Places to Stay in University City and West Philadelphia

July 23, 2021

Stay while surrounded by some of Philadelphia’s brightest minds by booking a room at one of the properties below. These area hotels place the universities, offices and labs of Philadelphia’s innovation hub within walking distance, with Amtrak’s 30th Street Station and the parks, museums, restaurants and other attractions found throughout West Philadelphia also just steps away. The neighborhoods and experiences to the east of the Schuylkill River, such as Rittenhouse Square and the Pennsylvania Convention Center, are easily accessed via a short walk, train or car ride.

TIP: Many of the properties listed here also offer private event venues perfect for meetings or conferences.

Photo courtesy of AKA University City.

Encompassing the top 18 floors of Cira Centre South’s innovative vertical neighborhood, the sleek AKA University City features 103 ultra-luxury hotel suites perfect for travelers looking for nightly or weekly stays. Amenities include an expansive glass-enclosed Olympic-sized pool, state-of-the-art Technogym fitness center and yoga area, 3D golf simulator, outdoor terrace with fire pits, sophisticated a.lounge, business center facilities, and a private screening room.

An outdoor pool at the Sheraton Philadelphia University City offers stunning views of the Philadelphia skyline. Photo courtesy of Sheraton Philadelphia University City.

Located six blocks from Amtrak’s 30th Street Station and in between the campuses of University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University, the Sheraton Philadelphia University City includes complimentary WiFi, 24-hour fitness center, business center, outdoor pool, lounge, and Sang Kee Noodle House restaurant. Just one block west from the University of Pennsylvania’s campus, the Homewood Suites by Hilton University City features 136 studio and one-bedroom suites with fully equipped kitchens, plus an on-site fitness center, indoor swimming pool and more.

Photo courtesy of The Study at University City.

Take in the studious atmosphere at the 212-room Study at University City, also located at the crossroads of Drexel University and the University of Pennsylvania, with interiors crafted by local woodworkers, metalworkers, and other artisans. The hotel offers nice views of the neighborhood and is in walking distance to bars and restaurants in West Philadelphia. The onsite CO-OP Restaurant and Lounge serves creative a menu of salads, sandwiches, pasta and shareable plates.

Photo courtesy of The Inn at Penn, A Hilton Hotel.

The Inn at Penn, a Hilton Hotel is a 245-room property located on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania. The hotel features Ivy League décor, including many references to the university’s history, as well as a communal Living Room space with couches, bookcases and two fireplaces – perfect for an evening of relaxation in chillier months. Guests can dine at French bistro Louie Louie at the hotel’s Walnut Street entrance, or at one of the many other nearby restaurants.

There are also several bed and breakfasts in West Philadelphia, including Akwaaba Philadelphia, which features six guest rooms and suites inside of an 1880s manor, complete with original woodwork and stained glass throughout and decorated with a nod to Philadelphia’s rich music legacy. The ten beautifully designed guest rooms at the Gables Bed & Breakfast are found within a striking Victorian mansion with a wraparound porch just a short walk from Clark Park.

Cornerstone Bed & Breakfast is a found within a charming house on the Drexel University campus that was constructed in 1870 for Mary Sellers Bancroft, the great niece of Revolution-era portrait artist Charles Wilson Peale. Guests can book a romantic stay in one of the house’s six individually designed rooms and enjoy breakfast made from ingredients sourced from Reading Terminal Market and other local purveyors.

Groups of 20 to 70 can find lodging at Chamounix Mansion, a hostel operating out of a National Historic Landmark building in West Fairmount Park that was originally constructed in 1802 as a seasonal retreat for prominent and prosperous Philadelphia merchant, George Plumstead. Declared the first urban hostel in the United States in 1965, Chamounix features several multi-bed dorm rooms throughout the Mansion and Carriage House.

Cover image: The outdoor lounge at Level 28 at AKA University City. Photo courtesy of AKA University City.

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