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“The best view I have ever had.” 4 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 (Downtown / The Loop)   |  
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Ranked #26 of 178 Hotels in Chicago
Certificate of Excellence
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
11 hotel reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“The best view I have ever had.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 7, 2013

My 19th-floor, corner-room view spanned unobstructed from Soldier Field across Grant Park to the Pritzker Pavillion. That alone kept me up at night and woke me refreshed every morning as the sun rose over the lake. It is the most spectacular city view I've ever had, and, if you're familiar with my previous reviews, you'll know I travel a lot for both work and leisure. The room itself was great. Lot's of work space and a roomy bathroom (but no tub). The king bed was comfortable with soft sheets and good pillows. I did think the lighting was a little dark and I had some trouble with the WiFi. Because I was working, I didn't have much of a chance to explore beyond the lobby, restaurant/bar and onsite Starbucks (a plus!) In summary, I'd stay here again, particularly for a weekend getaway.

Room Tip: Request a corner room facing East.
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled on business
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kimberly C, General Manager at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
Hello SAEmom25,
Soooo happy that you enjoyed your stay and so appreciate you taking the time to write a review! I agree, our lake view rooms are AMAZING and I'm so glad you got to experience it. Please let me know if you come to town again, we would love to stop by and say hello!
Best regards,
Kim
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1,280 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (315)
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English first
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
16 hotel reviews
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 7, 2013

...clean, large, spacious rooms with nicely appointed beds, funky interiors, fancy lights, bright & clean bathroom
...Rooms facing the EL track, or the university cooling system are noisy
...Wi-Fi is terrible, business travelers be ready for <1 mbps speeds; can be a deal breaker if you going to do voice/ video conference
...kitchenette unavailable, so food stock-up not possible
...restaurant is a popular one, room service typically takes 30-40 minutes
..really good gym
...popular for wedding receptions and art workshops

Personal opinion - I found the vintage lobby/ elevator & contemporary decor of rooms to be inconsistent.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Kimberly C, General Manager at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
Thanks, Lvlakshman2008, for taking the time to write a review! You were pretty thorough in your assessment, I'm happy to say that our WIFI speed has been increased to over 100 mg into the property so not sure when exactly you stayed here.
Hope that you will return again soon.
Best regards,
Kim C.
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Chicago, Illinois
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2013 via mobile

Built in the early 1900's, The Renaissance Blackstone Hotel has kept it's classic architecture and design while maintaining a modern flare.

The building and rooms are beautiful and the level of service provided by the staff is impeccable. The rooms are spacious and the views off the Michigan Avenue side are nothing short of spectacular.

I look forward to visiting the property and it's staff again as they are truly a rare gem in Chicago.

Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kimberly C, General Manager at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
Hi Angry_Foamy,
With a name like that I wasn't expecting such a great review, but THANK YOU very much!! :)
I appreciate the feedback and will especially pass on your comments to the team! A property can be beautiful to look at, but without a great TEAM, it really is nothing. I will be sure to give them your terrific feedback. As a Chicagoan, I hope that you will visit us again, soon.
Thanks,
K
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Thornton, Colorado, United States
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2013

WOW! What an amazing hotel! From our arrival to our departure, everything was flawless! Check in was fast and friendly, the room was spacious and had a beautiful view and dinner and drinks in Mercat was an experience unlike any other! We had to tell the chef to stop sending food we were so full! We wandered the banquet space and found an employee that took us on a little tour and told us all about the history of the hotel from the room of presidents to Al Capone and his barber shop! Anytime we are visiting Chicago, I will never stay anywhere else!! Great Hotel!!!

Room Tip: Ask for a view of the lake and park!
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  • Stayed October 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.
Kimberly C, General Manager at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
Hi Jennifer J,
Thank you so very much for taking the time to write a review of the property. I am thrilled that you enjoyed the property including the restaurant and that you found the history and stories to be of interest! WE love all the historic happenings and enjoy sharing so I'm especially pleased that you were able to connect with our staff members to discover something interesting!
Please come and visit us again soon.
Best regards,
Kim C.
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Madison, Wisconsin
Top Contributor
138 reviews 138 reviews
56 hotel reviews
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2013

I confess that the Blackstone is one of my favorite hotels in Chicago, but I was very disappointed in my last stay. The food in the concierge lounge was really awful. In the evening there were very limited choices, it was dry and not hot even with the heat lamps. The desserts were terrible, and little to no selection. And I can't understand why this hotel has blow dryers that you typically see at Fairfields or Courtyards. It should be no major issue, but I have long hair, and with the side vent, it sucks the hair right into it. It was very upsetting to have a big chunk of hair actually pulled into the blow dryer. This is clearly a safety issue. It also overheats, and if you turn it off while using it, you have to wait for it to cool off before it operates again - not very useful when you need to get ready for a business meeting. I called and told the operator what happened, and all they did was bring me another blow dryer exactly like the old one. A picture is below - beware this style of blow dryer if you don't have short hair. This needs to be changed before someone is truly injured. The bath linens were also not up to par - they were thin and worn - not what you would expect from a Renaissance property.

While I have been a Marriott rewards Platinum member for many years, I wasn't put in one of better rooms on the higher floors, and I had zero view. Well, I did have a view of the windows in the building next door. It would be completely understandable if the hotel was full, but when I asked the front desk they said they weren't anywhere near full. I should have asked for another room, but didn't want to bother moving everything. As always, the staff was wonderful. I hope this was just an exception, and next time the Blackstone I've known for years will be back.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Kimberly C, General Manager at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
Hello WJ2011,
Thank you so much for your feedback and for taking the time to write a review. I am so sorry that you were disappointed with your stay but was really concerned to hear about the hair dryer. WOW - I am so sorry. I have long hair and can certainly understand your frustration. I will definitely look into it!
In the meantime if you would give us another chance, I would love the opportunity to win you back as a happy customer. Please let me know the next time you come to Chicago!
Thanks much,
Kim C
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Ann Arbor, MI
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2013

I've stayed at the Blackstone a few times and it is definitely my favorite hotel for any business or pleasure trips to Chicago. The location is convenient for walking to most all tourist attractions as well as great restaurants.

The ambience of the hotel is vintage and inviting and the restored architectural detail really brings out the feeling of old luxury. As it should at The Hotel of Presidents where the term "smoke filled room" came to mean something.

In all my experience the staff has been welcoming and helpful, even when checking out a little late or dealing with a disagreement over the bill they were very accomodating.

Mercat is an excellent addition serving up delicious small plates and a good selection of drinks. I'm partial to the Lamb meatballs myself.

My only qualm is with the valet service which isn't even run directly by the hotel. And it's not a huge deal if you're in the know. Simply put, if you request your car 10mins before you leave, don't expect it to be there. You're better off requesting it 20mins ahead of time.

Otherwise again, they too are very helpful and accomodating.

  • Stayed October 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.
Kimberly C, General Manager at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, November 12, 2013
JB -
Thanks so much for making us your go to hotel for both business and leisure!!! We are thrilled. I am so sorry that you have experienced some issues with our valet company. I will definitely bring these issues to their attention. I know that they recently started using a texting system so that you can text your valet ticket number to them for delivery and that was to help expediting. Please let me know the next time you plan a trip, I would appreciate the opportunity to say hello and thank you!
Best regards,
Kim C
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Peoria, Illinois, United States
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
29 hotel reviews
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2013

Spent one night at the Blackstone before the Hot Chocolate 15K race. Cool decor in lobby. Room on 19th floor was very nice, interesting decor and very comfortable bed. Would definitely stay again when in town.

  • Stayed November 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
    • 4 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.
Kimberly C, General Manager at The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel, responded to this review, November 13, 2013
Hi Terry,
Thank you so much for staying with us and for taking the time to write a review! I actually ran in the Hot Chocolate race but only did the 5K - kudos to you for doing the 15K. Maybe next year! As you know, we are in a fantastic location for all things in Grant and Millennium Park. Please let me know the next time you come to the City.
Best regards,
Kim C
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Additional Information about The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel

Address: 636 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > Downtown / 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:
#20 Romantic Hotel in Chicago
#21 Business Hotel in Chicago
#22 Luxury Hotel in Chicago
#35 Family Hotel in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Blackstone A Renaissance Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 332
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" and the "Hotel of Presidents, the staff is 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. Legendary. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Renaissance Hotel Chicago
Renaissance Hotel Blackstone
Renaissance Chicago
Chicago Renaissance

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