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“Very pleasant experience with some negatives”

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The Congress Plaza Hotel and Convention Center
Ranked #153 of 192 Hotels in Chicago
Reviewed July 19, 2013

We had an eleventh floor suite with two large bay windows that gave a tremendous view of the Buckingham Fountain Grant Park, Lake Michigan, and the skyline. The rooms were stylishly renovated, modern, and somewhat elegant. Two huge flat-screen TVs. The entire staff, from bellmen to reception to housekeeping, was very friendly. The location cannot be beat.The restaurant was good for breakfast. The negatives were the very tiny bathroom and the ancient room air conditioner that leaked all over the floor. Engineering took up the water from the carpet using a shop vac and supposedly fixed the unit, but it happened again the next day. Over all, it was pleasant, but it is not a bargain by any means.

Room Tip: Make sure you know what type of room you are reserving. The online info was not clear about this be...
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Thomas F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 19, 2013

I really enjoyed my stay at the Congress Plaza Hotel. The location was excellent and made it easy to get around the city. The room was older, but clean and spacious. The staff was super nice and helpful. While it is an older hotel, I definitely recommend it as a good value for the area. I would definitely stay again.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled on business
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Thank bettyfiona
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2013

There is basically no control of the temperature of you individual room. The hotel either produces heat in the winter months or air conditioning in the summer months. I had to shut off my fan because it was way too cold and was told there is nothing that could be done about it. The rooms don't come with a microwave or a fridge, this is a steep rental fee to use one. The shower barely gets above lukewarm. This is an average hotel, nothing special. The rooms are clean and it provides a place to sleep.

Room Tip: Ask for a lake view room
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled on business
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Thank deanna610
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 18, 2013

This hotel was very unique. You can tell that there have been updates made to this hotel but I liked that it didn't look too modernized. Had great valet service and friendly staff. Being my first time to a big city, the view from the 14th floor of the lake and all the buildings was so awesome. When we visit Chicago again, we will most definitely be staying at this hotel.

Room Tip: Get a room on a higher floor facing the lake. It's beautiful.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank denakay87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 17, 2013

I'll start with one thing I liked about this place. Our room was on the top floor overlooking Lake Michigan. Prior to arriving I tried calling to see if rooms were available. I was on hold for 10 min before I hung up. Took my chances and went straight there. Luckily there were rooms available. I understand trying to keep the hotel looking like its original classic.self but when we got to our small room it was covered in wallpaper that looked.like its been there for at least 40 years. The A/C unit looked just as old. We could feel the springs perfectly in the mattress and the bathroom had no wash cloths. For the price i wouldve at least hoped to have a mini fridge but nope. Went to get water from their vending machines since the rooms have none and the vending machine ate our money. Reported it to the front desk and the receptionist tried to imply we lied about the cost of the drink we tried to get until a coworker confirmed that we were right. To me this place is almosr like an overpriced motel.

  • Stayed: July 2013
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1  Thank chaptastic87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 17, 2013

This Hotel has some really great points,

the rooms are LARGE
Its close to loads of things to see and do
Has some really nice features in the lobby etc

It could do with a little modernisation but for the price i cant really complain. i would stay here again

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled on business
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Thank Nicholeth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2013

We stayed three nights at the Congress with our two kids (8 and 11). We stayed in a two room setup facing Harrison and Wasbash.... The rooms were large with high ceilings and large closets ..one room had a King Bed and the other room had two double beds and the bathroom off of it all tied together in a suite.... It was clean and roomy.... we were on the 10th floor but still heard the street/CTA noise.

I would go back.... the location was great!

Day 1 We walked to the Art Institute of Chicago and Millenium park! (Eat at Cosi - it is across the street from the Art Institute.... great, affordable, fresh food!)

Day 2 we took a cab to the Adler Planetarium (only $10 with tip for the 4 of us) walked back to the hotel.... then that evening walked to and from the Shedd Aquarium for Jazzin at the Shedd it was great!

Day 3 We walked to and from the Field Museum. After 6 hours at the we walked back to the Hotel. Later we walked to the Harold Washington Library just two blocks away next to the CTA Station.

The location is great for the museums and Millenium Park! Good service at the hotel! Great access to public transportation!

It is an old school hotel that needs some help (shades, paint, doors) but it had great AC in the room (it was hot in Chicago the days we were there)

Overall the Congress served us well!

Room Tip: Ask for a courtyard room if you do not want street noise......
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Steve R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Congress Plaza Hotel and Convention Center

Address: 520 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605-1602
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Illinois > Chicago > Downtown / The Loop
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #153 of 192 Hotels in Chicago
Price Range: $89 - $263 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — The Congress Plaza Hotel and Convention Center 3*
Number of rooms: 851
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Step inside and experience an extraordinary piece of living history during your next visit to downtown Chicago at the Congress Plaza Hotel. This "Landmark of Chicago Hospitality" has delighted business and leisure travelers for over a century. Guests at the Congress Plaza Hotel can explore art institute, millenium park, buckingham fountain, magnificent mile,museum campus all with in walking distance just by stepping outside our front doors. Situated adjacent to Grant Park, our 14-story property is located along Michigan Avenue, providing unlimited access to the city's finest retail stores, the bustling business district and Chicago attractions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Congress Plaza Chicago
Hotel Congress Plaza
Congress Hotel Chicago
Congress Plaza Hotel Chicago

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