The building that today houses The Blackstone Hotel has hosted such famous (and infamous) characters as movie stars, notorious gangsters and 12 U.S. presidents. When it was built in 1910, it was the highest building in Chicago. In 2017, the Autograph Collection Hotels embarked on a renovation that would bring the Beaux Arts hotel back to its former splendor. Today, guests enjoy luxurious accommodations and an eclectic mix of modern and period furniture—including a typewriter up for use in the lobby and a barber’s chair from the era of Al Capone. Situated on Michigan Avenue’s “Cultural Mile,” the Blackstone offers a central location walkable to nearby attractions from Millenium Park to the Art Institute of Chicago.
The Blackstone – Best for…
Singles and couples
The Blackstone’s eateries—Timothy’s Hutch lobby lounge and Mercat a la Planxa—are popular among guests and locals alike, so it’s the perfect place to strike up a conversation. Art lovers can also take advantage of Art Hall, the hotel’s on-site gallery featuring contemporary works in an array of rotating exhibits. Its central location is also ideal for those who want to take advantage of everything Chicago has to offer. The Blackstone is just minutes from Millennium Park, Buddy Guy’s Legends blues Bar, the Auditorium Theater and Grant Park.
If you’re traveling with someone special, The Blackstone offers a Chicago Hotel Romance Package, complete with an upgraded room boasting views of Lake Michigan and Grant Park, sangaria and Barcelona Bites from on-site Mercat a la Planxa, and a bottle of Champagne and chocolate covered strawberries delivered to your room.
Looking to explore the Windy City a bit more? Whether you’re solo or traveling with a loved one, the Out and About package includes two welcome drinks at Timothy’s Hutch, a late checkout up to 3 p.m., and upgraded room views.
The Blackstone Amenities
The Blackstone’s 335 guest rooms include an array of options based on your needs and budget. The Heaven Suite and Sky Suite feature 25-foot ceilings and an opulent aesthetic, with the Suite of Presidents boast three lavish rooms including a formal foyer, separate parlor and dining area for eight. In case your last name isn’t Rockefeller, deluxe rooms include a double queen or king bed. Club level, lake view and executive rooms offer double queen or king beds as well with views of Lake Michigan or added space for seating. Those who opt for club-level rooms can take advantage to the private 1600 Club, which offers complimentary continental breakfast and refreshments.
The hotel itself features a 24-hour fitness center, same-day dry cleaning and overnight valet parking. There are also several on-site bars and restaurants. Mercat a la Planxa serves up Spanish Tapas reminiscent of Barcelona cuisine, and Timothy’s Hutch is the sleek lobby lounge—order the Timothy’s Old Fashioned. As well as in-room dining, the Market by The Blackstone offers quick bites on street level downstairs from the lobby. Finally, the 1600 Club offers a hot breakfast buffet, but it’s exclusive to Marriott Bonvoy platinum, titanium and ambassador elite members. Non-members can still take advantage of the buffet breakfast for $15, or complimentary with a club-level room.
The Blackstone Location
Just a stone’s throw from the shores of Lake Michigan, location is one of the premiere reasons to stay at the Blackstone. It is prominently placed on the newly dubbed “Cultural Mile,” a strip along Michigan Avenue focusing on arts and culture. The area includes The Art Institute, Cloud Gate and Grant Park—all within walking distance. For shopping, take a quick taxi ride to Magnificent Mile or local shopping along State Street.
Plus, accessing other parts of the city is a breeze. The Blackstone is three blocks from the Harrison station on the Red Line L-Train. Blue, Orange, Green, Purple and Brown lines are all within walking distance as well, so getting to Downtown Chicago is a quick trip. Navy Pier and Soldier Field are both a short walk away, as well.
The Blackstone, Autograph Collection – The Verdict
If your budget allows, a stay at The Blackstone offers an iconic glimpse into the history of Chicago. Dubbed the “crown jewel in Chicago’s architecture scene” by Fodors, The Blackstone is pricy for good reason: a prime location on Cultural Mile, lake view rooms and sophisticated dining options. Note that the more affordable rooms don’t offer too many perks—no complimentary breakfast or free wifi. But if you’re looking to splurge, the sophisticated decor and historic architecture lives up to the hype.