Darling Hotels of the USA: The Radisson Blu Aqua Chicago Review

July 20, 2018

*Thank you to the Radisson Blu Aqua for allowing me to stay at your beautiful hotel! All thoughts and opinions are my own. If you think I’m raving about this hotel, it’s genuinely because this has been my favorite hotel I’ve stayed at to date.*

 

I get unnecessarily stressed out when trying to find a hotel. Which one is the best quality? Which has the most to offer? Which is in the most convenient location? As a solo traveler especially, which is the safest? The Radisson Blu Aqua Chicago met and exceeded all my expectations to those questions’ answers, so today I’m reviewing it for you!

 

Travel blogger from Minneapolis and NYC Eva Darling on the radisson blu aqua hotel chicago review where to stay millenium park view rooftop garden luxury hotel midwest architecture upscale place to stay solo female travel

 

The Room

The Radisson Blu Aqua not only has traditional hotel rooms, but also has suites. I stayed in the Park Suite which had a view of Millenium Park as well as the rooftop track and gardens.

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The entire weekend I just kept saying how my dream apartment in NYC would be basically the exact layout and dimensions of the Park Suite. It’s definitely more of a fantasy than a reality, given that the shower itself was probably the size of most NYC apartment kitchens alone, but a girl can dream.  Regardless, I need these floor to ceiling windows ASAP. Waking up to that much natural light was amazing {and also made for some fantastic selfie lighting. 💁🏻‍♀️

 

The floor of this room was wood, which is huge for me. Every time I go to a hotel I make fun of the awful carpet and usually the awful carpet makes for even worse photos. The light wood floors were 1. Not an eyesore and 2. Felt so much cleaner than old carpet. I didn’t feel like I needed to be concerned as to how well the carpet was cleaned. It was an unexpected contemporary and chic touch.

 

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Okay, can we PLEASE talk about how the bathroom mirrors were not only lighted, but also had a small magnified mirror on the side? I’m pretty sure this is probably the first hotel that I can confidently say had amazing bathroom lighting. You don’t think it’s important until you realize how much easier it is to do your makeup when you’re not squinting under a single light fixture.

 

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The bed was perfect. Not too soft, not too firm. My only minor gripe is that I couldn’t find any USB outlets, only standard on the bedside outlets. I’m honestly not that bothered by it, however if you’re an international traveler, you may want to make a note to pick up a few American adapters before staying here. Otherwise, I probably could’ve stayed in bed that whole weekend and been happy as a clam between all the natural light and how comfortable it was!

 

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THE AMENITIES

Honestly, the suite alone was enough to make this hotel worth it for me, but the amenities it has to offer are the icing on the cupcake.

 

If you’re staying in a suite and business class, the hotel offers a complimentary breakfast in their business lounge on the 17th floor. I tend to have a small issue with hotel breakfasts just because most of them are over by 9 am. Not the case here! Breakfast was served until 10 or 11 am each day, making it easy to sleep in and not have to miss out.

 

On the third floor, the hotel has an indoor pool, rooftop pool, rooftop track, rooftop gardens, as well as a state of the art gym. The hotel also offers a spa, rooftop bar, and Italian restaurant. After being stuck indoors all winter, I was beyond ready to get out to the pool! It was a bit chilly, but the hot tub was there to keep me warm. See more views of the rooftop pool at the Radisson Blu Aqua here.

 

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Despite the amount of time I’ve spent on a treadmill, I have seen quite a few outdoor tracks {and even ran on a few. I know, I’m just as surprised at me actually running as you are}. I’ve never seen at track quite like this. The track at the Radisson Blu Aqua Chicago winds through the pretty gardens, which is SO much nicer than just running around astro turf or what have you.

 

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Just behind the gates and in front of that greenery is part of the track! In the very first photo of this post, you can see the aerial view of the track, which is the red path.

 

The hotel offers free wifi, which was fast and responsive, much to my surprise. I’m so used to wifi barely being able to load while I’m traveling, and never had a problem, even if I was streaming off of Netflix or Youtube.

 

The Staff

A hotel could be amazing, but at the end of the day, if it has bad staff, it ruins the entire hotel. I truthfully have never been to a single hotel with better staff than the Radisson Blu Aqua. Due to the MacBook incident of Boulder, I had to have my MacBook shipped from the Apple repair center to the hotel. To say I was nervous would be the understatement of the year. Before I even got a word out of my mouth, the lovely receptionist at check-in had already said “A package arrived for you. I’ll send someone up with it shortly.” Sure enough, the package was in my hands and my computer was safe and sound.

 

Even if I only left my room for an hour or two in the morning to grab breakfast or run and errand, I could expect to come back to the bed perfectly made and the room thoughtfully put together. Housekeeping even thought to cover my water so nothing would get into it while I was away. It’s the small things that make the biggest difference. If I needed anything, my call would be answered quickly and taken care of without me even needing to lift a finger except to dial. To say the staff here was exceptional is an understatement.

 

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Location, Convenience, and Safety

What I appreciated about where the Radisson Blu Aqua is located in Chicago vs. other hotels I’ve stayed at in Chicago is how the location is central and very close to many of the city’s main attractions, however tucked in a spot that isn’t too loud or noisy. You’ll be so close to Magnificent Mile that you can walk there, but far enough away as to avoid that crazy traffic jam. Millenium Park couldn’t have been any closer, either.

 

The hotel has a doorman and reception also has a street view. The area alone I would say is safe {we walked for pizza at 11 pm and felt totally fine}, but the doorman and reception make this hotel even safer. To access any floor but the lobby, you need to have your room key to unlock them in the elevator, which prevents random people from coming off the street and making their way into the hotel!

 

The Bottom Line

The Radisson Blu Aqua is a refreshing take on an upscale hotel. The decor is well-thought out and sleek, avoiding the classic “dated hotel” or “clashing decor.” If I had to describe The Radisson Blu Aqua in just a few words, I’d say that it’s contemporary minimalist chic in decor, while the amenities it has to offer don’t cut any corners.

 

For me, this hotel is a 10/10 {probably the only hotel I’ve stayed at that I’d give that score}. The rooms are large and spacious, it offers plenty of amenities and little luxuries should you opt to stay in, and above all, the staff is eager and happy to help. For a hotel in a prime Chicago location, you really can’t do any better!

 

xx,

E

 

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Travel blogger from Minneapolis and NYC Eva Darling on the radisson blu aqua hotel chicago review where to stay millenium park view rooftop garden luxury hotel midwest architecture upscale place to stay solo female travel

One response to “Darling Hotels of the USA: The Radisson Blu Aqua Chicago Review”

  1. Francesca says:

    This post could not have come at a better time! My team and I have an event in Chicago coming up in early September and are always looking for amazing and central locations to make our lives easier. This place looks GORGEOUS, definitely will bring this one up to my boss when she starts looking for places for us to stay 🙂

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