The WA Chicago is a quiet, friendly, comfortable home base for me when I'm in Chicago. I stayed there for the first time in October 2013, returned in November, and am returning again this December! :)
The location is convenient to so many things - Magnificent Mile shopping is basically outside your door; it's also easy to get to other places around town via a nearby Red Line stop, major bus routes (up and down Michigan Ave., Clark, Dearborn, etc.), and the WA's free house car when available. It's surrounded by hustle and bustle, but once you step inside the little courtyard, it's like you're entering another world of warmth and quiet. (Having the courtyard in front is also very convenient when being dropped off/picked up.)
I've stayed in a Deluxe and Astoria suite and both are very roomy. The bathroom is huge. The shower has great water pressure, and having the separate tub is a nice touch. The gas fireplace makes the living room really cozy. I never thought I cared about having a fireplace, but the one at the WA makes me want to put one in my own apartment. :)
I had learned of the hotel's no-tipping policy before I stayed there and thought it sounded nice, but I didn't realize *how* nice it would be until I actually stayed there. It's so refreshing to be helped by staffers who *never* have their hands out for tips. Staffers are generally very friendly, warm, and attentive to your needs. Having the house cars available is also great.
Is everything 100% perfect? No. The fitness room could be a little bigger and have a few more machines - at times, the treadmills were all in use. I also found it surprising that the housekeeping staff did not always vacuum the carpets each time they cleaned the room (a couple of times, I happened to be in the room doing some work while they came in and cleaned, so I was able to notice they didn't vacuum). The front desk could also be overwhelmed at times - sometimes there was a fairly long line. The bar also could be open later on Sunday nights.
The TV in the bathroom mirrors always took a while to work. At times, it was also confusing as to whether the house car was available or whether a taxi was coming. I also received macarons at turndown the first night and not any other nights - it would be a nice touch to always provide them.
However, overall, this is an incredibly comfortable and delightful hotel to stay at. It's like having your own very stylish apartment with a staff ready to meet your needs. I have felt well cared for both times I've stayed there. I look forward to returning in a few weeks!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The AAA Five-Diamond Waldorf Astoria Chicago(formerly The Elysian Hotel)is located in the heart of the prestigious Gold Coast neighborhood amognst the Magnificent Mile and Oak Street famed restaurants, retailers and lakefront. The award-winning 188-room hotel through innovative services and technologies, creates a new experience in luxury – energetic and fashion forward, warm and welcoming, and fresh and engaging. Amenities include a 14,000 square-foot spa & health club; 4,500 square feet of private event space; European-inspired bistro, Balsan; haute bar Bernard's. ... more less
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