Stay in the Center of It All: A Review of the Embassy Suites in Philadelphia’s Center City
When I plan to stay overnight in Philadelphia, there are two things I look for in a hotel: a great view and a great location. So, when I was invited to check out the Embassy Suites by Hilton in Philadelphia’s Center City, I was excited that it checked off both boxes.
Embassy Suites in Philadelphia’s Center City is located along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The building is one of several circular buildings in this part of town, which gives the hotel an interesting look on the outside and an interesting layout on the inside.
The hotel only offers valet parking, which was very quick and convenient even while checking in on a busy Saturday afternoon. While the price for valet parking is a bit more than other hotels in the area, I was impressed with the service. There are nearby parking garages that you can utilize if you’d rather save some money on parking.
After checking in quickly (again impressive for a busy Saturday afternoon), I headed up to the 18th floor settle into my room.
Given its circular shape, the hotel doesn’t feature traditional hallways. Instead, room doors radiate off of a central lobby. The lobby features doors for all rooms, a bench, and the hotel’s three elevators.
Each room features a large living room with a kitchenette, a separate bedroom, and a bathroom. Surprisingly , despite the circular shape of the hotel, the rooms don’t feature curved walls.
The hotel has recently been renovated, and the furnishings in the room were both comfortable and quite fitting for the cost of the room. The kitchenette was a nice touch with a microwave, coffee pot, and small refrigerator. This made it the perfect spot to make a late night snack or to keep a few beverages cool until I was in my room for the evening.
The room was also outfitted with a large desk, and by simply pulling the chair to the other side, I was able to do a little work while enjoying the great view from my room.
The size of the living room is impressively large, which would make this a great room for those with kids. There’s plenty of room for them to spread out and burn off a bit of energy if need be.
The bedroom in my room featured a very comfortable king bed with two different types of pillows. The hotel also offers rooms with two double beds. While the bedroom wasn’t overly large, there was plenty of room to put my suitcase and not feel too cramped, especially with the large living room just outside the bedroom door.
Despite the hotel just having completed a renovation, the bathroom still needed a bit of work. While the bathroom was clean, the finishings were more what I would expect out of a 2-star hotel. The shower head was also quite low, which is always a pet peeve of mine.
Nevertheless, I’m not one to be too fussed about bathrooms (as long as they are clean), and the quality of the rest of the room more than made up for this shortcoming.
With its location in the heart of the city, the Embassy Suites in Philadelphia’s Center City has fantastic views. My room from the 18th floor offered a commanding view of Logan Square and the Benjamin Franklin Parkway all the way to the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Regardless of the room you have, you should have a fantastic view of some portion of the city.
One of the reasons that I was most excited to stay at this property was for their amazing balconies that overlooked the city and offered a great chance to get some unique photos of the Center City area.
Unfortunately, I discovered when I arrived in my room that the hotel balcony doors had been “Locked for my safety.” A little research shows that this is a new change from early 2018 and was part of their recent renovation. While the views from inside the rooms are still quite stellar, don’t plan on stepping out on the balcony for a bit of fresh air or to get photos that aren’t taken through a dirty glass door.
Two other great features of the hotel are the free breakfast and the nightly manager’s reception.
The breakfast is offered every morning on the second floor of the adjacent TGI Fridays. There is a fantastic spread here including made-to-order omelets. While the buffet area is a bit tight on busy mornings, there’s plenty of seating and the food is quite delicious with a ton of options.
The manager’s reception is held in the hotel’s lobby every evening. Guests are invited to come down and enjoy complimentary wine, beer, and mixed drinks, as well as some non-alcoholic options. There is also a small selection of snack foods, but it’s a fairly basic spread of primarily chips and dip.
The drinks however were quite good, and the whiskey and Coke that I had was appropriately strong.
While seating is available inside, I recommend enjoying the reception from the patio on the rear of the hotel that’s adjacent to the bar. If it’s a nice night, this is a great spot to enjoy the beauty of Center City Philadelphia.
Finally, I loved the location of this hotel. If you’re planning to visit the many sites in Center City including the Franklin Institute, Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia’s City Hall, and the Barnes Museum, Embassy Suites is a great choice as it’s just steps from these spots.
Overall, aside from my sadness about the balcony doors now being locked and the somewhat out of date bathrooms, I really enjoyed my stay at the Embassy Suites in Center City Philadelphia.
The large room size, nice furnishings, and great location make this a perfect choice for those looking to stay close to the action in Center City and along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
Note: As noted above, my stay at Embassy Suites in Philly was hosted by the hotel. However, the opinions expressed in the article are my own.
See map below for other area attractions.
Jim Cheney is the creator of UncoveringPA.com. Based in the state capital of Harrisburg, Jim frequently travels around Pennsylvania and has visited, written about, and photographed all 67 counties in the state. He has also traveled to more than 30 different countries around the world.