Chicago, United States

The Robey

Rates from (ex tax)$125.00

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (USD146.75), via openexchangerates.org, using today’s exchange rate.

Style

Updated art deco

Setting

Hip suburban ‘hood

Set where two of Chicago’s hippest ‘hoods collide, The Robey is a flatiron-shaped art deco icon with light-flooded rooms revamped by up-to-the-minute modern design. The rooftop pool and cocktail bar look out to the downtown skyline, but there’s every chance you won’t miss the bright lights and blockbuster sights of the city centre. The Wicker Park and Bucktown neighbourhoods either side of the hotel are the Chicagoan’s Chicago: tourist-light creative hubs where the bands are still making it and the snow globes are only ever ironic. They say that Chicago is the pulse of America; this is the pulse of Chicago. 

Smith Extra

Get this when you book through us:

A bottle of champagne and $25 ‘raid the minibar’ credit

Facilities

Photos The Robey facilities

Need to know

Rooms

69, including 10 suites.

Check–Out

Noon. Earliest check-in, 3pm. Luggage storage available.

Rates

Double rooms from $125.00, excluding tax at 17.4 per cent.

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (USD146.75), via openexchangerates.org, using today’s exchange rate.

More details

Rates do not include breakfast; it’s $12 for an American breakfast, or choose from the à la carte menu.

Also

One of our all-time, top five favourite cult rom-coms, John Cusack’s High Fidelity, was based and filmed in Wicker Park, despite the original Nick Hornby story being set in London. The closest thing to the fictional Championship Vinyl record store is the comparably old school Reckless Records (1379 N Milwaukee Ave), although Dick and Barry almost certainly don’t work inside.

At the hotel

Cocktail bar, lounge bar, café, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: Cable TV, Bluetooth stereo, iPod dock, minibar, hairdryer, Le Labo bath products.

Our favourite rooms

Every room gets a healthy dose of sunlight, but it’s the triangular-shaped Corner Suites which have the best views. They, along with the jumbo Panorama Suite, have windows along all but one of their sides, giving 180-degree views of the neighbourhood below and beyond that, the city skyline.

Poolside

Come spring 2017, a refreshingly unheated triangular pool will be neatly slotted into the rooftop terrace. There'll be ledge-side sunloungers and terrace tables looking out over the city, and drinks service, so its worth packing your swimwear in anticipation now.

Packing tips

Binoculars, to make the most of the expansive views. In season, don’t forget your swimsuit for the rare-in-Chicago rooftop pool. For the young or young-at-heart, a kite – it is the Windy City, after all.

Also

The communal areas and four King rooms are fully accessible to guests with mobility issues and have the ADA stamp of approval. There is a lift to all floors of the building.

Pet‐friendly

The Robey warmly welcomes pets of all shapes and sizes; only the restaurant is off-limits, except for guide dogs, who can access all areas. There’s a flat $50 charge for each booking, which is waived for wee pups under 25lbs (11kg). See more pet-friendly hotels in Chicago.

Children

All ages welcome. Highchairs and full-size or travel baby cots are available on request.

Food and Drink

Photos The Robey food and drink

Top Table

It looks out on the bustling six-corner intersection where Wicker Park meets Bucktown, so a people-watching window seat is a must.

Dress Code

Insider designers to fit in and stand out in Wicker Park; think Kamm pants and mules.

Hotel restaurant

French-American comfort food: words to get the saliva glands going. Chef Bradley Stellings oversees Café Robey’s brunch, lunch and dinner menus, which feature the likes of steak frites, duck confit and house-made pastas. Each dish is carefully crafted in the open kitchen, and served up at sleek tables beneath the double-height ceiling.

Hotel bar

The Robey is the highest building for miles around; the view from the Up & Up, on the rooftop, confirms it. Low-slung sofas are slouch-ready by the bar, or beyond the floor-to-ceiling glass there’s the terrace looking out to the twinkling skyline and up to the iconic Robey spire. The Second Floor lounge, above Café Robey, is designed for work or play; it’s as well suited to a laptop-side coffee from Chicago’s own Metric roastery as it is to refined cocktails and light bites with one eye on the streetscape outside.

Last orders

Breakfast and brunch is available from 6.30am until 3pm daily. Café Robey serves its full menu from 10am until midnight. The Second Floor bar is open 8am to midnight; Up & Up rooftop bar opens from 6pm until 2am.

Room service

A selection of French-American yummies based on the Café Robey menu is available in your room, 7am to 10pm daily.

Location

Photos The Robey location
Address
The Robey
2018 W North Ave
60647
Chicago
United States

Planes

The mighty Chicago O’Hare airport is an international hub and a half, with flights all over the world including most major cities in the US and Europe. It’s 30 minutes by cab to the hotel (around $40, or $70 with a private transfer arranged by the hotel). Or arrive like a local on the L (elevated) train; take the Blue Line to Damen station. Chicago’s second airport, Midway International, is the same distance away as O’Hare, on the other side of the city.

Trains

From the hotel you could almost flick a dime into Damen station. The L train runs there into Downtown in about 20 minutes. For altogether longer journeys, head to Union Station (also on the L train Blue Line), where trains depart to New York, California, and plenty of places in between.

Automobiles

Roadtrippers can avoid the downtown crush by taking the 90/94 highway to W North Avenue, then driving west for half a mile to the hotel. Valet parking ($45) is recommended.

Other

Chicago might be hundreds of miles from open sea, but those Great Lakes are all but an inland ocean. In summer, several ships cruise out across Lake Michigan, some even as far as Toronto and Montreal in Canada.

Worth getting out of bed for

Outside the Robey doors lie Wicker Park and Bucktown, two of the city’s most achingly trendy neighbourhoods, with enough vintage clothes stalls, bookshops and high-end boutiques to make it prime territory for a rummaging urban ramble. To explore the area, walk the 606 ( also known as the Bloomingdale Trail); the stretch of abandoned rail line runs through Wicker Park, Bucktown, and neighbouring Logan Square and Humboldt Park. Top of the shops are Robin Richman (2108 N Damen Ave) for a curated collection of designer threads, Una Mae’s (1528 N Milwaukee Ave) for classic Americana fashion and an array of take-me-home knick-knacks, and Shinola (1619 N Damen Ave), for Midwest-made clothes, watches and leather bags from the Detroit-based brand. Local art galleries include LVL3 and Jackson Junge, and Corbett vs Dempsey; the latter displays work by up and coming artists from the local area. There’s a farmers’ market on Sundays, and every summer Green Fest (mid June) and Wicker Park Fest (late July) bring lip-licking street grub and live music to Damen and Milwaukee Avenues.

Local restaurants

Publican Anker (1576 N. Milwaukee Ave), the Wicker Park outpost of downtown institution the Publican, serves rustic gourmet fare in an old-world saloon atmosphere. For heroic Greek food go to Taxim (1558 N Milwaukee Ave), or head to Antique Taco (1360 N. Milwaukee) for habanero popcorn, horchata milkshakes and tacos, glorious tacos.

Local cafés

You can’t go wrong with the single-origin brews at coffeeshop mini chain La Colombe (1552 N. Damen Ave); Buzz Killer Espresso (1644 N Damen Ave) is an artisanal alternative. For big-hearted dishes in a lighthearted diner, grab a counter stool at Dove’s Luncheonette (545 N Damen Ave); grits, brisket burnt-ends and buttermilk-fried chicken star on the deep-south-meets-Mex menu, served up all day and night long.

Local bars

Fill up at Big Star (1531 N Damen Ave), a 1940s gas station revamped as a basement-priced bourbon and beer bar where the long nights are played out to a rocking, rolling, honky-tonk kind of soundtrack. Speakeasy-styled Violet Hour (1520 N. Damen) shakes up artisan cocktails in sophisticated surrounds. Double Door (1551 N Damen Ave) is the beating heart of Wicker Park’s live music scene; gigs in the intimate venue range from big-name bands to the latest and greatest of Chicago’s emerging talent.

Reviews

Photos The Robey reviews

Anonymous review

Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this boutique hotel in Chicago and unpacked their deep-pan pizza dish and Cubs bat and ball, a full account of their city break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside the Robey…

The Robey wasn’t always the Robey. When it was built in 1929, it was the Northwest Tower, the first skyscraper outside Chicago’s downtown Loop, soaring 12-storeys into the crisp lakeside air. The striking art deco office block, nicknamed the Coyote for its spire howling towards the sky, became an instant icon and the centrepiece of the Wicker Park and Bucktown neighbourhoods. From its peerless vantage point over the bustling Six Corners intersection, it would witness the decline of working communities as factories and warehouses shut up shop in the Sixties and Seventies, and then a renewed creative energy in the Eighties as artists flocked to the affordable urban studio space. Nowadays, the Coyote has a new official name (although it may take time for Chicagoans to adapt) – Robey comes from Robey Street, the old name for Damen Avenue, a major thoroughfare which flows into Six Corners. The thriving food scene and ahead-of-the-trend boutiques are living proof that Wicker Park and Bucktown are still evolving; the Robey stands tall above them, the perfect place to watch their future unfold.

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