The Rittenhouse has long stood out as one of Philadel-phia’s finest hotels, centrally located in one of the city’s poshest neighborhoods. Needless to say, I knew I was in for an afternoon of luxurious pampering when I hopped in my car and headed down I-95 from my suburban home to the heart of the City of Brotherly Love. As I drove through the seemingly endless roadwork on the highway, I realized just how long it had been since I’d driven this once-familiar route into the city as a result of the pandemic. Of course I was eager for the relaxation and bliss that was in my future, but it was also a welcome feeling to head back into Philadelphia for a moment of normalcy.
The Rittenhouse sits directly on Rittenhouse Square, one of the five original squares planned by Philadelphia’s founder, William Penn. Surrounded by high-rise luxury buildings, fine-dining restaurants and high-end shopping, the tree-filled square attracts Philadelphians and tourists of all ages to enjoy an oasis in the city. Named for astronomer and clockmaker David Rittenhouse, the square’s walkways run diagonally, beginning at the park’s four corners and meeting at a central oval. Much like the city overall, Rittenhouse Square is also chock-full of art, with noteworthy outdoor sculptures including Antoine-Louis Barye’s Lion Crushing a Serpent and Paul Manship’s 1911 Duck Girl.
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