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“Fantastic Art Deco Hotel Close to Lake Michigan” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Plaza Hotel

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The Plaza Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1007 North Cass Street, Milwaukee, WI 53202 (Downtown)   |  
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Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #22 of 52 hotels in Milwaukee
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Fantastic Art Deco Hotel Close to Lake Michigan”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2013 via mobile

I could not have been happier with my week long stay at The Plaza. The building was just incredible in an awesome historic way. Neat lobby, with extremely pleasant and helpful staff. I had read a lot of complaints about the wifi but I didn't have a single problem and it was lightning fast. The cherry on top in the Cafe at the Plaza. Incredible food from breakfast til 2pm each day with very reasonable prices for such awesome food. When I come back to Milwaukee this will be my go-to hotel.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
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103 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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    13
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 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 (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Spokane, Washington, United States
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 10, 2013

The building has a lot of charm. It's old and in a really beautiful location (Milwaukee's East Town neighborhood), and it's also safe (basically in the middle of the MSOE campus). The hotel is convenient - a block away from a supermarket and several bus lines, and five blocks from downtown, the Milwaukee Art Museum, and Lake Michigan. It is also down the street from a really yummy Greek cafe. In fact, I ate dinner there almost every night because it was delish! Anyway, the lobby of the hotel is covered by a huge rug with a huge, gross stain on it. I think they should probably fix that because it looks bad. The room was nice enough. My bed was super-comfy and I loved the attached kitchen. (Money-saving tip: go to the Metro Market and get cereal and milk and just eat breakfast in your room every day!) My bathroom was clean, but the shower/bathtub was horrible. The shower would not work unless the bathtub faucet was going at full strength, and that caused the bathtub to fill up. My shower ritual was to wash as quickly as I could in the shower and then wait for the tub to drain so I could wash my hair under the faucet. Very annoying, but I didn't complain to staff about it because I was already unpacked and weary after a 40-hour train journey. The building is also half-hotel and half-apartments. My room was near the residents' back entrance and the door slammed constantly. Every time the door slammed, by windows shook and it scared the crap out of me. Residents also smoked right outside my window near their bike rack area. I could smell it every time, because the room's windows didn't really close all the way. Anyway, those are all of my complaints. Try to get a room AWAY from the back entrance. Oh, a nice plus is the coin-op laundry they have in the basement - soap and dryer sheets for sale, too! I was able to hit up my next location with clean clothes.

Room Tip: Try to get a room away from the back entrance. Check your bathtub and shower before you unpack and m...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
BARNCA, Director of Sales at The Plaza Hotel, responded to this review, February 18, 2013
It is most unfortunate that the front desk was not advised on the bathroom issue, as well as the smoking. The guest would have been moved to another room and the faucet issue repaired.
There is a designated smoking area in the parking lot, away from the hotel. Smokers would have been asked to leave the area near the hotel. Also, the rug in the lobby is less than a year old and is of very good quality and cleaned/vacuumed daily. The "stain" was mistaken for the nap in the rug. Depending on where you are standing in the lobby, the nap looks different. The lobby has a lot of natural light that contributes to the look as well.
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Texas
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2013 via mobile

While it's a good "cheap and cheerful" hotel, the radiators in some rooms are just out of control. In our room, there was no regulator on the unit so we were connected directly to the boiler. The last night was just unbearable with the room temp hitting 90 degrees. In addition, the water banging in the radiator sounded like a bell choir. We were able to get a different room at 2:30 am but that radiator had the same bell choir problem. I can't blame the hotel for the noisy neighbors adjacent to the new room. Either way, it was a tough night.
The desk clerk did comp our parking fees but was authorized to comp at least that last night. A phone call to the GM a few days later didn't resolve things either. "Yes, we've been making some repairs to the boiler and I guess we still have some work to do."
Unless you're staying over New Year's Eve or on St. Patrick's Day, I would recommend staying at the County Claire for a good downtown "cheap and cheerful" option.

Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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BARNCA, Director of Sales at The Plaza Hotel, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
The following notification has been placed in each guest room:

Steam radiators feature manually operated, adjustable valves.
The hotel works on an “averaging heating system”. Steam is provided when the building, as a whole, requires heat.

Locate the radiator valve on either side of the radiator. Fully open the valve counterclockwise for heat. Turn the valve clockwise until it is fully closed for no heat.

If the guest room has two or more radiators, turn one off completely and use one only to regulate over-heating. It is best to leave a radiator on at all times.
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Oak Park, Illinois
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2012

Do not use the Plaza hotel when traveling here on business or if you plan on using internet in your room at all. The internet signal is so weak I don't even know why they bother offering it.

Location is great. It is a short walk to everywhere you need to go in Milwaukee.

Do not get a room near the cafe unless you want to get woken up early in the morning...but do get a room near the cafe if you want free smells.

  • Stayed August 2012, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BARNCA, Director of Sales at The Plaza Hotel, responded to this review, January 29, 2013
In the month of January, 2013, the Plaza Hotel quintupled the ban width to the building and replaced all network equipment. The upgraded network is working very nicely.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WI
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2012 via mobile

This hotel is tucked in a quiet neighborhood, walking distance to the lake and downtown restaurants. Cute, clean, affordable rooms. Older building undergoing renovations. Great breakfast at the cafe. Will definitely return.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 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.
Buffalo Grove, IL
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2012

The Plaza was a wonderful hotel for our weekend in Milwaukee. We were there for the weekend to go the a concert, visit the state fair and then just visit Milwaukee as I had never been. The Plaza was a perfect location away from your typical downtown environment. It was close walking distance to almost anything that we wanted to do. The only downside really for The Plaza was the comfort of the bed and pillows. They could have been a little softer, however I was still able to sleep through the night so it wasn't a deal breaker. The kitchenette was nice since we were there for the weekend...we were able to take some snacks and drinks of our own and keep them cold in a full size refrigerator.

I would definitely stay at The Plaza again when visiting Milwaukee.

Room Tip: Away from foot traffic (i.e. stair) as the floors are creaky Away from the cafe
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago and all over
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2012

The Plaza Hotel is not your generic chain hotel -- whether high-end or low-end. It doesn't feature a pool for the kids, high-end shampoos and soaps, a business center, or a fitness "room" (you know, the closest-sized "center" where the treadmill faces a wall). But it does have charm, comfort, and a fabulous cafe, and it is in a darned good location -- a location featuring a fitness "center" that encompasses the vast lakefront trail system. Other reviewers have commented on how aspects of their rooms seemed woefully outdated and/or not functional. Our room seemed to have benefited from the recent renovation effort and included a highly functional air conditioning unit.

Let's break down the pluses and minuses, shall we?

The minuses:

- Although our room was huge, the bathroom was tiny with only one hook for hanging towels and such and no hanging bars. While adding bars might be tricky in this tiny space, adding more hooks would be both possible and very helpful.
- Our room adjoined the cafe's courtyard, and starting early in the morning (maybe 6:30?), there was quite a racket. If you need to be up anyway or can sleep through anything, this is not a problem. Otherwise, ask for a room in a different location or use the fan on the AC unit as a white-noise cover-up.

The pluses:

+ A charming 1920s building in a great location, within walking distance of the lake, the art museum and other downtown draws.
+ Competent customer service, including a bonus for us: an unexpected room upgrade.
+ Nicely appointed rooms, including a huge closet.
+ Easy parking (although it is extra $).
+ A cafe serving up scrumptious breakfast and lunch -- whose main drawback is that it is not open for early evening cocktails. (Perhaps this would make life worse for the people staying in rooms next to the courtyard?)
+ Good value for the price, especially in the peak of high season.

When we return to Milwaukee, it is likely that we'll stay here again.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about The Plaza Hotel

Address: 1007 North Cass Street, Milwaukee, WI 53202
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Wisconsin > Milwaukee > Downtown
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #22 of 52 hotels in Milwaukee
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — The Plaza Hotel 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Plaza has been a fixture on Milwaukee's eastside since the roaring 1920's. This art deco gem has been thoughtfully renovated to restore many of the stunning original architectural details while providing for the modern amenities & the latest technology today's traveler demands. Nestled in a residential nook of the Yankee Hill neighborhood, the Plaza is just 4 blocks from Lake Michigan and the city's lakefront attractions. Within walking distance to some of the city's best restaurants, nightlife, arts, sports, etc. Grocery store, churches, art galleries & shopping are all nearby. On-site parking for a minimal fee, kitchenettes & laundry room. Cafe at the Plaza, open 7am-2pm. Known for it's great breakfasts! Sitting on the edge of downtown, you will find the Plaza to be a relaxing urban retreat.Property has air conditioning in the summer months. AC unit installed based on weather conditions. ... more   less 
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