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“Great Hotel-Great Rooms-Great Location-Ok Service”

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The Peninsula Chicago
Ranked #3 of 191 Hotels in Chicago
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 23, 2011

We have stayed at the Penninsula in Hong Kong which in my book is what all Hotels in this 5 star category should be measured against in all aspects so we were excited to give this Hotel a shot in Chicago. We came away overall with a great stay and were not disappointed. There were however some shortcomings that we felt did not put them at the 5 star level (more like 4.5) since 5 star really means near or at perfection. For example, we had a waiter for tea in the lobby (Reuben) that did not know how to smile and was slow; we had the same experience on two different occasions in the venue area where the service was slow to realize you were seated and slow to accomodate. Food was great though. Spa service and facilities were also excellent (we stayed at hotel for 5 days so we really experienced a lot). Housekeeping also fell a little short. For example, we had a suite with a hide-a-bed that our daughter slept on and on second night turn-down service failed to show up so we had to pull the hide-a-bed out ourselves which had no sheets so we had to call for them to come make up the bed (why they stripped it from the night before I have no idea). Again, not a huge huge deal, but something a five star should not miss. Certainly would stay again, but at their rates I might also give Trump a try or Four Seasons.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Jobo59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 1, 2011

While some people may turn their noses up because they have been better places, I thought the Peninsula was WONDERFUL! The service was incredible, the people were kind, the views were spectacular, and the location was superb. The beds were comfortable, and we appreciated the complimentary food in our room at the end of each long (and awesome) day. This hotel was absolutely wonderful, down to the smallest detail. The breakfasts were the meals of a lifetime, and I would go back in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled with family
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Thank HelloHorsey27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 1, 2011

and the peninsula proves to me why it is considered one of the best hotels in the country, and certainly the best in chicago.

i usually stay at the trump, and that is a wonderful hotel that i love and would stay at again, but the peninsula's staff and their attention to detail is in a different class.

several other travelers already mentioned the control center device on the nightstand, but it really makes sense. little things, like the staff communicating via your personal fax machine and having a small light illuminate on the control center when there was a message on the fax, were what made the difference. you got the feeling that the they were always available, but never intrusive.

other things, like asking them to send up silverware and napkins when i brought back takeout from a restaurant, or ordering pizza and having the staff deliver it to my room, were indicative of a place that valued not only the privacy but the security of its guests.

niggles? ok, the room isn't as spacious and modern as the trump. and the toiletries aren't as nice, either. but if you've stayed in enough five-star places, you know that you can get the same level of room decor and size at a hilton, but you don't get the same quality of sheets or attention to detail in housekeeping.

a female friend came to visit, and i gave her a set of the slippers they use for turndown. the next day, another set came. when i decided to use the cloth laundry bag for my dirty clothes, another one was placed in the same place as the old one. to see if this was a fluke, i took the next set and hid them in a drawer. they replaced them again. at other places i've stayed, you get one set, and that's it. it's little things like that that show that housekeeping is paying attention to the little things. clothes, for example, were always neatly folded if they were sitting out. shoes were placed back in the closet.

the indoor lap pool and the whirlpool were wonderful, and i would recommend bringing a swimsuit to take advantage of this.

other things? free internet access, which is huge because if you're like me, you travel with a work laptop and an ipad. if you have to pay for internet access, you end up paying twice if you want wi-fi. for this level of hotel, internet should be included. also, every room has a personal fax machine and number, so you can send and receive faxes. the machine doubles as a copier, as well, which is helpful when you need to scan something fast.

you can also smoke in the room (assuming it's a smoking room), unlike the trump. again, that's a huge thing for me when you want to unwind after a long business day and have a nice cohiba.

absolutely the best stay i've had in chicago. i am back in a few weeks for leisure, and i'll be back at the peninsula.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled on business
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Thank andergtr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2011

Don't get me wrong, this is a beautiful hotel in the heart of Chicago's mag mile, just steps from Michigan Avenue. And room service was delivered in just 10 minutes.
However, having stayed at 5-star hotels around the world, for us, this one left much to be desired.

First - although, you will find most of the staff's manners genteel and accommodating, yet the not overly friendly service that has become the standards of 5-stars, I had the experience of ordering an apricot sour in the bar.
The waitress yelled 3xs, across the entire bar to the bartender...."Joey(not real name) do we have apricot brandy.....(now louder) Joey, do you have apricot brandy....(3rd time - even louder) JOEY DO WE HAVE APRICOT BRANDY?" He must have finally answered because she told me she could accommodate my request.
It was one of the best I have tasted, when it arrived.

Next - The room, though lovely, was average at best. If you have recently stayed at a redecorated Hilton, with the new mattresses and white duvet covers, you will have an idea of our room's appearance.

Finally, my main issue was the availability and quality of the toiletries. Only the soap and shampoo were anywhere to be found. When I called the front desk to inquire about some body lotion, I was told to "pull" on the towel holder.
I did so and a drawer opened providing toiletries - the quality of a Holiday Inn. Small plastic bottles of lotion and cardboard boxed items.
I had to wonder, why were they hidden?
There was a sign in the bathroom directing me to the hairdryer - why must I call down to find a secret drawer of disappointing toiletries?

If you are looking for a quality hotel in the heart of the Mag Mile, you will not be disappointed. If you come expecting a 5-star experience, I would hope yours would be better than ours.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank jelliclegypsy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 11, 2011

It is easy for a five-star hotel to be a pleasure to stay at when all goes smoothly - the real test is when everything goes wrong. I traveled to Chicago on what was supposed to be an overnight business trip that turned into a six-night stay due to a sudden client emergency. I had only brought one change of clothes with me and, as it turned out, the hotel was fully booked for the days after my first night's stay - all at a time when I was working around the clock due to the client emergency.

The hotel staff rose magnificently to the occasion - my clothes were cleaned and neatly pressed for me every morning, and hung with care in my closet. In addition, depite the hotel being fully booked, they assured me they would find a place and within an hour called me to let me know that they had found another room for me and would move my things. All in all, the staff made a seamless pleasure out of what was a very stressful week in my professional life.

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled on business
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1  Thank nhdb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 1, 2011

my wife and i were scheduled to go to new york the week of january 24. as we were boarding the plane, all flights into la guardia were cancelled due to the weather. we're from atlanta and were packed for really cold weather so we decided to go to chicago. air tran could not have been more accomodating; they charged us nothing extra to change flights and put us in first class to boot.

we have stayed in some very elegant hotels but had never stayed in a peninsual property. the hotel was running a third night free package; we booked through our amex platinum card, which includes a one room upgrade; we were upgraded to an executive corner suite; i think it was 750 sq feet.; it worked out to approximately $375 per night. the room was magnificent; the service in the hotel was extraordinary; the hotel is immaculate; the location is perfect. the suite also came with a complimentary car and driver for 3 hours to drive us where we wanted to go and to wait for us; how incredible is that? ask for robert in concierge; top notch person to deal with.

if your plans include going to chicago, do not miss the opportunity to stay in this hotel. you will not regret it.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank hsg130
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 12, 2011

The Penninsula is quickly challenging if not surpassing both The Four Seasons and The Ritz Carlton for a few very important reasons:
1. Staff attends to guests in an old-school manner that is both gracious and intelligent.
2. Rooms are large, beautiful, comfortable, and surprising...
3. Surprises: many small details both in the rooms and elsewhere amount to a feeling of happiness and ease-of-living. For example, the way the flat screen TV swivels to face the bed; the lighting in the spa; the palm trees in the lobby.

I can't imagine a better urban luxury hotel.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank I1240DMdanielr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Peninsula Chicago

Address: 108 E Superior St, at North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611-2645
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > Magnificent Mile , Near North Side
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Chicago
#3 Luxury Hotel in Chicago
#3 Family Hotel in Chicago
#3 Business Hotel in Chicago
#4 Romantic Hotel in Chicago
Price Range: $373 - $1,162 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — The Peninsula Chicago 5*
Number of rooms: 339
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located at Water Tower Park on the "Magnificent Mile," the city’s premier shopping district, The Peninsula Chicago is the city's most luxurious and sophisticated hotel, offering guests all possible amenities and services. The Peninsula Chicago is a proud recipient of the Five-Star, Five-Diamond Award, and was also recently awarded "#1 Large City Hotel In US And Canada" by readers of Travel + Leisure. The Peninsula Chicago's 339 luxurious guestrooms and suites are among the largest in the city and are exquisitely furnished in a contemporary yet classical style, with a state-of-the-art electronic system that provides guests the ability to control guestroom features with the touch of a button. At the top of The Peninsula Chicago, you’ll find the world-renowned Peninsula Spa. An intimate, indulgent environment featuring innovative spa treatments, gracious service and magnificent facilities including a half-Olympic length swimming pool on the 19th floor overlooking the Chicago skyline. With three distinctive restaurants and a bar, guests can choose from a diverse array of superb dining options. Shanghai Terrace is notable as much for its intensely flavored Shanghainese and Cantonese delicacies as for its matchless service and 1930s supper club atmosphere; The Lobby provides an incredible breakfast, lunch and dinner menu, live entertainment and delectable afternoon tea in elegant surroundings; The Bar offers a sophisticated menu of cocktails, port; and Pierrot Gourmet is a European-style cafe ideal for casual, light fare. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Peninsula Chicago Hotel Chicago
Peninsula Chicago
Chicago Peninsula

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