One thing I love about Pittsburgh's hotel scene is that it seems like the best years are still to come thanks to the boom of new hotels opening in the city. One of the newest on the scene, Embassy Suites Downtown Pittsburgh, recently opened in early 2016. We decided to pay a visit to this one just a few weeks after it opened to see if it would be worth your time when visiting the city.
What are the Rooms Like at Embassy Suites Downtown Pittsburgh?
Each room at Embassy Suites Pittsburgh is, as the name suggests, a suite. The rooms consist of a generously sized living room, moderately sized bedroom with king-sized bed, and a large bathroom that would put many one-bedroom condos in downtown Pittsburgh to shame.
Overall, the rooms are quite comfortable and if you get a room with a good view (see our room guide below for more) you can easily spend all day relaxing here and taking it all in (or if you're like me, taking photos).
After going through our standard checklist of things we look for in hotel rooms, the only negatives we could find were that the bed is on the firmer side of things and the complimentary internet for HHonors members is incredibly slow. Sadly, this is the case at just about any Hilton property we've ever been to.
It is worth pointing out, however, that although you are in a centrally located hotel downtown, our room did not pick up any city noise that would have bothered us in the middle of the night. Throw in the blackout curtains on all the windows and overall we slept pretty well during our stay (although we did have to cover the overly bright clock that lit up the pitch black room).
What Can You See from the Rooms?
In my opinion, if you are booking a room in a downtown location in any city, you're going to want a room with a view. As Pittsburgh's skyline is one of the best around (not that we're biased at all), this is especially true here.
Luckily, Embassy Suites Downtown Pittsburgh has great views in the vast majority of its rooms thanks to its location on the top floors of the Oliver Building. To give you a better idea of what you may be able to see from your room, we wanted to break down the views by room number below. (Keep in mind this is our best estimate judging from the views from the lobby on the 25th floor.)
The naming convention of the rooms here is floor number + room number, so 2220 would be Floor 22, Room 20 (this is the one we stayed in and views from are featured in this post). The 22nd floor follows the numbering structure illustrated in the drawing below, which is likely the same for all floors.
The rooms have the following views:
- 1, 2, 3, 7, 8 19, 20: Facing west. Views of PPG Place, PNC Tower, partial views of PNC Park on the upper floors (22nd, 23rd, and 24th floor), the Rachel Carson Bridge, and limited views of the Roberto Clemente Bridge. Rooms 7 and 8 on the 24th floor should have incredible views of PNC Park (judging by the views on the 25th floor) and would be our preferred choice if we stayed again. Rooms 19 and 20 on all floors have the best views of PPG Place and the Duquesne Incline.
- 8, 9, 10, 11: Facing north. Views of PNC Park, the Allegheny River, several bridges, the Gulf Tower (with the color-coded weather beacon), and the Koppers Building.
- 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16: Facing east. Views of BNY Mellon, UPMC Building, and Gulf Tower. Not a bad view, but not as interesting as those facing west.
- 16, 17, 18, 19: Facing south. Views of Mount Washington, the Monongahela Incline, PPG Place, and PNC Tower.
- 4, 5, 6, 21, 22, 23: Obstructed views. These rooms are internal on the “E” shape and have limited views out. You may see some of the skyline, but the views may not be as good as other rooms.
Ollie's Gastropub for Cocktails and Pub Fare
The hotel has two restaurants that you are able to visit during your stay. The first is Elevation, a fine-dining restaurant with up-scale American fare ($15-$35 per plate) as well as Ollie's Gastropub serving cocktails and a selection of pub fare sandwiches.
We decided to visit Ollie's during our stay in order to be able to try a few more cocktails, and we are glad we did. Many of the craft cocktails at Ollie's were designed in-house by their team and are among some of the best hotel bar cocktails that we've had in the city. (So much so that we plan to go back in the future just to drink.)
During our stay we tried three cocktails including the Sidecar (using Tuaca as the base spirit an an incredible house made vanilla simple syrup), Mesabi (a unique cocktail to the bar made with gin, green chartreuse, and burnt rosemary- which is set on fire right in front of you) and a New Fashioned (made with Maker's Mark, Pear, Luxardo Cherry, and Black Walnut Bitters- the only miss of the night and felt somewhat watered down from the ice).
The food at Ollie's was basic pub fare, and if we're going to be honest when you're staying at a hotel in downtown Pittsburgh you should take in some local restaurants within walking distance instead. Try tako and Butcher and the Rye which are all within walking distance but require reservations quite far in advance (a month or more on weekends). Other good options can be found on our Pittsburgh map. After a nice dinner out, be sure to check out Ollie's for a nightcap Sidecar or Mesabi- you won't be disappointed.
Insider Secret: Ollie's Gastropub also has a few windows that can see home plate of PNC Park, making this a great spot to spend a night during a home Pirates game if you do not have tickets.
Other Hotel Amenities
The hotel also includes several amenities such as a fitness center (facing north), salt water pool (which was a bit cold when we took a swim), complimentary breakfast with made-to-order omelets and many staples served buffet style, and an evening cocktail reception with free beer, wine, well cocktails, and a daily special (sangria during our visit).
The hotel offers valet parking with in-and-out privileges at $32 per night plus tax. The Oliver Street parking garage is $19/night on weeknights and $5/night on Saturday and Sunday (the best downtown weekend rate we know of) but does not have in-and-out privileges. As such, depending on your plans and travel dates the valet service may be a good option.
Overall, Embassy Suites Downtown Pittsburgh is a great addition to this city's hotel scene, and we're looking forward to visiting again both to stay as well as to order more incredible drinks from Ollie's.
To book your stay at Embassy Suites Downtown Pittsburgh, please click here. By booking through our links we'll receive a small commission. If you found this review helpful and would like to support our site during your visit, we'd greatly appreciate it.
Embassy Suites Downtown Pittsburgh is located on the upper floors of the Oliver Building on 535 Smithfield Street.
Disclosure: We paid for our stay out of pocket and were not requested to write this review. As always, all opinions are our own.
Looking for more downtown Pittsburgh hotels? Check out the DoubleTree Downtown Pittsburgh or Homewood Suites Downtown Pittsburgh! Or, for more Pittsburgh hotels in other neighborhoods, click the previous link!