Best Indoor and Rooftop Gardens in the US

Best Indoor and Rooftop Gardens in the US

Winter can be a hard season for many of us because we’re surrounded by uninspiring landscapes. If our climate doesn't get a lot of snow, we’re left with dead, brown vegetation that leaves much to be desired.

Go Green Indoors

To combat the winter blues, consider a visit to some of the biggest indoor gardens in the United States. Or, book a room at a hotel with an indoor garden that may be modest in size, but big on impact.

Best Indoor Gardens

Is there anything better than a garden you can access year round? Rain or shine, hot or cold, it’s always there to allow you to enjoy the sights, smells, and textures of nature in comfort.


The world’s first geodesic dome greenhouse is located in St. Louis, Missouri. The Climatron at the Missouri Botanical Garden is also the first air-conditioned greenhouse of its kind. It originally opened in 1960 and provides a comfortable environment for over 2,800 plants, as well as guests. Visitors can stop by Tuesdays through Sundays with reservations, and there are seasonal displays such as the Garden Glow event in winter.

Garfield Park Conservatory

Chicago, Illinois is home to the 4.5 acre Garfield Park Conservatory. It features themed houses to showcase different plant species and to cater to a variety of guests. The conservatory can be visited with free, advance reservations so guests can enjoy a variety of activities, including the wellness walk, the winter flower show, or the children’s garden. The conservatory can also be rented for special events, such as weddings or reunions.

United States Botanic Garden

Our nation’s capital is home to a living plant museum. Located on the National Mall in Washington D.C., the US Botanic Garden was established in 1820 and houses 4,000 plants in the conservatory. The garden itself is closed to the public as of 2021, but virtual tours are available. Other online programs offered by the US Botanic Garden include yoga (hosted in the garden and broadcast online), cooking demonstrations, and book discussions.

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

Did you know Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania was given a botanical garden as a gift in 1893? Henry Phipps Jr. was the son of wealthy parents, and he was involved in philanthropic endeavors throughout his own life. 

Now registered as a National Historic place, the 13-room conservatory and gardens have offered seasonal flower shows for over 125 years. Guests who want to explore the garden or any of the events can reserve an arrival time, and then enjoy the conservatory for as long as they’d like that day.

Hotels with Lush Gardens

Orbitz surveyed travelers and found that 63% of millennials (people born between 1981 and 1996) want more greenery at the hotels they visit. Inside or out, the following hotels definitely deliver on that!

  • PUBLIC Hotel NYC - New York

  • 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge  - New York

  • Gaylord Opryland Resort - Nashville, Tennessee

  • Bellagio Hotel & Casino - Las Vegas, Nevada

  • Park MGM Las Vegas (formerly the Monte Carlo) - Nevada

  • Four Seasons The Biltmore - Santa Barbara, California

  • The Little Nell - Aspen, Colorado

Honorable mention goes to hotels with inviting outdoor spaces that either blend their urban settings with their luxury amenities or seamlessly blend into the landscape themselves:

  • Virgin Hotels Las Vegas - Nevada

  • Ambiente - Sedona, Arizona

  • Salish Lodge & Spa - Snoqualmie, Washington

  • Red Mountain Resort - Ivins, Utah

  • Viceroy Chicago - Illinois

Knowledgeable landscapers know the ins and outs of their planting zones so they can create successful green spaces. As Lawngevity explains in THIS blog article, it’s also important to know which plants work well with one another, and how to keep the soil nutrient-rich year-round. This is especially important for indoor gardens that rely on good gardening practices to provide all the essentials– proper light, water, drainage, etc…

It may be a lot of work to keep an indoor garden going strong, but is there any better feeling than walking into a hotel and being surrounded by nature? Studies show plants can improve mood, boost productivity, reduce stress levels, all while providing us with cleaner air to breathe.

Best Rooftop Gardens 

A rooftop garden serves more than one purpose; it can reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce heat in urban areas, and it can make the most of small spaces. If a hotel, retail building, or even an apartment complex wants to provide green space to the people visiting, working, or living within, it can be an expensive commodity. But, planting on the rooftop just might be the most convenient and cost-effective solution!

Here are some of the best rooftop gardens in the US

  • Gallow Green at McKittrick Hotel - Chelsea, New York

  • The Standard, The High Line - New York, New York

  • Beverly Hills Hotel - California

  • Washington Square Hotel - Greenwich Village, New York

  • Petite Ermitage - West Hollywood, California

  • Doubletree Los Angeles Downtown - California

  • Fairmont Hotel - San Francisco, California

  • Fourth and Madison Building - Seattle, Washington (bonus: this garden is open to the public during business hours)

  • Kaiser Roof Garden - Oakland, California (this rooftop garden is a public park)

The purposes of these oasis gardens vary. Some are home to bars or restaurants, others envelop a rooftop pool for privacy, and some are just a place to retreat and soak up some nature. Perhaps the best rooftop garden is one that not only offers green space but grows fruits and veggies for the hotel to serve to its guests (Washington Square Hotel, for one).

When you book a place to stay for your vacation, do you ever think to look at the outdoor spaces available? Maybe next time you’ll look for a rooftop lounge or accommodations with easy access to nearby botanical gardens. Giving yourself time in nature can be just what you need to recharge, whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure.