The Hilton O'Hare is the large semicircular black hotel located between the arrival terminal and the parking garage at Chicago O'Hare Airport. It has, for many years, offered unmatched convenience (I think it was one of the first hotels build on airport grounds) and has maintained a standard for room quality and service that remains first-rate. Despite a few issues, this is still the choice for business travelers booking connections or airport-meetings in Chicago.
The hotel is a short walk from the terminal, though a connecting tunnel at Terminal 2. You have to go into the terminal from the train, then down an elevator and back the way you came through a tunnel to get to the hotel: there is no surface access (follow the signs)..Once you arrive at the elevators, go up to the Lobby to check in (there were a number of people confused about that who were milling around the lower levels).
Check-in (and check out) are poor, so allow extra time. There is a narrow lobby with long lines the length of the glass front: too few clerks and a long check-in process (no better for Hilton Honors at their desk) delayed most people up to half an hour getting a room assignment (much grumbling in the lines from international travelers trying to get a bed and get to sleep). The restaurant on the same floor is pretty standard: a breakfast buffet that is large but expensive and a menu that quickly exceeds the price of the buffet if you go a la carte. The best strategy is to take an included breakfast coupon if you can get it: they range from simple continental credit to buffet credit. Otherwise, plan on about $20 per head.
The room, on the other hand, is lovely. The bod and the room are large, and include great touches like a senseo-style coffee-maker with plenty of packets to brew. The bathroom has a lot of high end toiletries, and the water is hot and abundant. The in-room TV has the usual dizzying array of cable TV and movie channels: there is Wireless Internet for $10 per day add-on (seems a bit steep, and no breaks for Hilton Honors members). There is a shopping arcade and fitness center in the lower level: the fitness center was always very busy when I passed by and the patrons are very toned: it's a place to see and be seen, rather than one to exercise in your grubbies.
The Chicago "L" train has a terminal below the hotel which goes directly into the heart of the city on the Blue Line. It's about a 45-minute ride each way and costs about $3: tickets are available at the station. Make sure that you know where you are getting off before you get on: there are few maps on the trains themselves: see, for example, http://www.transitchicago.com/maps/maps/2006D.html .
The best stop seems to be Clark, which lets you out a couple of blocks from the Theater district and the associated restaurants and shopping. Make sure to mark your way back, too: the subway entrance is not well marked and we got lost trying to retrace our steps back.
Overall, the hotel experience is very upscale in the rooms, less-so when you hit the lobby and restaurants. Still, it's convenient, and they host a good meeting in the second-floor meeting-room areas (but too few bathrooms...another story...)
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- Also Known As:
- Hilton Chicago o`Hare Airport Hotel Chicago
- Hilton Hotel Chicago
- Hilton Chicago Ohare Airport Hotel
- Chicago Hilton