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“Beautifully awkward” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Ivy Boutique Hotel

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Ivy Boutique Hotel
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   233 E. Ontario St., Chicago, IL 60611 (Near North Side)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #30 of 174 Hotels in Chicago
Chagrin Falls
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Beautifully awkward”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2012

This hotel is beautiful with modern rooms, high tech amenities and a great location. The roof top lounge has a rare view and the staff has moments of graciousness. However, for as much as I appreciated the rain shower, tv in the bathroom mirror and brand new accommodations, the truth is that customer service and a lack of a cohesive plan can ruinen the experience. We experienced both but remember the moment of being rudely told to vacate a roof top table because the manager had some undisclosed reserved seating plan invisible to the guests. Paying for two rooms for the weekend did not seem to insulate us from the chaos. The staff awkwardly brought us two bills, as if we were attempting to avoid one of the two and continued to strain any good faith created by the fresh and lovely property. This hotel has so much potential in need of some strong management guidance.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
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414 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (116)
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Kettering, Ohio
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2012

We planned a weekend stay in Chicago coordinating an outing to a Cubs game and an overnight visit to a local hotel using a Groupon discount. The Ivy was advertised as a new, unique hotel in a central downtown area and the coupon made it affordable. Little did we know what a terrific bargain we really got until we got to the hotel. From the time I contacted them to make my reservation to the time we checked out we were treated with outstanding service. Tiffany
even purchased train passes for us to get to the Cubs game in advance of our arrival since
timing was an issue. We stayed in a King Suite that was beautifully decorated and comfortable. The rainfall showerhead made me never want to leave and the depth of the soaking bathtub
was to die for. Definitely a gem in a great area. Walking distance to anything you'd need. All of the staff was eager to help and always greeted us with a smile. Two thumbs up!

  • Stayed July 2012, 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.
JamesCazares, General Manager at Ivy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, August 27, 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review about the IVY Boutique Hotel on TripAdvisor. I am delighted that you enjoyed the service from our staff and I will be sure to pass on your kind words to them. Please visit us in near future so that you enjoy our new Rooftop Lounge, SKY Terrace located on the 16th floor.

Sincerely,

James Cazares
General Manager
T: 312.335.5444
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Galena, Illinois
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2012

We stayed at the Ivy for one quick night in July, booked on points for free via UAL. While the hotel itself was very nice - clean, comfortable bed, big bathroom, nice staff - I found it to be rather lacking in atmosphere and charm. But honestly, there's really no fault there. Everyone has different tastes, and this just wasn't my cup of tea.

We had a king suite. It was very spacious and well appointed. I agree with the other comments about the rugs. The bathroom was nice as well, but I found that it was a bit dim, and perhaps needed more lighting. I could not get the TV in the loo to work either, but it wasn't really an issue - I just wanted to turn it on for the sake of turning it on.

I didn't expect there to be valet parking of any sort, so parking half block away wasn't a problem. We're locals (western burbs) and are familiar enough with the city and parking that we were able to find a good spot quickly.

Bottom line, it's a very nice hotel, and was great for the price (in my case, free) with an excellent location. I don't think I'd return, however, because I just never felt comfortable.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
JamesCazares, General Manager at Ivy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, August 16, 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to write a review about our hotel here on TripAdvisor. We enjoy all the feedback we get from our guests and we try to implement new procedures with all the feedback we receive. If you get a chance please visit us before the end of summer so that you may enjoy our new Rooftop Lounge, Sky Terrace.


Sincerely,

James Cazares
General Manager
T: (312)335-5444
E: James@exploreivy.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FLL
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2012

What a treasure to stumble on when traveling weekly. This hotel is located walking distance to everything needed in downtown Chicago and only 2 blocks from the lake. It is a boutique hotel with only 6 rooms per floor. The rooms are elegant and tranquil. The staff is warm and attentive making staying in the windy city feel like you are staying at home. I plan to make this my hotel for all future trips to Chicago. Oh and they are new and gave me a tour through the banquest rooms being finished. They are spectacular! I hope to hold a small evernt there in the future. ALso important to me is access to a GYM. They provide a full service gym pass located a block away.

Room Tip: I enjoyed the suite on the top floor.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2012, traveled on business
    • 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.
JamesCazares, General Manager at Ivy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, August 1, 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience at the IVY Boutique Hotel on TripAdvisor. We are delighted to hear you enjoyed your stay and we hope that we can become your home away from home when you are in Chicago. Feel free to contact me; I'd love to hear about the small event you are planning in the future.

Sincerely,

James Cazares
General Manager
Tel: (312) 335-5444
E: James@exploreivy.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, CA
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2012 via mobile

They only recently opened and there were some technical problems (TV, air con, internet). Worse, the room smelled like sewage a couple times! And there were some other, smaller issues.

But, the staff was nice (if not super competent), the room was large and mostly nice, the bed was really comfy, and the shower incredible.

It's in the real touristy section of town, surrounded by other hotels and near the Rainforest Cafe.

  • Stayed July 2012
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
JamesCazares, General Manager at Ivy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, August 1, 2012
Dear Guest,

We appreciate you taking the time to comment on your recent stay at the IVY Boutique Hotel and I am sorry to hear that you did not enjoy you experience to the fullest. I would be happy to discuss your stay further with you. Please feel free to contact me by email at your convenience.

Sincerely,

James Cazares
General Manager
Tel: (312) 335-5444
E: James@exploreivy.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2012

This hotel is a mixed blessing. Fantastic location, great hotel bar that's open late, super friendly doormen, friendly front desk.

Loved the room, at first. Electric drapes are a great feature. Hardwood floors in bedroom, marble floors in bathroom, top line fixtures, huge flat screen TV in the room. The bedding is fantastic. So soft, great mattress. The AC system was very cold, which was important as Chicago was very hot while we were there.

But this hotel just has problems with things that just knock it down a few levels. Hot water was non-existent during our stay (as many others posted. Wish I looked here before I booked). The best it got was JUST warm enough to shower. Pressure varied all the time, too. From really powerful to not enough to get the soap out of my hair. Literally, continually, changed by the minute.

The TV system was problematic, too. It stopped working randomly during our stay. Would just cut out for minutes at a time and oddly on all channels. You'd switch channels, thinking it was the channel itself, and all would be black. Gentleman at front desk said they were aware of the problem and were looking into it, but we never heard back and the problems persisted. The TV system also has very few channels, inexcusable for a hotel of this level. I'd guess around 20 in total! No Speed Channel, no ESPN (both to the dismay of my husband), no Fox News (some may see this as a positive), etc. The Holiday Inn we recently stayed at in St. Louis had far more selection, at 1/3 the price.

The internet was also an issue. I could not log in with either my iPad or mabook, my husband couldn't log in with his dell. This wasn't a big deal, as we weren't here on business, but this could be a problem for many.

Lastly, the rugs! Oh the rugs! They are made out of some material that literally hurts your bare feet to walk on them. You honestly can't walk on them! Plus the rugs are area or throw rugs, so you cross from the beautiful hard wood floors onto these rugs. The problem with this? The rugs edges stick up and catch your feet, whether barefoot or wearing shoes. Have throw rugs in our home and live with them elsewhere. Neither of us had ever seen anything like this.

Lastly, as a gal, I was a bit shocked when there was no ironing board or iron in the room! Also (gal again), the bathroom soaps/conditioners provided were awesome. Top quality stuff. Best of any hotel I've stayed at.

Overall a nice hotel suffering from niggling problems that would have been much more upsetting, had we spent any major time in the room. Once the rugs are replaced and the water pressure/internet/tv problems fixed, this place will be awesome.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
JamesCazares, General Manager at Ivy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, August 1, 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for taking the time to share your comments regarding your stay at the IVY Boutique Hotel. Your feedback is extremely important as it helps us to continually improve our service and provide a memorable experience to our valued guests.

Our relationship with our guests is of great importance to us and we hope that you will present us with the opportunity to better serve you in the future.

Sincerely,

James Cazares
General Manager
Tel: (312) 335-5444
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlotte, North Carolina
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2012

I just stayed at the Ivy for two nights and it was fantastic. When I came in there were other guests in my assigned room, so the very apologetic staff sat me in the bar and gave me a free (large) glass of wine. After no more than 5 minutes I was escorted upstairs to my new room and was given an upgrade to the king suite for free.
The room was absolutely beautiful. One wall was a large window with automatic curtains. The king bed was up on a pedestal, had individual reading lights on each side, and had a large flat screen tv. The bathroom was the best part - a huge bathtub and a waterfall shower.
I was in and out of the room on my first day and missed the first housekeeping time. I left at 5:00 and returned at 10:30 and to my surprise the room was immaculately made up with a plate of cookies and a brownie waiting for me. I also loved the Keurig coffee machine with flavored creamers in the room.
The only small problems were (as mentioned in the last review) the hot water never got super hot, and the tv screen in my bathroom mirror wasn't working (talk about first world problems).
The location of the hotel is great - there's tons of shopping and restaurants within easy walking distance. I got there from the airport easily on the blue line train and a bus.
I absolutely loved the Ivy and would recommend it to anyone who wants to be near Northwestern and/or the Magnificent Mile.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled on business
    • 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.
JamesCazares, General Manager at Ivy Boutique Hotel, responded to this review, August 16, 2012
Dear Guest,

Thank you for staying with us at the IVY Boutique Hotel and of course thank you for sharing your experience on Tripadvisor. We are so glad that you enjoyed the amenities in our rooms. Did you know at the IVY hotel each item in our guest rooms was designed with functionality and luxury in mind? If you get a chance to visit Chicago in the future we would love to host you again!

Sincerely,

James Cazares
General Manager
T: (312)335-5444
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ivy Boutique Hotel

Address: 233 E. Ontario St., Chicago, IL 60611
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > Near North Side
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #30 of 174 Hotels in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Ivy Boutique Hotel 4.5*
Number of rooms: 63
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Chicago's newest four star boutique hotel located just steps away from the Magnificent Mile on Michigan Ave, Chicago beaches, Navy Pier, and the restaurants of Streeterville. Experience IVY a Hotel like no other... Look to the IVY as your luxury boutique hotel experience in Chicago... Elegant, sophisticated, stylish, incredibly comfortable and quiet, the IVY is everything you’re looking for. The IVY Hotel offers distinguished and discreet personalized service. You'll find its sleek modern decor refined and understated, complemented by works of fine art from local artists. Each room and suite has been custom designed with functionality in mind. Soaring 16 floors high and with 63 rooms mostly composed of suites with your comfort in mind. Amenities at the IVY positively define luxury. ... more   less 
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