Moving to Philadelphia

Philadelphia is an ideal location for business school — small-scale and historic, with all the resources of a major East Coast city. One of the country’s liveliest, most diverse cities, it also puts you right in the heart of all the opportunities of the East Coast — a train ride away from New York City, Washington, D.C., and Boston.

Philly is big enough to have lots to do, yet small enough to get to know. Penn’s campus is in University City, a neighborhood with its own stores, restaurants, and movie theaters. Less than a mile away is Rittenhouse Square, a fashionable area with dozens of places to eat, shop, and hang out.  Rittenhouse is very popular among Wharton Students with over 80% of the current class choosing to live there.

Because the vast majority of Wharton students come from outside of the city, you will be part of a close-knit community in which it’s easy to make friends quickly.

Wharton MBA Housing Guide

The Wharton MBA official Housing Guide ( will assist you in finding a suitable apartment in Philadelphia. Started by two recent Wharton MBA grads, VeryApt offers trusted apartment reviews based upon price range and amenities.

Housing in Philadelphia

You’ll find varied and affordable housing options accessible to Wharton, from campus living to high-rise apartments to single-family homes. To learn more about Philadelphia’s neighborhoods, check out VisitPhilly’s Neighborhood Guide. Below are a few housing options that are popular with Wharton and Penn students.

Rittenhouse Square and Center City

Many students live near Rittenhouse Square, an elegant neighborhood over the bridge in Philadelphia’s Center City. A variety of apartment buildings and brownstones are available for rent within a 25-minute walk, or 10 to 15 minutes by public transportation or bike.

Additionally, two newer buildings are now available and are only blocks from 2401 Walnut Street and the Pub at The Armory, which is located at 22 23rd Street: 2116 Chestnut opened recently, as did Evo at 30th and Chestnut. Evo apartments also come fully furnished, which may be of interest to some.

Other popular Philadelphia neighborhoods — including Old City, Queen Village, Northern Liberties, Bella Vista, Society Hill, and Fairmount — offer an eclectic mix of affordable and livable housing options, from historic townhouses to converted lofts.

University City

Thousands of Penn students, faculty, and staff live in neighborhoods throughout University City, an area that offers rich ethnic, cultural, and economic diversity. Convenient to both the campus and Center City, the neighborhood has great restaurants, large apartments, and striking Victorian architecture.

Much of University City is in the eligible area for Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander University of Pennsylvania Partnership School (known as the Sadie School), a pre-K through eighth grade public school assisted by the University and the Penn Graduate School of Education. Opened in 2001, this neighborhood public school has been labeled a “gold standard” by the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities for bringing the most effective, research-proven educational practices into the classroom.

Suburban Living

Some students decide to live in the suburbs, particularly those with families, those with partners who work outside of Philadelphia, and those who plan to remain in Philadelphia after graduation.

The towns in the near western suburbs along the Main Line, such as Bala Cynwyd, Narberth, Wynnewood, Ardmore, and Bryn Mawr are close to campus (a 15-minute direct commuter train ride) and are known for excellent public schools. Other students choose suburbs to the north of Philadelphia or in New Jersey, also a train ride away.

Within the Philadelphia city limits, the residential neighborhoods of Germantown, Chestnut Hill, Mt. Airy, Roxborough, Overbrook, and Wynnefield offer tree-lined streets, architectural charm, and family-friendly single and twin homes.

On-Campus Housing

On-Campus Housing

Residences for MBA students on Penn’s campus include furnished studio efficiencies and two-bedroom apartments located in two high-rise graduate-student apartment buildings at Sansom Place.

Read more about Penn Residential Living.

Penn Housing Office (on- and off-campus housing)

University of Pennsylvania
3451 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Campus Housing

Philadelphia Living Resources

Philadelphia enjoys a thriving, eclectic culture across neighborhoods. The restaurant scene includes world cuisines from Belgium to Vietnam, haute cuisine, small BYOBs, reinvented pub grub, and Philly’s famous cheesesteaks.

Nearby Fairmount Park, the largest urban park in the world, maintains running, cycling, and riding trails and offers boat rentals on the Schuylkill River, the site of Philadelphia’s picturesque Boathouse Row and the Dad Vail Regatta, the largest collegiate regatta in the country. Even closer to home is Penn’s state-of-the-art Pottruck Health and Fitness Center, right across the street from Wharton’s Jon M. Huntsman Hall.

Resources for Living in Philadelphia

Official Visitor Site for Greater Philadelphia

A gateway to Philadelphia and its countryside, including things to do, places to stay, travel tools, and recommendations on Philly favorites.

Philadelphia Magazine

In-depth coverage of Philly’s nightlife, entertainment, cultural offerings, real estate developments, political landscape, and more.
Philadelphia Magazine

Philadelphia Fun Guide

Ways to spend your spare time, whether dance, lectures, museums & galleries, music, sports, theater, outdoor events, or activities targeted to particular lifestyles.
Philadelphia Fun Guide

Philadelphia Inquirer

The online version of the daily newspaper, providing the latest in local and national news, as well as local ads and entertainment
Philadelphia Inquirer

City of Philadelphia

Information of interest to current and future city residents, including utility companies, community and family resources, and travel and transportation.
City of Philadelphia