Kimpton Palomar: Birthday Surprise at One of the Most Dog Friendly Hotels in Philadelphia

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Have you noticed this trend of hotels using nothing but pristine duvets? No top sheet, no blanket. I always think it won’t be warm enough until I've been under it for a half hour and realize that it’s one of those sneaky comforters that holds in a lot of heat. And there’s nothing like sleeping in crisp white linens. Especially when you, your boyfriend, and your 60-some pound dog can all fit in the bed with space to spare. Especially when there’s central air conditioning that you can crank up (without worrying about money) in the middle of a Northeastern July.

I wanted to do something special, yet cost effective, for P’s 29th birthday. Kimpton’s Instagram-influencer marketing campaigns are very effective. Well, at least they worked on me. I’ve been meaning to do an overnight in one of their two Philadelphia properties for a long time, but was looking for an occasion. Thus, an idea was born.

I booked a Sunday stay at the Palomar because prices were lower and used the savings to also book us an in-room couples massage. I chose a Cityview Spa room for two reasons: 1) the room had to be big enough for a couples massage and 2) the pictures showed a baller bathtub/shower situation. The room did not disappoint. The bathtub/shower combo is probably the same square footage of one floor of our Trinity (so like, 100 sq feet). It's a soaker tub with built-in seats, jets, and an expansive view of Philly's midtown. I recommend picking up a bubble bath bomb from Lush (around the corner) and living out your Pretty Woman Walkman fantasies. They also provide full-size toiletries: a huge plus for anyone whose ever struggled to squeeze enough conditioner out of the typical tiny bottles to detangle their fiercely independent (read: difficult) hair.

As P said that day: imagine what an elevator must be like for dogs. Go in a little room, the doors close, doors open, and you’re in a whole new place! How terrifying or how wonderful? Probably depends on whether your dog is a bowl half-empty or half-full kind of mammal. And a fun side note: the Palomar’s elevator is one of the remaining areas of the hotel with the original Art Deco detailing (I’m such a sucker for Art Deco).

Originally I thought about having friends watch Dash, but it’s incredibly easy to bring your dog to Kimpton properties. There are no restrictions on breed, weight, additional fees, or policies against leaving your dog in the room when you go out. I had recently booked hotels for an upcoming trio-trip to Maine, where we’re spending two nights in Portland, and had a hell of a time finding a hotel that was a) dog-friendly and b) without any restrictions. I settled on two hotels, one in a downtown location with a pet fee on our way up to Acadia, and one without a pet fee—but in a much less convenient location—on our way back home.

In contrast, it was so nice to just walk in with Dasha and have them offer us dog bowls and a dog bed to borrow for our stay. They also give guests a little door-hanger to let housekeeping know there's a pet in the room when/if you go out. The piece of mind that comes with this is MAJOR, and I'm sure is also incredibly helpful for the staff as well. 

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The Palomar is right by, what I refer to as, the “Cook + Solo” restaurant row. Between 16th and 17th on Sansom are some of the best restaurants in town from the group, catering to a variety of dining needs: Abe Fischer (for an inventive dinner of Jewish Diaspora inspired tapas), Dizengoff (for freshly made hummus and hearth-baked pita), and Federal Donuts (for not just donuts, but the best fried chicken around). P and I chose Dizengoff for a late afternoon snack and carried it up to the room.

Then there's the hotel's daily happy hour with complimentary beverages. I had the Square 1682 Cabernet (which was full-bodied and made my little red wine-loving heart happy) and went back for seconds on the truffle popcorn. Pat had the featured white wine and the night's cocktail.

Later, clad in Palomar's complimentary zebra (me) and cheetah (P) print robes, we watched Arya kick ass on Game of Thrones while gorging on artfully plated and delicious room service from Square 1682. Then the concierge surprised us with a complimentary bottle of that Square 1682 red and a generous slice of carrot cake in honor of P's birthday. The only mistake we made was ordering the Baywatch movie on demand, but The Rock did lull the three of us to sleep, fat and happy.


This is just an honest-to-goodness appreciation post for our Kimpton experience. No one paid me anything, but Kimpton, if you’re reading thisI’d be happy to have more hotel stays. Just saying.