The 15 Best Hotels in Charleston

A brand-new property takes the No. 1 spot on this year's list.

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Guest room with city views at The Loutrel hotel in Charleston, SC
Photo: Courtesy of The Loutrel

There's a lot to love about Charleston, South Carolina. From cobblestoned streets lined with candy-colored houses and the Ravenel Bridge soaring high above the harbor, to the latest trendy restaurants, hotels, and rooftop lounges, the "Holy City" is at once traditional and ever-changing. Year after year, visitors fall in love with its historic neighborhoods, beautiful architecture, soul-satisfying food, and warm Southern atmosphere. And lucky for them, there are plenty of lovely places to stay — from charming boutique hotels with bespoke service to luxury properties located right in the heart of the city — all on our list of the best hotels in Charleston.

Every year for our World's Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Hotels (including safari lodges) were rated on their facilities, location, service, food, and overall value. Properties were classified as city hotel, resort, or safari lodge based on their locations and amenities.

Both trendy newcomers and established favorites were among this year's top-rated hotels — with a brand-new property taking the No. 1 spot on our list. Last year's top-voted hotel, the 19-room John Rutledge House Inn (No. 5 this year), received high marks from T+L readers, with one commenting: "Southern hospitality at its best." Another said the inn is great if you want to be "immersed in that Charleston atmosphere." Another historic home turned hotel, Wentworth Mansion (No. 2), was lauded for its warm staff and incredibly preserved rooms, with one reader writing, "Our experience at the hotel provided the exact combination of history, luxury, and hospitality we were hoping for on our first trip to Charleston." More than one added it was the perfect spot for a romantic getaway.

Properties that opened in the past few years also received high praise for their trendy design and buzzy restaurants and bars. Emeline, which opened in 2020, was commended for its great location, beautiful décor, and restaurant, Frannie & the Fox, which serves up wood-fired pizzas and an Italian-inspired aperitivo.

Here are the best hotels in Charleston, according to Travel + Leisure readers — starting with this year's top property, the Loutrel.

1. The Loutrel

Exterior of The Loutrel hotel, in Charleston
Courtesy of The Loutrel

Since it opened in November, the Loutrel has made a name for itself as Charleston's favorite new hotel — no small feat in a town packed with many noteworthy properties. Billing itself as "Charleston's Finest Hour," the Loutrel combines all the Southern hospitality you've come to expect in this South Carolina city with a new take on upscale Lowcountry style. (Think: an airy lobby inspired by the area's homes and gardens, a rooftop with panoramic views of the steeple-dotted skyline, and 50 beautifully appointed rooms and suites.) T+L readers loved the "fantastic location" on State Street — it's just steps from many of Charleston's can't-miss sights — the friendly staff, and the beautiful rooms, commending the hotel for an overall "wonderful experience."

Score: 98.00

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2. Wentworth Mansion

A fireplace at Wentworth Mansion, in Charleston, SC
Courtesy of Wentworth Mansion

Score: 95.78

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3. Emeline

Outdoor dining area at the hotel Emeline in Charleston
Lindsey Shorter/Courtesy of Emeline

Score: 94.15

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4. Zero George

Courtyard of the Zero George hotel in Charleston
Courtesy of Zero George

Score: 93.52

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5. John Rutledge House Inn

A sitting area in the John Rutledge House hotel in Charleston, SC
Courtesy of John Rutledge House Inn

Score: 93.22

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6. The Spectator Hotel

Lobby at the Spectator hotel, in Charleston
Courtesy of The Spectator Hotel

Score: 92.54

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7. The Vendue, Charleston's Art Hotel

Exterior of the Vendue Hotel in Charleston, SC
Courtesy of The Vendue

Score: 92.41

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8. Planters Inn

Entrance to the Planters Inn hotel in Charleston, SC
Courtesy of Explore Charleston

Score: 92.13

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9. Hotel Bennett

Terrace space at the Hotel Bennett, in Charleston, SC
Courtesy of Hotel Bennett

Score: 92.12

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10. Grand Bohemian Hotel

A colorful guest room at the Grand Bohemian hotel in Charleston, SC
Courtesy of Grand Bohemian Hotel Charleston

Score: 91.07

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11. Hotel Bella Grace

Guest room at the Hotel Bella Grace, in Charleston, SC
Courtesy of Explore Charleston

Score: 90.59

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12. The Dewberry

Exterior of the Dewberry hotel in Charleston
Kris Tamburello/Courtesy of The Dewberry

Score: 90.23

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13. Market Pavilion Hotel

The bar area at the Market Pavilion hotel in Charleston
Courtesy of Explore Charleston

Score: 89.41

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14. The Restoration

A lounge area at the Restoration hotel in Charleton, SC
Courtesy of Explore Charleston

Score: 89.23

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15. French Quarter Inn

A guest room at the French Quarter Inn in Charleston, SC
Courtesy of French Quarter Inn

Score: 88.26

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