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The Peninsula
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Reviewed 9 September 2021

The Peninsula Chicago is located just off of Michigan Avenue and is about eight blocks from the Riverwalk. The entrance is on Superior Street, and after a quick elevator ride, you are taken to the large lobby on the 5th floor. The Lobby Lounge area has impressively high ceilings, fresh flowers, a nice view and is a wonderful introduction to the aesthetic of the hotel, which is elegant, light and comfortable.

I was in a Superior Room (base room) on the ninth floor and was very intrigued by the layout of the room. A long-ish entrance hallway forked and one direction led to the bedroom while the other led to a pseudo-walk-in closet and bathroom.

The room itself was well-designed and surprisingly well-stocked. In addition to the typical mini-bar offerings and toiletries, the desk was fully stocked with office supplies and a printer. There was a lot of technology in the room as well including a giant television on an articulating mount so you could easily view it from both seating areas and the bed, digital light switches throughout the room, a smaller television by the large soaking tub in the bathroom and a number of tablets throughout the room that controlled temperature, lighting and contained necessary hotel information (i.e. dining venue hours and menus). There were a number of thoughtful, quality of life additions such as labels on drawers to make it easy to locate laundry, a hair dryer or an HDMI cable.

The service across the board was excellent, but I want to especially call out the housekeeping team. The precision, consistency and frequency of housekeeping at the Peninsula Chicago is second-to-none. I received AM service and turndown every day (including around check-in and check-out) and the level of detail from charging cables carefully coiled to cleaning cloths for my laptop and a Peninsula bookmark left near my book on the bedside table continued to impress. The team brought extra waters beyond what is typically left in the room when they noticed by the second day that I was guzzling them. They also folded any loose clothes that were left out and made packing at departure exceptionally easy for me.

While at the hotel I had dinner at Shanghai Terrace and enjoyed in-room dining for lunch and breakfast. All meals were excellent, but the standout was definitely Shanghai Terrace. We received great service to go with delicious food and inventive cocktails, all while enjoying the heated terrace on a nice Chicago summer evening.

In terms of constructive feedback, we were disappointed to learn that the outdoor portion of Z Bar closes much earlier than the bar itself. I also didn't find PenChat (their text-based service to request items and chat with the front desk) to be particularly responsive, especially after using better implementations at other hotels (e.g. Four Seasons).

All told, there were a number of other standout moments, from great interactions with the front desk, the impressive gym and spa facilities and the attentive bellmen who were incredibly efficient at hailing cabs for me throughout my stay.

This is my new favorite hotel in Chicago.

Date of stay: September 2021
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank Joeygtrz
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peninsula Chicago, General Manager at The Peninsula Chicago, responded to this reviewResponded 13 September 2021

Dear Joeygtrz,

Thank you for your very thoughtful and thorough review. I am so pleased you enjoyed your stay.

I appreciate your constructive feedback as well. Concerning the outdoor portion of Z Bar closing earlier than the interior portion of the bar—this is a city ordinance whereby outdoor spaces must close at specific times so as to not disturb area residents.

I was disappointed to learn our PenChat responsiveness was not satisfactory. We value your feedback and are working to improve our response time.

I’m pleased to hear you enjoyed your interactions with our front desk and bell staff.

We look forward to welcoming you back soon.

Warm Regards,
Maria Zec
Regional Vice President and General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 September 2021

We just finished five days/four nights at the Peninsula - and we loved it. This is a five star hotel. We had stayed at Peninsula in Bangkok a couple of times and the Chicago hotel is even better. Here is what I liked:
1. Our Michigan Avenue suite with a separate bedroom was perfection. High floor. Secure. Huge TV.
2. The people and service were excellent, especially housekeeping and check-in. Housekeepers visited our suite 2x per day and seemingly deep cleaned the room each day. Damp towels were whisked away - as if by magic. My wet bathing suit was hung on a hanger - as if by magic. A+ to housekeeping.
3. The room layout had the bedroom away from the Michigan Avenue windows and any Michigan Avenue street noise. It was so quiet and peaceful in that bedroom. Bath had every amenity. Huge tub.
4. Hotel appears to be well maintained and clean.
5. Pool and gym were first class. I liked the whirlpool as well.
I can recommend this excellent property to all. Five stars.

Room tip: Suites with separate bedroom
Date of stay: September 2021
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Joe T
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peninsula Chicago, General Manager at The Peninsula Chicago, responded to this reviewResponded 9 September 2021

Dear Joe T,

Thank you for sharing your wonderful review of The Peninsula Chicago! We are honored to receive your kind recommendation and praise. We are pleased that you enjoyed the Michigan Avenue Suite, pool and fitness center, as well as the service provided by our staff.

Thank you again for your feedback! We look forward to welcoming you back again soon.

Warm regards,
Maria Razumich-Zec
Regional Vice President & General Manager

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Reviewed 6 September 2021 via mobile

We had such a wonderful love weekend stay at the Peninsula! The location can’t be beat. It’s such a beautiful and comfortable hotel. The staff are all so friendly and helpful, especially our breakfast servers and the maid staff. I really appreciate that they have savory vegan options on their breakfast menu. The tofu scramble and avocado toast were both so good! I would love it if they would consider adding a sweet vegan option to their breakfast menu as well, such as pancakes. This will be our go-to hotel when we visit Chicago in the future!

Date of stay: September 2021
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank TravelingJEM
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peninsula Chicago, General Manager at The Peninsula Chicago, responded to this reviewResponded 7 September 2021

Dear TravelingJEM,

Thank you very much for the wonderful review! We are delighted to read that you enjoyed your stay at The Peninsula Chicago, including the location, dining experience, and service provided by our staff. Thank you for your feedback regarding the vegan breakfast options as well.

We look forward to your future stay when you visit Chicago!

Warm regards,
Max Schroeder
Hotel Manager

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Reviewed 1 September 2021 via mobile

Ok, it’s finally happened—a hotel experience so terrible I’m just gonna let it rip in a blistering review. This was SO BAD. I was leaving a horse show so I admit—I was looking not super well put together. I was just in simple black lounge pants and a Simon-Cowell-esque black T-shirt. However, strung out, exhausted, and wornout is how I end up after these events! My dream: two nights in the finest Chicago hotel with sumptuous bedding and room service. Ok, my first sin: I’m a bit of a spontaneous traveler. I checked to see if they had rooms online and when I saw they had availability, being less than an hour away, I decided to just go, thinking I could discuss the room options at my leisure with the front desk. However, apparently the Peninsula has a policy against making reservations at the front desk. Instead, I was told to “make your reservation in the parking lot.” There is no parking lot, so I sat on a luggage cart. I was on hold for a period of time so I thought, “Come on, I’m right here, I’ll go up to the lobby, it’s not gonna be a big deal.” It was. It is. There was no line and no wait at the front desk, but they could not help me. I sat in the lounge and waited on hold while staring at the four unoccupied front desk persons. Now I know they will say they were very well occupied, just not with helping me. That is very fine and good, but it does not make a good impression on a customer. I was further annoyed because the reservation chick had no desire to describe the different categories of rooms. I have to admit I was looking for a splurge, something maybe slightly exceptional, but I was offered the standard king as if I were some pleb cashing in Hotel Reward points! I mean, come on, Peninsula! If you guys are gonna act like insufferable snobs, I’m gonna give it to you straight: your standard room is not good enough for me! THEN I made the ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE request to NOT read my credit card number out in the occupied lobby, but could I not just discreetly pass it to the front desk whose members I’m still at this moment staring dead in the eye. NO! It is policy that the card MUST be given over the phone! At this point I will admit I was becoming agitated—and I really cannot fully fault myself. I asked if my stay would continue to be plagued by these major annoyances. Apparently my language was salty. The front desk man simply rolled his eyes and said “You don’t have to give us your money—your choice.” I was really taken aback, but it is possible I let a curse word slip out, I hate to say it, but it is my customary way of speaking—the world I inhabit is a bit rough-and-tumble. However, all my money was made in a business that prides itself on customer service and—I really didn’t get the dude’s attitude. For me in my businesses there’s always a solution to every problem, there’s always a way to make someone happy, exclusivity is accomplished not through exclusion and snobbery, but by providing true service and value. I was told by the apologetic bellmen that these policies had come into play during covid and bad service of this sort is not in the Peninsula’s history, but as things stand now—don’t book here. It is very expensive and I cannot vouch that your money will buy you anything other than inclusion in a club you wouldn’t want to be part of anyway. Save your money for your Bezos-Branson-Musk-inspired rocket—I swear if I gotta indulge in suborbital space flight to get me away from this hotel I’ll do it! I should also mention the paint on the ceiling was peeling—hahaha!

Date of stay: September 2021
Trip type: Travelled with family
1  Thank VedaSlade
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peninsula Chicago, General Manager at The Peninsula Chicago, responded to this reviewResponded 2 September 2021

Dear VedaSlade,

Thank you for sharing your review. We want to extend a sincere apology for the experience that you had at The Peninsula Chicago. We strive to provide superior customer service for our guests and we apologize that this was not the case during your interactions with the team. I invite you to reach out to me directly to discuss your experience, should you wish to share, as we are always striving to improve for our guests. I can be reached at MaxSchroeder@peninsula.com. I look forward to hearing from you.

Warm regards,
Max Schroeder
Hotel Manager

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Reviewed 28 August 2021 via mobile

We recently stayed at this location. General Manager Maria and her team has an amazing support staff. From our checkin with the bellman to Danny at the front desk we knew we were in for an amazing time.

The room is very high tech and my spouse was in heaven for this.

Breakfast each morning was awesome. All the waiters were so helpful and courteous.

Gary at the concierge was extremely helpful and was instrumental in getting us reservations at the rosebud.

Our rooms were cleaned real early in the mornings. On one occasion, after breakfast and we returned to our room. It was already being cleaned. Bed was amazingly comfortable.

Shanghai and Z bar were awesome. I will return to this hotel in a heartbeat and we are already Sharing our experience with friends and families about this place. Can’t wait to return. Thank you Maria and Team! L

Date of stay: August 2021
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
1  Thank nuffsaid
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peninsula Chicago, General Manager at The Peninsula Chicago, responded to this reviewResponded 30 August 2021

Dear nuffsaid,

Thank you very much for your kind words about The Peninsula Chicago and our restaurants! We are pleased to read that you had an enjoyable experience during your stay. Also, thank you for your generous compliments of our staff. We are delighted to serve you and appreciate your business.

We look forward to welcoming you back for your return visit!

Warm regards,
Max Schroeder
Hotel Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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