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Travel Blogs from Chicago
Arlington Million Day! For those we don't know, the Arlington Million is a horse race that is part of the biggest day of racing at Chicago's Arlington Park. There are three major graded stakes races -- the Secretariat, the Beverly D and the Arlington Million. The other races are also great and it is a day of mostly grass (turf) as opposed to dirt …
We got up relatively early and hit the executive lounge for a light breakfast, coffee and superb fresh-squeezed orange juice. Hubby went out to meet with more clients and I walked and shopped along Michigan Avenue for a couple of hours. I was really disappointed in the shopping -- for the first time ever I could not find one thing to purchase on …
We arrived in Chicago yesterday morning about 8:00 a.m. on American Airlines. We rented a car with Hertz (love the gold service that allows you to go straight to the car) and headed to Vernon Hills. My husband met with a client while I had iced tea and a delicious breakfast panini at the Corner Bakery (I wish we had these in St. Louis).
We spent the morning at the Shedd Aquarium. It was fun but the dolphin show wasn't much of an event compared to shows we have seen at Seaworld or other aquariums. After the Shedd we shopped a little more and ate a little more before we eventually headed to Union station to get our train. The train ended up being almost an hour late so we didn't get …
We decided to get out of the city for a day and go to IKEA to shop for the girls' bedroom. They want to change their whole bedroom look and this place is a great way to do that inexpensively. We rented a car from Enterprise near our hotel and headed out to Schaumberg. We even ate some Swedish meatballs at the store and there were surprisingly good …
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Historical Traveler Reviews The Drake Chicago
They ruined Mothers Day!
I just returned from the Mothers Day brunch of May 11, held in the Gold Coast room of The Drake Hotel and just had to express how angry and disappointed I was. When my party and I first arrived we were seated promptly enough but it went down hill from there. After 15 minutes of waiting and with no server even approaching our table, we finally flagged down a waiter who sent someone over. This server, Reggie, told us that he was the back waiter and that Patrick would be our front waiter all while leaning on our table and giving us attitude. Im not really sure why he felt the need to explain this to us, as all we wanted at this time was for SOMEONE to take our drink orders. He took our orders and after a time came back with our drinks. He placed them on the table without saying a word even after we all thanked him individually after placing the drinks beside each person. Not one youre welcome. This put an immediate bad note on the occasion. We were also put off by the fact no one explained to us what we were to do. Do we order first? Do we just head up to the brunch table? We just sat there dumbfounded at the lack of attention. After waiting yet another unusually long period of time, a member of my party got up and approached the Director of Banquet Services who turned out to be completely unfriendly and unhelpful. The only saving grace to this whole fiasco was the waiter named Patrick. He was really great. He saw what was going on and was very attentive to us after seeing what we had been going through. We finished our meal and decided on having dessert. We ordered some coffee that was served cold and had to wait, again, for some hot coffee. After we finished our meal we asked for the bill. After being quoted a price of $37.50 per person over the phone from one of the restaurant hostesses at the time I made the reservation, the bill reflected a price of $177.00 or $59 per person. Where did the extra $21.50 per person come from? The only thing we had to drink was water, coffee and the complimentarge of $26 was added bringing the grand total to $220! When I made the reservation, the hostess also told me that each Mother would get a rose. Ours never received hers. You have no idea how angry I am. I have been to many a brunch that cost half the price and been treated twice as well. I am surprised and shocked that a hotel with a high reputation would allow such antics! You can be very sure that I will never step foot in this hotel again and will tell all of my friends and co-workers what a sham the Drake Hotel truly is.
Loved The Drake!
The Drake was everything we expected it to be! Our room was lovely, roomy and verycomfortable--bathrobes, minibar, bottledwater, evening turndown service, pleasanthousekeeping staff. Afternoon Tea was adelightful experience--delicious food,attentive waitstaff, cosy setting, wonderfulambience--highly recommend the experience.We explored the hotel from top to bottom--sawall the beautiful ballrooms and meeting rooms,and appreciated The Drake's place in history.
Loved the Drake
My husband & I stayed for a weekend at the Drake for our anniversary in March, 2003 and were so very impressed! The staff was wonderful and extremely accommodating. Our room was just beautiful and very very clean. We would highly recommend a stay at the Drake, especially when celebrating a special ocassion.
I satyed at the Drake a couple of weeks ago while in Chicago on a business trip. I was happily impressed. The Drake, although an older hotel, still maintains her elegance and her charm. The hotel staff were attentive, friendly, and were able to satisfy my multiple additional requests. I'm not sure why others have found fault with the Drake -- perhaps they like brand new hotels or are happy at hotels such as Embassy Suites, where all the hotels and all the rooms look alike. I enjoyed my stay tremendously and will return again and again.
Drake family and woman friendly
I took two teenage girls to Chicago to enjoy the Magnificent Mile, see a show, and shop at Thanksgiving time and selected the Drake as I had stayed there several times in the past. The Drake still wins high marks. My girls accidently left our room door unlatched and I was in the room. Within 2-3 minutes a staff member knocked and called into the room to see why the door was open - noticing the appearance of a door not fully closed, and following up, all very professionally. The desk was efficient with easy check in and out, however the young lady was impatient with questions - I got my two minutes at check in and she was done talking to me despite no one else waiting to check in. The parking is normal price for the area and efficient. The doorman/bellman/valet parking service was above expectations. The bell capt was particularly good. Concierge desk in the lobby was great - I did not choose to go back to the front desk to ask a question. The Drake was beautifully decorated for Christmas and the wait staff was efficient. The hotel was family-friendly - I saw a number of people traveling with children mixed in with the business travelers. I felt very secure there and would recommend it for women travelers. The twin bed they advertise is more like an old fashioned 3/4 and is sufficiently wide for two as long as they are not large people. The standard room was compact, as in most older city hotels, There was a small sitting area by the window and it was nicely decorated. The bathroom was marble, roomy, and decidedly more than one would expect for an older hotel standard room. I found the service excellent. The morning coffee table is by the restaurant and I had to ask, but once I found it, was great. Will make a special point of going back to the Drake.
Slipping down the slope
Every couple of years we get together at the Drake to visit with old neighbors from our Ohio years. This was the year and the Drake was the place. We're sorry to report that we feel the Drake is slipping. First we have door locks that can't be opened by the keys. We report it, get new keys. The 2nd time we end up with hotel security working to change the batteries, the third time we have an asst mgr who can't get it open on her first 4 tries, and then tells us we should shake the door. At least this was finally fixed, which is more than we can say about the other problems, like the non draining bath drain, the dirty globes on the bath lights and our total favorite, the mold on the marble in the bath area.
I'm sorry, Drake, this is the worst maintenence we've ever had in your house.
I hope someone who cares about the quality of the Drake experience finds out about your trip down the slippery slope toward mediocrity.
Thanksgiving Day Brunch
My family wanted to have a very special Thanksgiving. We thought it would be nice to find a great brunch to enjoy our very important American holiday, and at $59 per person we thought we would get our money's worth? Instead we were very, very, upset and extremely disappointed. First the wait staff and captain were NOT attentive to our needs. We had stale rolls on the table. Had to remind the staff frequently for water, coffee, and fresh plates. Unfortunately we could not show had bad the service was, because they automatically charge for a tip for their staff. We even spoke to the staff operations (Mr. Jordon) manager a week later, and formally sent a compliant letter. He was not a good listener, and told me "how good his brunch was, and nothing was wrong with it". I guess the customers are NOT ever right at The Drake. Sad! In addition the main course selections on the brunch menu were terrible. The turkey was dry, the beef was poor quality, and the ham was dry. The turkey gravy was runny and lacked flavor. The "famous" dressing was pasty, sticky, and no flavor. The squash and sweet potatoes were terrible as well. My family hardly at anything of the main course. The dessert room was shabby, and all deserts tastes like they came out of a package. Pies were not home made, and served in the aluminum pie tins and not even cut. Very CHEAP! Poor quality, lacked freshness, and taste. The ballroom itself did not even have the feel of Thanksgiving. Nothing to remind patrons of this important American holiday MY FAMILY IS CURRENTLY SEEKING A FULL REFUND OF $296, or WILL SEEK OTHER METHODS OF RELIEF.
Great 10 Days
We stayed in the Drake for 10 days last year on a flat rate of $99 per room. Initally, the room we were given was tiny with a view of the fire escape. As we had travelled 5,000 miles to get to Chicago we complained and were upgraded to a beautiful suite with no extra charge. The hotel lobby is very impressive, the staff were excellent and could not do enough for us. Location is great, expecially the rooms with lake views. My only reservation was the afternoon tea with the harpist which was a bit old fashioned and so not what we do in Europe, although it was advertised as same !
Do it at The Drake!
I stayed on Vantines Weekend and it was the best!
I was upgarded to a GoldCoast Suite with Jacuzzi Tub with terrific views of the lake. I have never recieved such good value for a hotel stay. I loved the Coq D'Or bar , the entertainment was the best and their martinis are to die for !
Overall the staff were friendly and helpful and made me and partner feel at home!
The GranOld Old Dame is Young
The Drake Hotel is a wonderful Hotel. I celebrated my birthday there was wished a Happy Birthday upon arrival, had a bottle of Champagne and a birthday cake in my room as a gift from the assistant manager. I had dinner in the Cape Cod Room and the dover sole was the best I have ever eaten. On my second day there we had afternoon tea in the Palm Court and were entertained by their harpist. The concierge was terrific and all his recommendations were great! I enjoyed the Executive Floor Lounge with the huge windows overlooking the lake. It was the break I needed and look forward to returning soon.