This article outlines the hotels in Chicago which offer club or executive lounges to guests. By reviewing each of these club or executive lounges, in turn, I conclude which hotel has the best club lounge in Chicago.
Why Choose A Chicago Hotel With A Club Lounge?
When deciding which hotel to choose for your stay in a city like Chicago, it is sensible to consider the added extras provided by a hotel club lounge. Offerings usually include complimentary drinks and snacks throughout the day, breakfast in the morning and evening cocktails with canapés. Annoyingly, in Chicago, very few club lounges offer free alcoholic drinks. The exception it the Ritz Carlton which does include alcohol. In the other lounges, the beers, wines and spirits must be paid for but the food is free and tends to be filling and plentiful. Often the evening food and drink offering is more than enough to replace the need to go out for the evening and it is often worth paying to upgrade your room to a Club Room or even paying a fee to include club lounge access when you stay at your chosen hotel.
The best club or executive hotel lounges can also provide an interesting environment to work and relax in. Some lounges also provide dedicated meeting rooms, although I prefer to hold smaller meetings in the main lounge area. When I travel on my own for business, I don’t like to sit in restaurants on my own. Room service is also rather lonely, so a club lounge provides the ideal environment to enjoy good food and atmosphere whilst being completely comfortable that you are sitting on a table for one.
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Which Luxury Hotels In Chicago Have A Club Or An Executive Lounge?
I have compiled a list below containing the club lounges available across luxury hotels in Chicago. I list the ones I consider to be the best at the top.
Ritz Carlton Chicago Club Lounge Review
The Ritz Carlton Chicago offers a club level and is one of the best executive floors in Chicago. It is pictured above. Renovated in 2016, this brand new Ritz-Carlton Club® Lounge is located in the city’s fashion mecca. The Ritz-Carlton, Chicago also refreshed its suites and guest room corridors and upgraded its fitness center in 2016.
The huge 2,600-square-foot Ritz-Carlton Club Lounge is located on the 15th floor and showcases stunning views including the Historic Water Tower, the Magnificent Mile, and Lake Michigan.
This club lounge does include alcoholic drinks (hurrah!) including beer, wine, cocktails and spirits. In fact, it goes a step further with wine tastings and similar events. For example, Ritz Kids guests can enjoy a behind-the-scenes tour of the neighbouring firehouse and businesses and leisure travellers are able to immerse themselves in Chicago culture and cuisine through local wine and brewery partnerships.
The Club Lounge offers five different food and beverage options throughout the day; from healthy breakfast options to hors-d’oeuvres, cocktails and evening desserts.
The space itself is sophisticated, featuring walnut hardwood floors complemented by clean, modern walnut cabinetry highlighted by hints of blue, gold and brown, all of which tie into the ambience of the hotel.
To see more of what you will experience at the Ritz Carlton Chicago, take a look at the video on their website.
Sheraton Grand Chicago Club Lounge Review
After the Ritz Carlton, the Sheraton Grand Chicago probably offers the second best club lounge in Chicago due to the multi-level design with huge windows offering breathtaking views of the city. This lounge is also open throughout the day (unlike the some of the Marriott lounges) and offers a complimentary continental breakfast, evening hors-d’oeuvres, and snacks and beverages throughout the day. It is a great place to relax with two computer workstations Wi-Fi and TVs around the lounge.
Hyatt Regency Chicago Club Lounge Review
The Hyatt Regency Chicago offers a Regency Club Lounge. You can access this lounge if you book a Club King or Club Double room or are a World of Hyatt Explorist (and use your voucher) or Globalist member.
This club opens 6.30am and serves breakfast through to 9.30am on weekdays, and until 10.30am on weekends. It remains open throughout the day for snacks, water, and sodas. In the evening hors d’oeuvres are available from 6.30pm to 10pm.
The breakfast in this lounge is good and filling and includes fresh fruit, smoked salmon, hard-boiled eggs, pastries, cereals and one hot-item.
In the evening, the offering includes fresh vegetables, cheese, meats, breads and one hot bowl of food. This is enough to fill you up but is not massively generous and you do have to pay for any beer, wine or cocktails that you drink.
The advantages of this Hyatt Regency include the central location as you can walk pretty much anywhere you want to in the city from here. It is also central if you want to shop or eat out with plenty of local restaurants within walking distance.
Hilton Chicago Executive Floor Lounge Review
Situated in the Magnificent Mile area of Downtown Chicago, the huge Hilton Chicago enjoys views of Lake Michigan and the surrounding city. If you are a Diamond status member, you get complimentary access to the executive lounge. Otherwise, you have to pay extra for rooms on their executive floor.
The lounge is located on the second floor so doesn’t enjoy particularly great views but it is modern and functional if a little uninteresting. Throughout the day you can enjoy soft drinks, coffee, and bottled water as well as granola bars and nuts/pretzels.
Breakfast in the executive lounge is served from 7am to 10.30am on weekends and 6.30 to 10.00am on weekdays. There are hot egg dishes available along with oatmeal, fruits, croissants, and cereals.
Hors d’oeuvres are served from 5pm to 7pm with things like dumplings with soy sauce, enough for dinner but again not noteworthy. This lounge reminds me more of an airport lounge than a place I want to spend the day.
What is noteworthy at this Hilton are the gym and pool located on the 30th floor which means that you can jog on a treadmill to views of the Chicago skyline.
Renaissance Blackstone Hotel In Chicago Club Lounge Review
Chicago has three beautiful and historic luxury hotels; The Palmer House, The Blackstone and The Drake. Palmer House and The Drake are Hilton brand hotels. The Blackstone is a Renaissance. The location of the Renaissance Blackstone is on South Michigan Avenue and the historic architecture, with high ceilings offering intricate detailing along with marble floors in the foyer, give it a classic feel.
The club lounge is open for breakfast 6.30-9.30am, Hors d’oeuvres 5-7.30pm, dessert from 7.30-9.30pm and closes at 10 pm. The look is classic or old-fashioned (depending on your opinion) but the food on offer is extensive. Breakfasts include pastries, muffins, scrambled eggs, bacon and sausage along with healthy options like oatmeal. In the evenings, the chef goes nuts and offers a variety of food that changes every night. Dishes include tomato soup and grilled cheese, or multilayer Mexican dip (guacamole, salsa, cheese, etc) and quesadillas, or coconut chicken, egg rolls and shrimp. There is also cheese, ham, salads and fruit. Dessert is usually Cookies and bite-size cakes and pastries.
The food offering is good at this Renaissance but the lounge feels dated.
Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile Club Lounge Review
This Marriott has a club lounge which opens in the morning for breakfast and evening for snacks and drinks. It closes during the rest of the day which is frustrating if you want an alternate place to relax or work.
The breakfast buffet is however excellent, with an array of choices. You can also order additional items like eggs cooked how you like them. The evenings in this lounge are less impressive with only a small number of choices and probably not enough food to make up a main meal.
JW Marriott Chicago Club Lounge Review
This JW Marriott Chicago has a club lounge is open 6:30 am-10:00 pm Monday-Thursday but closed 12 noon on Friday and 5:00 pm on Sunday. As you would expect, there are hot and soft drinks available throughout the day, morning breakfast and evening appetizers. The lounge itself is often empty outside feeding times; perhaps as a result of it’s dated orange carpets and “office” feel. Certainly this lounge in no way matches up to the brilliant club lounge at the JW Marriott in London.
The breakfast is continental and adequate. The evening food spread is more impressive and enough to fill you up and is very tasty with a variety of offerings including salads and hot pasta dishes. But ultimately this lounge lacks atmosphere and although functional, is not one that you yearn to spend time in.
It is worth noting that the Intercontinental Chicago does not have a club lounge.
Which Club Lounge In Chicago Has The Best View
The club lounge at the Sheraton has the best view.
Which Club Lounges In Chicago Include Complimentary Alcohol?
Unfortunately, most club lounges in Chicago charge extra for alcohol with the exception of the Ritz Carlton with free beer, wine, cocktails and spirits along with specialist wine tastings once a week.
Which Is The Best Club Lounge In Chicago For Food?
You will not beat the breakfast and evening themed food offerings at the Ritz Carlton in Chicago.
Which is the best Lounge Overall?
The Ritz Carlton Chicago Club lounge.
If you are travelling to London you may be interested in my listings:
The best hotel club lounges in London
The best hotel club lounges in Hong Kong.
The best hotel club lounges in New York.
The best club and VIP lounges in Vegas.
Disclosure: Our property, service and product reviews are sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own and are in no way influenced by the sponsor.