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The Congress Plaza Hotel and Convention Center
Ranked #153 of 191 Hotels in Chicago
Reviewed November 25, 2013

The hotel is filthy and decaying. I had to change rooms at 3.30 AM, after I started developing an allergy from whatever chemical had been sprayed in the room. Look at the evacuation plan, a simple drawing taped to the elevator. I cannot understand why the city of Chicago has not sent a health and security inspector. Let's hope there is never a fire in that hotel. Coming from someone having history as a profession. This hotel is far away from being historic and charming. It was a poor choice for finding out by myself the truth behind these mixed reviews, given the excellent location. Stay away from this hotel. Cancel your reservation before it's too late, like in my case.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled solo
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3  Thank Mahler2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,536 - 1,542 of 2,871 reviews

Reviewed November 20, 2013

The hotel is a bit smelly. But it was fully expected due to previous hotel's reviews. What I do not like is that some of my clothes disappeared in the room. Reception was informed about this twice. And they did not do anything. I understand that things might happen, but the staff attitude was not proper.

Stayed: October 2013, traveled on business
2  Thank Mr B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 18, 2013

I booked a family suite because I had some friends in town and didn't want to pay an arm and a leg for 6 adults. I found a deal on Expedia for approx $450 for 6 adults. Not a bad deal for downtown Chicago. I didn't print out my reservation/confirmation number because these things usually aren't that difficult. I called on the way downtown with a car full of people to confirm the reservation for that night. The woman said she had nothing on file. I began to panic since I was in charge of making accomodations for 6 people. I called Expedia (which wasn't the easiest to get through) and the man said my reservation was all set, he called the hotel while I was on the other line and nothing was wrong. Okay fine. Thank you lady for giving me a heart attack. I should have asked for a free bottle of champagne or something for having to go the extra mile for no reason whatsoever. I thought this would be a nice, historic Chicago hotel but it was just old. Not vintage/chic or charming like I thought it would be. Just old and run down. They should really use that $450 to update a thing or two. Our room had about 2 outlets per room. There was no central heating or air. Just room temperature air spitting out of the fan unit. It just so happened to be 65 degrees in November so none of us slept as it was a sauna in our room. We also blew out a fuse while using the hair dyer while the coffee pot was plugged in. Had to wait for maintenence to come up and fix that. Unfortunately one of my friends was in the shower and had to continue his shower in the dark. The room also had one bathroom. It had 2 closets with absolutely no purpose so again, update your hotel to accomodate 6 people. Every time someone had to use the bathroom in the master room in the middle of the night/early morning it woke us up. Even though we really didn't sleep due to the heat. Just a bad experience. I think they should have paid us to stay there. I would have rather paid double at a hotel down the street to get a true family suite experience with AC/heat and more than one bathroom. I would not recommend this to anyone. Might as well stay at a motel or sleep outside with the bums.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Jennifer B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 17, 2013

Check in was swift. Marco and Steven gave excellent info and travel help. Room I booked was a 'queen' and the bed measured 7' across! Excellent linens and spotless bathroom. Hairdryer and drip coffee maker supplied. Beautiful old building. Walking distance to the 'Bean' and city centre.
I am an older female who travels alone and felt very comfortable within this hotel.

Room Tip: My room faced the side street which as it was on the 8th floor did not have street noise problem.
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled solo
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1  Thank Tushka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2013

I stayed on the 25th with my family. In room 441. That place is definately haunted. North tower 12th floor makes you feel like someome is pushing in on ur chest and you feel dizzy just walking. I had to stop a few times. A security guy took me in the grand hall and al capones room. He was awesome. Anyways that place is definately haunted. I didn't believe it until I stayed there. Seeing black figures moving out of the corner of my eye in my room, scratching sounds at night. But our room was huge. So it was great :) just avoid north tower on level 12. Nothin but trouble. There s a padlocked room that's sealed and I went by the elevator to go back down but I figured I'd take the stairs. I went to grab the handle for the door that leads to the stairway and it started rattling back and forth so I just dipped out of there and ran for the elevator! I know it sounds fake but I'm being legit. I didn't really believe in the paranormal til now. If you want a good scare, this is the place! :)

  • Stayed: October 2013
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15  Thank letsgo_hawks13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 12, 2013

Four of my friends and I stayed here for one night. We arrived at 6:00 AM and the staff allowed us to store out luggage in the luggage room, which was very secure. They even took our laptops to the basement for extra security! The hotel website listed that we couldn't check in until 3:00 PM, but our room was ready by noon. A very friendly bellman delivered all of our luggage to the room. They didn't even charge us an extra guest fee, even though we had five people in one room. The room was very hot, despite the cool Autumn weather, so we called the front desk to request a fan or something. Within minutes, a staff member delivered a fan to our room, which greatly improved the temperature issue. After we checked out, the hotel again stored all of our luggage for us until out bus arrived at 11 PM. Although the hotel was a little outdated and lacked a swimming pool, it compensated for these issues with its old-fashioned charm. Most of all, the incredible customer service here made our stay very enjoyable. Each and every staff member we encountered was friendly and accommodating. Also, all of my friends commented several times about how good and clean the entire hotel smelled. The location was also awesome, right across from Millennium Park on Michigan Avenue!

Room Tip: Higher floors are warmer... no A/C
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank J L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 11, 2013

I recently stayed here with my wife for 4 nights. Our experience was very good. The HOTEL is roughly 100 years old so it comes with some "character" that may have caused others to leave negative comments. Bottom line, it was a nice, clean, affordable place to stay in a great location! Right across the street from Grant Park & Millennium Park, 2 blocks from Lake Michigan, and although not in the heart of the action, very close to it. A few things to note: No Free WiFi and parking is very expensive and I don't think they had a pool.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Brett B
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 191 Hotels in Chicago
Price Range: $87 - $267 (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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