We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“OK, but as always, you get what you pay for” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Chicago's Essex Inn

Best prices for -
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 4 more sites!
Save
You added Chicago's Essex Inn to your Saves list
Chicago's Essex Inn
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   800 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605 (Downtown / The Loop)   |  
  |  
Hotel website
  |  
  |  
Hotel amenities
Special Price
15% off room rate
Ranked #107 of 177 Hotels in Chicago
Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“OK, but as always, you get what you pay for”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2013

Essex Inn's home page advertises "Hi-speed wireless internet access is
available for free throughout the hotel. We also have a 24 hour business
center with workstations, printer and hi-speed internet..

Actually the free internet service is only 256 kps (less than dial-up speed). If you want the 3 Mps service, you pay $8.95 per day. Let buyer beware.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,309 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    270
    587
    281
    89
    82
See reviews for
309
397
84
174
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (246)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bloomington, Indiana
1 review
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

As a frequent customer of the Essex Inn I can say I have learned a lot about Chicago...well enough to know that if you visit be prepared for everyone, from that panhandlers to the Hotels to try and take you for everything you have. You see to them...it's a game, If there victim (guest) doesn't know the difference, then it's O.K to steel your money.

After receiving an email (package deal) from Essex Inn back in December which was entitled "Park and Stay—Free Valet Parking" I booked a room for January. I called not once, but twice to confirm this great deal, as parking for the hotel is normally $41.00 a night.

Each time that I called I was assured not only of their definition of "Valet Parking" but that the package deal was legit and that I would get what I signed up for.

The morning I left for my trip I had a bad feeling, so I printed the ad and "ONE of the TWO" confirmation letters I received. One was for the nightly rate with no total and the other was the total stay with taxes of $207.+ change. I did not bring the last confirmation with the $207.00 total because the "confirmation" numbers were the same on all correspondence.

I tipped the staff generously thru out my stay, as I was not going to be charged parking I thought that was the right thing to do.

On the way down to the lobby two well dressed gentlemen (one carrying a clipboard), the other obviously a "higher-up" giving orders, pinstripes, grey wavy hair, mid to late sixty's, 5'8", got on the elevator we greeted each other and stopped at the lobby. The two men walked down the hall and entered a room that was under construction.

I proceeded to the front desk greeted the hotels Assistant Reservations Manager "Anna"...and...as expected, "they stated my room fees and parking charges" I handed them the copy of the "package deal" I signed up for a month in advance and we started to spiral down into the "pit-of-ugliness". At that moment the men on the elevator stepped back out from the door they had entered and I called out ..."Gentlemen, a word please".

He introduced himself as the president of the hotel. And I handed him the ad, to which he said to "extend the offer" to me. Luck!

I thanked him...the hotel reservations assistant manager was not happy, I had made them live up to there promise and I got justice in the end. A twisted kind of justice though it was.

I was given the runaround, made to feel like a thief, as if "I" was the one pulling the 'fast-one' on them. It was yet another bitter experience in Chicago. I did not want to come to Chicago wearing a bullet proof vest, preparing a case to go to trial with the hotel, but that's what I had to do. I felt, even before I left home with a copy of the "Package deal" in my hand like I was going to have to fight my way thru that city every minute I was there. What a way to relax and get away, huh? Sad.

I am posting this here because I could not find any way of contacting the man who shook my hand and "Extended the Offer", other wise I would have let him explain to me how this could have happened and how I could have possibly done it any different, because the hotel assistant Manager said she didn't know.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Virginia
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

We like staying at the Essex when we go to Chicago for the king suite overlooking Grant Park. The views from the living room and bedroom are spectacular. Sunrise over Grant Park is a great way to start the day. That being said, the heater is either on or off. No in between. It takes awhile to learn how to regulate this. They are in the process of remodeling the lobby and it was closed off. The restaurant has been remodeled and is now Brasserie by LM. It is a french style restaurant. The food was very good, but choices are limited. A would prefer a menu with more options. All considered, we will stay at the Essex again.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled on business
    • 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
    • 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.
Pella, Iowa
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2013

Loved the pool, bathroom was small, no microwave. nice to be within walking distance of the downtown museums. It could use updating. Also a little better planning on arriving quests. If I have made reservations for two adults and two children listed I would expect more than two towels in the room

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
Chicago, Illinois
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

I am a single traveler and work two blocks from the Essex Inn. I stayed there the night before Thanksgiving so I could walk to my Amtrak train at Union Station early on Thanksgiving morning. I used a bidding site, looking for a room at a low price and so did not get to choose the specific hotel before giving my credit card information. The price was unbelievably low for downtown Chicago. If all you want is a cheap place to stay in Chicago, go for it. If you care about comfort, cleanliness and good taste, keep looking. Don't be fooled by the renovated lobby; the clean, tasteful look ends there. The indoor pool would be great for kids, but I found the greenhouse structure over it depressing, especially since my room window looked right down onto it and made me visible to people in the pool area (and at very close range). Definitely ask for a room high enough to be well clear of the roof of the pool area. The bed was knobby and uncomfortable, the carpet did not seem clean and I made sure not to go barefoot, the extra blanket was riddled with holes, the hallway stank. And do not even think about using the stairs to bypass the elevator. (I was on a low floor.) The stairway was filthy, smelly and depressing. There is an outdoor patio outside the pool area, but it is surrounded (at least in November) by a tall plexiglass wall that made the view disappointing. It seemed just as worn and musty as the rest of the hotel. Overall, the room served my purpose--a cheap night's sleep before an early departure. Will I ever return? No, and I feel so strongly about it that I won't use the bidding process again, but will always choose my particular hotel, at least in Chicago's south Loop.

Room Tip: Ask for a high floor with a nice view, if possible. Definitely ask for something on floor six or hi...
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Chicago
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2013

Don't bother staying here. Besides the bathroom light switch being broken and other minor issues this place is outdated and not worth it. Anyone could walk in through the parking garage entrance and do whatever they want since they are re doing lobby and it is a joke as far as security.

Room Tip: Don't go.
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 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.
Carlos D, Manager at Chicago's Essex Inn, responded to this review, January 14, 2013
Thank you for your feedback. We take our guest comments very seriously and always strive to provide comfortable, safe, secure and friendly accommodations at Chicago’s Essex Inn.

I assure you the feedback of our hotel will be reviewed and most certainly forwarded to the appropriate departments. I have taken the opportunity to private message you, in hopes that you would be able to contact me directly. I would love to look into the challenges that you experienced on your stay with us. We take the confidence our guests place in us very seriously and work diligently to rectify any unsatisfactory experiences.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lyons, Wisconsin
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2013

We stayed at he Essex inn in December 2012 and found the rooms excellent.The staff went out of their way to get us to all the palces we wanted to go. The shuttle service was wonderful.The elevators were fast to our 3rd floor room.

Room Tip: On a cold day in December the rooms are really warm, and there were people in the pool which was com...
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Price Your Stay

Been to Chicago's Essex Inn? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Chicago's Essex Inn

Address: 800 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > Downtown / The Loop
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#100 Business Hotel in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Chicago's Essex Inn 3.5*
Number of rooms: 254
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Chicago’s Essex Inn is a hotel in downtown Chicago on the Michigan Avenue Cultural Mile that combines breathtaking panoramas of Grant Park, the Museum Campus and Lake Michigan with exciting promotional packages that incorporate famed attractions and events in Chicago.From our steel and glass lobby to contemporary rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows to an all-season rooftop pool, the Essex Inn offers amazing views and amazing value. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Orbitz, Priceline, TripOnline SA and Hotels.com so you can book your Chicago's Essex Inn reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Chicago`s Essex Hotel Chicago
Chicagos Essex Hotel
Essex Inn Chicago
Hotel Chicagos Essex

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Chicago's Essex Inn, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.