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“Our second home” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Waldorf Astoria Chicago

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Waldorf Astoria Chicago
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   11 East Walton, Chicago, IL 60611 (Formerly Elysian Hotel Chicago) (Gold Coast)   |  
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Special Offer
$50 Summer Resort Credit
Ranked #6 of 169 hotels in Chicago
Chicago
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Our second home”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 11, 2013

Live in Chicago but spent about ten nites here due to some home renovations and thoroughly enjoyed the property. I can see how Hilton is letting this property fade and some of the originally beautiful fabrics and finishes are starting to get a bit nicked. Still a wonderful property and as a local, probably the best location in the city for access to Lake Michigan, shopping and the Loop for business. The fireplace is a wonderful aesthetic but frankly, it heats up the room so quickly, it never made sense to keep it going even on a cold April day. Bathrooms are huge and top notch -- very few hotels can compare to the scale of these rooms in general. Our service experience as "repeat" guests was fabulous -- always greeted by name, lots of attention paid to our dog (this hotel is very pet friendly), luggage was held between trips. When it's available, the house car is a nice ride to wherever you're going. Spa is gorgeous but the fitness center looks like an afterthought.

  • Stayed April 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WAChicago, General Manager at Waldorf Astoria Chicago, responded to this review, May 13, 2013
Dear MI_Vintner,

Thank you so much for sharing your feedback regarding your most recent long stay with us on TripAdvisor. We are very grateful because you chose to visit with us again, but most importantly, for letting us become your home away for home for a short period of time. It gives me great pleasure to read that you find our location convenient and all of the hotel amenities enjoyable, especially our Elysian Spa and our House Car service. Your kind remarks regarding our service team are highly appreciated and I will make sure to share them with the rest of the team. Your loyalty is truly valued. We can’t wait to welcome you, your family and your dog back, hopefully very soon!

Sincerely,
Richard R. Evanich
General Manager
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (239)
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English first
San Francisco, California,USA
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2013

Want to be treated like a Queen, stay at the Waldorf. Amazing rooms and the best service I've ever experienced. The room was so amazing, we spent lots of time relaxing. Love, love this place. The maid Gloria was so wonderful to us. Can't wait to go back.

Room Tip: Get a room on the highest floor possible. Busy area, can be noisy.
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  • Stayed May 2013, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WAChicago, General Manager at Waldorf Astoria Chicago, responded to this review, May 10, 2013
Dear sfheather,

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your feedback regarding your most recent stay with us on Trip Advisor. I am truly delighted to read that our team was able to make you feel like a queen. Your kind appraisal of our team is truly valued, especially your kind comments about Gloria. I will certainly share your remarks with the entire staff. Your loyalty is highly valued. We will look forward to welcoming you and your friends back, hopefully in the very near future!

Sincerely,
Richard R. Evanich
General Manager
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Madison, Wisconsin
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2013

The “good” at the Waldorf goes without saying. It’s a luxury hotel. They have luxury amenities; the spa is sparkling, the property is beautiful and people open doors for you. You didn’t need me to tell you that. The “not-so-good” – I feel this hotel rests on its laurels. I’ve heard the Elysian did not disappoint with its level of service. The Waldorf, however, does.

We chose the Waldorf for our two-year anniversary get-away. The hotel was aware of this, evidenced by the box of pistachio brittle with a note of congratulations. Pistachio brittle. It was disappointing. And not very good.

I realized I had forgotten my hairspray one morning. My husband called and asked to get some brought up. They informed him that they didn't have any, but could go buy us some. They really don’t stock hairspray?

Our privacy "button" was inadvertently activated one morning. We returned that evening to find our room had not been cleaned. A phone call to the front desk resulted in a promise that our room would be refreshed when we left for our 6:30 dinner reservation.
We returned 2 hours later to find our room exactly as we left it. After a second call to the front desk, we agreed to leave again while it was cleaned.

We returned at 10:30 pm to a clean, but incredibly warm room. We called the front desk , notifying them that the temperature had not budged from 76 degrees in 24 hours. A technician was called to the room and worked on the unit for about a half hour. He worked while my husband and I awkwardly waited in our pajamas, waiting for him to leave. Finally, at 11 pm, he assured us our room should feel noticeably cooler in about a half hour. A full hour later, there was no improvement. It was midnight, and I couldn’t sleep. I called the front desk to lodge a complaint. The staff’s responses were, “try opening your patio door, you have a Juliette balcony”, “we could send a fan”, “we could move you to a different room.” It goes without saying that I’d rather not leave my patio door wide open all night, listening to the street noise. Didn’t want the fan. And who on earth wants to move rooms at 12 in the morning? And, as if the heat weren’t bad enough, the beds… awful! I would know, I have a bad bed at home. The mattresses are firm and lumpy. The covers consist of a down comforter sandwiched between two sheets. At least we didn’t need the covers!

The next morning, I took my cupcake (purchased from the “cupcake ATM” across the street!) out of the refrigerator so it would be ready to eat when we came back later in the day. When we returned to the room, it was gone. I looked all over the room. I checked every trashcan. No box, no wrapper, no crumbs - nothing! I even had to stop and think if I had eaten it before we left. It unnerves me to think that someone had entered our room for no good reason and then took something. I’m still wondering what else I might be missing that I haven’t discovered yet.

Our stay was pleasant, yet filled with petty inconveniences that put a damper on our enjoyment. At least they kept the no tipping policy.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WAChicago, Director of Hotel Services at Waldorf Astoria Chicago, responded to this review, May 9, 2013
Dear Jacilyn A,

Thank you so much for sharing your feedback regarding your recent stay with us and for choosing the Waldorf Astoria Chicago to celebrate such a special occasion. I am delighted to read that you found our hotel beautiful, with luxury amenities and our Elysian Spa sparkling. I regret, however, to learn about the inconsistencies in our level of service you experienced during your visit, especially pertaining the Housekeeping services and uncomfortable temperature in your room.

We truly value your feedback, for comments like yours enable our continuous pursuit of excellence in everything we do. Unfortunately, these valuable lessons have come at your expense. I would like the opportunity to personally apologize and discuss how we can have you stay with us again. I can be contacted at kathryn.m.day@waldorfastoria.com, or alternatively, my direct number is (312) 646-1404.

Apologetically,

Kathryn Day
Director of Hotel Services
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Seattle, Washington
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2013

We visit Chicago several times a year and decided to try the Waldorf this 5-day trip to Chicago, even though we LOVE the Park Hyatt, our favorite Chicago hotel for many years.

The Waldorf room was beautiful, large sitting area, fireplace, spacious. This is where the luxury ended. Service was very lax, food in restaurant and room service awful.

For a five star and supposedly the “best hotel in Chicago” we are so disappointed. Our room had many small issues that were annoying. Clock did not work, we had to call 3 times for a functional clock. A light went out in bathroom and was not automatically replaced- after 2 days we called and someone came to replace. When our room was made up, drinking glasses were not replaced- every day we had to call for new glasses. Toilet seat very loose- we had to call to get it fixed. Some days we received our complimentary newspaper, some days we did not. The TV remote battery must have been low because we had to stand one foot from TV to get it to work. We ordered white toast from room service for breakfast, and were called back to say they were out of white bread. Really? How does that happen? Seems like an employee could run to the bakery around the corner and get a loaf of white bread to fill in before their regular bread delivery- this is what 5 stars do. In short, being a guest at this hotel requires a lot of work from the guest just to have the little details attended to, which all should happen unnoticed.

The hotel knew we were displeased and sent an apology note and phone call, but no little plate with a couple of strawberries, or chocolates with the apology- a couple of complimentary berries or cookies goes a long way to smooth things over- which is what 5 stars normally do.

In summary, room beautiful BUT service awful, management seems disorganized, we never felt pampered, little details falling through cracks, we needed to call and prompt staff to replace glasses etc. This hotel has a great room but the food is so bad, you can’t eat there, which cancels out the good room.

Its back to the Park Hyatt when we visit Chicago next- our true home away from home, where every little detail is attended to, food is amazing and you feel like a pampered guest and one of the family , all at the same time.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WAChicago, Director of Hotel Services at Waldorf Astoria Chicago, responded to this review, May 9, 2013
Dear Gretel8,

Thank you so much for sharing your feedback regarding your recent stay with us. I am pleased to read that you found comfort in your room; however, I am truly disappointed and concerned to read that the rest of your experience fell far below your expectations. I truly apologize for all of the inconveniences you went through during your visit, especially with regard to the lack of attention to detail from our Engineering, Housekeeping and In Room Dining departments. I can assure you that the level of service you experienced does not reflect the Waldorf Astoria’s service standards.

I would like the opportunity to personally apologize and discuss with you how we can amend our mistakes and have you and your family visit with us again. I can be contacted at kathryn.m.day@waldorfastoria.com, or alternatively, my direct number is (312) 646-1404.

I look forward to the opportunity to regain your faith in our ability to properly serve you.

Apologetically,

Kathryn Day
Director of Hotel Services
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Bloomington, Indiana
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

From the moment we arrived at this beautiful hotel, we felt very well taken care of. Everyone everywhere made us feel welcome and appreciated. Our room was exceptionally clean and beautiful, with every amenity at your fingertips. We especially loved the dressing area with two closets, and the huge wet bar with assortment of drinks and snacks. Room service each morning for breakfast was fast and delicious - our favorites were the fruit plate and eggs benedict. We also ordered room service the night we arrived, we were tired and hungry from driving, and the food was cooked to perfection and arrived quickly. We enjoyed drinks and appetizers in the hotel lounge, which was intimate yet inviting. We didn't have an opportunity to visit the spa, but the hotel elevator stopped on that floor a few times, and each time I peeked inside and wished I had time to book a service during our stay! This hotel is in the heart of Chicago's Gold Coast area. We absolutely understand why this hotel was voted the 2013 traveler's choice for luxury on Trip Advisor last year, and I hope we can stay again soon!

Room Tip: The Waldorf Astoria Suite was spacious and made us feel pampered in every way.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WAChicago, General Manager at Waldorf Astoria Chicago, responded to this review, May 7, 2013
Dear ilona06,

Thank you so much for taking the time to post your review of your recent stay with us on TripAdvisor. I am truly pleased to read that the team made you feel welcome and pampered and that you enjoyed all of the unique amenities in your suite and hotel, especially our In Room Dining service. I will share your kind remarks with regard to your dining experiences with our Executive Chef and his team, for I know they will be so pleased to read that you and your travel companion truly enjoyed their culinary creations. I hope that next time you visit with us you have the opportunity to enjoy some of the incredibly relaxing services at the Elysian Spa. We truly value your loyalty and can’t wait to our next opportunity to serve you, hopefully in the not distant future.

Sincerely,
Richard R. Evanich
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Budapest, Hungary
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

Again, a perfect stay of 6 nights in a suite of Waldorf Astoria.... At check in, we were offered to get a coffee maker and a kettle in the room without asking. Also, we were asked when the room service and the turn down service shall be done - it was something I was never asked before in other hotels. The interior, the amenities, the speed of service, the cleanliness, the politeness of staff - all in order and perfect. A real flawless stay - in THE Best Hotel if Chicago, if not the whole US.....

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WAChicago, General Manager at Waldorf Astoria Chicago, responded to this review, May 7, 2013
Dear Peter M,

Thank you for sharing once more your candid feedback regarding your recent stay at the Waldorf Astoria Chicago on TripAdvisor. I am so delighted to read that you visited with us again and that you had for a second time a pleasant stay. Your appraisal of our team, services and facilities is highly appreciated. I will certainly share it with the entire staff as I know they will be equally pleased to learn of your kind remarks and recognition of their efforts to meet our guests' needs. We truly value your patronage and loyalty and can’t wait to our next opportunity to serve you when your travels next bring you into Chicago.

Sincerely,
Richard R. Evanich
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

This hotel was more than we ever dreamed of. We traveled from San Diego to Chicago for a winter vacation. We had always wanted to travel to Chicago and with the amazing reviews the Waldorf Astoria Chicago had, this was the only place we wanted to stay and it was worth every penny! We stayed Wednesday through Saturday and had an amazing time! We used the CTA to get from the airport to our hotel which was cost effective, but sort of a struggle with our luggage. We arrived to the hotel Wednesday afternoon and were greeted by the most amazing staff! We had booked a king suite and were immediate upgraded to a one bedroom suite. The hotel was jaw dropping! We never wanted to leave our room. Our favorite aspects of the room was the fireplace in the room, the bathroom (equipped with a TV in the mirror) and the super comfortable bed. Now to the staff, Edward, the concierge was amazing! He recommended the most amazing restaurants and went out of his way to help us with anything we needed. Thanks Edward! Spa and gym access was included daily and the amenities were just as astounding as the rest of the hotel. During our four days at the hotel, we encountered the nicest staff we have ever come across. The hotel is at a great location! It is walking distance from all of the shops and restaurants. The hotel sits one or two blocks over from the top of magnificent mile and we felt very safe walking everywhere around our hotel.
The only “bad”, (if I can even consider it that) experience we had at the hotel was the breakfast we had in the restaurant. For both of us to eat (2 breakfast entrée’s, 1 side of potatoes, 1 coffee and 1 water) was $65.00 which we felt was a little over priced for breakfast.
Unrelated to the hotel, we decided to take a cab back to the airport, as we were returning to the airport late on a cold Saturday evening and felt safer in a cab. It cost us $45.00 rather than the $10 CTA fare. The staff at the hotel helped us get a cab to the airport and that was a much better experience!
Overall, we had an amazing experience at the Waldorf Astoria Chicago. The hotel made our trip! When we return one day, we will absolutely return to this hotel! Every aspect of this hotel was as classy as could be, from the lobby, to the elevators, the lounge, to rooms, and of course… the staff.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WAChicago, General Manager at Waldorf Astoria Chicago, responded to this review, May 7, 2013
Dear Brittany S,

Thank you for choosing the Waldorf Astoria Chicago for your winter vacation and for sharing your feedback regarding your stay with us on TripAdvisor. I am so pleased to read that you and your travel companion truly enjoyed your suite and the various unique amenities our suites and hotel have to offer. I will share you kind remarks pertaining to Edward's passion to serve with him and the entire staff.

The entire team at the Waldorf Astoria Chicago is truly happy to read that your stay with us made your trip to Chicago more memorable. We can’t wait to welcome you back when your travels next bring you to Chicago, hopefully sooner than next winter.

Sincerely,
Richard R. Evanich
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Waldorf Astoria Chicago

Address: 11 East Walton, Chicago, IL 60611 (Formerly Elysian Hotel Chicago)
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > Gold Coast , Near North Side
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 169 hotels in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Waldorf Astoria Chicago 5*
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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