Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
A mid-range property with lots of history, but it's no longer the luxury hot spot it once was
Built in 1926, The Radisson Plaza-Warwick Hotel is a National Historic Landmark, and at one time drew celebrity guests and politicians (Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner spent a night of their honeymoon here). And after a $22 million renovation completed in 2010, the hotel is still holding up -- the public spaces are still elegant, and the rooms have flat-sreen TVs and iPod docks. But in spite of all that, this is no longer the luxury property it once was. These days, it draws families and business travelers rather than the rich and famous, and the room decor is run-of-the-mill.
But changes are still to come at the hotel. In mid-2013, the hotel is set for a multi-million dollar renovation before beoming a Radisson Blu.
In Center City, just east of Rittenhouse Square Park
The Radisson Plaza is on South 17th St, a busy tree-lined stretch that's home to a number of hotels (including the Sofitel and the Palomar, a couple blocks north) near Rittenhouse Square Park. The Shops at Liberty Place mall is a short walk away.
Center City is Philadelphia's commercial and cultural center, and the vast majority of the city's hotels are clustered in this neighborhood. Popular historical sites, including Independence Hall, are located here, as is the Philadelphia Museum of Art (fronted by the stone steps made famous in the Rocky films). The picturesque Rittenhouse Square Park, located in the southwest area of the neighborhood, is surrounded by some of the city's best restaurants and bars. The ornate City Hall, built in 1901, is the second tallest masonry building in the world; its tower is a prominent fixture of the Philadelphia skyline.
Average mid-range decor, but up-to-date technology and Sleep Number Beds
The room decor is nothing special -- beige carpets, bland fabrics, wood furniture with nicks and scratches. But there are 32- to 42-inch flat-screen TVs and iPod docks, as well as adjustable Sleep Number Beds. I'm sure the Sleep Number Beds are comfortable enough when they work, but the remote for my bed gave me error messages, and the mattress was extremely firm.
All rooms include:
A fitness center and business center, but not much else
An on-site American restaurant, plus an upscale steakhouse attached to the property
This 301-room hotel built in 1926 has plenty of old-world charm -- lovely English Renaissance architecture, and an elegant lobby with two fireplaces. Rooms are thoroughly modern, however, with flat-screen TVs and iPod docks. It's a solid mid-range option near Rittenhouse Square, with thoughtful freebies (free bottled water in the rooms, free Wi-Fi, free morning newspapers). But the room decor is nothing special, and the much-vaunted Sleep Number Beds are rock-hard when they don't work.