HOTEL BUZZ: The Elysian Chicago

The latest addition to Chicago’s luxury hotel scene is the magnificent new Elysian hotel. Opened last December on the corner of Walton and Rush streets, this is the flagship property of the Elysian hotel group and they have set a new exclusive standard in the city’s Gold Coast. Judging from the hotel’s ultra-luxe interiors, sleek design, and attentive service, the Elysian hotel group has a bright future, with properties slated to open in gateway cities and resort destinations worldwide.

We were impressed as soon as our driver pulled up to the large circular driveway. The glamorous 60-story hotel’s European style courtyard, complete with a water fountain and ornately detailed exterior, was reminiscent of a grand 1920’s style hotel. The sophisticated black and white lobby has soaring ceilings and two striking marble Greek statues by Mexican artist Javier Marin. There are 65 contemporary artworks scattered throughout the hotel, setting a grand, sophisticated vibe that carries over into the rooms.

Each of the 188 lavish guest rooms and suites average over 800 square feet, and feature tasteful interiors with understated white and gray color tones and lots of luxurious silver accents. The white Carrara marble bathrooms are enormous, with soaking tubs and a rain shower. One of our favorite features is the oversized dual bathroom mirrors with an inset LCD television, where you can watch TV while brushing your teeth. The 460-thread count Rivolta Carmignani Italian bed linens are heavenly and flat screen LCD televisions adorn both the bedroom and living room walls. Perks like complimentary national calling, and free wifi just add to the hotel’s appeal. Another major bonus is the hotel’s no tipping policy. As we tried to tip the attendant for assisting with our bags, he refused with a “You are so kind, but no thank you.”

On the third floor, dining options include the upscale Ria with a menu focused on seafood and Balsan, a European style bistro featuring wood-fired oven pizzas and a raw bar. For a bit of relaxation, feel like you stepped into ancient Greece at the hotel’s 14,000-square-foot spa and health club, complete with a bathhouse-like pool area, a six-foot-tall tile mosaic of Greek statues, saunas, steam rooms, and an outdoor terrace.

The hotel definitely lives up to the hype of its name, based on the paradise of Elysian Fields. The ancient Greeks would definitely find perfect happiness here. Rates start at $435. To book visit www.elysianhotels.com.


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