Experience the Best Unique & Boutique Hotels in Kentucky

Photo courtesy Historic Boone Tavern, Berea

Join luxury lifestyles writer Kim Kerr as she embarks on a tour of the best unique and boutique hotels in Kentucky.

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A state that’s revered for its rich history, its distilleries, and its deep connection to thoroughbred horse racing, Kentucky has also made a name for itself in the hospitality trade, too. Dotted across the state, the best boutique hotels in Kentucky offer travellers a more intimate and personalized accommodation experience guaranteed to make you feel right at home.

Each and every one of these unique establishments has a fascinating story to tell. Often set in meticulously restored historic buildings, they blend the state’s rich heritage with modern sophistication creating spaces that are both nostalgic and refreshingly new at the same time.

Whether you’re looking to explore bustling cities like Louisville or Lexington or prefer a more relaxed country ambiance, Kentucky’s boutique hotels promise a stay that’s as memorable as the adventures you’ll embark on. Join us as we explore a handful of our favorite boutique hotels in Kentucky for ideas and inspiration.


The Best Unique & Boutique Hotels in Kentucky


Historic Boone Tavern, Berea

Its location in the heart of one of the pretties small towns in Kentucky certainly hasn’t hurt the Historic Boone Tavern’s reputation. Au contraire. In fact, its being located in the remarkably picturesque town of Berea has only added to this iconic hotel’s reputation.

Named in honor of the famed American pioneer and explorer, the legendary Daniel Boone, the tavern was built in 1909 with help from students from the acclaimed Berea College, who made the bricks needed for the construction project. Initially built to cater to guests visiting the institution, the tavern has been intertwined with Berea College ever since, and now serves as a teaching hotel for students, offering hands-on experience in the hospitality industry.

Now over a century old, its walls have seen countless equally famous visitors come and go, among them Henry Ford, President Calvin Coolidge, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Maya Angelou, to name but a few. Now popular with curious travellers here to explore the town as well as the lovely surrounding countryside, the hotel recently underwent a multi-million-dollar renovation that’s made an already good thing even better.

Each of the hotel’s rooms is thoughtfully curated, blending timeless elegance with contemporary comforts. Handcrafted wooden furniture and artwork are a nod to Berea’s arts and crafts heritage, while top-quality fabrics and linens are used throughout. If you can, opt for one of the tavern’s specialty suites. These roomy units offer extra living space along with lovely views over the picturesque college square, while the in-room fireplaces in select suites provide a cozy ambiance.

The dining experience at Boone Tavern is top-notch, too, with dishes inspired by age-old recipes and made from locally sourced ingredients. The signature spoonbread, a delicate, fluffy cornmeal dish, is a must-try.

Riley Recommends: For the latest reviews as well as rates and reservations, visit Historic Boone Tavern.


The Grady Hotel, Louisville

Located in the heart of downtown Louisville, The Grady Hotel has undergone meticulous restorations. The end result? Undoubtedly one of the best boutique hotels in Kentucky, this fine luxury hotel is a pleasing mix of classic historical architecture with a contemporary design that manages to honor its rich historic heritage.

Housed in a stunning 19th-century building on historic West Main Street in downtown Louisville, the Grady features chic décor throughout its rooms and public spaces. Highlights include the various art installations dotted around the hotel, as well as bucketloads of charm. Notable amenities include a gourmet dining restaurant and an on-site bar serving artisanal cocktails with a contemporary twist, as well as concierge services.

Ready for bed? Plush bedding, state-of-the-art technology, and curated minibars are standard, while your suite’s spacious bathrooms boast high-end fixtures and bespoke toiletries. The Grady’s central location is also a plus. You’ll find yourself just steps away from landmarks including the Kentucky Center or the Performing Arts and the Muhamad Ali Center.

Riley Recommends: For the latest reviews as well as rates and reservations, visit The Grady Hotel.


Grand Victorian Inn, Park City

Located in Park City in southern Kentucky, the Grand Victorian Inn was built in the 1860s and continues to be one of the most popular historic hotels in Kentucky. Featuring stunning Victorian architecture and timeless charm, this adults-only inn offers bed and breakfast-style getaways in a former railway hotel that once catered to passengers from the old L&N Turnpike, and which still serves as a base for those wanting to explore Mammoth Cave National Park.

Highlights of a stay include the antique-laden public spaces with their original wooden floors and pleasing décor. And with just 11 rooms (and no kids!), it’s always quiet, so a good night’s sleep is guaranteed.

We particularly enjoy the hotel’s personalized service and friendly staff, as well as the first-rate food and drink options at the in-house restaurant. In addition to delectable dinner dishes prepared with a touch of Southern flair, you should also sample the sumptuous breakfast included with your stay.

Riley Recommends: For the latest reviews as well as rates and reservations, visit Grand Victorian Inn.


The Kentucky Grand Hotel & Spa, Bowling Green

Located in the popular tourist destination of Bowling Green, The Kentucky Grand Hotel & Spa is centrally located close to the city’s top attractions. One of the newest boutique hotels in Kentucky, The Grand – also known as the KY Grand – features a number of meticulously designed suites featuring rich textures, opulent furnishings, and state-of-the-art amenities.

The hotel’s attention to detail is evident not just in the room’s décor but also in the personalized services that cater to the unique needs of every guest. Be sure to book a treatment or two at the spa; they offer a mix of traditional massages and contemporary therapies guaranteed to rejuvenate.

One of the hotel’s standout features is its rooftop venue. Offering great views of Bowling Green, it’s an ideal spot to sip on a cocktail as the sun sets.

Riley Recommends: For the latest reviews as well as rates and reservations, visit The Kentucky Grand Hotel & Spa.


1895 Washington Hotel & Spa, Paducah

The 1895 Washington Hotel & Spa in Paducah is a great choice for those wanting to explore southwestern Kentucky in style. As its name suggests, this charming hotel encapsulates the elegance and charm of the late 19th century yet manages to combine this sense of history with a dash of contemporary luxury.

Highlights include intricate original woodwork, high ceilings, and large windows, with every nook and cranny beckoning you to relax and enjoy. Airy, spacious rooms feature ornate chandeliers and vintage furnishings with quality, comfortable beds and linens.

You’ll want to book a session at the hotel’s spa which offers a range of relaxing treatments.    

Riley Recommends: For the latest reviews as well as rates and reservations, visit The 1895 Washington Hotel & Spa.


The Stanford Inn at Wilderness Road, Stanford

Named after the town in which it’s set, The Stanford Inn at Wilderness Road is certainly one of the most unique places to stay in Kentucky. More a collection of centrally located historic properties than a single destination, you’ll find yourself facing two choices when it comes to accommodations.

While small, the hotel’s eight charming “tiny rooms” are located on the second floor of the old St Asaph Hotel and look as they would have done in the hotel’s heyday in the 1920s. Featuring queen beds and private baths with Plainview Farm toiletries, they also come with luxury bedding, flat-screen TVs, blackout shades, and Wi-Fi.

Our favorite accommodations are the inn’s unique guesthouses. Authentically restored, these charming cottages and homes are named after legendary Kentucky pioneers including Daniel Boone. Complete with quaint front porches, they’re spread about town and provide everything needed for a great vacation.

Great dining is available at the exquisite Bluebird restaurant located next door to the inn’s Main Street location and features authentic Southern cuisine using fresh, locally sourced ingredients.

To learn more, visit this exquisite property’s website at  wildernessroadguest.com.


Mustard Seed Hill, Millersburg

Set in the quaint small town of Millersburg, Mustard Seed Hill offers a memorable accommodations experience just 30 30-minute drive northeast of Lexington. Originally home to the Millersburg Military Institute, this sprawling property boasts a number of stately structures that have been beautifully restored, and which serve as event and function spaces.

The stunning Allen House, a grand Georgian Revival building at the heart of the campus, was built in 1852 and boasts impressive columns and ornate woodwork. Now a National Historic Landmark, the building’s good looks are only matched by its meticulously landscaped grounds, providing an idyllic backdrop for events and photo sessions.

Four buildings on-site have been transformed into opulent vacation rentals available for those wanting to stay on-site. Bookable through Airbnb, you can find out more here.




Kim Kerr is a Contributor to RileyMag.com and its subsidiary luxury lifestyle websites, including LuxuryKentucky. And yes, she loves bourbon and fried green tomatoes.

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