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“Perfect location, beautiful buildings, but.....”
Review of Morris House Hotel

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Morris House Hotel
Ranked #24 of 88 Hotels in Philadelphia
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 22 October 2013

We stayed at the Morris House Hotel to be close to the historic attractions, and to avoid "cookie cutter" chain hotels. The hotel itself is beautiful, and has been updated for modern convenience while keeping its historic character. The property has three buildings--one is the original main house, connected to a restaurant/hotel building by a nice courtyard. There is a third section in the back with rooms. The public transportation system, SEPTA, runs a train underground in front of the hotel, so I highly recommend you stay in the back of the two buildings that face 8th street. The train noise is loud, as there are grates in the sidewalk in front of the hotel. We were sitting in the courtyard one night, and you get a feeling that a "ghost" train is passing because you can hear it and feel the vibration, but you can't see it. We stayed in Room 502 (restaurant building), where you can feel a slight vibration, but it is not distracting. Our room was a suite, which was very large and comfortable. The furniture is contemporary (borderline IKEA), but attractive and functional. There is a kitchenette with a sink, one-cup coffee maker and cooktop; I would have preferred to have a microwave. Due to the historic nature of the building, there are no elevators, and you have to walk up steep stairs to the upper rooms. The staff helped us with the bags when we checked in. Bathroom was huge and well-appointed with white marble tile.
Now the downside--the hotel offers an extremely sparse continental breakfast. This was disappointing due to the facts 1) we were paying about $300 a night, and 2) the hotel has a restaurant. If you want to eat 95% carbs to start your day, you might be satisfied. Only "hot" item was microwaved mini-quiches, which were seldom replenished. Fruit was a basket of apples and oranges. Some fresh berries would have been nice and easy to serve. There was some sliced bread--dry, and some cake breads --also dry. A few thin slices of greasy-looking cheese, yogurt and a bowl of Cheerios or granola were the other offerings. It would have been nice to have the option of a hot breakfast in the restaurant, which I guess we could have done if we wanted to pay (using a 10% discount offered to hotel guests eating at the restaurant). It would have been nice to have some boiled eggs, some sliced meats, juices other than one pitcher of orange juice and more cheese other than just a few slices that were almost transparent. They should consider providing a "taste" of their restaurant by offering a hot breakfast--it might entice more of the guests to eat there rather than go elsewhere. I have stayed at hotels for $89 a night and received a much better breakfast. I have stayed in many hotels, especially in Europe, where you showed your room key in the hotel restaurant and received a hot, cooked breakfast. I was expecting more for the price we paid. After the first morning, we went elsewhere for breakfast.

Also, we discovered after waking up more morning in a 66 degree room that all the rooms, at least in our building--despite having individual thermostats--run off one system. If one room turns down the heat, all the rooms get cooler. We mentioned this to the front desk clerk, and she assured us she would check all the rooms later. The next morning, we could see our breath when we woke up. The staff was accommodating and very apologetic and brought a small heater for the bathroom (slate tile floor, which was well-chilled). We were given a discount off of one night for the inconvenience.

The hotel is extremely convenient to the historic areas, and within easy walking distance of many attractions. The area behind the hotel, Washington Park, is lovely.

I recommend this hotel for its character, reasonable comfort and great location, but with the abovementioned caveats.

Room Tip: Ask for a room away from the street--either in the back of the buildings facing 8th street, or on th...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled on business
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2  Thank sb_osobailiando
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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248 - 254 of 579 reviews

Reviewed 18 October 2013

We stayed here in September for 3 days, really great find. we arrived not really knowing what to expect, they upgraded us to a suite, we had a huge room, had a kitchen, sitting room, balcony,and very comfy bed. its really a historical beauty. the breakfast and cookies were great, we will be back for sure, not anything bad to say. thank you for the wonderful stay, oh, also great location, can walk anywhere. Italian market must see, old city very close. If you have legs you can walk anyplace, area is very safe in the day, just like any other city gotta be a little more careful at night.

Room Tip: We found this on one of the hotel sites, I think expedia but not positive
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank David K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 October 2013

Just stayed here. Staff were fabulous--knowledgeable, helpful, friendly.
Would have liked to know more about the history of the place. They provided a little bit, but could have provided more. Good location.

Room Tip: No elevator (totally understandable), which may be an issue for elderly visitors. Stairs have sturd...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank A B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 October 2013

My husband and I stayed at Morris House Hotel for a quick one-night stay related to a Univ of Pennsylvania event. Morris House is a gem in the middle of the Philadelphia historic district.

You should park in the lot across from the hotel - just be sure to have your parking ticket validated to save 15% off the $30/night parking fee.

The "home" is beautifully maintained and managed by the staff. The experience is completely unlike a traditional "hotel" packed-in-like-sardines experience. There are a ton of stairs which clearly would be an issue for anyone with a physical disability.

Morris House is connected to M Restaurant via a gorgeous 200 year old courtyard which serves as the restaurant's seating area. The only reason we didn't eat there is because we want to explore the city a bit. We asked for a dining recommendation from the front desk and we were directed to the "GayBorHood" section of town which is just a few blocks away from the hotel. It was a lovely night and we walked a few blocks up walking through the fun and funky neighborhood. We found a fantastic Mexican place (very chic with great atmosphere) called El Vez.

The bed and bedding were wonderful and the room itself was beautiful. The only odd moment of the evening was when we felt a tremor go through the entire room, and I remembered reading other TripAdvisor reviews about the subway which runs under the hotel. We had a laugh, and it wasn't an issue at all.

The European breakfast is lovely and served in the gorgeous dining room and library of the home. There is free wi-fi, although the signal was a bit weak on the 3rd floor.

All in all, I would strongly recommend Morris House Hotel for any stay in Philadelphia. You are literally steps from the best Philly has to offer.

Room Tip: The train tremor seems to effect the higher floors more - but you really can't go wrong anywhere...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank ogeek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 October 2013

My sister and I loved our stay at the Morris House room 203. The ambiance, staff and foods were wonderful. We started our morning with mini-quiches, cereal, delicious breads and potent coffee in a period style dining room before our days of sight seeing. In the evening, we returned to the beautiful and restful patio, sipped complementary wine and relived our day's activities. We also looked forward to the delicious home baked cookies after our wine. Because we ate late lunches (City Tavern and Penns Landing), we never tried the restaurant. We realized that we were going back in time and thus would need to take steps (rather than an elevator) to our room. An in-room coffee maker would have been welcomed -- we knew this in advance so brought our own mini-coffee maker. We totally loved our stay in this special hotel.

Room Tip: Room 203 is the first room at the top of the stairs. There's a TV in bedroom, but not the sitti...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Betty M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 August 2013

I just checked out of this historic hotel; the building had another use before becoming a hotel. It was built in the 18th century.
Everything was very good. The room was very comfortable and I enjoyed reading old World Book encyclopedias from the '60's. The PATCO subway runs under the hotel and it rattled all the furniture in the room but I got used to it.
When I return home next year I will stay there with relatives. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed: August 2013
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Thank GeorgefromSF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 August 2013

We had room 301. which was lovely and comfortable but up some steep stairs. We loved this hotel, the only thing we didn't like was how they served their breakfast. Self service in two separate rooms, I would have liked better bread and fruit.
Despite my reservations with breakfast, we could not fault this hotel for anything else. Room comfort, efficiency of reception staff with bookings etc. and the hotel's proximity to Independence Square was brilliant.
Taxi drivers struggled a bit to find it though, as you have to go beyond it to come back down a one way street.

If you don't like plastic style modern hotels, this one oozes old style charm and elegance

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Bonniegirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Morris House Hotel

Address: 225 S 8th St, Philadelphia, PA 19106-3519
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Pennsylvania > Philadelphia > City Center East
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Romantic Hotel in Philadelphia
#12 Family Hotel in Philadelphia
#20 Business Hotel in Philadelphia
Price Range: £123 - £198 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Morris House Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This national historic landmark, renovated into a luxury boutique hotel, offers cozy accommodations and elegantly combines 18th century charm with all of today's modern conveniences.The Morris House Hotel offers uniquely decorated rooms, complete with charming views of the private garden or city. Free Wi-Fi is included.Guests at the hotel can enjoy a delicious continental breakfast every morning and afternoon tea with homemade cookies. M Restaurant, located on site, features French-inspired cuisine and a garden patio.Only a short distance from the Morris House are some of Philadelphia's main attractions. Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell are moments away. A number of world-renowned restaurants, shops and theaters are also within walking distance. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Morris Hotel Philadelphia

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