Ok, full disclaimer before I get started…Philly has always been my least favorite city. Way to open up a Travel Tuesday blog post, right? Well, my thoughts on Philadelphia have been slightly changed by a recent girls trip over MLK weekend with Sabah & our fab travel organizer, Paulina! We were able to fit in a lot in our one night stay, and I left Philly thinking hey, I might want to come back here again!
Paulina got an awesome deal at the Kimpton Hotel Palomar, located in the City Center neighborhood. This was my first time staying at a Kimpton, and it did not disappoint. The Palomar is a chic boutique hotel, in a perfect location for sightseeing. Check-in was super quick, the woman behind the desk was friendly, and even though we were a few hours early she was able to accommodate and get us a great room right when we arrived. Throughout our short stay, the customer service was great.
We had a great, spacious, room on an upper level floor. There was plenty of room for us three ladies. I loved the color scheme of the room, it was super clean, the beds were comfy, and they have robes too! I love a good robe, and I think it should be a staple in all hotels like this.
Kimpton Hotels also offer a nightly wine hour in the lobby, usually between 5:00pm and 6:00pm. After a day of roaming the city, this wine hour was much, much needed! The wines featured, a Chardonnay and a Cabernet Sauvignon were from their hotel restaurant, Square 1682. Since the weather was freezing, they also had hot apple cider, with an optional whiskey addition, that I of course went for.
I was ridiculously excited to see a massive bowl of truffle oil popcorn brought out during wine hour. If you know me, you know I’m obsessed with popcorn, so I was thrilled to say the least.
PS: In the morning, Kimpton Hotels offer coffee and tea, which is always appreciated, and much needed.
After checking in we headed over to The Barnes Foundation, which is a museum of interestingly collected post-impressionist and impressionist (among other things) art museum. The layout and aesthetic of The Barnes Foundation was a little odd to me, but I enjoyed seeing the collection of Picasso’s and Renior paintings. The entry fee is $30, which in my opinion is a little steep, but the museum is very interesting and one of a kind, so it ends up being worth it.
There’s a documentary, The Art of the Steal, that explores how Barnes’ collection was amassed, and also how the foundation was almost lost. From what I understand there are quite a few creepy elements to this collection, I really want to watch the documentary so I can try to get a better handle on the collection and the story behind it all.
We also checked out the Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens, which was so awesome!! The Magic Gardens are a must see when visiting Philly, there’s a huge force of community engagement and creativity that you feel immediately when entering. The mosaic art, use of material, and story behind the inspiration and conservation is pretty cool, and from a visual aspect, it really is magical!
I highly suggest paying for a ticketed entry ahead of time, there was a line when we went, but since we had tickets we just walked right in. Also, if you go on a weekend afternoon, around 3:30ish, they have a make your own mosaic crafting station that is free! We had so much fun making tiles, I def forgot how relaxing it is to craft. I would plan on spending an hour here, and plan on taking lots of pics!
Lastly, before we headed out the next morning, we of course dropped by the Liberty Bell. Get there early & you won’t have to worry about sharing your Liberty Bell photo op with anyone else.
Next week, in Travel Tuesday: Philly Pt 2, I’ll be sharing the yummy spots we dined at during our time in Philly, so stay tuned!