The Waldorf Astoria Chicago Rating: 5.0 Pearls
The Waldorf-Astoria offers top-of-the-line luxury in Chicago. With an intimate, boutique feel -- but all the amenities of a large hotel -- the 188-room Waldorf caters to leisure and business travelers. Sleek rooms feature neutral tones, contemporary furnishings, and gorgeous marble bathrooms that offer separate showers and soaking tubs, as well as TVs inset in the mirrors. Highlights include the upscale restaurant Balsan, a top-notch spa, and health club with extensive services and an indoor lap pool. Plus, the hotel's location in the swanky Gold Coast neighborhood puts it within walking distance of upscale shops, restaurants, and attractions.
Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago Rating: 5.0 Pearls
Those who associate the Trump brand with over-the-top gold and glitz will be pleasantly surprised with this tasteful luxury hotel. The 339-room Trump is probably the top luxury hotel in Chicago, with a riverside location near the Magnificent Mile, a Michelin-rated restaurant, a gorgeous indoor pool, a first-rate spa, and excellent service. The huge, refined rooms have limestone bathrooms with soaking tubs and floor-to-ceiling windows (often with phenomenal views).
The Peninsula Chicago Rating: 5.0 Pearls
The Peninsula Chicago, a classic 339-room Chicago hotel right on the Magnificent Mile, exudes elegance and luxury -- from the bright and welcoming interior decor, to the immaculate indoor pool and sunbathing terrace. The natural light and warm colors combined with dark wood accents make it feel simultaneously airy and cozy. Rooms, though a tad generic for this caliber of hotel, are high-tech, featuring iPod docks, flat-screen TVs, control panels to adjust the lighting, and deep soaking tubs with personal TVs.
JW Marriott Chicago Rating: 4.5 Pearls
Opened in late 2010, this upscale hotel is housed in a historic neoclassical-style building with crystal chandeliers and a grand staircase in the lobby. But sophisticated rooms are thoroughly modern, and big, elegant bathrooms have separate showers and soaking tubs. The Loop location is convenient for business travelers, and the 24-four fitness center is top-notch.
Sofitel Chicago Water Tower Rating: 4.5 Pearls
The Sofitel Chicago Water Tower embodies the French elegance of the Sofitel brand. Though it caters mostly to business travelers, the location near Magnificent Mile, the dimly lit lobby, the sexy Le Bar and the sleek, contemporary décor makes it a good choice for leisure travelers as well. The property features high class service, a delectable French restaurant, a stylish bar, free newspaper delivery and sophisticated decor. Bright, contemporary rooms have flat-screen TVs, separate showers and bathtubs and L'Occitane toiletries.
Four Seasons Chicago Rating: 4.5 Pearls
The Four Seasons Chicago is located on floors 32 to 46 of a limestone-and-glass skyscraper along the Magnificent Mile, atop an upscale shopping center. The hotel boasts a gorgeous indoor pool, an expansive spa and fitness center, elegant rooms with phenomenal views, and a restaurant helmed by a Michelin-starred chef. It's one of the city's most beautiful hotels, and its location near the historic Water Tower and the Hancock Observatory can't be beat.
Ritz-Carlton Chicago, a Four Seasons Hotel Rating: 4.5 Pearls
No doubt we've given the Ritz-Carlton four-and-a-half pearls -- the hotel's location half a block from the upscale Magnificent Mile and walking distance to some of the city's top attractions makes it desirable for those looking for upscale convenience. Its large, lovely rooms, luxury spa, indoor pool, and beautiful design are all top notch, keeping you occupied in splendor. One of the most striking lobbies in Chicago, it boasts fountains, chandeliers and unobstructed views of the buildings on the Magnificent Mile.