I stayed at the Willows on a recent trip to Chicago and was slightly underwhelmed in comparison to other travelers who have reviewed it here.
My room, a first floor "suite", was apparently located under the stairwell that leads from the lobby to the second floor. This was not a problem during the day. But, was quite noisy at 3 am on Friday and Saturday night when drunken revelers came stomping home from the local bars. More so when the staff began digging ice from the ice machine next to my room at 6 am for the continental breakfast that the hotel serves in its lobby.
In the case of the Willows, the excessive noise could be contained by the simple installation of some acoustic tiles and/or insulation under the offending staircase and more considerate behavior by the staff.
The suite consisted of one large room with a wall installed in the middle of it and a couple of chairs, a tv and wet bar in the sitting area. It certainly was not worth the extra expense. The bedroom had a rather old window unit air conditioner which was unnecessary the night I was there. Heat, which would have been welcome the night of my visit, appears to be radiated steam heat as one might find in many older Chicago buildings. The bathroom was tiny and one could nat maneuver around its door without having to close it.
The bedding was quite comfortble. However, the room fixtures including carpet were old, worn and appeared to be in need of replacement
The neighborhood is quite nice. Many dining and drinking options are available within blocks of the hotel. It is quite close to the Lake Michigan beaches if one is traveling in summer. The hotel does offer a gym membership at a local Bally's.
The staff seems a bit inept. Not capable of dealing with difficulties encountered by other guests checking in at the same time I was.
There are only a scant few hotels in this neighborhood which is surprising given its proximity to Wrigley Field. My experience at all has been quite underwhelming (including at the Willow's sister hotel, the City Suites on Belmont, which backs up to an active El track). I suspect that the demand caused by the lack of competition in the neighborhood creates an environment where the hotel operators don't have to excel to keep guests coming back.
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- Also Known As:
- The Willows Hotel Chicago
- Willows Hotel Chicago
- Willows Chicago