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Intercontinental Chicago O'Hare

The Intercontinental O'Hare is located in Rosemont, next to the Rosemont theater and close to the Rosemont exhibition center. From the airport it is a short ride by the complimentary hotel shuttle, which after it has left the central pick up point next to the O'Hare Hilton passes also the international terminal 5 on its way to the hotel. The shuttle drops guests on request also at the CTA station “Rosemont”. From the hotel it runs every 30 minutes

The hotel is a twelve floor building in T-Shape. Built in light brown colors, it has a massive first and second floor, which hosts the meeting rooms as well as exhibition and meeting space. A driveway leads to the entrances.

The hotel has a driveway, with smaller building in front of the hotel on the rights side. There is the restaurant “McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurant” located and there are also exhibition rooms and space.

After stepping into the hotel building, one has to turn left to reach the lobby. The lobby is in light brown colors with paintings and has a modern interior design. Lounge chairs and tables are available. If one passes the lobby one reaches the “Ice Bar”. The bar has a few chairs with tables, but seems to be a place where one is either sitting at the counter or standing. During my first visit the Ice bar was empty and there were only four guests – including me – in the Ice bar.
On the other side of the lobby, you have to turn right after you have entered the hotel is the Restaurant “Capital Grill”. This restaurant was closed during my first visit in February 2009 and also im May 2009 due to the low occupancy of the hotel and some remodeling.
The elevators are opposite the entrance and you have to pass them to reach the club lounge and the gym.

The later one is big, but lacks any form of natural light. The equipment (steppers, body machines, treadmills, cross trainers among others) is new and very modern, towels and water are available, but unfortunately no changing room (but a restroom). The ambiance is not the nicest, a contribution to the missing windows but also too the darker carpets and the lights in the rooms. But since this is an exercise room this really should not matter.

The club lounge has two areas. There is a first area right at the entrance with a few lounge chairs, sofas and tables, a bookshelf with books about art and architecture and a fireplace. The other part of the lounge consists of a huge buffet styled sideboard in the middle of the room and table and chairs and another smaller sideboard at the back wall. The design has many wooden elements and is nice and cosy, definitively a modern design and a nice change from the usual style of places like this in US Hotels. During my first visits in February and May 2009 the lounge was closed as club lounge but used as Restaurant. Unfortunately there are no windows in the executive lounge.

The “Ice Bar” serves different types of beverage and light snacks like a French Onion Soup, a Caesar Salad, Hamburgers,... The prices are okay, not the cheapest ones.

Stays 20 February 2009 - 29 May 2009
visited on Winter in Chicago - Montreal with United 2009

direct link to hotel
InterContinental Chicago O'Hare

Arrival Date: 20 February 2009
Departure Date: 21 February 2009
Room type booked: Deluxe (got Junior Suite)
Rate Plan: Advanced Purchase Rate
Room Number: 1159
Room Rate: 79.00 USD (excl. taxes)

Status of Guest Program: Platinum / Royal Ambassador

I headed for the hotel shuttle after I arrived in Chicago O'Hare, which was waiting at the pick up point close to the Hilton. The driver greeted me and waved me in the bus, since it was cold outside, and offered me a small bottle of complimentary water (Fiji). We waited a couple of more minutes and drove via “International Terminal 5” to the hotel. He radioed the hotel that he has picked me up and it was a very short ride. I arrived finally at the hotel around 19:40 and was friendly greeted by the check in agent. He confirmed and asked if I had a good journey. He asked for my credit card and my passport and I was addressed by name during this process. I was told I had an upgrade to one of the Junior Suites and got also four vouchers, two for a beverage in the Ice Bar, one for a starter in the Ice Bar and one for continental breakfast. However I was not told, that the club lounge was closed and used as Restaurant instead. I had also to ask for the location of the gym, but the overall impression was quite good. I had not experienced such a good check in for a long time. The way to my room was explained, but I was not accompanied to the room.

The hallways to the rooms are quite dark (a very dark gray color), I would have preferred a combination with some more vivid colors.

After opening the door a hallway passing the entrance to the guest bathroom leds to the living room. The Junior Suite was spacious and consisted of a living room, a guest bathroom with sink and toilet and a bedroom, reachable through a sliding door from the living room. The huge master bathroom could be accessed from the bedroom.

The living room was big and had a sofa, a lounge chair and a table. At one end was a sideboard as sort of “smal bar area” with the espresso machine and the minibar. The Ambassador gift (some pralines), a fruit plate and a bottle of water were also placed there.

The desk was placed on the left side of the living room, next to the sliding door to the bedroom. It was big enough to work and had also a phone, built in power outlets and a lamp.
A huge wall mounted Flat TV was on the wall left hand side of the sliding door to the bedroom. Not the ideal place since you barely could see the screen from the sofa and lounge chairs of the living room, although it was moveable and could be turned in the right direction.

The bedroom consists of a huge bed with bedside tables, reading lamps, a cordless phone, and an ipod docking station. In front of the window was an ottoman. The closet was spacious enough to store clothes for a longer stay. The safe was also located in the closet in one of the drawers. Another Flat TV was hanging on the wall next to the sliding door opposite the bed.

The bathroom was huge and had a stand alone shower, a bath, a toilet and a sink. The design was nice, but in many parts not very good to use (not quite the term “form follows function”). The sink had not enough space to place utensils like razor, toothbrush etc., there was only a board to place sinks in front of the mirror. The bath – a deep one – was okay, while the shower had only a rain forest shower and I really missed the hand shower. Not to have a door might be modern, but you cannot avoid water dripping from the shower on the floor of the bathroom. The toilet was in the back part. Bathroom amenities were by Elemis.

The guest bathroom was also a bit difficult to use. There was space between the sunk and the wall or in other words the tap was way too short, so water always dropped between sink and wall and this was really annoying. Otherwise it was a nice bathroom.

Living- as well as bedroom were air-conditioned and the air condition could be set separately for both rooms. Since this stay was in February I used the heating function of the system, since it was cold outside.

The design was also dominated by gray colors with modern furniture. The furniture was made from brighter wood in a light brown. So one has a very nice design which is really miles away from the typical interior of hotel rooms in the US.

I had a small light dinner in the Ice bar using my vouchers. The food was good and I could try the wine I had ordered although it was an open one. It was served from the bottle at my table. I have experienced a different less sophisticated way of serving many times, so this is also a nice change. I had ordered two item from the starter list since I was not that hungry. Although I have asked to serve the salad later, it came only a few minutes after the soup which I had not finished. But overall it was a very attentive and friendly service.

Breakfast was served in the club lounge and it consists of a Continental and American Buffet. The first one included colt items like bagels, toast, fresh fruit, jam and marmalade, cereals and milk while the American one consists of scrambled eggs, hashed potatoes, sausages, bacon, etc.. Coffee and tea as well as juices (orange, pineapple) were brought to the table. The staff was attentive and the fresh fruit was really fresh and really good.

Overall this was a very enjoyable stay. The hotel is new and modern and its designs a very welcome change from the average hotel in the US. Staff is also very friendly and helpful. I will definitively return to this hotel, at least, if I have Royal Ambassador Status with them.



InterContinental Hotels and Resorts


Arrival Date: 29 May 2009
Departure Date: 30 May 2009
Room type booked: Deluxe (got Junior Suite)
Rate Plan: Corporate Rate
Room Number: 751
Room Rate: 97.30 USD (excl. taxes)

Status of Guest Program: Platinum / Royal Ambassador

On my second visit I called the hotel for the shuttle which picked me up at the international terminal at Chicago's O'Hare airport twenty minutes later. At the hotel I was friendly greeted and welcomed back. The service was again very friendly and I was again addressed by name.

I was told to contact the front desk if there was anything else they could do me. This time, no vouchers for drinks and breakfast were given. The lounge was again not used as lounge but as restaurant as the restaurant “Capital Grill” was still not open. They seem to rebuilt something, because there were equipment for construction work visible in the restaurant, though no work was done at this Friday Evening.

I got the same type of suite than on my previous visit and like the other it was in very good shape with no stains and no scratches. Some things were placed in a different way, like the coffee & espresso machine and also less capsules of coffee were available, but that was all. This time the amenity consists only of a fruit plate and a bottle of water.

I used the air condition in the living room but not in the sleeping room, which was fine. It is electronically adjustable and works without much noise and draught.

I skipped breakfast and only had a coffee in my room before I checked out and returned to the airport to catch my flight. Check out was fast, the folio was correct and the internet was free, since I was Royal Ambassador. I was told, it is also free for Ambassadors. There were some differences in the times the shuttle run, but after some calls the issues was resolved and the first information given was right. At weekend they ran the shuttle on different time than during the rest of the week.

Again a very enjoyable stay and again a great upgrade. It's a pity,that the lounge was not open yet and one got not again vouchers, but that's okay.