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“My favorite hotel” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel

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Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   117 South 17th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103 (City Center West)   |  
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Philly Overnight Package
Ranked #3 of 83 Hotels in Philadelphia
Certificate of Excellence 2014
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Boston, Massachusetts
1 review
“My favorite hotel”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2013

This is by far the best hotel I've ever stayed in. The staff was warmer and friendlier (and didn't feel artificial), the style was modern and fresh, the rooms were comfortable and beautiful, and everything just seemed to work and feel better than all the desk chairs, drawers, lamps, showers, sinks, soaps, beds, pillows, blankets, and lights I had used at other hotels. I go out of my way to make sure I can stay at this hotel when I travel to Philadelphia for work.

A few hints for others interested in staying here:
1. Become a Kimpton In-Touch member: They only send about an email a month, usually just a promotion letting you know a bunch of hotel rooms are on sale, and in return you get a $10 minibar credit every time you stay. It's usually good enough for a beer, 1-2 waters, a snack, or some medicine.
2. If you're in a good mood (or a bad one), let the front desk know. They will go out of their way to make sure you have a good night. One night after talking to a front desk person I got a fruit plate sent to my room. Another night I got some bath salts. Made an already amazing stay even better.
3. The fitness room has treadmills, cardio machines, weights, and some other stuff. Many of the larger units have TVs installed on them, and there's some additional ones on the walls if you're doing weights or floor exercises. If you're trying to stay in shape make sure to bring some workout clothes and shoes to take advantage of the fitness room.
4. The location is within two blocks of some of the best food and drinks that Center City has to offer. It's also a block away from a mall, a block or two from a nice park (Rittenhouse Square I think), a few blocks from JFK Plaza (Love Park), a block from high-end shopping, and a block from the Dandelion Pub (my new favorite bar). As long as the weather is nice, go out and explore!

Room Tip: My company gives me a choice between a room with a king bed and a room with a queen bed and "Ci...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wendell B, General Manager at Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, April 23, 2013
ChrisD372

Wow, so glad that to hear that we keep taking great care of you each time that you stay with us. We can't wait to see you on your next visit.

All The Best!


Wendell B.
General Manager
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1,775 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (471)
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English first
Newtown, PA
Top Contributor
270 reviews 270 reviews
149 hotel reviews
Reviews in 171 cities Reviews in 171 cities
417 helpful votes 417 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2013

We were really looking forward to staying at the #1 hotel in Philly. We have stayed in many good hotels in the city and the Palomar was on our bucket list. It's a shame that a power outage on Saturday morning, March 30th put a damper on what was an excellent stay up to that point. The spa king room was fantastic and lived up to the billing. The staff leading up to Saturday morning was pleasant and professional. This review should have been an easy 5 out of 5.

I realize this was out of the hotel's control, but I don't think the staff realized what a tremendous inconvenience this was and were not ready to handle the situation. First, the manager came over the speaker system multiple times to let us know about the outage, which lasted at least 90 minutes from around 9:30 to just past 11:00. About halfway through the manager literally made 4 announcements in a 5-minute span telling us the problem was found and we would have power shortly. After that we heard nothing for 45 minutes and still no power.

We were meeting friends at the Wells Fargo Center for the 1pm Flyers-Bruins game. Obviously there was no running water; so showering, shaving and using the bathroom were out of the question. We did not feel very groomed to head out for the day. I had just finished filling up the spa tub when the power went out and was disappointed not being able to use it a second time during our stay. That's the reason we spent a little extra for the room.

Keep in mind that there are 20-25 floors in this hotel and many had to make the track down the stairs without the use of the elevator. Thankfully the power came on just as we were getting ready to walk down the steps with our luggage to check out. At this point going back in and showering was out of the question as we had plans to meet before the game and just wanted to get out of there at that point.

Here's where I have the biggest problem. When checking out the staff just kept the "all is well" attitude like nothing happened during the morning. I was wondering how the hotel might compensate their customers. I could see nothing was going to happen, so I asked about waiving the parking fee. The woman complied right away, which was fine. She should have made the first move, not me. I shouldn't have to ask about compensation, standing there unshowered and unshaven.

Getting the car was another adventure. We were told about 20 minutes from the valet. Meanwhile I noticed others were upset and impatient waiting in front of the hotel. I knew it was going to be longer than 20 minutes. Our wait ended up being 40 minutes. I was worried about not getting to the game on time. We barely made it. Thankfully our friends with the tickets were caught in traffic and didn't wait too long for us.

This is a dog friendly hotel, which is cool. Saw lots during our stay. I just wish folks wouldn't let them go right on the lamp post in front of the hotel entrance. We saw this when waiting for our car, not very appealing.

Having said my $.02 on this issue, I still would stay here again in the future. Hopefully my review can help the Palomar realize the severity of this situation, and better prepare the staff the next time something like this happens. I know we were not the only ones who felt this way.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wendell B, General Manager at Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, April 5, 2013
Dear relayer,

We feel so bad about the power outage! It came unexpectedly to us as well and we sincerely tried our best to minimize the impact of the situation as much as possible, although it was different for everybody. I am sorry it put a damper on your plans -- at least the Flyers got the W!

Let me know when you are headed back into town, I'll be sure you're set up nicely.

Have a great weekend,

Wendell B.
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White Stone, VA
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

First of all, we travel with our miniature schnauzer, and we are huge fans of Kimpton hotels. Not only are pets accepted, they are welcomed. The Palomar in Philadelphia was lovely and welcoming to both humans and canines! The reception staff could not have been nicer, and when it was discovered that we had a one-bed room and we needed a two-bed room because our niece was with us, a very comfortable roll-away bed was immediately procured (the mistake in booking was ours not theirs). The room was very comfortable, and in a great location, close to Rittenhouse Square and other Philadelphia neighborhoods. The lobby was very sophisticated and the gas fireplace gave a very lovely "feel" to the room, though it was too small to accommodate the guests who arrived for happy hour. We saw many guests take their complimentary glass of wine (big points on that!) up to their rooms because they couldn't find a place to sit. Our dinner at the adjacent Square 1682 restaurant (separate review) was outstanding. We would definitely stay at the Palomar again.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wendell B, General Manager at Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, April 5, 2013
RivahBob,

Thanks for bringing your family our way! It's great to see you had an enjoyable visit in both the Hotel and in our newly renovated restaurant, Square1682. Hopefully we'll see you and the pup again soon.

Kind Regards,

Wendell B.
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Arlington, Virginia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

My boyfriend and I stayed here on a recent Philly getaway weekend and we were thrilled with the Hotel Palomar. The location can't be beat--you can walk to amazing restaurants and bars in Rittenhouse Square--and the staff were incredibly accommodating. Kimpton hotels are always wonderful, but the Hotel Palomar went above and beyond. Truly a chic urban oasis. Stay here if you have the choice!

Room Tip: Join the Kimpton InTouch loyalty program and I believe they'll go a bit above and beyond to acco...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wendell B, General Manager at Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, April 5, 2013
Dear 534Jessical534,

Awesome feedback! Thanks for sharing. There's so much to explore in the Rittenhouse neighborhood and we're happy to be your home away from home while you do that!

See you again soon,

Wendell B.
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Hastings on Hudson, New York
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2013

My family and I had a perfect stay at this lovely hotel. It has that special combination of warmth and elegance. It is in a super location: stroll to dinner and shops or take a nice walk to see the historic sights. Our room was spacious, nicely appointed, comfortable and spotless. The staff was friendly and professional, helping us out with directions and just making us feel welcome. The 5:00 pm complimentary wine service was a great way to wind down after a day of sightseeing and art. They were even nice enough to offer my daughter a complimentary Shirley Temple. That's what I'm talking about!

We will definitely book the Palomar for our next trip to Philadelphia.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wendell B, General Manager at Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, April 5, 2013
NYCFrancophile,

Who doesn't love a Shirley Temple?! Thanks for writing such an awesome review of a great stay. That's what I'm talking about!

See you again soon,
Kelly
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2013

I enjoyed my stay at the Palomar and would recommend it to others but would rather stay at the Sofitel across the street...Great location, and right from the begining, valet was quick and the doors were opened for us from our car to the hotel entrance. The front desk attendant was top notch. She was absolutely amazing and came off as a very friendly and genuine person. I couldn't give her enough praise. The hotel has a cool, modern vibe to it and the Kimpton In Touch program is worth joining, especially since it's free. The hand written welcome letter was a wonderful touch and the room itself was great. Really great view of the skyline as well. Room service food was okay, but nothing to write home about. Upon checking out, again the same front desk attendant left us smiling.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wendell B, General Manager at Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, April 5, 2013
Dear Mbl5687,

Thanks for your comments about the great service from the Front Desk. We love to see you leaving with a smile. Come back and see us again - maybe then we'll win you over! Until then, thanks for the recommendations.

Appreciate the feedback,

Wendell B.
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Doylestown, Pennsylvania
Top Contributor
129 reviews 129 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
61 helpful votes 61 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2013

Overall a good hotel in a wonderful location set in an amazing building but did not meet our usual Kimpton expectations.

Very nice front of the house staff who from the doormen to the front desk staff were friendly. For the most part they were welcoming but unlike at other Kimptons I did not feel a sense of staff going out of their way to make guests feel welcomed.

Our room was a single queen on the "corner" and was petite but the view from the three windows was incredible --- It was a neat room and one I am glad I had the chance to stay in. Cleanliness of the room is where it fell short & it is my regret for not addressing the issue and (quite literally) sweeping away a few housekeeping issues - minor but in hindsight I should have requested a change of linens AND of towels.

Lobby was very nice but frequently, regardless if wine hour or anytime, felt cramped. I also missed the eye popping decor found at other Kimptons.

For future visits to the city, I would prefer the other Kimpton (and especially if traveling with our daughter).

Room Tip: corner room high floor for the view but keep in mind it is a tiny little room
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wendell B, General Manager at Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, April 5, 2013
ManyMilesStill2Go,

Cool username! We love to travel too. Thanks for travelling our way recently and for sharing your comments about the visit. I hope you can see from past reviews that the cleanliness of our builidng and the friendliness of our staff are two things we aim to thrive at. I'm sad to read that you didn't recieve that. Feel welcome to reach out to me directly next time you are in town so I can make sure you are set up nicely.

Have a good weekend,
Wendell B.
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Additional Information about Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel

Address: 117 South 17th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Pennsylvania > Philadelphia > City Center West
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 83 Hotels in Philadelphia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Palomar Philadelphia - a Kimpton Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 230
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Palomar Philadelphia, a Kimpton Hotel, is the first LEED Gold Certified luxury hotel in the heart of Center City is a testament to superior eco-friendly hotel design, personalized service and genuinely warm hospitality. Hotel Palomar is a unique luxury boutique hotel that features a striking lobby, the critically acclaimed Square 1682 restaurant and on-site fitness center. Throughout our boutique hotel, original artwork dynamically interacts with soft hues, luxurious custom furnishings and original architectural detailing. ... more   less 
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