At first pass, I missed the turn into the walled, roundabout parking area of the Waldorf Astoria. Know why? Because I didn’t know there was such a thing as a roundabout driveway in the Gold Coast, where every piece of real estate is treated like gold and used to its greatest potential. How wrong I was. The lavishness continues inside the hotel, which you could call “French manor-style,” but “palatial” is more accurate. Built in 2008 as the Elysian, the Waldorf Astoria brand took over the space in 2012, and has done a superb job of maintaining its elegant, over-the-top image. Turn your eyes up in the bright white lobby and you’ll see a starburst chandelier, which was based on a brooch that Coco Chanel used to wear, and the swirly designs in the marble are inspired by her apartment. The rooms here are among the largest in town, decorated with furnishings that are artfully residential, and many are equipped with balconies and fireplaces. Of the 188 units, only 38 are standards and the rest are suites, drawing in, surprisingly enough, a good number of families. One warning, though: Although there’s a pool on site, it’s more of a lap pool and less of a kid-friendly play area. Look close and you’ll see hundreds of thousands of small, pink, Italian tiles on the bottom. The goal: so guests can feel as though they’re swimming through a bed of roses. Seriously.
11 E Walton St. (at Rush St.), Chicago, IL 60611
Our Rating Neighborhood Gold Coast Transportation Subway/El: Red Line to Chicago Phone 800/500-8511 or 312/646-1300 Prices $405–$505 double. Valet parking $64 Amenities Restaurant; lounge; concierge; health club w/spa and indoor lap pool; room service; free Wi-Fi Units 188 units Web site Waldorf AstoriaBook a Room Now
Map11 E Walton St. Chicago
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.