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“North Side Boutique Hotel Delivers!”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of The Willows

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The Willows
Ranked #72 of 187 Hotels in Chicago
Certificate of Excellence
St. Louis, MO
Level Contributor
26 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“North Side Boutique Hotel Delivers!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 August 2014

If you are visiting family or friends in the Lincoln Park/Lakeview area this is THE hotel to stay at for a relaxing, hassle free stay. We stayed at The Willows Aug. 14 - 17. Were lucky to find a FREE parking spot on the street right next to the hotel. We found the staff to be quite pleasant and very interested in making sure that our stay was exceptional. check-in was simple and efficient. Our room (King Suite) was spacious and clean. I have heard that some other rooms are shockingly small as this is an older building. There were a couple of "quirks". The remote for the bedroom also inadvertently changed the channels for the sitting room TV! Ha! The bed was quite comfortable. Wi-fi was strong and no hiccups.

I can't say enough about Adrian, Eric and Ben who made our stay above and beyond.

Why 4 stars and not 5? Two main things. First, the towels are quite old and small. We had to ask for extras, you need two per shower. Let's invest in some new towels folks! Second, the breakfast is marginal at best. They have some severe space limitations as the front lobby was not designed to be a breakfast area. I really don't enjoy starting my day in a jam-up of people. hovering over the microwave, toaster, coffee, etc. The fare that was offered was humdrum. It's a shame because with a little bit more of an investment you know they could be getting fresh baked goods, juices and cereals. A hard boiled egg is the only protein they put out there and the one egg I got was over the hill. Given the prices they charge you expect a bit more than what you would get from a bottom rung hotel chain. These two things are not hard to fix.

All in all it was a very nice, stress free stay.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Chief58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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837 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (156)
Date | Rating
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English first
Indiana
Level Contributor
28 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 August 2014

This was a fantastic place to stay for so many reasons. The rooms were up to date and clean and the staff was very friendly and helpful. The breakfast was pretty good. The best part about this hotel though was its location. The neighborhood was wonderful with cute shops and plenty of restaurants, and even an urban Wal-Mart and Walgreens for any forgotten essentials. We were in walking distance of the zoo and Wrigley Field and an L-stop. The rate we got was very good for Chicago. The only problem we had was that upon arrival they did not have any in/out parking passes left so we had to pay for one day whenever we left and re-entered, but they reimbursed us for this so in the end it all worked out. I highly recommend this hotel when visiting Chicago!

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TravelingTrowel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 14 August 2014

This is a charming old hotel with updated rooms. The hotel staff is super accommodating. I wish I could remember all of the staff's names as they should all be commended for providing superior service! We received a great rate through a hotel website for two nights when we stayed the first time during mid-August, 2014. We liked it so much that we are paying full price to stay again in mid-September, 2014. The hotel is just half of the story! I have to agree with another reviewer, "...quaint...but fit like a comfortable jacket."

The neighborhood is delightful as well. We walked a great deal but found two restaurants nearby that we intend to visit on our next trip. There is a great Turkish restaurant (Efes) with outdoor seating or inside traditional Turkish seating just around the corner. Also, Le Creperie is just two blocks away and has great main course and desert crepes. They are authentic and this is one of the oldest Crepe restaurants in Chicago. On a pleasant day, you can dine in the back garden, away from the bustle of the city.

Less than a mile from Wrigley field, this special charming hotel is a must-try! Breakfast is included in the price and was lite but good. Croissant sandwiches and breakfast sweets delivered fresh from a local bakery.

Another plus - parking with 24 hour in/out access is only an additional $22 per night.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Mary C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
15 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 August 2014

Generally good! I did only stay a short while, but it was worth it!

The location of the hotel was great for walking to both Lincoln Park & main down town

But also north to great little burbs

Staff made you feel great

  • Stayed August 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Dave F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chagrin Falls, Ohio
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 August 2014

Previous reviews raved about the staff and I was not disappointed...very helpful and friendly. Nice location just off the street with plenty of stores and restaurants near by.
The hotel itself is quaint; nothing spectacular but it fit like a comfortable jacket. The rooms were not large but fine enough for two people.
The cookies were a nice treat and the breakfast was just fine to get your day started.
During our stay, the master key machine was broke, so no key cards to get in the rooms; the staff had to go with you to your room to let you in. I figure that we have men and women overseas risking their lives in the Service, so this wasn't going to bother us. The staff hustled whenever we needed to get in the room...no issues.
For parking, right behind is a garage that charged $21 for the 24 hours we were there....not out of line from garages we saw walking around.
If you need to stay near DePaul or Loyola area, this is a fine choice and will definitely be back when we visit again.

Room Tip: some rooms, like ours, had view of building next door, but didn't matter. Elevators were kind of...
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Tiant78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Germantown, Tennessee
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 August 2014

Great boutique hotel and perfect location for us to stay since my son lives just blocks away on Surf.-The staff goes out of their way to be friendly and helpful. A special thanks to Ben the bellman and Nancy for going out of their way to make us welcome. Location convenient to Lincoln Park Zoo, the lake, Wrigley field and many great restaurant. Bus # 151 at the corner will take you right downtown! This is our fifth stay at the hotel and will come back again!

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Barbara M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Newburgh, Indiana
Level Contributor
207 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 August 2014 via mobile

We stayed there this past July. Very friendly, helpful and accommodative staff. Nice rooms....great location within walking distance of restaurants. Close to the Lake...short bus ride to Wrigley Field. Highly recommended.

Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Ballpark52
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Willows

Property: The Willows
Address: 555 West Surf Ave, Chicago, IL 60657-6020
Region: United States > Illinois > Chicago > Lakeview
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Room Service
Hotel Style:
#9 Best Value Hotel in Chicago
#37 Romantic Hotel in Chicago
#59 Family Hotel in Chicago
#67 Business Hotel in Chicago
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — The Willows 3*
Number of rooms: 55
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
The Willows Hotel Chicago
Willows Hotel Chicago
Willows Chicago

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