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“A wonderful experience at the Renaissance Blackstone” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel

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The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   636 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605 (The Loop)   |  
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Ranked #25 of 169 hotels in Chicago
Massachusetts
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“A wonderful experience at the Renaissance Blackstone”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2012

I was recently in Chicago for a conference and had a wonderful time at the Renaissance Blackstone from the moment I arrived. Abel, a bellhop, opened the cab door and helped with my bags. At the reception desk, Scarlet explained that the hotel wanted to accommodate my request for a room with lake view and had only an accessible room, which meant that it included bars in the bathroom with some lower towel/robe hooks and a lower rod in the closet. Abel brought up my bags, pointed out special features of the room, found the classical music station on the radio, and ordered a full-size ironing board from housekeeping (the room had only the table-sized one).

The room itself (1121) was terrific and the view, beautiful. I could look across Grant Park at the lake and be greeted each morning by the sunrise. Although others have complained about street noise, I didn’t notice this at all. Especially appreciated amenities were the very comfortable king bed, light fixtures that could be brightened and dimmed (e.g., to leave a night light in the bathroom), empty refrigerator, coffeemaker, and—last but not least—a luxurious terry-lined bathrobe. To fill the refrigerator, if desired, one can find a supermarket a few blocks south and to the right.

Not wanting a big dinner, I sat in the quieter bar section of the restaurant, Mercat a la planxa, and enjoyed a delicious warm salad (spinach, pine nuts, currants and apples), which came with bruschetta topped with tomato salad and spices. Like the other hotel staff, the waitress, whose name I unfortunately don’t recall, was extremely helpful and eager to please.

At the concierge desk, Shannon booked me a place on the Chicago Architects Foundation (CAF) river tour and later, the hop-on, hop-off trolley tour. Both are highly recommended! Although the river tours have ended for the season, CAF offers other tours that I heard were excellent.

I really like the hotel’s location, which seems a bit quieter than other sections further north. It was lovely to walk north along South Michigan Avenue. Several times I passed the Chicago Symphony, just a few blocks up, and was enticed to go to a performance for which I was very fortunate to get a last-minute ticket.

The hotel building is gracious and welcoming. Features of the comfortable lobby include a billiards table, a gold-upholstered sofa, and a couple of nooks. One can get newspapers (Chicago, USA Today, New York Times, Wall Street Journal), for a dollar each, in the gift shop behind the concierge’s desk, which is also stocked with drinks and other items. Off to the left in the back corner is a business office, where one can use the computer (there are two) and printer for free. I never had to wait.

My visit to Chicago was greatly enhanced by the staff and accommodations at the Renaissance Blackstone!

  • Stayed November 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DOSBlackstone, Director of Sales at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, December 6, 2012
Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to post a review on Trip Advisor. We truly believe that feedback, both positive and negative is a gift as we can learn from them and improve our services.

Thank you also for the wonderful comments about our staff, specifically Abel, Shannon and Scarlet. We will be sure to share your comments with them.

Next time you are in Chicago, we hope that you choose the Blackstone!

Happy Holidays,
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977 people have reviewed this hotel

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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 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (242)
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Orlando, Florida
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2012

This hotel is absolutely gorgeous! We arrived in Chicago earlier than our check in time, but they allowed us to go ahead and check in and upgraded our room since it was storming out. We had a view right over Michigan Avenue and was able to see many of the sites that Chicago has to offer, including the Navy Pier. The hotel has a 1920's feel to it with it's hard wood decor, which is stunning. However the rooms are very modern and comfortable. Be aware that there is no public parking and you will have to valet and it was pretty expensive (can't remember exact cost). But, we will definitely be back (sooner rather than later!).

Room Tip: Ask for a room overlooking Michigan Ave and bring your walking shoes!
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  • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DOSBlackstone, Director of Sales at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, December 6, 2012
Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to post a review on Trip Advisor. We truly believe that feedback, both positive and negative is a gift as we can learn from them and improve our services.

I'm glad you enjoyed the beautiful views from your guest room. Navy Pier is exceptionally gorgeous at night.

We hope to welcome you back to the Blackstone in the future.
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Goodyear, Arizona
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2012

First time at this Marriott property was a great experience. From check-in through the three night stay everything went very well. We were welcomed at the curb from our taxi, assisted in, given a first class check-in at the desk by Gigi, and assigned an excellent room. The room was up to date, very large, spotless, well furnished and included a small refrigerator, coffee service, and toiletries in the bath area. The glass enclosed rainfall type shower was relaxing. A key feature throughout was the pleasant and courteous disposition of the entire staff, day and night, every day. Hotel location is very convenient to all of downtown Chicago and the north Michigan Ave. area. Plenty of restaurants [the hotel has a restaurant and a Starbucks on-site], coffee shops, shopping, and parking nearby. Highly recommended by this experienced traveller.

Room Tip: Our room, southeast side, had a partial lake view, good light. Rooms directly facing the lake might...
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  • Stayed November 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2012

I stayed here for business. Overall, I felt the hotel was nice, clean and a good location. This is the first time I have stayed at this hotel and my review will point out some highlights. The hotel is an older building but has been updated. The rooms are nice and clean. Rooms are different shapes and sizes because of the building layout. The bathrooms are updated don't have a fully closing door, the door slides closed but does not create a tight seal so two people in our group of fifteen were complaining that they were cold while taking a shower, I did not have that issue nor did I hear of anyone else complaining. The lobby is nice but you need to walk up stairs to get to registration (I'm not sure if there is an alternate option but I was not provided one). I imagine most people would not have an issue with it but if you have an issue with walking up stairs I would call the hotel first to see what other options you would have). There is a Starbucks and bar (and apparently a restaurant which I did not use). For the Starbucks and the bar, we had to walk down flight of stairs. Again, I'm not sure if there is an alternate route but this is what everyone seemed to be doing. The lobby architecture has been renovated to the period of the building with seating and a pool table.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DOSBlackstone, Director of Sales at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, December 6, 2012
Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to post a review on Trip Advisor. We truly believe that feedback, both positive and negative is a gift as we can learn from them and improve our services.

The hotel does have an ADA elevator to assist with those not able to use steps. It is located on the Balbo side entrance through an ADA door. This is also the same floor where Starbucks is located.

We hope to welcome you back to the Blackstone in the future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nashville
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2012

We had a very pleasant stay at the Blackstone and found the property to be nicely renovated and excellent housekeeping. The lobby has been done in the style of the period of the hotel and is really lovely. The architecture of the lobby is wonderful. The rooms themselves are in a contemporary style and are nicely appointed. We found the concierge lounge to be a bit lacking in what is generally provided in such lounges and it is quite small. The staff in the lounge were friendly and helpful.

The location was great for visiting museums and taking in the sites south of the river. It was interesting to walk around in the loop, theatre, and financial district and observe the wonderful architecture in that area.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2012

The Blackstone was the base hotel for a black tie event at the Field Museum that we were attending, and I booked four rooms for a Saturday evening, so this review is a summary of nine persons' experiences.

Check In: Generally good: Thank you to Buffy for being very polite and efficient when I arrived early a.m. to check into any available rooms. Thanks also to Mallory for looking and looking until she found a room for my 80 plus year old parents when they arrived.

There were times of no wait and times of long waits at the front desk. On crazy Saturday afternoons (there were two weddings, a conference, and our event based at the hotel that day), I would suggest that management be always present as backup for the hard working folks staffing the desk. They only showed up when someone demanded to see a manager.

Rooms: Spacious, airy, interesting decor. We had a very cool view of the city from ours; the views were mixed in other rooms, but everyone enjoyed. No complaints.

Lobby: What a fun place to watch the world to by!!! Find a place to sit and relax with a cup of coffee or a stronger libation.

Restaurant: We had breakfast and it was incredible. Beautiful room, good service, and very tasty breakfast dishes with a Hispanic flair. Loved it.

Starbucks: It seems like every time there is a Starbucks in a hotel, there is a problem, and this is no exception. I have no idea if there is any connection between the Starbucks and the Blackstone, or if Starbucks is completely independent, but it was awful, and the Blackstone should probably care about that, now matter what the connection. Slow moving, rude, obnoxious workers. The line could be out the door, or you could be the second person in line, and you were still subject a long wait, as the servers seemed to have been trained to be nasty and as slow moving as they could be to ensure that your experience was unpleasant.

Parking: As other reviewers have stated, high at $55/night, but very quick service.

In sum, we would definitely stay again, and everyone enjoyed the hotel very much.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salt Lake City, Utah
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2012

I called to cancel one of my 5 rooms I had booked six days prior to the event and the hotel was unwilling to work with me and is charging me $300 cancellation fee because of some fine print with the group I'm staying with (it required 7 days prior notice I found out). I was treated poorly on the phone by the front desk, and even though the management called me back, they were unsympathic to my situation and stated they couldn't sell the one room, even with 6 days notice, or that the rate would be less than the one they gouged me with. They never called me by name on the phone, and were quite defensive. This is $300 less my group will be spending in their dining area. What a joke. Greed over customer service.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 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.
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Additional Information about The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel

Address: 636 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > The Loop
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#16 Romantic Hotel in Chicago
#18 Luxury Hotel in Chicago
#24 Business Hotel in Chicago
#47 Family Hotel in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Rediscover a legend with the revival of historic Blackstone, A Renaissance Hotel in Chicago! Meticulously restored to its original grandeur, the acclaimed Blackstone Hotel is back with 332 unique and luxurious guestrooms. Once hailed as "the premier hotel of Chicago", we are eager to welcome you back to this Landmark, and share a story or two with you from our rich history. What will be your story? The Blackstone. How Chicago. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Renaissance Hotel Chicago
Renaissance Hotel Blackstone
Renaissance Chicago
Chicago Renaissance

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