Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Chicago, I love Chicago!

A few weekends ago, Tim and I went to Chicago. This was about 10 days before our 1st anniversary (4/21) and since Tim had a final on our anniversary, we were going to have some fun! We stayed at the Conrad just off of Michigan Ave. This is the high end Hilton. Of course I used points -- somehow all that traveling has to pay off! Loved the hotel. It wasn't boutique like, but just very understated and very high end finishes. Marble floors. The reception was on the 4th floor. We had free breakfast certificates (as benefits a Diamond Hilton member). They hand wrote them and delivered them to our room. Our room had a flat screen TV (ours still is bigger!) and marble and granite in the bathroom. A separate soaking tub, and so on. You get the picture.

The best part was going to the Bulls/Cavs game in the executive lounge sponsored by one of my suppliers. Gretchen, the sales rep, is a really awesome person in general and she has great ideas for entertainment. After the game (which, sadly, the Cavs lost) they took us out in limos to a local bar and kept feeding us and supplying the drinks. A great time was had by all.

The next day, we slept in. The fact that we did not hear street noise and the curtains blacked out the light completely -- another sign of a really top notch hotel. Unfortunately, it was a cold and rainy weekend so we opted to go to the Aquarium and spend some time with the fishes. What an awesome place. The fish were amazing and we saw a lot of ones similar to what we saw snorkeling in Tahiti. Great frogs and some really fun lizards. We finished Saturday off with some awesome Chicago style pizza. Yummy:-)

The only jarring thing the whole weekend was our breakfast service on Sunday. I won't bore you with the details, suffice to say the food served in no way matched the description on the menu. We had to work to get the waitress to come by and when she did, she didn't handle the situation well. They ended up taking off our bill (the free part of the breakfast only covered so much) but I was shocked that such a high end place would stumble so badly. The hotel did redeem itself -- I filled out a survey online they sent asking about our stay. I was fair, but did tell them about the restaurant situation. 3 hours after submitting the survey, I received a call from the restaurant manager apologizing. He didn't offer any excuses, but said that this was not acceptable and invited us to be his guest at a meal the next time we stayed at the hotel. Wow! that's responsive customer service. (Of course, it would have been better to not have had the incident in the first place . . . ).

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