Philly’s a great ad for a grid system. Back in the 17th century, William Penn designed the city around five public squares that still function as urban chill-out zones. Rittenhouse and Washington Squares are especially good with a coffee on slow mornings, but find a base anywhere in this area (around what’s now Center City) and you’ll be well placed to roam from riverside Fishtown up east, through Old City, right down to South Philly and the sports stadia beyond.
If you’re going to be out and about day and night, and just want a place to crash, check out Motto By Hilton. At competitive prices, it’s got the downtown location and modern rooms with everything you need.
Philly doesn’t have a Soho House, perhaps because it’s got a home-grown alternative. The Fitler Club offers 14 handsome rooms to non-members. Book in and you’ll get the run of its members’ facilities – as well as a huge gym and spa, there’s a bowling alley, golf simulator and screening room.
The Four Seasons is the place if you’re going all out. Norman Foster’s starchitect design leads with a glass elevator taking you up to the 60th-floor lobby. Beyond that you’ll find wild views, food options to match and an infinity-edge pool with panoramics of its own.
Other worthy options around Center City include the storied Rittenhouse (great bar and spa), the newer Kimpton Palomar, or the Deacon if you’re a decent-sized group looking for some exclusive use.