AAA Four-Diamond Downtown Hotel Dating to the 19th Century
Back when it was built in 1882, The Cincinnatian Hotel—then known as the Palace Hotel—was the tallest building in the city. Today, it’s dwarfed in size by many of the downtown skyscrapers that have sprung up around it. But as Fodor’s notes, “it's not the largest hotel in Cincinnati, but it is the best.” The Cincinnatian, now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, retains some of its original features, including the marble-and-walnut grand staircase that swoops over the lobby.
Though its architects couldn’t have predicted it 130 years ago, the Cincinnatian’s location turned out to be a pretty convenient one downtown—guests are within easy reach of the city’s top attractions. The Contemporary Arts Center, the Cincinnati Bengals’ stadium, and the Aronoff Center for the Arts are all less than 1 mile away. There’s a free London cab service available through the hotel, too, which will take guests to any downtown location. A concierge is on hand to assist with purchasing tickets and making reservations.
The Palace Restaurant, the onsite fine-dining eatery, serves an eclectic mix of contemporary American cuisine for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The hotel’s other restaurant, The Cricket Lounge, specializes in lighter fare and plays host to weekend jazz-trio performances.
Cincinnati: Dynamic Riverside City with Historical Breweries and Victorian Architecture
Cincinnati is positioned in the southwest corner of Ohio near the Kentucky border, along the banks of the Ohio River. The port city grew rapidly in the early 19th century, when it was crowded with steamboats and riverboats; today, it's still possible to ride an old-fashioned riverboat to scope out the downtown skyline.
It can feel like you're walking underwater in certain parts of Newport Aquarium—many of its exhibits have transparent floors and underground tunnels that give you up-close views of tropical fish and sea creatures.
A block from the hotel, Fountain Square sits in the nucleus of Cincinnati's cultural attractions. The fountain is turned off when temperatures drop below freezing, but you can lace up a pair of ice skates and glide around its outdoor rink. Nearby, you'll find The Banks, a collection of both upscale restaurants with extensive wine lists and sports bars filled with TVs. It's also worthwhile to visit one of Cincinnati’s many chili parlors to try out the famous local recipe, a sauce-like version that typically includes seasonings such as cinnamon and cloves.
Take a five-minute drive or cab ride north of downtown and you'll find Over-the-Rhine, a quiet neighborhood reminiscent of a charming European village. The streets are lined with Italianate buildings and several historical breweries, as well as Findlay Market, a public bazaar open year-round. Vendors here set up shop both outside and inside to sell fresh flowers and international foods.
Read the Fine Print for important info on travel dates and other restrictions.