- Reviews: 715
..: picking a hotel
Try to pick a hotel near the Blue line if coming by airplane because it will be easier for you to get to the airport. Also the hotel should be near a stop where there is an elevator. The downtown area is best but if you can not afford then consider Belmont Avenue which is fully accessible. This area has a lot of shops that satisfies those of you who like off the beaten path.
- Reviews: 4356
Various: Lodging in Wicker Park/Bucktown
For those people who would rather stay in a neighborhood than staying in the tourist district downtown, there are a few B&Bs in the Wicker Park/Bucktown neighborhood of Chicago. It's an easy ride into downtown via the el, there are a lot of interesting restaurants, bar and shops. Time Out publishes a nice annual guide to Wicker Park and Bucktown
Here are the B&Bs that I've read about in this neighborhood, obviously living here I have no need to stay at a hotel or B&B but all three seem to have very positive reviews on booking.com and Trip Advisor.
House of Two Urns 1239 N. Greenview Avenue
Ray's Bucktown Bed and Breakfast, 2144 N. Leavitt Street
Wicker Park Inn, 1329 N. Wicker Avenue
Two of the three list free parking which most hotels in Chicago do not offer, I didn't see mention of free parking for Ray's.
- Reviews: 574
theWit: Great new hotel in the Loop.
One word describes our stay at theWit - Terrific!
The hotel just opened in May 2009 and is modern, stylish and has a great vibe. It's located in the loop area, very convenient to theaters, restaurants and tourist sites.
The staff were all friendly and helpful. We were very impressed by the service provided. This is not an old stuffy hotel.
The rooms are very spacious and well appointed. Ours was a corner view room that had a sitting room, separate bedroom and a large spa bathroom. The sitting room had a couch, chair and 42" flat screen TV. The bedroom had a very comfortable king size bed, a lounger and another big screen tv. The bathroom had a spa tub and a separate stand up shower. For those who need space, there was also three closets plus drawers for storage.
Did we like it, yes. Would we recommend it, yes. Will we go back, you bet!
We had a great view of the Chicago River from our room. Great to watch the boats go by, especially at dusk.
The hotel has a very popular bar/lounge on the roof called theRoof. It's an open air bar with fire pits and a kitchen for small plate food. Beware, it gets packed quickly and is very trendy.
Our room also had a kitchenette with a refrigerator and microwave.
- Reviews: 1
Avenue Hotel: Great place to getaway
My boyfriend and I stayed at this hotel for one night and had a great experience. We live in Chicago and occasionally enjoy getting away for a night or two in a hotel downtown. I would consider the Avenue Hotel a chique boutique hotel. It was modern, and yet extremely comfortable not to mention in an excellent location that is walking distance to everything important like shopping, restaurants, bars etc. The staff was very friendly and gave us an incredible room with a view of the city. No matter how long you live here you never get tired of the skyline at night. I would definitely recommend coming here!
location, location, location. Great staff
- Reviews: 707
Belden-Stratford Hotel: Art Deco Gem in Lincoln Park!
Ian, my son, and I stayed here this past spring (May 2009) and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. It's a gorgeous art deco building with lovely detailing inside that remind me of the Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza downtown Cincinnati.
I paid $195/night for a 2-bedroom apartment that included kitchen, living room, more than ample closet and drawer space, iron/ironing board, safe, and hair dryer. Downstairs is a breakfast area for Continental breakfast (including croissants, bagels, and oatmeal) as well as a spa, workout area, and drycleaners (warning: NOT OPEN on Sundays or holidays).
Coffee supplies in the kitchen are well-stocked daily, the shower pressure is fantastic and the water hot (if you need it) and the hotel supplies lovely smelling soap (oatmeal-scented), shower gel, shampoo, shower caps, and even needle & thread if you need it (just inquire at the front desk).
It's less than a $15 cab ride from Union Station to this area of Lincoln Park. I believe we paid less than $9 to get to Joe's Stone Crab downtown.
Our room was on the 15th floor and afforded lovely views over Diversey Harbor.
Across the street is the fabulous & free Lincoln Park Zoo! We loved it! Please see my Lincoln Park Zoo tip in the Things to Do section.
One of the best budget bistros I've ever dined at is located right in this hotel, Mon Ami Gabi. Ian even avers that his steak here was THE BEST he'd ever eaten (even better than Joe's Stone Crab)!
Lou Malnati's (my favorite deep-dish Chicago pizza) delivers here as does Ranalli's, a long-time Chicago pizza joint that serves a thinner crust pizza.
The #22 (Clark) bus runs along Clark street downtown past Congress Pkwy (near Buckingham Fountain) and north through Lincoln Park, just past Wrigley Field and to the Green Mill (Uptown Poetry Slam). The #151 (Sheridan) bus has a stop at Fullerton & Stockton or at various points along Lincoln Park Zoo.
We loved it so much here, that we decided if we ever won the lottery we'd love to own one of the apartments in this hotel!
Please look at my travelogue for more photos:
Photos: May (Memorial Day Weekend) 2009
- Reviews: 707
Arlington House Hostel: Charming Location in Lincoln Park!
After I swarped our kids off to NYC for Labor Day weekend, Mr. Connolly surprised me with a trip to Chicago! Mind you, we hadn't traveled since our honeymoon in 1992 so he was a bit trepidatious in making the travel arrangements. I backed off from making any plans and let him take control, merely reminding him that because Chicago is the 3rd largest city in the US and also smack-dab in the center of the country it makes for a very popular conference city!
Well, he waited a bit too late and we ended up staying at the youth hostel in Lincoln Park, Arlington House Hostel. The one on Congress has only dorm rooms and the hostel I normally stay at had filled their one single room. We were very happy about finding accommodations here, especially considering it was in the famous Lincoln Park area, an area likened to Greenwich Village in New York, with its winding cobblestoned streets, nightlife, restaurants, and bars! Plus, there are very few hotels in this area (the Day's Inn seems to be perpetually booked - couldn't book for this trip, the one with my son, nor a tentative girls' trip).
Then the snag - we read reviews about this place on TripAdvisor.com which contained horror stories of BEDBUGS (I know)! Turns out we didn't need to worry because we had nary a problem with any sort of critters in our room.
Unfortunately, the hostel itself is not very charming (as you can see from the photos). Terrible '70s bedspreads and ugly concrete floors. We did find ourselves lucky to have our own sink & toilet, a rarity in a hostel.
One of the Lou Malnati's is located in this area and delivers to the various hotels in the area. Also, Charlie Trotters, considered one of THE best restaurants in the US (Anthony Bourdain loves the place) is located in Lincoln Park.
Nearby on Clark Street, parking is available at Lincoln Park Supermarket (please see tip in my General Tips).
Also, go to my Lincoln Park area travelogue to get an idea of what this area has to offer - gorgeous place. I would live here in a heartbeat. On a recent trip, I even stopped back in this area to look at some of the apartments available on W. Arlington, a charming tree-lined winding street which reminds me very much of the Chelsea area of New York!
Photos: November 2008
- Reviews: 284
ALOFT CHICAGO O'HARE: GREAT Airport Hotel
For a stay needed near the airport, this is IT!! GREAT RATEs--we were fortunate to get a limited-time offer; not sure if it wass due to being a new hotel and/or economy problems, but our rate was onlyUS$68.50 INCLD Taxes! (I just checked their website and the room is now US$135 incld taxes; so the rate we got has passed, but it is still much less expensive than most other hotels and has absolutely everything one needs; is new, clean and fresh!)
They are very close to the airport, with SHUTTLE, the rm was a 315sqft room, Deluxe, w/2 huge beds, sooo comfortable and with wonderful bedding (I wanted to stay for days), big flat screen TV with many selections incld pay-movies, safe in the closet, 2 phones (one portable), FREE WIFI and good desk space, large bathroom with separate room for toilet and oversized shower; coffee and tea-making facility and a fridge. No restaurant, but a breakfast bar available. Nice large lobby with many comfortable seatings and large TV.
EVERYTHING needed by the traveler at great rates! A totally smoke-free hotel!! Very courteous, helpful staff. Our room was exactly like what is on their website; a member of STARWOOD GROUP!
- Reviews: 1647
Four Points by Sheraton Chicago O'Hare Airport: Airport Hotel
Selecting a hotel at the airport is such an oxymoron. You wanna get some sleep but the airplanes coming and going are noisy and keep you awake. We happen to be flying into O'Hare at midnight and our connecting flight wasn't leaving until 7am the next morning which meant arrival to our destination at 9am. I didn't want to waste that day with being tired so I thought it would be wise to try to get some sleep. For the $86 overnight stay, it was worth it! The hotel is not too close to the airport, maybe 10-15 minutes away. The airport shuttle for the hotel arrives at the airport every 20-30 minutes, 24 hours a day. So, I didn't have to make special arrangements.
The hotel itself is a no frills kind of place. It was clean and all the amenities worked. The comfort of the beds was so-so. I guess I should say I was able to sleep.
- Reviews: 335
Quality Inn: park 'n Fly from here for $100
I booked this thru the www.parknfly.com site. I stayed here on a friday night, then they drove me to the airport, and I kept my car in their surface parking lot for 10 days. Then they picked me up at the airport and drove me back. Cost $99 for one night to sleep, and parked for free.
Hotel was nice too, free breakfast. Staff was very helpful.
free shuttle to O'Hare, runs every hour or so.
- Reviews: 4356
Various: Family friendly lodging
Family friendly lodging is a topic that comes up frequently, I've never stayed at any of these hotels but these are some of the places I see frequently mentioned that have multiple bedrooms and amenities such as microwaves and refrigerators plus sometimes free breakfast.
Hampton Inn and Suites.
I've also seen VRBO listed as a place to accomodate more than 2 people, these are basically short term apartment rentals
- Reviews: 335
Motel-6 -Elk Grove: About as cheap as you can get.
If you don't want to pay $100 minimum downtown, you can stay out at the end of the subway lines. This one is near O'Hare airport, on the blue line. The subway gets you downtown in about 45 minutes. There are about a dozen in the Chicago area.
If you book over the internet it's only $35.99/night. Add $2-3 for a full day of parking at Cumberland train station and $4 for a r/t train ticket.
- Reviews: 3530
Embassy Suites O'Hare: Close to the airport
I know it's a bad photo, but it was the only one that I took on an October, 2004 business meeting trip. It is a 6th floor balcony shot of their enclosed central Atrium restaurant area taken in the poor morning light, showing where breakfast was being served.
The hotel itself is quite nice and I ended up with a sizeable suite that cost US$202 with all taxes included. It so happened that this was where the one-day meeting was booked.
Their breakfast options were a bit better than some that I have experienced. You could either have the standard buffet line-up or you could ask their on-duty chef to cook you an omelette or other such egg combination while you waited.
The room had high-speed internet connection or dial-up with the first hour free (using your 1-800 number) and then 10 cents/minute thereafter. The hotel has a free shuttle-bus service to the airport. At the Ground Transportation area inside the airport building, just follow the big Red Arrows in the floor and they will lead you to the shuttle bus area - wait at Post #15.
- Reviews: 335
Chicago O'hare Garden Hotel: Nice place, walkable to the train
Single room, with free breakfast included. Brekkie wasn't much to write home about, but it was free and ok. Bathroom was clean, towels and free soap and shampoo. Free parking in the lot right in front. 2 nights cost me $136.
You can walk to the train ~ 10 minute walk, only 1 bad intersection to cross. Or you can talk the free shuttle which leaves every 30 minutes.
- Reviews: 1
Acres Motel: alderman pat o'connor stayed here!
thanks to pat o'connor we have 2.6 million in our pockets! you gotta love eminent domain!!!!
no whores here
- Reviews: 1
Purple Hotel: Deader than a Doornail
When I drove by it about 5 months ago, it looked to me to be long,looooong closed. If not, I wouldn't stay there; weeds growing in an empty parking lot. Grow up,website. PS, looked like it was a notelmotel, not a hotel. DUMP CITY.
Also, there is a stunning pension not listed on this site, the latter of which I would not trust at all.
--An Ivy League Evanston resident.
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