The Best Hotels to Book Near Keeneland Race Course, Lexington

Feel like royalty at the Kentucky Castle in Versailles, Kentucky
Feel like royalty at the Kentucky Castle in Versailles, Kentucky | © The Kentucky Castle /
Nick Dauk

Keeneland Race Course in Lexington isn’t horsing around when it comes to showcasing some of the finest thoroughbreds and racehorses in the country. This National Historic Landmark is a haven for live races and auctions, preserving and showcasing the history of the thoroughbred industry. Ride into the Lexington area, and fall in love with horse country at one of these hotels near Keeneland Race Course, now bookable with Culture Trip.

1. Staybridge Suites Lexington, an IHG Hotel

Suite Hotel, Hotel

01846afd - Staybridge Suites Lexington, an IHG Hotel
© Staybridge Suites Lexington, an IHG Hotel / Expedia

Staybridge Suites is a suitable place to hang your halter if you’re heading to Keeneland Race Course. All suites are equipped with kitchens, and the grocer across the street will help you dirty some dishes up. A few fast food joints are nearby if you don’t feel like falling asleep to the sound of the dishwasher. Just make sure you keep oats and carrots in your refrigerator – you never know if you might pick up a horse at the Keeneland auction.

2. Embassy Suites by Hilton Lexington/UK Coldstream


5f82fad5 - Embassy Suites by Hilton Lexington:UK Coldstream
© Embassy Suites by Hilton Lexington/UK Coldstream / Expedia

Embassy Suites is only a 10-minute drive from Downtown Lexington, though you may want to hail a cab. A few hours at the Embassy’s complimentary evening reception may leave you a little tilted. If the small plates and generous drinks don’t send you back up to your suite for an early bedtime, a dip in the indoor pool should get you upright again. Hop in a cab, and head down to the city for a sampling of the area’s best bourbon at Barrel House Distillery.

3. 21c Museum Hotel Lexington


05c1bd1a - 21c Museum Hotel Lexington
© 21c Museum Hotel Lexington / Expedia

If you’re a true blue Kentucky Wildcat fan, then no visit to Lexington is complete without a selfie with the Blue Penguin at the 21c Museum Hotel. One of the many local artworks adorning the walls of this museum and hotel, the Blue Penguin won’t try to bunk with you for the night (although the rooms with high ceilings and large windows offer ample space for guests to stretch out). You may catch him at Lockbox, though, trying to sneak a slice of smoked trout toast.

5. The B&B at Queenslake

Bed and Breakfast

21553213 - The B & B at Queenslake
© The B & B at Queenslake / Expedia

Fall in love with horse farm life at the B&B at Queenslake. This snuggly lakeside lodging is as peaceful as they come, giving you all the time in the world to watch the horses roam around the paddock as the sun travels across the sky. If a whole lot of nothing is on your itinerary, then this bed and breakfast is the perfect place to dive into the book that’s been collecting dust on your bedside table.

6. Capital Plaza Hotel


67658818 - Capital Plaza Hotel
© Capital Plaza Hotel /

As the only full-service hotel in Frankfort, Capital Plaza Hotel goes the distance to extend its Bluegrass hospitality. You’ll be welcomed with open arms and led to a room with either city or river views. The staff will certainly give you time to unpack, but, with happy hour, bingo and an indoor pool waiting downstairs, your luggage won’t mind sitting full for a bit longer. Need a little time to yourself? The trails at River View Park and Fort Hill are right outside the front doors.

7. Fairfield Farm Cottage


228171886 - Fairfield Farm Cottage
© Fairfield Farm Cottage /

Fairfield Farm Cottage is ready to remind you which Paris you’re actually in. It’ll begin your indoctrination into the Bluegrass brotherhood with a local delicacy: Kentucky beer cheese. Dairy delights aside, the two cozy bedrooms and fully equipped kitchen as well as the private spot on Stoner Creek to cast a line make Fairfield Farm Cottage feel just like home.

8. Eighth Pole Inn


Eighth Pole Inn is one luxe hotel that you’ll want to trot over to. It’s an inn hosting horse lovers and horses themselves, and you’ll love watching the foals graze in the paddock just outside your room’s window. The 600-thread-count sheets are far from the hay stalls that horses sleep in, and, as for your grooming routine, we’re sure you’ll appreciate the marble-tiled showers. Be sure to bring your autograph book; a few active racehorses may be sleeping over in the barn.

9. The Kentucky Castle

Hotel, Luxury

243173248 - The Kentucky Castle
© The Kentucky Castle /

At the Kentucky Castle, grand rooms with ornate portraits and dark wooden furniture are bathed in natural light. The restaurant has a delicious charcuterie board with cheeses, vegetables and meats sourced from the very Bluegrass fields surrounding you. For a little royal pampering, request that the concierge schedules a cryotherapy session for you at the spa.

10. Steele's Run

Bed and Breakfast

187684920 - Steeles Run SaveCall
© Steele's Run SaveCall /

Don’t worry: even if you’re 2m (6.6ft) tall, there’s plenty of room for you in the Jockey Room at Steel’s Run B&B. If you’d rather gamble on the horses and leave the room a safe bet, the Sycamore Room’s two queen beds can be pushed together to tackle any length that lays on their sheets. Plus, there’s a fireplace in the suite, so you’ll likely be cuddled up into a smaller package either way.

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