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CongressPlazaHotel
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Reviewed 21 August 2013

I stayed here for 5 nights. The lobby area is nice, the whole hotel is old though. You really notice it in the room. The bed was ok...not the most comfortable bed. I could see Willis Tower out my window. I could also hear the trains going by every few minutes as the tracks were right there. But the room was clean and really, I only slept and showered here.

The location was great for me! Easy access to public transport and close walking distance to many Chicago attractions (Solider Field, Shedd Aquarium, Willis Tower).

Date of stay: August 2013
Trip type: Travelled solo
1  Thank Danielle P
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 21 August 2013

The lobby has an old world charm with its mosaic tiles, very nice, but our room was terrible. We had 2 queen beds for 4 adults. We were there August 2013. Upon entering our room it was HOT, as the air was not turned on - hello, it's August! After turning it on it still didn't work well.

Our room was cleaned only 1 time in the 4 days we stayed there, only after I called to alert them it was not done. After being "cleaned" (beds were made), one of our party took a shower, without realizing that they too ALL our towels and he was stranded in the shower with nothing to dry off with. I called immediately to the front desk and 40 minutes later towels arrived, with NO apology. Every day it was the same thing - call down to get new towels as they left the dirty ones on the floor!

The hallways were dirty and needed to be vacuumed. Some of the light fixtures in the hall to the restaurants are broken, and instead of fixing the candelabra arms, they are swung to arms that are not broken - looks bad - makes you think "oh boy, this place is hurting for money."

The front desk personnel is not well trained in customer service care. They never offered an apology, even after I explained what I had gone through.

Location of the hotel is great I must say, close to the park and also to the metro.

Light kept filtering into our room as the curtains wouldn't close completely since the windows were bowed and there were 3 separate curtain rods on each window that prevented the drapes from closing all the way. (We had a corner room). View of Willis Tower (Formerly Sears Tower) from our room was great, especially at night.

The Bathroom shower was tiny. And, the 10 foot glass shelf for our toiletries was scary as it didn't have a support and kept bowing with weight on it. There was nowhere else to put things in the bathroom other than that shelf. Also, the toilet leaked and we had to keep a towel at the base of it so the water didn't travel across the floor. Each flush produced about 1 cup of water!

Beds look pretty, and have very nice soft cotton sheets. But it felt like we were in a college dorm, as there are no box springs. The thin mattress is on top of a board - our bed was built similar to a waterbed.

I wish they would put some money into this hotel, as it has such potential.

Room tip: If you must stay here, beware, but ask for a room overlooking the park if you like a view.
Date of stay: August 2013
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
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1  Thank Jim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 20 August 2013

Myself, husband and daughter took a vacation to Chicago and decicded to stay at the Congress. I have not been to the congress since I was a little girl when my mother worked there as a housekeeper in the early "70's". We loved everything about it when we walked into our room it was very nice and we had a beautiful view of the city. Yes when we first tried to get to our room it was confusing because we had to get out the elevator and go through 2 doors just to get to our room but after a while we had no problem with it ( My daughter thought it was fun ). Second thing the building and room did have some views of the hotel's years of service but I had no problem with it because the age of the hotel. My husband and I were taking our own tour of the hotel and we ran into security officer Pete ( we weren't given his last name) but he gave us a very informal tour of the hotel and the ballrooms. We appreciated his tour and the info he gave us Thank you Pete. We stayed there 3 days and my only problems is that most to the employees were not in uniforms so we didn't know if they worked there or not. The fitness center was a disappointment only because it didn't have much equipment and most of it was old fashioned and not updated. We needed a cab to take us to the southside and we got a lot of we don't go that way or got a high charge just to get us there it seemed that the people in Chicago were afraid to go into there own neighborhoods then those who are not even from Chicago. Other then this I was amazed at how much Chicago has grown and was just amazed of how beautiful downtown is now. Overall we had a pleasant stay and wouldn't mind staying there again in the future.

Room tip: If you don't like the noise of the train or " L " like we say in Chicago do not ask for a city view ask for a lake view.
Date of stay: August 2013
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
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Thank petra p
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 20 August 2013

Thankfully I only stayed at this hotel for one night. As soon as you walk in you get the idea that this place hasn't been updated in at least 30 years. After check in we went to our room and out of the elevator the floor had a very odd smell to it. We went into our room and I was surprised with how small it was. We were staying with another group of friends and their room was even smaller, there was about 2 feet from the end of the bed to the opposite side of the wall, barely enough room to walk through. The carpets were very dirty, stained and the bathroom was not impressive either. Towels must be hard to come buy here as we only had 2 bath towels and 2 wash cloths, no hand towels. Then there are the beds, which feel like you're sleeping on metal camping cots. Worst bed I've slept on in a hotel. The location was nice since there was a train stop just around the corner but besides that this hotel has no other reason for you to stay there.

Date of stay: August 2013
  • Trip type: Travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Frank502
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 19 August 2013

As many others have noticed, a quality of this hotel is its location. Excuse me, "THE" quality, as in, there are no other positive attributes. The lobby, of course, is beautiful, and the price is a scam, fooling travelers into thinking that the rooms themselves are worth something.

The room was not as large as an average hotel room. The bathroom was about as large as a closet. There was barely any room for our toothbrushes. Sitting on the toilet resulted in hitting your head against the sink. The shampoo and conditioner were combined in a small bottle. Even no hooks to put your clothes when you shower.

This applies to the room in general - poor and old equipment. Not enough light, noisy fan in the bathroom wakes up everybody if one person goes to the bathroom at night. There was even no folding stool to put your suitcase on - an item normally found even in the cheapest hotel rooms.

The WiFi costs about $10 per day PER DEVICE. According to the information book in the rooms, the use of the business center is charged per 15 min intervals. We did not try it ourselves though.

There is no complimentary breakfast. You can purchase breakfast for $16 per person - still less than you'd be paying for two laptop's internet connections for one day!
With no complimentary breakfast, we were still charged extra $25 per night for a third adult in the room. It did not result in any additional towels, soap, or blankets. I know the charges for an extra people are usually to cover the "extra ware" of the rooms, but the room we stayed in in the Congress Plaza was not renovated since the Chicago fire.

The hotel's website states the parking is $35 per day (more if you use valet service), but the price is actually $39 per day, and if you use valet service once upon arrival, you are charged $44 per every day of you stay. This includes Sundays, on which Chicago parking is generally free. The parking is until 2PM at the day of checking out, regardless of the time you checked in.

One good thing about this hotel (in addition to location, of course!) - the check out is at noon, while in most places it is 11AM. Honestly, cannot think about anything else. We stayed there for three days and hates every moment of it.

Date of stay: August 2013
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank WickedWitchOfEast
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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