As one of the nation’s first modern skyscrapers, Loews Hotel is an architectural piece of history located in downtown Philadelphia. Built in the midst of economic uncertainty of the 1930s, the building was finally completed and opened to the public in 1932 despite the uncertainty of naysayers and skeptics. Ironically, as most of the country’s banks crumbled during the Great Depression, the hotel was actually first opened as the USA’s first savings bank. Nowadays, the building welcomes visitors from around the world and acts as a pit stop for travelers in need of some well-earned rest.
Just a few steps from Reading Terminal Market and Philadelphia Museum of Art and two blocks from Philadelphia City Hall, it doesn’t get much more central than Loews Hotel. Jefferson Station is the closest subway stop, and you should leave the station via the Market St exit.
Facts, Curiosities and Interesting Things about Loews Hotel
1. Loews Hotel’s architecture is a nod to the Art Deco period
Since the building was constructed in the Art Deco period, its architecture boasts magnificent curved glass panes and bold geometric shapes typical of the style. Materials from over 30 countries were shipped into Philadelphia to form the structure we see today, including rare woods, marble and granite. Today, exposed pipes and wooden beams on the ceiling add a rustic feel to the hotel while the tufted leather banquettes maintain a sense of elegance and sophistication.
2. Remnants of the former bank still exist
On entering the hotel, you’ll first be greeted inside the dazzling lobby. As you walk to the check-in desk, you may notice the enormous vaults that stand proudly to the left of the lobby. These bank vaults are the original installations that were constructed almost 100 years ago and act as a homage to the hotel’s interesting past.
3. Architects and designers can’t get enough
In 1969 the local AIA voted the Loews Hotel as the most important building in Philadelphia of the last 100 years. 10 years later, thanks to its historical and architectural significance, the building was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Architects have also been left impressed by the breathtaking views available on the 32nd floor of the hotel that span over three states.
What can you do at Loews Hotel?
Looking for a bite to eat? Located in the hotel is the aptly named Bank & Bourbon – a fabulous restaurant and bar with an inherently American food menu that serves up house-aged liquors and creative cocktails. The hotel also has its very own on-site spa located on the fifth floor. Inside the Joseph Anthony Retreat Spa and Salon, guests can indulge in super relaxing treatments including the renowned Turkish Bath experience and unique Soft Pack Float treatments.
From luxury weddings to live music performances, Loews Hotel has hosted an array of events in its time, including the magical series of Candlelight concerts. Although there are currently no upcoming concerts taking place here, all hope is not lost! Several other magnificent venues in Philadelphia are lighting up with the magic of Candlelight including the iconic BOK Building.