it deserves.

Room Tip: Some of the rooms have been renovated. Angle to get one of those.
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled solo
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2  Thank TravelBeard
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 6 October 2013

Had a wedding this weekend and Hyatt at The Bellevue was the hotel of choice. Great location as the wedding was held at the Kimmel Center just down the block with several functions at the hotel. First the good. The Sunday brunch was excellent. The staff was very friendly and helpful. The room was spotless and the bed good. Since this is considered a premier hotel we had high expectations. Didn't expect the bath towels to be almost threadbare...all of them. Add to that the fact that the water never really got hot in the shower or sink (shaving wasn't all that pleasant), the sink backed up, and the toilet seat was loose....well these types of experiences should not be part of a not inexpensive stay.

Stayed: October 2013, travelled with family
2  Thank MartyB33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 October 2013

I stayed at this hotel recently on a business trip and had a positive experience. The location is central, with easy access to the cultural venues, Rittenhouse Square, and a tremendous variety of restaurants. It's in a safe neighborhood.

The front desk and cleaning staff were extremely friendly and helpful. When I asked about wi-fi, the front desk staff told me that there's a daily charge, but that it would be free if I belonged to the Hyatt frequent customer program. She signed me up on the spot without my having to fill out or sign any forms. My room with two queens was huge, about double the size of most hotel rooms with two beds. It was quiet, except for occasional sirens that I could hear through the windows (I was on the 14th floor).The bed was comfortable, the room was clean, the water pressure was excellent, and the water didn't take long to get hot. The bathroom was modern-looking and clean. The closet was about 4 feet wide and had standard wooden hangers (not those funky hangers that latch onto special hooks). The room did not have a safe, but had a small refrigerator. The padding on the ironing board was miserably thin and the diamond pattern of the board itself kept coming through onto my clothes. The iron worked great. The large, flat-screen TV was excellent. I noticed that one of the bulbs on one of the sconces and the bulb in the make-up mirror were burned out.

The carpeting in the hallways was a bit dated and in need of cleaning. We had several meals as part of our business meeting. The food at every meal was superb. I also heard that the food in the XIX restaurant was very good too.

I would stay again at this hotel.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled on business
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Thank PAsunshine90
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 September 2013

SUMMARY

Overall this hotel has a high level of service and nice rooms. It's location on Broad Street is ideal for access to downtown Philly. While this hotel is not inexpensive, it is cheaper than several similar hotels in the area.

I would certainly consider staying here again.


ROOMS

I had initially booked a room with 2 queen beds (had initially planned to travel with others), but the room I was assigned was near the elevator (one of my pet peeves), so I switched to a smaller room, not near the elevators, with only 1 queen bed.

My room was nicely laid out, was fairly well sized, with the expected amenities, and had a walk in closet (which made things super easy). There was wireless internet, which they threw in for free (without me even mentioning anything), since I had changed rooms. There were 3 phones in the room (wired, wireless and bathroom), a larger flat screen TV, desk, dresser, night tables, etc...


CHECK IN/OUT AND PARKING (A REAL PLUS!)

The hotel has it's own "side-street" entrance, with excellent valet guys (even though I chose to self park), who made checking in/out really easy. The adjacent self-parking garage ($28 / night, with in/out privileges if you get your ticket stamped at the hotel desk) was extremely convenient and far easier than other city hotels, where parking can be a nightmare.


DETAILS

This hotel is one of those "back in the day, it was beautiful" hotels. The lobby has a huge spiral staircase with a tall ceiling and chandeliers that I imagine were once amazing. It seemed to me that there are still renovations needed, but they put their money into the rooms and services, so it was a nice stay.

There is a pool, spa, hot tub and health club in the hotel, but (unfortunately), I didn't get to check these out. Other people I ran into had only positive things to say about them.

There is an adjacent shopping area, which you can reach from the hotel lobby without going outside. The shopping area was convenient and had some nice stores, food options and a sports bar.


QUIRKS

The main lobby has only 2 elevators, which are fairly slow. On some floors there are other elevator banks, but you cannot reach the lobby from those elevators, which was both annoying and strange. There is also a large elevator bank in the adjacent shops area, which can get you to the meeting rooms quickly, but not the guest rooms (which makes sense).

My room had an analog alarm clock, which was not visible in the dark. On my first night there, the alarm went off at 4 AM (some hoax by the preceding guest?). I felt like the hotel housekeeping staff should have safeguarded me against this sort of ruse, by assuring the alarm switch was set to "off" before my arrival.

At one point during my stay, I came back to my room to find that both of my 2 room keys (fancy computer-chip cards) were unable to open the door. The hotel staff were fast and efficient in geting me some new keys, but I got this sense from them that this thing happens not infrequently.

Room Tip: If you ask for a room with 2 queen beds, these rooms are quite large. So, if you want a little extr...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled on business
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Thank Tarzan_JungleMan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 September 2013

I really should be giving this a 4 because the rooms are a bit on the shabby side, though I understand updates are soon coming. But, the rooms are spacious, light, and very comfortable.

I wish I had done a bit of homework on this hotel before I arrived because I would have gotten a bit more out of my stay. Though I knew the hotel was old, I didn't know how old and certainly none of the history. During my stay, I kept thinking that the hotel had undergone a major restructuring along the years as certain architectural features didn't add up (the hotel lobby, the office building lobby, etc). I asked one of the staff for a quick history, and then I understood why walls, etc where were they are. The hotel was subdivided about thirty years ago becoming a hotel and office building.

Anyway, location is fabulous, you can walk just about everywhere. I walked to the Historic District and to University City. Food was excellent at the hotel, and of course, Hyatt service is always so reliably outstanding. Very friendly, energetic staff who enjoy their jobs and clearly love their Grande Dame.

I love old buildings, and though it's sad the hotel lost its original magnificent lobby, the building was preserved and they did a good job saving such a wonderful landmark. I would definitely stay here again, Before my next visit, I'll do some more reading up on the hotel and suggest that if you stay here, then you try and do the same because the hotel has a fascinating history.

Room Tip: The XIX Bar on the top floor is a popular and lively spot for both locals and guests. There is a Fre...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Wet_Coast1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 September 2013

My wife and I were married on September 7th, 2013 at the Hyatt at the Bellevue. It was an incredible affair managed wonderfully, executed with precision and hosted in a perfectly classic Philadelphia setting that exceeded ours and our guests expectations. The Bellevue Bridal Suite was an incredible room or the bride and bridesmaids to get ready in and for my wife and I to share after the reception and all of our guests continued to talk excitedly about the unique differences between their room layouts and decor. Professional and accommodating staff, ridiculously tasty food across the board and a willingness to go the extra mile.

  • Stayed: September 2013
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Thank JeffreyStumpf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 September 2013

Classic atmosphere Hotel in downtown area. Many restaurants are within walking distance. Parking is not that bad.

Pros : European style classic atmosphere. 19th floor has a restaurant/bar with nice balcony. Make sure to bring a camera to take a great photos.
Rooms are equipped well and clean. Has a banquet hall for wedding, etc..

Cons : Little difficult to find the parking entrance because alley is very small, and doesn't clearly show the Hyatt Sign from the street.

Room Tip: Rooms with Balcony has good view.
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank seung b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hyatt at The Bellevue

Address: 200 S Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19102-3803
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Pennsylvania > Philadelphia
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Spa Hotel in Philadelphia
#17 Luxury Hotel in Philadelphia
#24 Family Hotel in Philadelphia
#24 Business Hotel in Philadelphia
#25 Romantic Hotel in Philadelphia
Price Range: £142 - £339 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hyatt at The Bellevue 4*
Number of rooms: 172
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover true grandeur, historic style and unrivaled service at one of the most iconic hotels in the all of downtown Philadelphia. Situated on the famous Avenue of the Arts, Hyatt at The Bellevue seamlessly blends old-world architecture with modern interiors to provide a stay that epitomizes Philadelphia luxury. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hyatt At The Bellevue Hotel Philadelphia
Hyatt Philadelphia
Park Hyatt Philadelphia
Philadelphia Hyatt

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