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“Unhappy made it right” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Lincoln, a Joie de Vivre Hotel

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Hotel Lincoln, a Joie de Vivre Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1816 North Clark, Chicago, IL 60614 (Near North Side)   |  
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15% off room rate
Ranked #26 of 174 Hotels in Chicago
GreenLeadersBronze level
Appleton
Top Contributor
119 reviews 119 reviews
39 hotel reviews
Reviews in 52 cities Reviews in 52 cities
68 helpful votes 68 helpful votes
“Unhappy made it right”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2013

I was really, REALLY unhappy with Hotel Lincoln. Reserved lake view room and got fire escape view room instead. They did give me a substantial credit and made it right. If you make your reservation on line you must call them and make sure it is Lakeview. I also recommend you call them a week before and then again two days or the day before, keep bugging them to make sure you are getting the room you ordered.
This is a great location, Zoo and Conservatory are easy walking distance, can bike ride the beach. The roof top bar, J Parker, is spectacular, thank you Angelo. The restaurant was also outstanding.
We would stay here again, but I would not trust them that I was getting the room I ordered until I saw it!

Room Tip: If you reserve on-line call to make sure your are getting room you thought you reserved.
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Green Features: They did have recycling containers in the rooms, that was all I saw.
  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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803 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (294)
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English first
Mystic, Connecticut
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2013

Hotel Lincoln was the perfect place for a wedding weekend in Chicago. Lincoln Park is a great area, and I really enjoyed being able to walk (and short cab ride) to some great bars and restaurants. The hotel has an upscale hip design feel to it. Other people have complained about the rooms, but mine was spacious and clean. The rooftop bar offers an amazing view, but the drinks are pricey. The wedding I attended had a post-wedding brunch on the rooftop the next day and the food was pretty good. Other than that though, I did not try any of the food at the hotel. There is a coffee shop off of the lobby which was convenient for me as a caffeine addict. My only complaint was that the couch/pull out bed mattress was worn and thin and somewhat uncomfortable...the king bed though was nice (we had 4 girls in one room). The front desk was VERY friendly and helpful, Glenn in particular was exceptional. I would definitely come back.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Concord, North Carolina
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 15, 2013

The first thing you need to understand is that this is a boutique hotel. So it doesn't have all the regular amenities. I always equate boutique hotels with smaller rooms, but maybe that's just me. Yes, the rooms are small by American standards, but totally sufficient. My one and only complaint was that the sink was really small & I kept splashing water on the floor when I tried to wash my face. But in the grand scheme of things, it wasn't a big deal. The room was clean, it was in a safe & accessible location and the staff was friendly. That meets all of my criteria for a good hotel. We didn't have any problems with the temperature of the room, with light coming in at night or the noise of the A.C.

You can tell that this hotel is "trendy" and "hipster" but we never felt out of place and we are over 30.
We travel to Chicago quite often and would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Liverpool, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

The staff are very well trained and are all friendly and helpful.
However, the rooms still have a feel of a cheap budget hotel. The size of the rooms makes working in the room difficult if two people are present. The AC was very noisy and after three nights with little sleep I was ready to leave.

The roof top bar was very crowded but worth a visit to see the view. However the drinks were expensive and we were told we would have to move from our seats in 30 mins as they had been reserved, so it wasn't a relaxing experience.

Breakfast isn't provided in the price and we found a wonderful place to eat in the park opposite at the patio cafe. The food was excellent with great views and peaceful setting overlooking the lake.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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New England
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

Read this as 2+.

First and foremost, Chicago is the best city in the USA and everyone should visit!

I tried to like this place, I really did, but I just couldn't. To be fair, I was traveling on business and this is not a business traveler-friendly hotel.

When I arrived to the hotel, I pulled up to the valet stand and no one was there. Sort of problematic since valet is $50/night plus tips. I sat in my car for 5 minutes and then I just went into the lobby to check in and to alert them that there was no valet. The man behind the desk (who was probably the only staff member I met there who was over 30) was very nice - checked me in and found the valet.

The room: other negative reviews complain about the size, but it was in line with other boutique hotels. But, unlike top boutique hotels, it wasn't comfortable. A top hotel can make a space work; this space does not work. If you're unfortunate enough to be in a south or west-facing room, your room will be hot. Even if you draw the shades and set the A/C to the coldest setting. The room will trap the heat from the sun. Oh and if when/if you shower, the shower is tiny (be prepared to bang your elbows on the walls) and when you get out, the room will trap the humidity as well. For hours.

There's no room service (not at all a huge issue, but something to consider when booking). The (free) internet is slow. Like other people have written, the gap at the bottom of the door lets in a ton of light (easily solved by putting the throw pillow in front of the door). And unless you're in an east-facing room (or maybe north? or due south?) your view will either be the unglamorous suburbs or the fire escape.

The most complicated part of my review has to do with the staff. They were so nice - even during episodes of incompetence. I was there during the Chicago Marathon and was notified (on Friday) that valet couldn't access my car on Sunday morning - disclosure: my own fault, should have researched before booking. The notification read that I should talk to the front desk about alternative parking options. Cool. The front desk's response? 'Uhhh...park on the street a few blocks away.' When I asked the valet about specific alternative parking, I was given the same vague response. But everyone I spoke with was so pleasant.

Perhaps it was the busy weekend, perhaps it was because I'm not the biggest fan of boutique hotels,or perhaps I'm right, but I didn't gel with this place. I think it's important to note that I'm 31, and over three days I only interacted with one or two front-desk staff members (over three days, and I spoke to at least ten representatives) that I determined to be my age or older.

I get that this hotel is going for a young, hipster, bow-tie, vest look for its staff, and that might be wonderful and refreshing for some travelers (though I never saw a female representative of the hotel working behind the desk...), but it didn't work for me. I felt like I was at the mall and told I'd be shopping at Brooks Brothers but I ended up at Abercrombie & Fitch.

Pros: Great location for tourism, aesthetically nice room, friendly people, great city.

Cons: Tiny rooms, no room service, valet parking is $50/night (I don't think there's a self-parking option, but I could be wrong), not exactly convenient to downtown (though not awful), staff needs training - or management needs to realize that not everyone finds the staff's image charming/relevant post-2009.

I won't stay there again for business or pleasure, but it might work for other travelers.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Hotellincoln, General Manager at Hotel Lincoln, a Joie de Vivre Hotel, responded to this review, October 23, 2013
Dear MPrice82, Your stay was far from perfect and I apologize for what was clearly not our best effort. The lack of explaination for parking options, inlcuding self parking or the listing of the room service menu on the television is clearly a missed opprotunity on our part to share the features of the hotel.

We all apologize and do hope you'll return to us one day. Please make your arrangements through me, should you choose to.

Warmest regards,
Robert
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wilmington, North Carolina
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2013

My husband and I had the pleasure of staying at the Lincoln for three nights in early October. The booking was his idea and what turned out to be a wonderful surprise. The hotel has a hipster feel to it without the obnoxious self importance usually associated with the term. The staff was fantastic and went out of their way to be helpful and accommodating. It was my first time in the city and my husband wanted me to be able to see the sunrise over lake Michigan. The morning staff unlocked the rooftop bar elevator for him so he could surprise me with breakfast on the roof while we watched the sunrise.
To that end the rooftop bar is second to none. It's chic and comfortable and the cocktail menu is uniquely modern and retro simultaneously. The service staff was attentive and sincere, and the view was astounding. The coffee shop in the lobby serves fantastic baked goods and great coffee.
The rooms, as some have mentioned, are a little small, but nothing you wouldn't expect from an historic building. The beds were comfortable, the bedding soft, and the rooms are well decorated and nicely appointed. The only snag we ran into was a bathtub that didn't seem to want to drain- so we took showers mostly in ankle deep water. I'm certain this was room-specific and did not detract from the overall experience.
The hotel is, fittingly, located adjacent to Lincoln Park and the farmers' market sets up shop twice a week. If you're lucky enough to be there when the booths go up I highly recommend the crepe stand- the ingredients were fresh, local and perfectly prepared. For all the restaurants we visited on our trip we agreed that our blueberry maple crepe was our favorite meal.
Our stay at the Lincoln was a perfect compliment to a great city. We will, without a doubt be visiting again- hopefully in the near future.

Room Tip: Park view is great- and word has it the suites are beautiful...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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northern california
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2013

My daughter booked her wedding room block at the Hotel Lincoln. We had 30 rooms just for our out-of-town friends and family! Edgar at the door is super friendly and Glenn at the front desk made sure all our requests were handled. Taylor assisted us with a special morning- after brunch at the rooftop bar. She rounded up the night-before center pieces and made sure everything sparkled. The JParker morning chef did an outstanding job of food prep. Everything was delicious and easy for this mother-of-the-bride.

Room Tip: All the rooms are funky fun. The room layout is a tad strange but very workable. We had a junior sui...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Lincoln, a Joie de Vivre Hotel

Address: 1816 North Clark, Chicago, IL 60614
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > Near North Side
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #26 of 174 Hotels in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Lincoln, a Joie de Vivre Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 184
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located just north of Chicago’s downtown financial and retail hubs, Lincoln Park is the city’s most charming and historically rich residential community, where tree-lined streets are dotted with a mix of million-dollar-plus homes and classic three-flat apartment buildings and sidewalks buzz with energy from families, DePaul University students, young professionals, fitness buffs, and visitors to the city. At the center of it all is Hotel Lincoln. Hotel Lincoln is an upscale boutique hotel with an eclectic-meets-collegial vibe, offering 184 guest rooms, executive meeting space, a lobby-level European-style coffee bar, a spacious rooftop lounge with panoramic views of downtown Chicago and Lake Michigan, and the acclaimed Perennial Virant – helmed by award-winning Chef Paul Virant. As Joie de Vivre’s first hotel east of the Mississippi, the property is uniquely designed to not only connect Chicagoans with iconic city gems, but also give travelers a taste of what life is really like in the packed-with-personality city. ... more   less 
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