Although French Canadians, Europeans, and Native Americans lived in the area for centuries, it wasn't until 1921 that the city officially incorporated. Shortly after this time, Royal Oak experienced a population boom thanks to rapid industrialization and the boom of the automotive industry. Following a decline in the 1970s and '80s, the city rebounded in the 1990s and early 2000s as one of the premier nightlife and entertainment destinations in the Detroit area. In addition, Royal Oak boasts over 50 parks and 70 restaurants. Lofts and condos also dot the area, increasing foot traffic to downtown and causing a revitalization among local businesses.
When to Visit Royal Oak, MI
The best time to travel to Royal Oak is during the summer, when downtown is hopping and the sun is shining. Most of the time, temperatures only top out in the 80s, with lows in the high 60s or low 70s. With these amazing temperatures, you're free to explore the area on foot in a t-shirt and shorts. Be aware that humidity can saturate the air, so you may want to grab a shower before you head out for the evening. Hotels are at peak demand during this time, so make sure to book a room well in advance to get your preferences.
Winter is downright brutal in Royal Oak. Temperatures rarely rise above freezing from December through February, and if you stay for a week or more, prepare yourself for a decent amount of snowfall. Make sure to pack a heavy jacket and warm clothes, and give yourself some extra time if you're planning to drive somewhere. Most hotels experience large vacancies during winter, so you might be able to grab a last-minute deal and avoid the crowds.
Late spring and early fall blend into the summer, so if you want to experience Royal Oak with fewer tourists, head here during these times. Temperatures generally range from the 40s to the 60s, so it's pleasant most of the time. Rainfall is still a possibility, so make sure to pack a raincoat if you're heading out on foot. Hotel demand varies with the events going on in the city and the surrounding area.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in Royal Oak, MI:
Royal Oak, MI: Prices by Star Rating Class
Below we've posted 3 graphs illustrating avg. nightly cost patterns by star rating class in Royal Oak, MI. Browse these charts to determine the least expensive time to make a reservation in Royal Oak for your upcoming travels.
Luxury Hotel Options in Royal Oak, MI
4 Star Average Prices: $119.69
If you want a relaxing trip with all the extras, head to the Greektown Casino Hotel, about 10 miles from Royal Oak. With 400 rooms and suites and 30 stories, this hotel offers breathtaking views of the Detroit skyline and river, with guest amenities to match. Choose one of four room configurations, each of which offers a plasma television with satellite programming, a minibar, and complimentary wireless internet.
When you're feeling lucky, just head downstairs to the casino to try your hand at the slots or another game of chance. Win or lose, you can drown your sorrows or celebrate your winnings at the 24-hour health club, which has facials, massages, and more. If you're feeling hungry, grab a meal at one of the five restaurants or two cafes or knock back a drink at one of two on-site bars.
Affordable Hotel Options in Royal Oak, MI
3 Star Average Prices: $98.61
Whether you're passing through or staying for a week, you don't want to spend all your hard-earned cash on accommodation. Fortunately, Royal Oak has plenty of budget options.
The Hotel Royal Oak is a locally owned hotel that's a stellar choice. A classic motor lodge converted to a boutique hotel, this establishment is surprisingly inexpensive for what you get. It has eight different room arrangements, ranging from two double beds to a fully furnished suite. With a stay here, you're close to the Detroit Zoo, the Royal Oak Music Theatre, and the Red Oaks Waterpark.
Each of the 65 rooms comes with complimentary wireless internet, cable television, free toiletries, and a rainfall showerhead that delivers a refreshing morning wake up call. Other on-site amenities include a library, free newspapers, a terrace, a garden, and a restaurant to quell your hunger if you're feeling famished.
Another budget option is the Red Roof Inn, just 3 miles from downtown Royal Oak. Room arrangements include a king, a queen, or a double bed, or you can upgrade to a superior king for a bit more. If you need a jolt of energy, take advantage of the free coffee and tea in the lobby. Don't worry about getting in late, as the 24-hour front desk provides easy check-in and check-out. All guests can enjoy in-room perks such as free Wi-Fi, an LCD television, a hairdryer, and free local calls.
2 Star Average Prices: $62.31
Royal Oak, MI Hotels with Discounts
When you want exceptional amenities without spending your entire savings, check out a few of Royal Oak's discount hotels. Seniors and AAA members can save up to 20 percent on their room at the Residence Inn only 3 miles from Royal Oak. Each of these apartment-style rooms has a plethora of features including a kitchen with a refrigerator, a microwave, and a stovetop, a flat-screen television with satellite programming, a desk, and daily housekeeping to keep your room nice and tidy.
Don't miss out on the recreational aspects of the Residence Inn. Let the kids splash around in the seasonal outdoor pool as you relax nearby in the spa tub. During the week, the hotel also has a complimentary reception with food and drinks, so you can mingle with the other guests. You'll also have access to a full complimentary breakfast, a business center, and express check-in and check-out.
At the Rodeway Inn, AAA members and AARP members can both get a sizeable discount for the duration of their stay. Recreational opportunities include a seasonal outdoor pool, free newspapers, a complimentary continental breakfast, and a computer station for work or leisure. Each room offers free Wi-Fi, cable television, a coffee maker, and free local calls.
Best Value Option in Royal Oak, MI
Value options in Royal Oak give you all the amenities you want without wrecking your carefully planned travel budget. The Extended Stay America is an aparthotel that has all the amenities of an apartment with some of the perks of staying at a hotel. Each room features a kitchen with a refrigerator, a microwave, and a stovetop, and a 32-inch flat-screen television. Before you head out to explore Royal Oak, fuel up on the free continental breakfast that's served daily from 6 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
Top Royal Oak, MI Destinations and Attractions
Royal Oak is an animal lover's paradise, home to the critically acclaimed Detroit Zoo. Situated on 125 acres, the zoo features over 2,000 animals and 245 species and welcomes over 1.6 million visitors each year. Some of the animals include zebras, gorillas, red pandas, snow leopards, yaks, bears, camels, tigers, and more.
While all the exhibits are sure to entertain, the most popular and exciting one is the Arctic Ring of Life. Built in 2001, the Ring of Life is the country's largest polar bear exhibit, centered around a 300,000-gallon aquarium. The crown jewel is a 12-foot tunnel that goes underneath the water, allowing visitors spectacular underwater views of the polar bears as they swim, dive, and feed. At $14 for adults and $10 for children and seniors, the zoo is one of the best bargains in the city.
If you're staying in downtown Royal Oak or close to it, take advantage of all there is to do. When you're feeling famished, check out one of the trendy new restaurants. The GreenSpace Cafe is one of the newer, exciting eateries downtown, offering hand-crafted cocktails and a menu of fast, casual vegan fare. Boodles Restaurant is a better option for carnivores, with steaks, veal, and tenderloin highlighting the menu. Go for a late-night dinner to catch some awesome live music.
Aside from the 70 restaurants throughout the downtown area, Royal Oak has even more to offer visitors. Live music is one of the mainstays of the area, and if you're lucky enough to catch a show, make sure it's at the Royal Oak Music Theater. Opened in 1928 as a vaudeville theater, this venue holds up to 1,700 people and invites some of the best musical acts and comedians to showcase their talents.
Other downtown attractions include bars, craft breweries, and comedy clubs.
For its size, Royal Oak is a surprising breath of fresh air, offering exciting entertainment options near the Motor City. The best part is that you can find everything from luxury accommodation to low-cost options to make your stay enjoyable while catering to your personal tastes and budget.