Kimpton Hotel Monaco Chicago
What We Love
- A nightly lobby wine hour from 5 to 6 p.m. every evening
- So pet-friendly it verges on doggie daycare (think turn-down treats and no size restriction)
- Free (upon request) spa tote bag for use during your stay, filled with a yoga mat, Pilates rings and core strengthening bands
What To Know
- There is no dedicated hotel spa, though in-room massages and facials can be arranged
- WiFi is free for those who sign up for the free Kimpton Karma Rewards program
- The “Forgot It? We’ve Got It!” program will supply you with anything from lip balm to cell phone chargers, if you call the front desk
- Handicap Accessible
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
This circa 1912 property, perched one block south of the Chicago River, started life as a hat factory. And that suits the Monaco — part of the playful Kimpton hotel brand — just fine. Following through on the theme with lots of Mad Hatter whimsy, the 191-room hotel kicks things off with a reception area and living room lounge that features day-glo photos of women in fanciful headgear, funhouse-size wing chairs and Deco murals. The valets get in on the act with their own hat tricks; depending on the season they’re decked out in earflap trapper hats, straw boaters or newsboy caps.
Bed and Bath
The guestrooms add to the quirky romp with white leather chaises, looping carved wooden headboards and a spinning color wheel of gold-framed mirrors, scarlet carpets and red damask drapes. Even the standard King Deluxe Rooms are airy by Chicago standards, at 332 square feet, but the gentle rise in price to the Mediterranean Suite buys you a separate living room, along with epic, cushion-lined window seats that could pass for cupboard beds. Standard bathrooms feel cramped, though the granite countertops, C.O. Bigelow toiletries and animal-print robes, cheetah to zebra, keep the party going.
A functional fitness center features free weights, stationary bikes, treadmills and supersized hula hoops. There’s a nightly lobby wine hour from 5 to 6 p.m. and the hotel’s South Water Kitchen sits just off the lobby. The homey restaurant doesn’t try to compete with all the local Gold Coast contenders, but it does do right by its Midwestern comfort food menu, which includes a very meaty plate of bourbon-braised pork belly dished up with bacon mac and cheese.
In the Area
Sitting just south of the Chicago River and just west of Michigan Avenue, the Monaco straddles the North and South Loops. That means you’re within easy striking distance of most major Chicago attractions: Navy Pier, the theater district and North Michigan Avenue’s luxe lineup of shops. The hotel’s concierge can help you book a private charter tour of the Chicago River, for a floating view of the city’s sleek modernist landmarks. If you want to stay firmly grounded, though, head south to Magnolia Bakery for a cup of the banana pudding. Then walk over to the Art Institute of Chicago, where the Modern Wing, inaugurated in 2009, showcases work by Picasso and Georgia O’Keeffe, and the terrace of the Terzo Piano restaurant, headed by master chef Tony Mantuano, overlooks Millennium Park.
How to Get There
When we travel, we always try to stay at a Kimpton Hotel. So, on our trip to Chicago, we booked the Hotel Monaco.
On the positive side:
- The room was beautifully decorated, clean, comfortable, etc. Perfect. No complaints.
- The hotel is centrally located...easy to walk to many sights and restaurants.
- The hotel staff was nice.
We had two problems:
- First, there is no concierge and the people at the desk were not very helpful in giving us restaurant or sightseeing suggestions/information. We asked several times for suggestions and finally gave up.
- Second, throughout the 5 night stay, housekeeping did not leave enough towels, wash cloths, body lotion, etc. At one point, upon leaving in the morning, we left a message with the front desk that we needed body lotion. Upon our return that night, no body lotion. I went to the front desk and they gave me some.
Though not a huge issue, it just wasn't up to Kimpton standards.
I generally like Kimpton hotels and for my stay this was no exception (except for the annoying texts from the front desk checking that I was ok--that's superfluous!).
But I managed to rush out in the morning and leave a nice pair of pants and brand new shorts in the closet. I didn't discover this until that evening, when I was in New Jersey looking for the pants to wear the next day.
I was in Chicago, near the hotel, all day. If they had called me to let me know that they found them, it would be have been a breeze for me to come by and get them. Instead I had to call twice to track them down. On the 2nd call they said that would send them to me and took down my home address.
The next day I got an email from a 3rd party service (Lokated) offering to send them to me for $22 shipping (or more for expedited). I called again and was told that it's standard practice for hotels not to notify guests if they leave something. is that really true?
Seems like less that ideal service.
And they apparently never tracked down my new shorts at all. Ugh!
I stayed 2 nights in this hotel in June and I totally recommend it. Here is a quick story about my stay and how things that start bad can end up being corrected and making a customer satisfied again.
First time, I did not have a very good start when I arrived in the hotel (8am on a Sunday). I knew I was early for check in (I arrived from a 11 hour flight) but the issue was more on how the staff treated me on my early arrival. I did not liked it and made a complaint.
The positive thing is that after i left, I received the customer feedback email and I made my fair customer complaint, and I was immediately responded by the Front Officer Mgr, Mr.Abdul, whom gave me huge support for my upcoming stay and of course, apologized for the situation I faced in my arrival.
I just have to thank Mr.Abdul and the entire hotel staff that was super friendly when I stayed again in the hotel. I am a huge believer that mistakes happen every where and in every business and they can be fixed. Customer Reviews are important tool to address issues and have them resolved.
The hotel is super clean, in a very good location in Chicago downtown. You have plenty of bars, restaurants and anything you might want in walking distance.
My family traveled to Chicago for an extended July 4th holiday and stayed at the Kimpton Hotel Monaco. We enjoyed a wonderful hotel experience. The entire staff is friendly, courteous and professional. The entire hotel has been recently remodeled and all areas are in superb condition. The location of the hotel provides great access to the Chicago river and area restaurants and shopping.
I recently stayed at the Hotel Monaco and traveled with my two dogs for their first visit to Chicago. From the moment we pulled up to the moment we departed; we made to feel extremely welcome. They remembered our names each time we cam in the door and my dogs were very welcomed. We would all stay again in a heart beat. Thank you so much to all of the staff for a wonderful stay.