BEST HOTEL - 2002
St. Paul Hotel
If you're going to pay to sleep in strange surroundings, you might as well put up the dough for the best. The Saint Paul Hotel has served as a surrogate home for presidents from Taft to Clinton and foreign dignitaries from Gorbachev to Thatcher. It's not difficult to see why. Overlooking Rice Park, the century-old hotel is a nearly bucolic oasis amid downtown St. Paul. Despite this tranquillity, it's within easy walking distance of the Ordway, the Xcel Energy Center, and other urban amenities. There's a rooftop exercise facility and valet parking. The bar of the St. Paul Grill, with its dark wood and black-and-white portraits of Minnesota luminaries, is the most elegant spot in town to linger over some Scotch or a glass of red wine. And the prices (or "tariffs," as the hotel prefers) are equally impressive: rooms range from $159 for a standard room to $579 for the deluxe Ordway Suite.