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Sunday, January 22, 2012

Chicago, Illinois/ Hyatt Regency McCormick Place

January 2012, Weekend, King executive guestroom # 2733
Diamond perk

Status perks
As a Diamond member, I received an executive room upgrade, breakfast for two, and choice of a hotel perk or extra points. I chose the perk, so the agent gave me a slip of paper to choose two items, and the time I wanted them delivered. I chose a bottle of wine and the cheese plate. I thought this was an impressive perk, and both items were excellent quality.

Guestroom
I received the same guestroom I had stayed in three years ago when I stayed at this property. I was impressed when I received the upgrade at that time since I only had basic status with Hyatt then. I remember wondering how I had gotten so lucky. This guestroom is a spacious corner room with a beautiful view. The upgrade was not as impressive with Diamond status. It was spacious and comfortable, although the furniture was the same as a few years ago, so it was slightly tattered and worn in spots. 

Even though the sitting area furniture was somewhat worn, it was comfortable. The bed and bedding comfort was superb. This guestroom has a connecting door next to the bed, and I could hear the guests next door when we went to bed that evening. Fortunately, the noise was muffled and not real loud. There was a large walk in closet off the bedroom area, which was as big as the small bathroom.

There was a small fridge under the counter where the coffee was set up near the entrance door, and across from the bathroom. Even though there was plenty of room, there was no sink or microwave. I was shocked to see that I needed to pay $3 for a bottle of water in the guestroom. When I stay at a Hilton or Marriott with Gold status, I always receive two complimentary bottles of water. There was only one packet of regular coffee provided, and the creamer was powder. We were able to get extra coffee from the front desk, and the coffee shop in the lobby (Daily Grind) gladly let me take liquid creamer back to our room the night before.

Left: bathroom; right: closet
The bathroom was a basic hotel bathroom. There were two sinks in the vanity, although the actual room area was quite small. I needed to shut the bathroom door to step into the shower/tub combination. The hair dryer was good quality, and I was surprised to see a small tube of toothpaste on the vanity with the complimentary amenities.

Food & Beverage
Our breakfast coupons were good at Shor for any a la carte item on the menu or for the buffet. French-press coffee and juice was included, and so was the tip. My husband got the buffet, and I ordered the Mushroom and Sun-Dried Tomato Egg-white Omelet, which was delicious! Another choice I had considered was the Open Faced Wild King Salmon Sandwich. I saw this food item presented to another guest, and it looked mouthwatering as well. I almost missed both of these items because they were listed in the menu column that said "Comfort" at the top. I did not consider either of these items comfort food, and I almost did not look at the choices below Oatmeal, which was the first item listed. The service and food quality at breakfast was excellent.

We had a cocktail and a couple appetizers at M/X in the evening. The online sample menu is not the menu we were given that evening. We had pork and fish mini tacos, which were pretty good. The evening food quality and the service was somewhat subpar, especially compared to our experience in the morning.

Pool and fitness center
The pool is located behind the fitness center, and we needed to walk though the fitness room to get to it. The fitness center is a large room with many cardio machines. We did not use any of the equipment.

The seating in the pool area looked comfortable. We stopped to see what it was like; however, we did not return to use the facilities. This hotel does not have a whirlpool tub--which we probably would have used, and the pool water did not feel very warm. The saunas were located in the restroom/shower rooms, so they are not coed.

Misc. and overall
We chose this hotel because we were visiting for the boat show, which was in the same building at McCormick Place. There is not much of anything around this hotel, and if you are visiting for an event at McCormick Place, this is a convenient choice. In addition to the hotel restaurants, there is a McDonalds and a pizza restaurant in McCormick Place as well.

The train station is accessible from McCormick Place, so you do not need to go outside to get to it, until you walk down the steps to board. When we arrived on the Amtrak, we walked to the Van Buren Street station (entrance on Michigan Street), which was less than a mile, and took the train to the Hyatt. Since it is so easy to get to McCormick Place by train from any of the downtown hotels, we will probably try a different hotel the next time we visit McCormick Place.

I was very happy with the wine, breakfast, and the bed comfort; however, we missed not being able to walk to restaurants or other activities in the evening. I did not have any serious complaints about the cleanliness of our hotel room, although we did think the cleanliness of this hotel was below Hyatt standards. There were a few little things that needed attention, such as vacuuming along the walls and in the corners--in our guestroom and in the hallways. And, there were other public areas where there were small bits of debris on the floor and walkways.