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The Whitehall Hotel

Exterior

At a Glance

    Pros

  • terrific location
  • updated rooms
  • remarkably comfortable mattresses

    Cons

  • small elevators and fitness center
  • expensive parking

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating:  

The Whitehall Hotel Review

An exclusive dining club for the city's elite in the 1920s, this Gold Coast boutique hotel that once hosted the likes of Katharine Hepburn and Mick Jagger has spacious, updated rooms in a stellar location close to Magnificent Mile shopping, Rush Street nightlife, and the Oak Street beach. Luxurious linens and lots of dark wood reinforce the elite feel. Two restaurants are on-site: Fornetto Mei serves Italian dishes that include standout pizza, and Mei's Corner is a casual, street-level Asian restaurant with authentic food and decent prices for the area. Staff is friendly and welcoming.

    Hotel Details

  • 214 rooms, 8 suites.
  • Rate includes no meals.
  • Credit cards accepted.
Updated: 06-11-2013

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating:  
  • Room  
    Décor  
    Service  
    Value  

    We got the Keith Richards Suite, but....

    First off, great location. Easy walk to Oak Street Beach, Old Town, great window shopping. We love the historic charm of the place, and the decor. The Rolling Stones slept here back in the day, and who knows who else. It's a fun place.

    But speaking of rollaway beds, we had a problem.

    We were my husband and I and our two daughters, 19 and 21. We booked a room for four, and expected the four of us to have a place to lay our bodies and sheets to lay them between. We arrived around check in time, and the desk clerk wrinkled her forehead deciding where to put us. Somehow there were no rooms with two double beds. How would we like a suite with a rollaway?

    Our penthouse suite turned out to be, according to the little exit map on the door, the second largest in the hotel. So, clearly the Keith Richards Suite. It was immense, with two bathrooms, a bidet, a king-sized bed, dining table, a couch. Fancy! Nice views!

    On our way out for the evening, I mentioned the rollaway again to the desk clerk. Later that night when we returned to the room, still no rollaway. Well, we'll just unfold the couch... and...wait. It's just a couch. Not a foldout, and no sheets. So, the four of us had one bed for two people. We called the desk, and were told the night shift would be in soon and would bring a rollaway bed.

    Near midnight, a nice young man rolled a single bed in, and my husband decided to sleep on the bare couch. I gave him one of my rollaway sheets.

    In the morning, the desk clerk was unsympathetic, dismissive, said he'd try to see what he could do. Never mind. My husband said just to keep the suite.

    I tell you who we liked there among the staff: the doormen. We went in and out so many times that weekend that we were almost chummy. And those elevators: tiny but friendly.

    by stokebailey, 9/14/12
  • Room  
    Décor  
    Service  
    Value  

    Incompetant Housekeeping, Indifferent Front Desk Staff, Imperious Mgmt.

    Our 14 y/o daughter was unexpectedly forced at 1:00AM to sleep on the floor due to the incompetence of the housekeeping staff and the dilatory unresponsiveness of the front desk staff.

    It is inconceivable to me how so many people working in such a disconnected manner can screw up the simple task of delivering a roll-away bed in a timely manner.

    We requested a roll-away in our reservation. I confirmed the need for a roll-away bed the day before our arrival; we asked for the roll-away to be brought-up when we checked-in at 7:00PM. We waited for 45 minutes, still no roll-away bed. We finally left for dinner at 8:15PM, informing front desk staff that we still had not received the roll-away bed. At 10:15 PM we returned from dinner. No Bed. Called front desk, were told we would be getting the bed "Shortly". At 11:15PM, front desk staff asked us if the bed had come yet (NO...!), they would see if a bellhop (!) could deliver one, as housekeeping had gone home for the evening at 11:00PM... numerous calls back and forth to and from the front desk... at 12:30AM, front desk "offered" to move us to a lesser-quality room (we were in a RACK-RATE, booked-directly-thru-the hotel "King Pinnacle" room) with two DOUBLE BEDS... I had taken a sleeping aid at 11:00PM, was in NO SHAPE to move to another room. Finally, WE SUGGESTED that the staff bring up a bunch of pillows for our daughter to sleep on... they pillows finally arrived 30 minutes LATER...

    The staff at The Whitehall are not the brightest crayons in the box. Instead of staying here, stay at the Tremont Hotel, where our son and daughter-in-law stayed, right behind this hotel on Chestnut St. Same quality and style, same distance to all Chicago venues, and a much more responsive staff...

    The WHITEHALL HAS ABSOLUTELY HORRIFIC STAFF. We complained to the front desk staff the next day. We were very, VERY careful to be respectful to the front desk staff, and were offered only an upgrade on our "next" (!) stay. We were told the hotel manager, "ALEX," would call us... 3 weeks later, we're STILL waiting for ALEX TO CALL. Go To THE TREMONT HOTEL!! Plus, A Bonus - DITKA'S is attached to THE TREMONT HOTEL.

    Pros: Beautiful Decor, quality updates throughout - doesn't make-up for inadequate staff

    Cons: Imperious front desk staff; inept housekeeping, poor staff communication

    by ExhaustedMom, 11/4/08

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