Sometimes, the hotel is part of the adventure. During our Louisville vacation, we seized the opportunity to stay at the Seelbach Hilton which quickly brought us back to 1900's splendor. Brothers and German immigrants Otto and Louis Seelbach envisioned a hotel transporting the grandeur of European hotels to America. They were able to capture this magnificence by importing the finest marbles, bronzes, textiles and hardwoods from Europe and the West Indies. The hotel opened with a 5-hour public inspection in 1905 that drew an incredible crowd of 25,000 people.
The lobby staircase definitely creates a sense of awe and you can just imagine the many notables that have stayed at the hotel glided up and down the stairs. Of particular note is visitor F. Scott Fitzgerald's fondness of the hotel and his inclusion of it as a setting in The Great Gatsby. The hotel was later featured in the 2013 film as well. Al Capone also favored the Seelbach and reportedly crept out through hidden stairways and tunnels when the police came to break up a clandestine poker game.
We had fun taking a little time to explore the hotel. How often do you get to feel a little bit like royalty?
The Rathskeller in the basement is quite a sight to behold. The Rathskeller, which refers to a bar in a council house basement in English, is decorated with Rookwood pottery. Rookwood pottery is unique in that the designs are drawn on the clay before it is fired. The Rathskeller is the only intact room of this kind in the world. An interesting yet slightly creepy room to walk around!
The Seelbach is home to the award winning Oak Room Restaurant which is Kentucky's only AAA 5 Diamond Restaurant. If you are able to sneak away for a weekend without the kids, this may be one you want to try! We did check out the lobby outside of the Oak Room which featured lovely wood walls and a rich atmosphere. My photo does not do it justice!
Besides the charm, we enjoyed that the Seelbach was close to many Louisville attractions including the Waterfront, the Louisville Slugger Museum, the Frazier History Museum and more. We found the hotel to be quiet and it provided quite a comfortable rest!
We did stay on the Executive Level which was quite a treat! In the evening, we benefited from a cocktail hour that had an impressive spread of appetizers and later on a few sweet treats. Great for the whole family! Plus, parents could easily enjoy a tasty beverage for $2 which is much more affordable than anywhere you would be eating out. In the morning, we had a considerable breakfast spread which included a lot of fruit options which made me very happy! An easy way to balance out the splurging while on vacation! We loved our stay at the Seelbach and would love to return!