Saturday, October 9, 2010

Review: Downtown Chicago Starwood Properties

This is a review of the Starwood properties in the downtown Chicago area.

The Westin Michigan Ave.
The W Lakeshore
The W City Center
The Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers
The Westin River North

The Westin on Michigan Ave. (right next to the Hancock) is the Starwood property that I've visited in Chicago the most. It's right next door to my office so it makes it very convenient - but there's not a lot else going for it. The elevators are frustrating and the rooms are in need of an upgrade. Dining options are very limited - but the Grill on the Alley is an ok place to grab a drink after work.

I've only been to the W Lakeshore once. It's in an awkward location and the bathrooms don't offer much privacy (as is traditional in W chains). W's are designed to draw people out of their rooms into the common areas and thus typically have trendy, fun bars. I'm more comfortable staying in my room. They also really try to fleece you with a huge selection of mini bar items - be careful. The location of this property is awkward - you can't really walk anywhere.

The W City Center eschews the cabana feel of its Lakeshore sister property for more sleek, modern appointments. This is a popular hotel on the weekdays for business travelers and the bar is usually packed after work. On the weekends it can get pretty isolated and quiet unless there's a large event going on.

There's not much to say about the Sheraton except that it's huge. I've only been there for conferences and it's clearly constructed to support them. The rooms are small. It's a shade classier than your traditional downtown Sheraton property.

My favorite Chicago Starwood property by far is the River North. A great location near some fun bars and clubs. An excellent bar downstairs and great views of the Chicago river from many of the rooms. The staff are courteous and very willing to help.

No comments:

Post a Comment