Kimpton Hotels are stylish and contemporary in the heart of major cities. The Kimpton Hotel Monaco Pittsburgh fits the mold, but some of their design choices weren’t for me. I’ve included the photos, you decide.
Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco Pittsburgh is located in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh. The classic building has been converted into a hotel now but has been standing since 1903.
Address: 620 William Penn Place, Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Phone: +1 412-471-1170
Parking is reasonable for the size of the city and the location. Overnight Valet with full in/out privileges costs $38/daily, they also offer smaller rates for less time than a full overnight. Pittsburgh is jam-packed in this part of the city but the hotel does a nice job keeping a lane clear in front of the property for checkin and valet service. You may be able to do better parking on your own, but not much better – parking in this part of the city for an extended period of time is expensive.
Rooms ranged from $200-550/nt from a single King to a suite. Those prices are right in line with where this property should be given the market, location and design elements of the hotel. For points redemptions, 35,000-45,000 will secure most rooms most nights.
I have written before that I may be too old for W hotels, the style just seems off to me – more kitsch than clever. There were some of those elements here too. The restaurant (featured later) was well designed and beautiful. The classic style of the building gives some elegance that would be hard to mess up. However, the endless bird cages and a chicken foot chandelier seem to be more temporary trend than lasting design choices. I’m not an interior designer but it seemed like some of it was right on target while other pieces were just trying a little too hard to be cool.
Stepping into room 828, I was unsure of what I would find. In terms of size and view, it was a crapshoot. The hotel was a new renovation so presumably, the rooms could be as large or as small as the designer liked. The room was a standard King redemption on the 8th floor. There was no upgrade as a Spire though, in fairness, those rooms may have been sold out.
Inside the room, the closet appears to the left, the bathroom to the right before opening up to a smaller room than I would have imagined. Classic hotels have smaller rooms, I know, but for the price and opportunity, it seemed like a short-sighted decision. True luxury hotels in downtown (pronounced “dahn-tahn” in Pittsburghese) are scant. One block over, the William Penn (an Omni hotel) and the Fairmont a bit further away are the only true five-star hotels in the Central Business District.
The bathroom in this property is excellent. There is a shower but it’s not over a tub, and while I didn’t take note of the shower amenities I am sure they were not KenetMD. Really tasteful design in the bathroom displays how the hotel could have been given a less-kitsch upscale design. Clean lines, traditional luxury, a marble shower – excellent execution.
Throughout the room, the design seems to be amplified with “vibrant” colors (according to the Kimpton website). I found it to be pretty but a bit distracting. There was no view to speak of, just an office building across the street, but of course, it is a dahn-tahn hotel so I am not sure what more can be expected.
A good hotel, especially one in a business district, should have an adequate desk for work and I prefer one that allows for two laptops. The Kimpton Hotel Monaco Pittsburgh desk ticks that box; good electrical outlets are near the desk.
No one books a hotel room for the TV, though Tru Hotels have massive TVs at the foot of the bed (both because the TVs are large and because the rooms are that small). The TV in this room was pretty small given the distance from the bed. It would also not have been possible to watch TV from any place in the room other than the bed and that too seems like a poor planning choice rather than design. I rarely need an armoire when I stay at a hotel, but I want to be able to view the TV from more than just the bed.
The hotel is home to a pair of ultra-trendy and well-designed restaurants. The Biergarten, an open-air venue on the 9th floor is unfortunately closed for the 2018 season. The Commoner has a great mix of long communal high tables in the bar as well as booths to accommodate most occasions.
As IHG hates their elites, despite 75 nights at the brand to achieve Spire Elite, breakfast is always on your own dime. That’s not on Kimpton but IHG more broadly.
This Kimpton is a perfect example of why IHG made a great purchase when they bought the brand. It’s stylish (even if not exactly my speed), it’s reasonably affordable, and has a great location.
What do you think? Are Kimpton’s style fashion-forward or more kitsch than clever? Have you stayed in this property? What was your experience?