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“The Most Beautiful Hotel in Chicago, A Few Negatives” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The Palmer House Hilton

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The Palmer House Hilton
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   17 East Monroe Street, Box 75845, Chicago, IL 60603 (The Loop)   |  
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Ranked #85 of 174 Hotels in Chicago
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Top Contributor
95 reviews 95 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
48 helpful votes 48 helpful votes
“The Most Beautiful Hotel in Chicago, A Few Negatives”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2013

The Palmer House Hilton is absolutely stunning - pictures really cannot do the lobby justice. You simply have to see it. The rooms are beautifully decorated (marble tile in the bathroom, nice curtains, soft linens). All of the common areas are just as nice - pictures of classic acts line the walls in the hallways.

Aside from the decoration, other positives include the bed itself (very comfortable) and the location - perfect for shopping on State Street, a short walk from Millennium Park and the Art Institute, and a short bus ride to the Field Museum and the Science and Industry Museum. Magnificent Mile shopping is also a fairly short walk away (about 10 minutes).

Unfortunately, we also experienced a few negatives. The Palmer House does charge an early check-in fee, which is not advertised on the website ($25). There is also a late check-out fee ($50).The rooms are not sound-proofed - my in-laws were in the room next door when they called on the telephone, and we could have just listened to them through the walls. We could also hear everything going on in the hallway (a lot of folks with small children on our floor). Wireless is only free in the lobby or the business lounge - you must pay for it in the room. Toilets are low-flow and clog easily. The shower curtain was also short in our room (though it was not in my in-laws' room). Housekeeping comes around fairly early (around 8) and is fairly aggressive about getting in if you do not answer immediately.

Aside from the negatives, I would still recommend this hotel - with all of the history this hotel has seen, it's worth the stay. The location and beauty of the hotel trump a lot of the negatives.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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5,188 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Bettendorf, Iowa, USA
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 3, 2013

We got a decent rate to begin with (under $100) and decided to be put on a list for a $9 upgrade to a higher floor. When we arrived, we were offered an "executive" room for an additional $36. It was on the 23rd floor, accessible by special elevator, included snacks, hors'doevers(sp?) and breakfast. Sounds good,right? The "snacks" consisted of apples.That's all (altho soda was available). The hors'doevers included some salad-type thing, chicken skewers and ravioli. Breakfast was cold cereal,some oatmeal, amd a variety of bread and rolls.
The worst part? The entire floor was packed with families with little kids. Running - all over. No place to sit, ever. I swear those people invited all their friends and families up to the floor for the freebies. We had to return to our room (23-119) to be able to sit and eat. Also - we had to go back 3 times before they had coffee.

The room itself was fine - although not much better than their regular rooms (we had a nice view of the buildings and rooftops next to us - and the sound of the elevated trains all night).
IF we stay here again, we will NOTpay extra for the inconveniences we experienced.

Oh - when we checked out, no one asked about our stay or I would have told them what happened. I have a feeling they already knew and did not want to deal with it.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Schaumburg
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

Our room was small but very nice. Looked to be recently updated. We were in town for a play at the Bank of America theatre. Hotel is about a block or so down the street from the theatre and across the street from a couple of nice resturants. Had cocktails in the lobby bar, waiter very nice and efficient. Had dinner at the Italian Village. Meal very good and the waiter made sure we were served and finished in time to attend the play.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Mexico
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

Fantastic location in the middle of the Loop! Major attractions within walking distance of the hotel, bus stops and subway right outside the door; with comfy and spacious rooms. It's a truly historic hotel with a magnificent lobby and friendly service, the architecture is what you should expect from a great hotel in Chicago. Just one thing: the pool is quite small and full of children in Spring break!!

All in all, highly recommended!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Minneapolis, Minnesota
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

The location of the Palmer house is perfect to walk to pretty much any destination on your list in the Chicago Loop area. We walked to the Shedd Aquarium, MIllenium Park, the Magnificent Mile and Navy Pier. We never pulled out our car. The lobby is beautiful and has a great retro feel. We had 2 rooms for our extended family to stay for the weekend. The room my husband, myself and our 3 year old stayed in had 2 double bed and a nice big sitting area. Our only complaint was the bathroom didn't feel updated at all. The shower head was small and water pressure was low. It was clean though and the beds were comfy. Also, there is no fridge in the room, so we couldn't keep any left over food, or drinks for the kids cold. We visited on Easter weekend which we thought might not be busy but it was packed everywhere we went. So it was nice to come back our hotel to just hang out. There is also great food at Miller's Pub right next door or the Corner Bakery for breakfast right outside.

Room Tip: 2 Double Bed Rooms have a big sitting area, the rooms with one King bed were much smaller. Use Spot...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Alcester, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

Im not used to posh 5* hotels but i was amazed, the most incredible hotel i've ever stayed in. The background music made me feel like i was in a movie, all the staff were professional, friendly and polite. Rooms were incredible & a great location. Only place to stay in Chicago!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Saint Paul
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 2, 2013

a Grand Dame, but it is really starting to show. Lousy pool, high priced internet additional, daytime concierge is a jerk and she makes sure you know your questions are beneath her, tiny bathrooms. A great location, and well cleaned.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with Hilton Hotels & Resorts

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Additional Information about The Palmer House Hilton

Address: 17 East Monroe Street, Box 75845, Chicago, IL 60603
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > The Loop
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#22 Spa Hotel in Chicago
#43 Luxury Hotel in Chicago
#54 Family Hotel in Chicago
#70 Romantic Hotel in Chicago
#77 Business Hotel in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Palmer House Hilton 4*
Number of rooms: 1640
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
North America’s most established hotel, the Palmer House Hilton first opened its doors in 1871 and has remained the place to "see and be seen" in downtown Chicago. We continue evolving to serve you with the latest conveniences and comforts in meetings, accommodations and dining - a hip and historic blend of modern nuances and Chicago cultural significance. Whether you’re holding a gala in the famed Empire Room or an intimate gathering in one of our hospitality suites, your event is sure to be a success. Here, you’ll be the host in the Chicago hotel that’s been the venue of choice for celebrities, politicians, and royalty for more than a century.When you come to the Palmer House Hilton, you don’t just stay here. You live here—even if it’s only for a night. That’s why all of our guest rooms and suites have just the right touches to make you feel right at home. You’ll sleep well on our Hilton Serenity Dream bed featuring a plush top mattress and crisp linens, lathering up with Peter Thomas Roth bath products, perceptual service and a full host of amenities to keeping you connected – from flat screen HD televisions, wired and wireless high-speed internet to alarm clocks with auxiliary ports, you’ll find everything you need to rest easy. Lockwood Restaurant, your Farm to Fork, AAA 4 Diamond destination open for breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as afternoon tea. The Lobby Bar at Lockwood is a favorite for locals and travelers alike for craft beers and craft cocktails with Palmer House private reserves and labels. Potter’s is the hip spot to enjoy a retro mix of perfectly poured libations and delectable light fare while reminiscing about the hotel’s history. The hotel is walking distance to the Blue Line and the Orange Line “L” stations for quick transport to O’Hare International Airport and Midway Airport, respectively. The Palmer House Hilton is steps to all the action along State Street including Macy’s, Nordstrom Rack, American Apparel, H&M, Block 37 Mall and the Chicago Theatre. The hotel is also a short walk to The Art Institute, Joffrey Ballet, Cadillac Theatre, Jeweler’s Row, Millennium Park, John G. Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum and Adler Planetarium. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Palmer House Hilton Hotel Chicago
Hilton Hotel Chicago
Hilton Hotel Palmer
Palmer House Chicago
Chicago Palmer House Hilton
Palmer House Hilton Chicago
Palmer Hilton House
Hilton Chicago
Chicago Hilton

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