Summer Vacation for Food-Lovers

Vacation Rentals We Love: A Bold Blue Philadelphia Kitchen

Image Credit: Heidi's Bridge

Vacation Rental: Lokal Hotel, Philadelphia, PA
Sleeps: There are six apartment-style rooms, 3 one-bedrooms and 3 two-bedrooms
Price: Rates start at $195
Why We Wanna Cook Here: We're definitely feeling the bold blue look here.

In the great debate of hotels vs. vacation rentals, I admit that I am torn. And not because I don't have strong opinions — I do! I love both so much! Don't make me pick just one!

If a Hotel & Airbnb Had a Baby, It Would Look Like This

I truly believe that a good hotel is one life's luxuries worth splurging on. A good hotel offers crisp white linens, soft cotton robes, and the ability to have breakfast delivered to you at the touch of a button. It has fun bath products and minibars with local finds and plenty of design inspiration. And that's without even leaving your room!

But a vacation rental has some things going for it too, namely a kitchen and all the conveniences of home. I love being able to make myself a cup of coffee first thing in the morning (no need to pay $17 for a pot from room service or put clothes on and stumble down to the lobby with my hair sticking up) — or to stock the fridge and pantry with some easy snacks for when I don't feel like going out for dinner.

Read more: Why I'll Always Choose Hotels Over Vacation Homes

This is why I'm so besotted with Lokal Hotel in Philadelphia. If a hotel and Airbnb had a baby, it would look like this. On the one hand, it has the nice linens, fancy bath products, and room service (from nearby High Street on Market) that I love in a hotel.

It also has a fully equipped kitchen (no need to bring your coffeemaker!), complete with induction stovetop, convection oven, dishwasher, and a full-size fridge. It's stocked with local coffee, looseleaf tea, olive oil and vinegar, salt and pepper, and a whole slew of other spices.

Who Should Go (and When)

I'm someone who loves traveling solo and I can think of no better pied-à-terre than this. That said, I could also see this as a suitable love nest for two or even as a haven for families. As for when, Philadelphia pleases any time of year, but my money is on late spring or early fall when you can comfortably take in the city by foot or bike.

What We'd Cook Here

Confession: I did not cook anything here (unless you count coffee and tea). During my three-day trip, I ate donuts every day for breakfast, fried chicken for lunch, and pizza for dinner (in the name of research, I swear!). In fact, one of my favorite features of this apartment-hotel is that you can walk about 10 to 15 minutes in any direction and you'll find a Federal Donuts. You'll want to try all the donuts, and a few different fried chicken options as well. I can personally recommend the za'atar fried chicken.

Read more: The 5 Best Pizza Places in Philly, According to a Local

But if you are not on a mission to eat all the donuts, fried chicken, and pizza in Philadelphia, this kitchen is definitely made for cooking. For starters, I'd definitely take advantage of the well-stocked bar cart (see below for more details) and mix up a cocktail; my go-to is an Old Fashioned. And naturally you'll want some bar snacks to go with; I recommend these irresistible cashew clusters.

Another Thing We Love

The guide to all the best things to do (and eat!) in Philadelphia is a thoughtful touch. It's comprehensive in its scope, but selective in its picks, which is exactly what I want when starting out in a new city. You won't be steered wrong if you follow this helpful manual.

What to Instagram

Designed by Jersey Ice Cream Co., the entire apartment is an Instagrammer's dream come true. The blue kitchen is obviously Insta-worthy, as is the bar cart, curated by nearby store Art in the Age with small-batch bitters and syrups, plus copper bar tools.

Book Your Stay: Lokal Hotel, from $195 per night

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