There's still one more year until it's time to vote for the next U.S. president, and while you can get a quick fix casting a ballot in the general election in November, there's an even better way to take part in politics. Get a refresher on U.S. history staying in presidential suites that have actually hosted presidents over the years for your own version of White House living. These 10 suites made history for a reason–and are top picks by U.S. leaders.
The suite started as a radio station in 1939 — Photo courtesy of The US Grant
THE US GRANT
Built in 1910 by Ulysses S. Grant, Jr., to honor his father, the 18th U.S. president Ulysses S. Grant, THE US GRANT has played host to 14 presidents over its 100-year history, from Woodrow Wilson to George Bush Sr. The 11th floor penthouse presidential suite started as a radio station in 1939–the tallest radio tower west of the Mississippi–and was the spot where President Roosevelt broadcasted his first fireside chat outside of D.C. Now the 1,300-square-foot suite overlooking the bay blends elements of its storied past with modern touches like the LED-lit chromatherapy Jacuzzi tub for spa-like treatment from the exclusive penthouse perch.
The presidential suite at The Palace boasts architecture from 1909 — Photo courtesy of The Palace Hotel
The Palace Hotel
The historic spot was built in 1875, but this year The Palace underwent a renovation that just so happened to fall at the same time as the 100-year anniversary of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco celebrating the completion of the Panama Canal. Other historic moments include President Woodrow Wilson hosting a luncheon here in 1919 to show support for the Versailles Treaty, and President Warren G. Harding even passed away in the presidential suite in 1923. Overlooking Market Street, the 1,898-square-foot suite still has details from its original 1909 architecture, as well as more recent additions that have an antique feel, like the custom-designed vanity in the bathroom inspired by vintage hatboxes.
Stay in a suite inspired by the White House — Photo courtesy of The Willard InterContinental, Washington D.C.
The Willard InterContinental
Playing on the theme of the Oval Office, most of The Willard's presidential suites have oval-shaped living rooms, set on the corner of 14th and Pennsylvania Avenue. The eight presidential suites are all named after the men who stayed in them, with the largest being the 2,800-square-foot Thomas Jefferson suite with an oval dining room seating 10, 18th century design inspired by the White House and sweeping views down Pennsylvania Avenue to the US Capitol.
Sleep where 13 other US presidents have spent the night at The Jefferson's presidential suite — Photo courtesy of The Jefferson Hotel
The Jefferson Hotel
Since The Jefferson opened its doors in Richmond in 1895, the presidential suite has drawn quite a roster of celebrities, as well as 13 U.S. presidents, including both Roosevelts, both Bushes, Coolidge, Taft, McKinley, Clinton and Obama. Each of the presidential suite's four bedrooms features original woodwork, and the parlor still has its original fireplace mantel, as well as French doors leading on to a marble balcony overlooking Franklin Street. There's even a baby grand piano that's been played by the likes of Elvis and Frank Sinatra.
Eisenhower used to call this suite home when he visited Denver — Photo courtesy of The Brown Palace
The Brown Palace
Before his election, Eisenhower transformed the Brown Palace Club into his campaign headquarters and continued using the hotel as his Western White House since the president and his wife were regular visitors in the Mile High City. You can even stay in the same suite he called home during the summer of 1955. Reminiscent of the White House, the renovated Eisenhower suite has a cherry wood dining table with a chandelier overhead, a four-posted cherry wood king bed, white columns, elegant formal furniture and a fireplace mantel that still has a dent from Ike's golf swings.
The grand Reagan suite is in the same tower that hosted the 1984 Republican National Convention — Photo courtesy of Hilton Anatole Hotel
Hilton Anatole Hotel
Each of Hilton Anatole's grand presidential suites is named after a political leader and one that stands out from the rest is the 2,364-square-foot Reagan Suite showing off corner views of the Dallas skyline. Set in the tower section of the hotel, the suite has a private wet bar, king bedroom and living and dining areas–plus space to host 50 dignitaries, if you happen to be a VIP yourself. The suite also plays a role in history since the tower was built in 1984 to house the Republican National Convention, and rumor has it that it was the last time a sitting president and VP (Reagan and Bush) stayed at the same hotel.
Every president since Hoover has stayed at the Arizona Biltmore except Obama — Photo courtesy of The Arizona Biltmore
The Arizona Biltmore
The 85-year-old Arizona Biltmore opened in Phoenix during the Roaring Twenties with a design guided by celebrated American architect Frank Lloyd Wright. The Catalina Pool built in the 1930s is not only the spot where Irving Berlin composed hits like "White Christmas," it was also known as Marilyn Monroe's favorite pool. The 1,300-square-foot presidential suite, now remodeled and renamed the signature suite, also has an illustrious history, hosting every president since Herbert Hoover. The only one left to try out the spot that's in its own wing–which can be blocked off for security purposes, of course–is Obama.
Leaders from Nelson Mandela to Bill Clinton have stayed in The Charles' presidential suite — Photo courtesy of The Charles Hotel
The Charles Hotel
The estate of President John F. Kennedy originally wanted to use this site as the location for his presidential library in Harvard Square, but the neighborhood decided it wanted another institution to set up shop next door–The Charles Hotel. Since opening 25 years ago, both U.S. and foreign presidents from Barack Obama and Bill Clinton to USSR President Mikhail Gorbachev and Nelson Mandela have stayed in the presidential suite with its two fireplaces, specially designed four-poster maple bed and custom-made desk that looks out at the Boston and Cambridge skylines.
President Truman called The Mayflower the second-best address in DC — Photo courtesy of The Mayflower
After a $20 million renovation adding modern touches to the 1920s hotel, The Mayflower came out looking just as sophisticated, but left the most historic parts untouched saving the best of its art deco interiors. Dubbed the "second best address" in D.C. by none other than President Harry Truman, the 10-floor hotel has also welcomed John F. Kennedy, as well as Amelia Earhart, Winston Churchill and Sophia Loren, with their names inscribed on the guestrooms' "signature wall" behind the bed. The 2,400-square-foot presidential suite still has its oval-shaped entry with a stained glass window and original patterned stone floor, as well as plenty of spots perfect for entertaining VIP guests.
The Miami suite shows off 360-degree views of Coral Gables and has hand-painted ceilings — Photo courtesy of The Biltmore
Coral Gables, Fl
The two-story Everglades Suite is the top-tier spot to stay at the Coral Gables hotel, earning its name from the hand-painted ceilings with scenes from the Florida Everglades. Showing off 360-degree views from two balconies and windows on the wrap-around mezzanine, the Spanish-style suite is not only stylish, it's also super private–with access only by special key. It's no surprise then that it's been a favorite for presidential stays by Clinton, Roosevelt and Eisenhower, as well as a bunch of international presidents.