Tag: Chicago Hotels

View All Tags

/ / / /

Confessions of Hotel Bartender, Vol 7: A Cheeky Drink at Virgin Chicago

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 203 N. Wabash [map], Chicago, IL, United States, 60601
March 26, 2015 at 3:45 PM | by | Comments (0)

A few weeks ago we stopped by Virgin Chicago to sample some food in their all-day dining outlet, Miss Ricky's and ended upstairs at the Commons Club to partake in an adult libation from the cheeky bar menu.

After bellying up to the bar, we had chance to bend the ear of the head bartender, Jon Harris about what the drinks we were sipping and his thoughts on the industry.

This Chicago native has spent some time mixing cocktails from DC to London and back to the Windy City. Shaking some of the hottest drinks in DC's first cocktail bar, The Gibson, Jon eventually landed the job at the Virgin and started putting together the back bar well before the hotel swung it's doors open to guests.

Keep reading for our Q&A with Jon Harris

more ›

/ / / /

Virgin Will Reveal Its Rooftop Next Month But It Won't Stay The Night

Where: 203 N. Wabash [map], Chicago, IL, United States
March 25, 2015 at 1:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

Now that the Virgin Hotel Chicago has unveiled Miss Ricky's Diner and it's Two Zero Three coffee shop and wine bar, there are only a few more things left to take off--the hotel's killer rooftop spaces and the downstairs spa. Both of these should be unveiled next month at the Virgin's official grand opening party on April 16.

We were able to peek at the rooftop spaces during our first time with a Virgin in January and they will seriously impress you with their cool yet fun decor and their incredible city views. Remember, one of the rooftop spaces will be incredibly exclusive so fingers crossed your on the list.

As for the spa, it promises to be a "wellness lounge designed with beauty, comfort and mingling in mind."

While the rooftops and the spa will be unveiled on opening night, we hear they won't officially open to the public until the week after. Room rates for that next weekend, April 24-26, start at $249 a night for a chamber king before taxes. If you're a AAA member, rates start at just $224 a night. Whoopee!

[Photo: Virgin Hotels/Facebook

/ / / / / /

Get Pumped: Chicago Athletic Association Hotel Will Open on June 5

March 18, 2015 at 4:46 PM | by | Comments (2)

Commune Hotels & Resorts is getting very close to opening the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel , a 241-room lifestyle hotel in the Michigan Ave nabe and it will be quite the spot.

The historic Venetian Gothic tower, first built in 1893, has been under major restoration and renovation for the past two years We first profiled the plans for the building back in 2013 when contributor Nina K. Hahn peeked at what Harstone Plunkard Architecture and Roman and Williams had in mind for the place, as well as snapping what the spot looked like before it went under the knife.

Yet throughout the renovation process, the teams have kept much of the building’s 19th architectural elements such as the bas-relief woodcarvings on the fireplaces, stained glass windows and marble staircases.

Keep reading for a look at how the building used to be and for a sneak peek at the all-new guest rooms!

more ›

/ / / / /

Why There Is Over a Mile of Cabling Inside a Peninsula Room

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 19, Avenue Kléber, Paris, France, 75116
March 11, 2015 at 8:25 AM | by | Comments (0)

It may be a 1908 Beaux Arts building in the middle of Paris, but Peninsula Hotels made sure when spending hundreds of millions on its first European hotel that besides all the artisans and historians restoring murals, plasterwork, and the like, some serious money was spent on wiring the place up.

The end result? Well over a mile of cabling inside each room (and more in those humongous suites) to make everything – and we do mean everything – controlled through these tablets and / or little touch screens on the walls. Want to take a bath? Touch the “spa” button and lighting dims as soothing music starts playing. Have shoes that need polishing? Drop them in the valet box, press the button, and they’ll be delivered back to you shiny as can be.

With its renovation plans announced, these tablets are on their way to Chicago, and – we have no doubt – to all Peninsula hotels eventually. Check out what’s at the touch of a button below.

more ›

/ / / / /

Miss Ricky's at Virgin Chicago is More Than A Greasy Spoon

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 203 N. Wabash [map], Chicago, IL, United States, 60601
March 10, 2015 at 6:06 PM | by | Comments (0)

Last week, something happened in Chicago that made us crave diner food and now we can share how our appetite was whet the moment we stepped foot into Virgin Hotel's newest food outpost, Miss Ricky's. In true Virgin fashion the diner menu has been re-invented consisting of old stand-bys, with a cheeky twist and clever take on Branson's name.

When we originally stayed, the all-day dining restaurant off the lobby was still shrouded with paper as the menu and space was being finalized, but last Thursday, the diner welcomed it's first guests, tempting them with giant burgers, Reuben sandwiches and milkshakes.

With a menu that goes well beyond the normal flat grill of a truck-stop, the restaurant claims to be "a modern American diner for early morning noshes, late night bites and everything in between", and with hours starting at 6am to well after midnight on the weekends, you won't be disappointed.

Oh, a full cocktail menu will probably help with that too.

more ›

/ / / /

Viceroy to Get a Piece of the Chicago Pie in 2017

March 5, 2015 at 2:10 PM | by | Comments (0)

Chicago is absolutely not slowing down its hotel scene anytime soon. The latest hotel brand to set its sights on the Windy City is Viceroy Hotels.

The Viceroy Hotel Group officially announced this morning they will open The Viceroy Chicago in the city's Gold Coast nabe in 2017. The announcement was extremely light on details but here's what it said:

Working in tandem with Convexity Properties, the powerhouse luxury hospitality brand will unveil the Goettsch Partners and TAL Studio-designed property, located conveniently for guests on State Street in the Gold Coast. The area occupies the central part of a flourishing neighborhood, quickly gaining momentum as one of the most sought-after modern luxury destinations in the city.

Known for creating authentic and inspired experiences, Viceroy Hotel Group will be using design, art, style and culture to infuse the new property with all the amenities and services of a top-luxury hotel, while simultaneously working to maintain a distinct sense of place for guests eager to explore and experience the Chicago landscape.

more ›

/ / / /

The Loews Chicago is Now Officially Open (and Rates are Rather 'Loew')

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 455 N. Park [map], Chicago, IL, United States
March 2, 2015 at 3:10 PM | by | Comments (0)

We're only in the third month of the new year, and we've already got another new hotel to check out in Chicago--The Loews Chicago (the first hotel to open this year was the Virgin Chicago.)

We took a behind-the-scenes tour of the Loews Chicago back in early December but now it's your turn to actually stay in one of the 375 guest rooms, or if you prefer some larger space, one of the 25 suites inside the 52-story tower in downtown, just a block north of the Chicago River and close to North Michigan Avenue.

Rates tonight start at just $133 as part of the hotel's First Impressions rate, which is 30 percent off the usual rate. That's for a 377-sq. ft. superior room with a king bed, free WiFi, Garnier Thiebault linens, a work desk and chair, and a Keurig coffeemaker. A premium room with great city views is only $140 while a 621-sq.ft. junior suite is just $182. #BOOKIT #WORTHIT.

more ›

/ / / /

AC Hotel Chicago Downtown is Expected to Open in May (So They Say)

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 630 N. Rush Street [map], Chicago, IL, United States, 60611
February 26, 2015 at 8:30 AM | by | Comments (0)

We've long known that the old Sheraton Four Points in Chicago on Rush Street was transforming into an AC Hotel by Marriott but now we have a date on when this transformation will be revelead---MAY.

That's what the website for the hotel is saying, but you know this hotel business, dates can, and do, change. Interestingly, that's also when the new Hyatt Centric brand will open in Chicago. (Taps fingers together and laughs a Dr. Evil kind of laugh.)

Still, if May is when the hotel opens, guests can expect masculine but comfortable decor, free WiFi, tapas and cocktails from the AC Lounge, and breakfast with those imported buttery croissants in the AC Kitchen. There should also be an AC Store where you can pick up toiletries, snacks, wine and phone chargers, among other things. No word on room rates but we'll update you when we have them. #prayfor$200orless

Elsewhere in the AC world, AC KC (Kansas City) is about to open, while AC DC is happening next month, followed by AC MB (Miami Beach). And there's a whole bunch more in the works too. You can read those here.

GO INSIDE THE AC HOTEL BY MARRIOTT EXPERIENCE!

/ / / /

Now That Everyone Can Sleep With The Virgin, How Goes It?

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 203 N. Wabash Avenue [map], Chicago, IL, United States, 60601
February 25, 2015 at 3:35 PM | by | Comments (0)

It's been over a month since we slept with the Virgin Chicago and a few things have already changed since we did it.

For starters, Sir Richard Branson came in for a visit. Then on Valentine's Day, the new coffee and wine bar, Two Zero Three, opened just off the entrance of the hotel.

Opening next week is Miss Ricky's All American Diner a 23-hour spot serving "new classics" such as a Great Lakes Reuben, The Biggie Grilled Cheese, Short Rib Pie and decadent donuts and dessert. You can see Virgin CEO Raul Leal's recent tweet for confirmation of such decadence:

The hotel has also rolled out a partnership with Tesla Motors, giving all Virgin guests the option to be ferried around town in a Model S P85D. It's color? Bright red of course. #howVirginsdoit

Now, these things are all fun to talk about, but it's time to see what real guests are saying about the hotel. And for that, we head to TripAdvisor. Even though everyone knows to take TripAdvisor with a grain of salt (seriously awful reviews can never be trusted, neither can the gushing ones) it's still a place all guests go to when thinking about booking a hotel.

more ›

/ / / / /

Hyatt Centric South Beach Has Opened Up Reservations for Stays From....

February 25, 2015 at 12:21 PM | by | Comment (1)

UPDATE: A Hyatt Centric South Beach reps says the hotel will open in April but that the "spring inventory" has not been released yet. The hotel is working on a special opening package which they will release next week. Once we have those details, we will let you know how you can book a stay in April. Stay tuned.

The other week, we had an operative on the ground in South Beach who cruised by the forthcoming Hyatt Centric South Beach to check on the construction progress. Our operative's conclusion? April was going to be a tough opening date to make. And they were right.

Hyatt Centric South Beach, one of the first hotels of the new Hyatt Centric millennial-friendly brands to open, is now taking reservations from JUNE 1.

We found a room on that date for $239 a night for a 300-sq.ft. king bed with complimentary WiFi, 47" flatscreen HDTV, a tea and coffemaker, a minibar, an oversized desk with ergonomic chair and a Hyatt Plug Panel for all your gadget hookups.

more ›

/ / / /

The Peninsula Chicago to Get a Makeover, Inspired By Sister Hotels in Paris, Hong Kong and Shanghai

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 108 East Superior [map], Chicago, IL, United States, 60611
February 19, 2015 at 3:17 PM | by | Comments (0)

The Peninsula Chicago, which opened in 2001, is undergoing a guest room overhaul this year, perhaps to freshen up before new luxury hotels like LondonHouse and Nobu hit the scene. Details are sparse, but here’s what we know. All 339 rooms and suites will be redesigned, with the new décor inspired by the best elements of other Peninsula properties such as:

Accent details from the Peninsula Paris:

Distinct wood and leather finishes from the Peninsula Hong Kong;

Elegant color palettes from the Peninsula Shanghai:

Can you picture a combination of these features? Well, we can’t either but look forward to seeing the most likely beautiful result.

The hotel will up its game in the technology space as well: in-room proprietary Peninsula touch tablets will feature 11 different languages and will control everything in the room from the curtains to the Nespresso machine, plus complimentary long-distance calling via VOIP technology.

Peninsula Chicago enthusiasts, what would you like to see in the newly designed rooms? Do tell.

Peninsula Chicago enthusiasts, what would you like to see in the newly designed rooms? Do tell.

[Photos courtesy of Peninsula Hotels/HotelChatter]

/ / /

LondonHouse Coming to Chicago in 2016 (With a Tri-Level Rooftop, Too!)

Where: 360 North Michigan Avenue [map], Chicago, IL, United States
February 17, 2015 at 6:08 PM | by | Comments (5)

Yet another luxury hotel, LondonHouse, is set to open in Chicago in the spring of 2016 at the corner of North Michigan and Wacker Drive. Despite the name, the British are NOT coming.

Chicago-based Oxford Capital Group will open the property at the historic London Guarantee Building (hence the name) after a comprehensive renovation resulting in a high-design, 452-room lifestyle hotel with a new 22-story “modernist” glass tower designed by Goettsch Partners.

Per a press statement:

more ›