Public Chicago

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Hotel Capacity:

Total Number of Rooms - 285

Public Chicago

*****

Ian Schrager’s reincarnation of the once-iconic Ambassador East hotel, Public Chicago, shows that the city could be making a play to move up from its role as America’s ‘Second City.’ A 21st century Mies van der Rohe vision of modern elegance, the hotel has bigger rooms with better views than anywhere in New York, and a Jean-Georges-run restaurant and bar where international glitterati congregate. 

Highlights:

  • Oversized rooms

    Huge windows and lake views

    Jean-Georges dining

Smith extra

A bottle of prosecco

In the know

Also need to know:

In-room massages can be arranged through Windy City Massage. In addition to the hotel’s 24-hour fitness centre, Public also has arranged for guests to use the nearby David Barton Gym at no extra charge. The hotel is completely non-smoking.Borrow bikes to cruise along the lakeshore that's just a few blocks away. Note the entertaining Jean Baptiste Modino cows-in-hats art lining your room's walls – they're meant to evoke Mrs O'Leary's famous cow that reportedly started the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.

Packing tips:

Brogues and peep-toe pumps for hobnobbing in the Pump Room. Leave your laptop at home, though, as the hotel has iPads and Mac laptops to borrow so you can settle in with the locals at the long tables in the buzzy lobby.

Dress code:

Cigarette pants for the ladies and designer denim for the gents, to echo the hotel’s urban, updated Mies van der Rohe feel.

Mr and Mrs Smith reviews

‘This may be the most beautiful city I’ve visited in America.’

I laughed uncomfortably, the native San Franciscan and current New Yorker in me duelling for who should more offended. Surveying the shady street around us – lined with impressive homes (mansions, even) from every architectural era of the last 130 years – I found it painfully difficult to contradict Mr Smith’s declaration about Chicago.

To be fair, it was a pleasantly warm mid-July morning and Lake Michigan was an almost oppressively brilliant shade of blue. And, in the hour or two we’d been in the city, he’d had a relatively c

Accommodation details

Address:

1301 North State Parkway, Chicago, Illinois 60610, United States
Chicago
USA

Location:

1.8 mi / 3.0 km from city centre

General facilities

  • Valet parking
  • Exercise gym
  • Internet services
  • Complimentary in-room coffee or tea
  • Room service
  • Lounges/bars
  • Restaurant

Dining information

Restaurant:

Once a landmark Chicago supper club frequented by the likes of Humphrey Bogart and Audrey Hepburn, the Pump Room has been reborn under James Beard award-winning chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. His menu offers updated, farm-to-table versions of classics – caramelised beef tenderloin with miso butter and Lake Superior whitefish with lemon confit are just a couple of standouts. Add a lively late night bar scene that evokes its see-and-be-seen origins and the Pump Room has reclaimed its rightful place at the top of Chicago’s nightlife. In addition, coffee by La Colombe and snacks by Jean-Georges’ kitchen are served throughout the day in the Library & Coffee Bar off the lobby.

Top table:

Whether you’re à deux or with your own posse, slide into one of the enveloping corner booths with half-drawn curtains for maximum privacy.

Last orders:

Happy hour in the Pump Room bar is from 5 to 7pm daily; the bar and restaurant are open until 11pm Sunday through Thursday, and until midnight on Fridays and Saturday.

Room service:

A special Public Express menu – a modified version of the Pump Room offerings – is available 24 hours a day, either to eat in your room or packed up in a special paper bags to take on beach picnics, to the airport or wherever you’re off to.

Hotel bar:

In addition to the Pump Room and its lively bar scene, the Library – with its comfy couches and Vermeer-esque artwork – becomes a mellow lounge area at night, boasting all the same craft cocktails, beers and wines as its buzzier counterpart. 

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