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21c Museum Hotels: A Ranking of My Favorites

21c Museum Hotels: A Ranking of My Favorites

Discover the captivating world of 21c Museum Hotels. Experience the extraordinary blend of luxury and artistry that sets these hotels apart. Immerse yourself in the ever-changing art exhibits, explore historic buildings with a modern twist, and savor the unique ambiance of the restaurant and lobby.

As a devoted fan, I have personally ranked the six 21c Museum Hotels that I have had the pleasure of staying at. Prepare to be enthralled by this one-of-a-kind hospitality experience.


#6 Louisville, KY

Experience the ultimate luxury at Louisville’s 21c Museum Hotel Louisville MGallery, ranked 6th on our exclusive Top 21c Museum Hotels list. Located on Main Street, this repurposed 19th-century warehouse turned hotel is at the heart of Louisville’s vibrant commerce scene.

Indulge in the culinary delights at their stunning eatery, Proof on Main, known for its high ranking in the restaurant world.

Your stay in the spacious luxury king room at 21c Museum Hotel Louisville MGallery offers simplicity and comfort. While the artwork above the bed may not suit everyone’s taste, the cozy corner chair and heavenly bed provide a tranquil retreat. The hotel prides itself on exceptional linens that guarantee a restful sleep.


The entrance to your room features an exposed white brick wall, adding a touch of modern elegance. The bathroom is a standout, boasting a lighted mirror, spacious glass shower, and unique black nightlight that casts a cool, eerie glow.

One of the highlights of this hotel is its extraordinary art collection. Don’t miss the breathtaking 30-foot tall David sculpture by Serkan Özkaya, a magnificent sight just outside the hotel.

Additionally, be sure to catch a glimpse of Ned Kahn’s mesmerizing Cloud Rings piece from the first-floor hallway window, an experience you won’t want to miss.

Fun Fact: The 21c Museum Hotel Louisville MGallery features a super cool room with a completely immersive art experience that you can stay in called Asleep in the Cyclone. I. would love to have seen it. Check it out online and watch your jaw drop!


#5 Cincinnati, OH

Welcome to the 21c Museum MGallery Hotel in Cincinnati, Ohio, where I had an amazing experience. My room, a spacious corner suite adorned with warm tones and tasteful accent pieces, was a true standout. The glass-door fronted closet and sleek curved couch added a contemporary and sophisticated touch to the space.

I was particularly impressed by the simple light fixtures and mirrors in the wet bathroom, featuring beautiful Rookwood Pottery Company tile. Plus, the sectional in the living room was perfect for relaxation.

One thing I really appreciate about 21c Museum Hotels is their attention to detail, providing ample lighting and outlets.


My 699-square-foot hotel room had a fantastic view overlooking Walnut Street and Historic Gano Alley. The location of this hotel is also a major plus, as it is within walking distance of many top attractions.

It’s worth noting that this property has a rich history. Previously known as the 100-year-old Metropole Hotel, it has been transformed into a stunning 156-room boutique hotel with a cozy residential feel.

In addition to its stylish rooms, the hotel offers a range of amenities, including a full-service spa, museum shop, and convenient laundry and valet services.

Last but not least, Cincinnati’s 21c Museum Hotel has received numerous accolades, including being named the #1 Hotel in the Midwest and the #8 Hotel in the US, according to the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards for 2020. That’s something to celebrate!


#4 Bentonville, AR

Discover the charm of Arkansas at the 21c Museum Hotel Bentonville ranking number four on my list. Located in a convenient and vibrant part of town, this hotel is a true gem. Step into the inviting lobby, adorned with incredible artwork that perfectly complements Bentonville’s renowned Crystal Bridges.

Indulge in the luxury of a spacious king room, measuring nearly 400 sq. ft. Furnished with adorable animal pillows, stylish lamps, and comfortable seating, your room is a delightful retreat. Not to mention the retro table and the captivating white Tai-sphere light fixture.


I had the pleasure of experiencing Bentonville as my first 21c Museum Hotel stay. It holds a special place in my heart, especially since it was one of the few hotels I had the privilege of visiting before COVID.

In order to prioritize the safety of their guests and prevent the spread of the virus, 21c Museum Hotels took precautions by temporarily storing away unique trinkets and accessories.


As a testament to its excellence, the 21c Museum Hotel Bentonville was recognized by Condé Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards for four consecutive years (2017-2020), earning the prestigious title of “Top Hotels in the South”.

Join the ranks of satisfied travelers and experience the magic of this exceptional hotel.

#3 Nashville, TN

If you’re looking for the coolest hotel in Nashville, look no further than the 21c Museum Hotel. With 124 guest rooms and suites, this place is a gem. I’ve been to Nashville countless times, but no other hotel room compares to this one.

I stayed on the 8th floor, which you can access with a private VIP elevator. The best part? My room had a rooftop terrace, something I’ve never experienced at any other 21c Hotel. The terrace was absolutely amazing, with breathtaking views and enough space to host a small gathering of about 20 people. It measured 231 square feet and offered panoramic views of Nissan Stadium, Broadway, and Honky Tonk Highway.

Trust me, the sunsets from here are truly magical.


The room itself was average-sized, but it had some fantastic features. I was thrilled to find a Nespresso coffee machine and, of course, the incredible terrace. It had a small table with chairs, lounge chair, and couch, making it the perfect spot to enjoy a glass of wine or have a nice conversation.

But it’s not just about the room. The staff at 21c Museum Hotel Nashville was absolutely top-notch. They went above and beyond to make my stay enjoyable, from assisting with parking and unloading to recommending local restaurants and giving directions. The artwork throughout the hotel was fantastic, with some pieces that were completely new to me.


Overall, I cannot recommend staying at this Nashville beauty enough. Whether you’re visiting for the first time or you’re a frequent visitor to Music City, this is the place to be.

Oh, and here’s a fun fact: the fitness center at the hotel has Peloton bikes. So, you can keep up with your workouts even while traveling.


Pro Tip: Self-parking across the street is nearly half the valet parking price in many other 21c Museum Hotels. 

#2 Oklahoma City, OK

Prepare to be amazed by the fantastic 21c Museum Hotel Oklahoma City rooms, which boast luxury and style. I stayed in the 920-square-foot luxury loft, which had me feeling like I was living in a dream.

With its spacious living room and separate media room, complete with a daybed, you’ll have plenty of space to relax and unwind. And the entertainment center with a massive HDTV? It’s the ultimate treat.


The 21c Museum Hotel OKC bathrooms are as big as a standard hotel room, with a separate dressing area, closet, and a European bath/shower combo that will leave you feeling pampered. And of course, you’ll spot the beloved 21c rubber duck sitting on the stack of washcloths, ready to add a touch of whimsy to your stay.

The bedroom is a true work of art, with incredible pieces adorning the walls and a king bed that will ensure a restful night’s sleep. You’ll also find cool details like a tripod lamp, cozy chair with an ottoman, and a massive picture on the wall that adds a touch of elegance.

These incredible features have not gone unnoticed. The 21c Museum Hotel Oklahoma City has received numerous awards, including the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards from 2017 to 2020, consistently ranking as the top hotel in the Midwest category.


#1 Lexington, KY

Discover why the 21c Museum Hotel Lexington is an absolute favorite amongst visitors. Whether it’s the prime location, friendly staff, or stunning rooms, there’s something about this place that will capture your heart, as it did mine.

Immerse yourself in unparalleled sophistication at the stylish luxury hotel that’s just a short walk away from Lexington’s top attractions. Housed in the historic Fayette National Bank building, this repurposed space adds an extra touch of charm.


Prepare to be amazed by the 427-sq-ft corner king room that I fell in love with. The soaring high ceilings, vibrant lime green couch, and tastefully muted colors that complement the artwork set the stage for a truly luxurious experience.


And let’s not forget about the massive windows that offer breathtaking city views. Thank you to whoever designed the floor-to-ceiling blackout drapery – it made my stay even more special.

The bathroom is equally impressive, boasting an oversized shower with sleek glass doors. The backlit headboard and stylish reading lamps add a touch of elegance to the bed, making it more than just a place to rest.

Plus, the teal-painted entryway that houses the mini-bar, closet, and hotel amenities adds a pop of color to the overall aesthetic.

Here’s a fun fact: The 21c Museum Hotel Lexington has been recognized as one of the “Top Hotels in the South” by Condé Nast Traveler in their Readers’ Choice Awards of 2017, 2019, and 2020.

Join the ranks of those who have experienced the exceptional hospitality and ambiance of this incredible hotel.


I was hosted on these 21C Museum Hotel visits as part of writer FAM trips. All opinions and reviews are 100% mine and unbiased.

All 21c Museum Hotel Offerings

Discover 21c Museum Hotels: Where art and luxury blend seamlessly. Created by Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson, these hotels offer a one-of-a-kind experience that combines contemporary art appreciation with exceptional accommodations and onsite dining.

Unlike cookie-cutter chain hotels, each 21c location is unique, showcasing its own captivating urban renewal journey.


Immerse yourself in the artful atmosphere of boutique-style rooms, complete with modern furnishings, free WiFi, and striking decor. Stay fit and energized with 24-hour state-of-the-art fitness facilities.

Enjoy a movie night on the 42″ HDTV in your room, indulge in luxurious Malin+Goetz toiletries, and wake up to original artwork by Laura Lee Brown.


But that’s not all – the beloved plastic penguins are the stars of the show. Each 21c location has its own special penguin color that pops up throughout the hotel. Witness the whimsical penguin shuffle in action and join the legions of 21c fans who adore this fabulous kitschy art piece.

Teal penguins await you in Nashville, yellow in Cincinnati, red in Louisville, green in Bentonville, blue in Lexington, and purple in Oklahoma City.


21c Museum Hotel Restaurants

Discover the mouthwatering dining experience at 21c Museum Hotel restaurants. With delectable dishes and stunning aesthetics, these onsite restaurants consistently receive rave reviews on Trip Advisor.

From innovative Watermelon and Popcorn (Tasso, feta, avocado, and herbs) at Mary Eddy’s in Oklahoma City, to gourmet fried chicken sandwiches (Alabama white sauce!) at Lockbox in Lexington, and Southern-inspired breakfast skillets at The Hive in Bentonville, each restaurant offers a unique and delightful culinary adventure.


Don’t miss out on the impressive dinner menus and Instagram-worthy cocktails at other 21c Museum Hotel restaurants across the country. Experience the perfect blend of creativity and satisfaction at a hotel that truly knows how to please your taste buds.


21c Hotel’s Sophisticated Art

Experience the captivating world of art at 21c Museum Hotel, where art is always free for everyone, whether you’re a hotel guest or not. The art installations and exhibits constantly change, ensuring a unique experience every time you visit.


Immerse yourself in the works of renowned artists like Kehinde Wiley, whose larger-than-life pieces grace many of the hotels. Discover the beauty and power of modern art as you explore the curated collections.

From paintings and mixed media to stunning sculptures and mesmerizing light shows, 21c’s art displays encompass a wide range of mediums. You may even encounter towering robot-like clocks and breathtaking stained glass creations.

Expect the unexpected as you wander through the galleries, always filled with excitement and joy.


Book Your Getaway Today!

Discover more 21c Hotel locations beyond this post! Chicago, Durham, and Kansas City, Missouri are just a few of the exciting destinations awaiting you. Plus, keep an eye out for upcoming openings in St. Louis, Missouri.

While 21c Museum Hotels have predominantly flourished in the Midwest, they are now expanding to bring their unique charm to other areas. Join in celebrating this exciting growth!

I hope you will enjoy your stay at the 21c Museum Hotels and partake in the incredible visual treats they have in store for you.


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