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fairmont or james hotel

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Roll Tide
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fairmont or james hotel

Anyone have any strong feelings either way for 4th of July weekend? Rates are both ~$100/night...

Illinois
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for Chicago, Illinois
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1. Re: fairmont or james hotel

Fairmont's closer to the Grant Park. If that's why you're coming in, go for it. If you want to avoid the crowds, take the James.

Chicago
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2. Re: fairmont or james hotel

I like the JAmes but think the Fairmont is a much more luxurious property. For that price, I'd go with the Fairmont.

Central, Illinois
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3. Re: fairmont or james hotel

I agree that Fairmont is more luxurious but the Davoodas have found it's location to be "out of the way." We tend to enjoy River North and the Gold Coast more than Streeterville, but that's a personal opinion. The Fairmont is a nice hotel!

We have stayed at The James several times and for the $100/night rate it's well worth it! You're in the thick of the River North neighborhood - walking distance to lots of dining, clubs, shopping - and a short walk to get on the Red Line if you want to go to Wrigley for a Cubs game, US Cellular (still can't get used to not calling it Comiskey) for a Sox game, or to neighborhoods like Bucktown/Wicker Park/Lakeview to shop and dine. You can get breakfast across the street at Starbucks or Trader Joe's (if you don't want to break your fast at Primehouse) and the bar at The James is chic and fun.

Davooda

Roll Tide
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4. Re: fairmont or james hotel

Thanks for the replies...

Unfortunately I think the Fairmont is out due to the pet policy of not being able to leave the pet unattended in the room (how is this even possible if you are doing anything but arriving late one night and leaving early the next?). They also charge $25/night for a pet which is a quarter of what the room costs to begin with. Also, the James charges a $75 pet fee, which over two nights equates to a 37.5% upcharge per night. No thanks.

I've got a rate of $81 for the Allegro or $115/night for the Sofitel, both of which don't charge extra for pets. We are staying the first 2 nights at the Monaco, so I was thinking maybe the Sofitel to stay in a different area of downtown.

What do y'all think about the remaining two options.

Rensselaer, Indiana
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5. Re: fairmont or james hotel

pickles, there aren't many pet-friendly hotels which don't place restrictions and/or make surcharges of some type.

I believe that the Sofitel's policy may be that only pets weighing under 20 pounds are free of charge. If you are still considering this hotel and this is an issue, I'd check with them asap.

With the the Kimptons: At the Allegro, there are only a very limited number of floors of rooms where pets are allowed. Same with the Hotel Monaco. I believe that you have to fill out a pet registration form for them when reserving a room and you'll probably have to sign another form for accepting the responsibility of additional cleaning costs/damages caused by your pet(s). Check their websites, as they usually indicate information on these types of issues in their FAQs sections.

Roll Tide
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491 posts
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6. Re: fairmont or james hotel

Yeah, I've talked to the Sofitel and the Monaco directly about their pet policy, and both are more lenient and don't charge an additional fee for pets. Also, both allow the pet to be left alone while the guest is out sightseeing. You are correct that there are forms to fill out and waivers to sign, and at the Sofitel there is a $200 refundable incidental charge for pets. Thanks for the thoughts!

Chicago
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7. Re: fairmont or james hotel

I'd pick the Sofitel--although I love the Allegro as well. Also, Residence Inn, as a policy, accepts pets, as you probably know. There is a nice property on Walton, across from the Drake.

Central, Illinois
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8. Re: fairmont or james hotel

The Davoodas' fave hotel in Chicago is Sofitel (although we're giving the Trumnp a try in May) so that would be my recommendation. We spent our 10th wedding anniversary there and they treated us like royalty.

The Gold Coast neighborhood where Sofitel is located is often derided by locals as the "Viagra Triangle" but we find it big fun. We enjoy the nightlife, though we usually dine in other neighborhoods to save a few $$, but overall we really enjoy the upscale vibe of the area.

One of my favorite things to do is to take a walk north and east of Sofitel into the residential Gold Coast, e.g. Astor Place, N. State Parkway, E. Goethe, to take in all the magnificent row houses and mansions. It is also a short walk to Oak Street Beach. You can pick up a bagel breakfast a little north and east at Ashkenaz Deli, or dine in at Old Pancake House, or even closer - just around the corner from Sofitel, haev the breakfast of champions at Tempo (cash only, unless they've decided to accept credit cards).

Davooda

Roll Tide
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9. Re: fairmont or james hotel

Thanks everybody!

I ended up passing on the Allegro and booked the Sofitel on Hotwire wir $179/night with the full intention of using their "Double the Difference" price match guarantee against the $128/night rate on quikbook.com

End result? Received an email this morning from Hotwire customer support stating that I was entitled to a refund of $204 on my 2 night stay, which works out to $77/night at the Sofitel!

I'm a happy camper...Thanks Hotwire!!

Chicago, IL
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10. Re: fairmont or james hotel

James is more trendy. I like it! Also, there is an amazing steakhouse in the same building called David Burkes, amazing steaks!