Don't have the heart to leave the furry members of your family at home? You don't need to. Make vacations all the better by bringing your pets with you—the following are our favorite stops for lodging with our animal companions; some make it even better by giving back.
A Giant in the Pet-Friendly Game
Known for its flexible, free-of-fees policy, Kimpton Hotels employs Directors of Pet Relations to make sure all members of your family get the most from their stay.
It all started with a mini collie named Chianti, named after founder Bill Kimpton's favorite wine. According to Nick Gregory, Kimpton's senior vice president of hotel operations, Chianti and Kimpton were regulars at the hotel group's first property, the Clarion Bedford Hotel in San Francisco, California, in 1981. Kimpton knew that pet companions helped alleviate the stress of travel and brought a sense of comfort to guests who wanted a reminder of home. Thus, the pet-friendly policy and Director of Pet Relations were born.
Today, Kimpton's stunning property list includes 64 boutique hotels in 33 cities, all committed to the generous policy.
"It's important (to have a generous pet policy) because you're not 'pet-friendly' if you're charging a fee or are too restrictive," said Gregory. "We know that traveling with pets matters to our guests and brings a sense of joy to the travel experience."
While the Directors of Pet Relations change throughout the year, one well-established director is Charley at the Kimpton Onyx Hotel in Boston, Massachusetts, a 5-year-old lemon and white beagle with her own personal email— firstname.lastname@example.org—so human guests can email specific dog requests before their stay. But no matter what city you're in, Gregory suggests consulting the Kimpton concierges for questions on all things pet-related.
Pets that have stayed at Kimpton Hotels have ranged from a baby kangaroo, macaws and pedigreed pups taking part in the famed Westminster dog show.
Hotels That Give Back
Aloft Asheville Downtown
Want a more secure place to walk your precious pup than a dog park? Among the amenities that Aloft offers is a rooftop puppy path with artificial turf. Pets stay for free, and at check in receive treats, a plush bed, pet food and water bowls. And they can even make a new friend. The hotel partners with Charlie's Angels Animal Rescue to find homes for foster dogs; guests will find an adoptable dog in the lobby daily. Check its Facebook page to meet its most current adoptable pup.
Park Hyatt Chicago
Do good by simply bringing your canine companion with you. To get the word out about homeless pets, the property has partnered with PAWS (Pets Are Worth Saving), Chicago's largest no-kill animal shelter; the Park Hyatt donates 100 percent of the proceeds from its pet fee to the cause. In addition, guests can meet Parker, a 5-year-old pug with special needs and former homeless pet, who loves to sleep behind the front desk and in the NoMI Garden. Guests are encouraged to take photos with Parker, now a permanent member of the Park Hyatt family, and share their experiences on social media (#BarkHyattChicago).
"We are proud to offer a home to one of Chicago's deserving dogs," said Walter Brindell, general manager of the Park Hyatt Chicago. "Parker has become a very special member of our family here, and we are honored to further support the efforts of PAWS in our community."
Upon check in, housekeeping delivers a pet bed, dog bowl with water and treats to your room. There's a 50-pound weight restriction for dogs; fees are $100 for six nights or less and an additional $100 for stays of seven to 30 nights.
Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch
At this posh family-friendly resort, the four-legged members of your family receive the same perks as their two-legged companions—and maybe more so. Inspired by the resort's canine ambassador, Bachelor, "Bachelor's Pack" includes all-natural pet food, treats, toys, overstuffed dog beds, bath treatments and in-room doggy massages from the Bachelor Gulch Spa. You'll also receive a directory of pet-friendly dining spots and hiking trails for some outdoor fun.
All members of the family will enjoy hanging out with the super-mellow Bachelor, a St. Bernard who loves the snow and interacting with visitors.
And that's not all: through its "Pampered Pets for a Cause" initiative, the resort donates $25 of pet fees accrued, per stay, to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Fees, for two dogs of any size per stay, are $125 the first night and $25 each additional night.
Running Y Ranch Resort
Natural glories await at this pet-friendly resort, and your canine friends can explore them alongside you. Pet-friendly rooms are available at $25 per reservation; doggy guests will receive a water bowl and bottle, fresh linens and treats at check in. A limited number of pet-friendly vacation rentals (2-4 bedrooms) are available for $50 per reservation.
Top Luxurious Pet-Friendly Hotels
Fairmont Scottsdale Princess
Cats and dogs live the luxe life in this resort's Posh Paws program: for an additional $25 a night, pet guests receive a plush bed, food and water bowl, toys to play with and plenty of treats. Does your pet have a taste for supreme suppers? Ask the dining team what they can whip. Should you need help with dog walking, the staff is ready to assist. No more than two pets per guest room are allowed.
Loews Coronado Bay Resort
It's more than just a mantra. Loews really does love pets—it offers some of the best amenities around for your four-legged friends. The hotel, which was featured in National Geographic's The Dog Lover's Guide to Travel, is just as accommodating to cats, offering gourmet room service menus prepared by an award-winning chef, posh bedding, leashes, collars, litter and litter boxes, pooper scoopers, rawhide bones, catnip and scratch poles. In addition, pet-walking and pet-sitting services are available, as are dog-route maps, pet placemats, water bowls and dog pickup bags.
A fee of $100 per stay is assessed, with a limit of two pets, no more than 40 pounds each. Up-to-date immunization records are also required.
Inn by the Sea
Dogs can become true divas at this luxurious beachfront property that offers pet massages, gourmet dinner options, signature treats at turndown, doggie daycare, beach towels and cozy blankets. They stay for free, but be sure to let the staff know about the dog who will accompany you when you book your reservation, so they'll have all the amenities set to go upon arrival. The inn was one of the East Coast's first hotels to cater to pets and has been doing so for more than 15 years.
Mandarin Oriental Atlanta
A focus on relaxation, as well as healthy snacks and meals, for pets makes this Atlanta hotel a standout. Only the best will do—pets receive filtered water, and the in-room "MOpup" dining program serves up dishes such as grilled steelhead salmon, dry-aged tenderloin and peanut butter biscuits. Pets can even indulge with their owners in a nightcap; peach "MOcktails" and coconut-water infused melon "Puptails."
Takeaways include a gold Mandarin Oriental tag and hoodies that sport the saying "Keep Calm and Carry Treats."
Pets up to 30 pounds are allowed, with a $250 deposit charged at check in; $100 of that will be refunded upon check out.
Trump International New York
The height of luxury will be yours—and your pooch's—at this gleaming tower in the heart of New York City, just steps away from the Upper West Side, Central Park, Lincoln Center and Fifth Avenue. Dogs can kick back in a plush bed, get their fill of gourmet meals and treats, drink bottled water and play with brand new toys. Dog-walking services can be arranged, or you can do it yourself from a map of the city that highlights dog-friendly parks.
Pets sure are welcome at this downtown Seattle hotel. It was voted one of the "5 Best Pet-Friendly Hotels in America" by Travel+Leisure. Pets of all types and sizes are welcome, for an additional $25 above the nightly charge. They'll relax in style in a W pet bed, receive toys and get a special treat at turndown. Concierge can recommend the best pet sitters and groomers in town, and for those with pooches, dog-walking service is available.
Westin Verasa Napa
Dogs can explore the wine country with their owners and also get pampered after a long day of exploring. This pet-friendly hotel provides your canine companions with luxurious dog beds covered in miniature Heavenly Bed duvets and signature dog treats. Their owners will receive a list of the best dog-friendly attractions, wineries and restaurants in town, as well as pet stores and veterinarians.
The weight limit is 40 pounds or less; be sure to indicate you'll be traveling with your dog when you make the reservation.
Another Westin that tops our list is the downtown Austin location. In addition to the mini Heavenly Bed, they can join you for a drink and have some doggy beer, as well as treats from a local bakery. You can even write your pet's name on the VIP Pup board at check in so they receive some extra-special attention.
Budget-Friendly Hotels That Welcome Pets
Those traveling on a budget should try these hotel chains. Pets are not permitted to be left in the hotel room unattended.
Best Western: Two dogs, with a maximum size of 80 pounds per animal, are allowed. Other pet types are allowed at the discretion of each property and require prior approval. A maximum fee of $20 per night and/or $50 damage deposit may be assessed.
Choice Hotels: Cats and dogs are allowed for a small fee; for details, contact the property directly.
La Quinta: Two pets are allowed in your room for no fee; a pet-policy agreement must be signed at check in.
Red Roof Inn: Allows one free pet in your room; your animal must be declared at check in.