The rates at this hotel seem to vary tremendously--anywhere from $80 to $300 or more a night. I was fortunate enough to get a very good deal for a stay on Thanksgiving night. The rates skyrocketed on Black Friday, though, so I chose to move to another hotel after staying just one night.
When the price is right, this property offers the best aspects of both a chain and a boutique hotel. It doesn't really feel like a Hampton Inn, but it does offer the standard services (like free wi-fi and hot breakfast) you'd find at a Hampton in the suburbs.
Entering the hotel is odd. There's a sort-of "micro-lobby" at street level next to the Bank of America Theatre. An employee (who seemed more like a guard than a clerk or bellman) verified that I had a reservation and then directed me to an elevator that took me to the real lobby that is located above the theatre. I checked in there and then proceeded up another elevator to my room.
My room was fairly spacious for an older downtown hotel, though not as large as the "cookie-cutter" rooms at the hotels out by O'Hare. It had more character than I'd expect at a Hampton Inn, with a unique shape and an interesting burgundy color scheme. The view was nothing special. Mostly I saw an alley, though if I craned my head I could see the nearby buildings on State Street.
All the room's furnishings were pleasant, and everything was immaculate. I'm not a fan of the stark white bedding Hampton has gone to in recent years (I'd rather have an old-fashioned comforter in neutral colors), but that's the chain's issue--not this hotel's. The shower provided good pressure, and the wi-fi worked well. The complimentary breakfast was very excellent.
The hotel provided luggage storage (at the desk in the little mini-lobby at street level). The service is theoretically complimentary, though tips are expected. It was nice to be able to leave my bag while I went out exploring during the day.
Probably the best asset of this hotel is its location. It's right in the heart of the loop, less than a block from the State Street shopping district. There are dozens of outstanding restaurants within a very short walk. It's also just steps from both the blue and red line subways, which provide cheap and easy access to the entire city.
On future trips to Chicago, I'd definitely consider staying here again. I'll check the rates, and if they're competitive, I'll certainly book the Hampton Inn.