We stayed at the Chicago's Essex Inn October 23 - 25, 2008. It was a great location for what we had planned. The rooms were clean and recently renovated. No complaints. We had room service one evening and the food was good. We swam in the indoor pool and it was very clean and the water was warm. There is a lifeguard on duty. Grant Park is directly across the street from the hotel. From there we were able to walk to Millennium Park. I highly recommed Millennium Park to see the huge "Bean".
Our trip mainly consisted of visiting the museum campus. We highly recommend purchasing the City Pass if you want to do the museums. Huge savings! We drove to The Museum of Science and Industry which is just a few miles south of the hotel. If you want to take advantage of free parking, do not go into the parking garage which is located under the front entrance. Drive past the museum on Lake Shore Drive and you will see an entrance into the Science Center. Park here! It saved us $15. The museum is great and plan on spending the entire day. The U-5 Sub is a must see along with the tour. The Baby Chick Hatchery is fun to watch too! They also had live science experiments happening throughout the museum.
The Hancock Observatory was fun. With the city pass, it offers an audio tour of the city. They offer one for adults and children. Our 10 year old daughter really enjoyed it.
Adler Planetarium was nice, but it won't take the entire day. At least we did not think so.
Shedd Aquarium was also nice. When we were there, the Oceanarium was closed for renovations. With that being closed we did not use up an entire day either. However, when that reopens, I'm sure it will be very nice. When we went to the Adler Planetarium an Shedd's Aquarium we took a taxi as it would have cost us the same to take the car in/out (with tipping), plus parking at the museums.
We also visited The American Girl store at Watertower. Very nice and we had dinner too. It's expensive, but our daughter enjoyed it and the food was good.
We ate at Ed Debevic's, fun place to go.
All and all, we had a great time and felt like we got the most for our money.
- 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, the Essex Inn offers amazing views and amazing value. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Chicago`s Essex Hotel Chicago
- Chicagos Essex Hotel
- Essex Inn Chicago
- Hotel Chicagos Essex