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“Clean room, nice location”

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The Blackstone, Autograph Collection
Ranked #36 of 189 Hotels in Chicago
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
147 reviews
57 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
“Clean room, nice location”
Reviewed October 31, 2011

I stayed in the hotel for a weekend get away to get some work done. The staff were very friendly, and got a nice large room on the 12th floor overlooking the park. If there is one complaint about the hotel itself, it would be that the LCD is not equipped to take external media input like other Marriott hotels have.

For runners, the hotel location is great IMO. On the east side you have the park to run in which gives you lots of options on which direction to go, and whether you want to run along the bay or not. On the West side, lots of cheap eats to pick from. On the North side, the classes restaurants are there. Love the location as it is not located near the busy side Michigan Ave.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank KingmanP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Colorado
Level Contributor
29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed October 31, 2011

This was my first stay at a Marriott Renaissance property and I can say I really enjoyed the experience. My platinum status upgraded me to a beautiful corner room with a view of the Sears Tower, which proved to be quite lovely.

I can honestly say that I was fascinated with the television that was embedded into the mirror in the bathroom. I typically don't bother with tv when I'm traveling - but since I could brush my teeth and watch the morning news in the same room, why not?

The room itself was quite nice with a comfortable bed, Eames-style lounge chair/ottoman, refrigerator, and desk. My colleague who had not been upgraded told me her room was nice, but apparently my digs were much nicer. Sometimes status really pays off.

The concierge lounge and food were both sub-par at best. I count on Marriott for my oatmeal and what I found at the property was a soupy/sugary/cinnamon concoction that was awful. Evening fare wasn't any better. I'm a vegetarian so typically I can find something in the form of a salad or crudite, but instead they actually server little hotdogs and some sort of bean concoction. I knew I wasn't off in passing less than stellar judgement about the lounge, when I heard a number of other visitors make a few negative remarks about the food.

The neighborhood around the hotel is up and coming with a good restaurants within walking distance. Lake Michigan is a short 2 block walk. Once there you can walk in either direction for miles, enjoying the beautiful lake and the Chicago skyline.

The gym is a decent size with good weight and aerobic equipment. It was clean and well attended during my visit. If you have good weather skip the gym and head to the lake for a walk/workout on the lake.

I'll definitely stay at this location again, but won't count on the lounge.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank girlcats
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed October 28, 2011

I would absolutely stay at the Renaissance Blackstone again - if I was on my own, or if it was just me and my wife. It was a beautiful hotel with so much history. The location was as close to downtown Chicago as we were going to get with our budget. It was a half hour walk to the downtown core, which was perfect on a sunny day. With Millenium Park right beside the hotel, the walk was beautiful - one of the highlights of our trip.

On a rainy day, one would have to take the subway which is surprisingly not kid-friendly. We were a first-timer to Chicago, so we tried to bring our stroller on the subway, which was not only a hazard, but next to impossible. The only reason why I bring this up is because if people were travelling with kids and the weather was anything less than sunny, it might be worth the extra $$ to stay downtown.

The room was incredible. Booking on priceline, I had a pretty good idea that we were going to get one of the non-preferred views, which happened - but it was not a bother. The room itself was clean and larger than I was expecting. There was a little white noise with a subway close by, but it was not nearly as much of a bother as some of the reviews I had read. Didn't bother either of us at all. The one and only cash-grab we felt while at the hotel was when they tried to 'upgrade' our room at check-in for $40/night for a better view.

The staff were amazing. Everyone was very professional and courteous. The front desk staff, concierges, housekeepers - everyone was great. Back to trying to be a 'family' stay - there was one concierge who had absolutely no idea what kind of restaurant to recommend when I said that I was bringing a one year old child and looking for a family-style restaurant - she continued to tell me about upscale restaurants. I wish I got her name because the other concierges I spoke with were much better.

Also - the hotel did not recommend Buddy Guy's Legends at all, which was really surprising. It is basically on the same block, and their afternoon entertainment from 12-2pm was again another one of our highlights. Glad we stopped in to it while attempting to walk to the restaurant the concierge recommended, which was blocks away. We actually stayed there for about 3 hours - it was really a load of fun with the acoustic blues set - perfect for kids.

We didn't dine in the restaurant because we figured it would be expensive. We opened the inroom dining menu and the first page was obviously the breakfasts. They cost between $20-$25, which is crazy for breakfast. A few nights later, after a full day of walking and exploring, we were bushed and submitted to going back to the hotel for room service dinner. We got $7.50 hamburgers which were surprisingly one of the best meals we had on the entire trip - FAR less expensive than we figured, and the quality was incredible. I would have happily paid $20 for it.

Great hotel - I would recommend this place to anyone.

Room Tip: Try a lake facing room - we 'cheaped out' and didn't want to pay the extra $40/night. T...
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
3 Thank not interested n
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
90 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
Reviewed October 28, 2011

I firat encountered this hotel from a general manager of another top Chicago hotel. He took me to its famous tapas restaurant for Saturday lunch.

As it is located in the South Loop, it is near the Science Museum as well as the Field Museum, Planetarium, and Aquarium.

So it is the perfect spot for lunch after a visit to one of these museums.

I recently treated myself to a night there and the hotel is equally opulent and singular.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled solo
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Adlai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bowie, Maryland
Level Contributor
234 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed October 27, 2011

I like old hotels, as long as they are kept renovated, and wasn't sure to expect with this one. Walking into the lobby it did have an older feel, but I have stayed at the Hilton across the street and thought perhaps all of the older hotels were trying to keep some of that "days gone by" look. However I didn't find it totally "old" as some have suggested, the check in desks were these individual stations that were kind of funky and modern looking. I was pleasntly surprised by the rooms which are modern and "Kimpton" like. This is a nice, boutique hotel. I had a view of an apartment building which caused me to keep my blinds closed. The building was VERY close with lots of windows looking into mine. This made my room dark all of the time as there are only about 4 lamps in the room.

Room Tip: Ask for a view that isn't the parking garage on one side or apartment building on the other.
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled on business
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Helpful?
Thank EventPlanner_7186700
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Breckenridge, Colorado
Level Contributor
349 reviews
80 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 174 helpful votes
Reviewed October 26, 2011

We really enjoyed our stay at the Blackstone. We were on the 11th floor and the view over Lake Michigan, Navy Pier and the Field Museum was fabulous!! Watching the sunrise was a terrific way to start our day! Check-in was quick and the staff was very friendly. Our room was nice sized, clean and beds were very comfy. Room is very quiet and the bathroom was large and very clean.

Location: Easy to walk to Millenium Park, Art Inst, Magnificent Mile, etc. Also close to all transportation.

Only complaint is the towels were thin, but I would definitely stay here again!!

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Deanna9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kentucky, United States
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed October 24, 2011

This is a really classy, clean, retro hotel with a very accommodating staff. I got a great deal on Priceline through name your own price and was so thankful! Definitely a 4 star.

Room Tip: The room we had faced State Street and was a bit noisy with city noises. But, it's Chicago, so y...
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank TraciW126
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Blackstone, Autograph Collection

Property: The Blackstone, Autograph Collection
Address: 636 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60605 (Formerly Renaissance Blackstone Chicago Hotel)
Phone Number:
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:
#18 Romantic Hotel in Chicago
#25 Business Hotel in Chicago
#25 Luxury Hotel in Chicago
#36 Family Hotel in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Blackstone, Autograph Collection 4*
Number of rooms: 335
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Blackstone in downtown Chicago is a storied architectural icon rooted in the city's legendary past, but newly updated to deliver a distinguished hospitality experience for today's discerning traveler. Previously known as the Renaissance Blackstone, this recently revitalized destination is blooming as a point of cultural and creative discovery on the Cultural Mile. The Blackstone, where epic history meets a clever contemporary attitude. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Renaissance Hotel Chicago
Renaissance Hotel Blackstone
Renaissance Chicago
Chicago Renaissance

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