The Palmer House – Chicago
There are three different parts of this experience of the Palmer House hotel in Chicago to share. I initially booked this stay online for a weekend with my kids. I chose a higher-end hotel because I was traveling with my kids and they like things like the pool and the spacious rooms. I picked their standard room because it was during a weekend of nice weather which meant we would not be in the room a whole bunch.
We checked into the Palmer House after an excessively long line and wait in the hotel lobby. It took us about an hour to wait in the long snakey line set up just to check-in. After we got to our room we had noticed right away black mold on the wall above the doorway and black mold in the bathroom. I have a kid with asthma and he has been hospitalized for it twice (ICU even). I spent 20 minutes on hold trying to reach the front desk. They sent a person from housekeeping who proceeded to spray bleach everywhere. I realize she may not have known this but that is another trigger for asthmatics. I called downstairs again and they took my message. We left the hotel for the afternoon, while I was out with the boys about 4 hours later I called the front desk again (again a long wait time) to be told they moved us to another room.
Room 2 was bigger in size but the problems were the same. The bathroom had mold in the bathtub and there was wallpaper peeling up in the room that had more mold under. There was a large curly hair (I will save you the photo) in the bathtub. I called again to complain to the front desk and they said that we had no more options and that they would send someone to clean the bathroom.
Room 3 – Second Stay
The Palmer House did not compensate us for the dirty awful stay that we had but instead gave us another weekend to stay at the Palmer House Hotel at a future date and we took that opportunity. This time I just brought my friend and made it a girl’s trip.
At check-in, despite this being a trip that was comped by the hotel – they charged us the full market price for the hotel, which we had to straighten out with the hotel 3 days after our stay there.
The room was fine and the bathroom was fine – they upgraded us to the “executive” level, which meant we also got free breakfast in the executive room.
The hotel amenities
We had breakfast in the main restaurant downstairs and the options were okay standard continental breakfast. The breakfast on the executive level was no different. Same things.
The pool and the hot tub were much to be desired for. They were very outdated, it felt dirty and the towels and chairs were extremely aged and gross. It is my understanding that they were going to upgrade or rehabilitate this pool area. I have not been there since.
(photo from Tripadvisor)
The bathroom had this amazing steam room. That was my favorite part of the pool experience!
Overall, the Palmer House is likely in need of some serious restoration after the amount of black mold and dirty feeling I saw or experienced throughout the different rooms. I also think that the elevator needs to consider security. You can walk into the Palmer House and get on the elevator and go to any floor without a key. This always seems like a big security issue to me. I don’t know how you would get around that issue if you were delivering food (we ordered Uber Eats our last night there).