Famous for its fried chicken, signature baseball bats, and bourbon, Louisville, Kentucky, is a vibrant city on the banks of the Ohio River. But with so many incredible neighborhoods and hotels, choosing where to stay in Louisville, KY, can be a challenge.
Take a journey through Louisville’s hottest districts and vibrant accommodations scene. From the sprawling lawns of Victorian mansions in Old Louisville to the glass towers of a five-star boutique residence on Whiskey Row, the best hotels in Louisville offers world-class examples of wanderlust-worthy stays.
Ready to book your lodgings for your Louisville trip? Narrow your search with this complete guide to the best places to stay in Louisville, KY, including the ideal areas, neighborhoods, and hotels for travelers.
Best places to stay in Louisville, KY
As Kentucky’s largest city, Louisville is jam-packed with interesting areas and neighborhoods to base yourself on your vacation.
Louisville has a superb selection of luxury boutique hotels and trusted hotel chains, mostly dispersed between the Downtown Louisville, Whiskey Row, and East Market District (NuLu) neighborhoods. In these central areas, you’ll also find the highest concentration of attractions, restaurants, and shops, giving them a more spirited personality.
For travelers seeking a more personalized experience, booking a bed & breakfast in Old Louisville or a vacation rental in The Highlands might be better suited for your vacation plans. In these less central areas, you’ll be treated to quieter streets and a more laid-back atmosphere.
The best areas to stay in Louisville, KY, are:
✓ The best area to stay in Louisville for nightlife and top attractions
As you’d expect with its central location, Downtown Louisville is home to the city’s top restaurants, shopping, and entertainment venues. If you want to be at the center of all the action, you’ll definitely want to consider staying downtown—even if it comes at a bit of a premium.
From museums and distillery-hopping to walking along the iconic Big Four Bridge as it illuminates in the night, there’s plenty to keep you busy in Downtown Louisville. Many of the most popular things to do in Louisville—like the Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts and the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory—call the downtown area home.
There’s a wide range of hotels in Downtown Louisville to suit every style and budget, from suite-style accommodations under international hotel umbrellas to high-luxury boutique hotels.
Food is at the center of the Embassy Suites Louisville Downtown experience. A cook-to-order breakfast and evening reception with snacks and drinks are included in your reservation. If you ask for your breakfast to go, the kitchen will even gladly put together a picnic-style bundle for you. Don’t feel like hunting around town for a hip dinner spot? A meal from the hotel’s in-house surf & turf restaurant always hits the spot!
Looking for a central hotel that’s both affordable and reliable? The Homewood Suites By Hilton offers all the amenities you need with a Hilton guarantee, plus a few extras. Enjoy a swim in the indoor pool, challenge your family to a game at the billiards table, or unwind in the courtyard lounge with stone pillars and firepits—the possibilities are endless! You’ll also enjoy an American breakfast buffet when you wake up each morning. Finding accessible hotels in the city can be tough, but this hotel has multiple accessible suites, common spaces, and pool entry.
The Grady Hotel has a prevalent old-world vibe, with twinkling chandeliers, tropical plants, dark woods, and leather armchairs abound. They even have museum-quality historical artifacts and original artworks on display. For all the bookworms, this boutique hotel has multiple designated reading spaces with tall, lit library shelves, and velvet-clad bench seating. Don’t forget to stop at the Wild Swann, the snazzy hotel’s cocktail lounge, for a nightcap after your favorite literary character breaks your heart.
The 21c Museum Hotel Louisville is equal parts boutique hotel and gallery. With avant-garde art installations around every corner and an eclectic farm-to-table restaurant (with over 120 whiskeys behind the bar), this place oozes quirky personality. Need to get a workout in? The hotel’s fitness room is eye-popping with exposed stone walls, making maintaining your gym routine an inspiring experience.
A night at the Omni Louisville Hotel is a universally grand experience that’ll have you feeling as if you’re living the high life. During the day, you can treat yourself at the Mokara Spa and Salon or catch some rays in a luxury sunbed by the rooftop pool. When the sun sets, head down to the speakeasy-style bar, dishing out a cool prohibition-era vibe and secret bowling lanes!
✓ The ideal neighbourhood in Louisville for Bourbon connoisseurs
Another gem on the outskirts of Downtown Louisville, Whiskey Row, located along West Main Street, has a lot going for it. The Whiskey Row neighborhood is aptly named for its high concentration of Kentucky Bourbon distillers, including Old Forester Distilling Co.
Whiskey lovers will definitely want to focus their time on Whiskey Row’s distilling scene. But tasting bourbon whiskey isn’t the only thing to do in the area. In & around the neighborhood, you’ll also find some of the city’s hippest nightlife venues, the Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory, and the Muhammad Ali Center.
Whiskey Row has a fairly even mix of apartment rentals and boutique hotels for the ultimate urban experience.
Treat yourself to a white brick industrial apartment on West Main Street’s Museum Row. These loft rentals are expertly designed to give you the full city experience. The minimal but well-curated desk space, set against the window with views of the streets below, is particularly well-loved by previous guests. The lofts are a great choice for business travelers, especially those planning to stick around Louisville for a longer stretch of time.
The Aloft Louisville Downtown has a gorgeous indoor/outdoor lobby bar and patio space, plus a 24-hour refueling station for coffee, grab-and-go snacks, and simple meals. Do you consider yourself a coffee snob? Not to worry: This hotel has all your java needs (and high standards) taken care of with bottled cold brew and nitro brew on tap.
Looking to party hard on your Louisville vacation? The Moxy is always is hit, from bachelorettes and girls’ getaways to co-ed spring breaks. Undeniably fun with neon lights, glass walls, and leather accents, the after-dark nightlife scene turns into something more classy and sophisticated when the sun comes up. This boutique hotel has all the entertainment you could ever need right onsite with photo booth areas, “Zombie Taco,” a hub for late-night eats, a games room, and a bar for happy hour libations.
Located at the heart of “Whiskey Row,” Hotel Distil, Autograph Collection, is, as its name suggests, all about the distillery vibes. Whiskey lovers can request an in-room bourbon cart with a premium tasting of 10 whiskies curated just for you. If you happen to make a reservation at the hotel’s steakhouse, be sure to request the private dining barrel room. Even visiting pets are treated like royalty, with their very own bourbon-barrel doggy beds, hotel-branded chew toys, and custom treat boxes.
East Market District (NuLu)
✓ Recommended district in Louisville for art lovers and foodies
Foodies and art lovers alike agree that East Market District (NuLu) is the coolest up-and-coming neighborhood in Louisville. From renowned restaurants to posh contemporary art galleries, this district to the east of downtown holds urban sophistication at its core.
Throughout the year, NuLu is home to dozens of live musical performances, artisan markets, and festivals. Besides this never-ending rotation of fun events, you can also turn up the heat as the night stretches on by hopping between the city’s most innovative craft cocktail lounges.
If you want an apartment-style suite owned and operated by a hotel chain, then East Market District is a great choice. Here, you’ll have all the freedom of a vacation rental without sacrificing style or safety. As you’ll still be close to the city’s major highways, NuLu is also the perfect neighborhood for launching into some popular Louisville day trips like Lexington or Frankfort.
Every unit at the FRONTDESK NuLu Apts Louisville has two bedrooms, a private balcony, high ceilings, and trendy decor. The apartments are within walking distance of Louisville’s top attractions, dining, and nightlife, making it the perfect home base for travelers who want to see & do it all.
Whether you’re looking for a little extra living space or a budget-friendly hotel that’ll deliver great value, the Home2 Suites by Hilton Louisville Downtown NuLu will serve you well. Brought to you by one of the the world’s favorite hotel chains, this accommodation option includes a continental breakfast and extra amenities like an indoor pool, plus a splash of color and a kitchenette in every unit.
Looking for photogenic lodgings that’ll give your social media feeds a boost? Hancock House offers tall arched windows with city views and has been newly outfitted, head-to-toe, with stylish furniture. This suite-style boutique hotel is a relic from 1865, when it opened as the neighborhood’s original local grocer. Worried about safety? The building and each room have a code-protected entry for an additional layer of security.
For visitors who like to keep it simple yet still travel in style, the AC Hotel by Marriott Louisville Downtown is a fabulous option. Boasting a modern minimalist design, tapas-style breakfast with a Spanish flair, and a spacious fitness center, you simply can’t go wrong at this superb NuLu accommodation option.
✓ Top Louisville neighborhood for history buffs.
Want to experience the vintage charm of Kentucky’s biggest city? Old Louisville is where you’ll find the highest concentration of original architecture, Victorian influence, and historic landmarks around the city.
Although Old Louisville has a more laid-back vibe than other neighborhoods, it doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do here. Fun attractions like the Speed Art Museum and Central Park are just the beginning of what this neighborhood offers.
Old Louisville is an area with a rich history—and its streets show this off in spades. To up the ante, treat yourself to a night in one of the area’s lavish Victorian mansions; the neighborhood is known for its lovely bed & breakfasts and slower pace of life.
You can spot this spirited boutique hotel from a mile away with its colorful facade of hot pink and orange. The entire hotel has a decidedly moody atmosphere with everything from black leather to LED-lit rainfall showers. Plus, the Vu Guesthouse’s lobby bar is a pretty cool place to hang out, serving coffee by day and cocktails by night.
Dating back to 1879, the historic Dupont Mansion Bed & Breakfast is chalked full of ornate, antique furnishings and Italian influence. Guests rave about the full gourmet breakfast spread, accentuated by sweet treats, so be sure to hang around in the mornings.
Booking a romantic couple’s getaway? Add a dash of romance to your vacation with a package that includes an in-suite couple’s massage, breakfast in bed, roses, champagne, chocolate-covered strawberries, and a candlelit dinner for two at one of the historic district’s finest restaurants.
Directly across from its namesake park, the Central Park Bed & Breakfast provides an opportunity for travelers to fully immerse themselves in the historic neighborhood. Fully decked out in authentic Victorian period decor, this guesthouse is filled with floral wallpapers, fine china teacups, carved oak furnishings, velvet couches, and even a few canopied beds. Your reservation comes with a 3-course breakfast by the fireplace or on the veranda based on the season; be sure to come with an appetite!
✓ Top place to stay in Louisville for large groups and young families
The Highlands is a wonderful area for those who like to travel at a slower pace. Quaint, family-owned businesses from bookshops to bakeries are tucked into every nook and cranny of the neighborhood. The Highlands is among the greenest Louisville districts, with plenty of wide open spaces to enjoy.
The Highlands area has a solid handful of urban parks and arboretums, plus incredible cafes and the Baxter Avenue Theater for those who need a rainy-day activity on standby. Traveling with kids? Be sure to check out the Louisville Zoo, one of the city’s most family-friendly must-sees.
As it’s largely a residential area, the accommodations scene in The Highlands is mostly made up of vacation rentals: either apartments or full houses. Whether you’re traveling with a large group and want to share a space or would like to be able to cook your own meals, this is a great way to give yourself extra flexibility and save some money.
With room to sleep six, the Louisville Home with Hot Tub in The Highland offers you cozy, modern decor and a relaxing front porch swing. Looking for something to do after dark? Curl up with a flick in the finished basement, or soak under the stars in your very own hot tub.
This cutie box bungalow has large windows to let in the natural light, exposed brick, and a large backyard with patio space and a BBQ. Don’t be fooled by its little exterior: Louisville Gem with Yard sleeps 12 with three bedrooms and a whole lotta bunk beds, making it a great choice for friends’ trips or multi-family stays. The grand feature? The skeeball and vintage Pacman machines in the living room.
Need something to accommodate a single family? The Lux townhouse sleeps eight between two bedrooms and comes with a stocked kitchen and ensuite laundry, so you’ll have all the perks of home at your fingertips. It’s also pet-friendly if you’re thinking about bringing Fido along. Feeling peckish but don’t feel like cooking? Not to worry: One of Lousiville’s premier taquerias, Taco Luchador, is just around the corner.