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Friday, June 26, 2009

From the Top of the Trump

From Buckingham Palace to a penthouse at the Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago...how's that for living the lifestyle of the rich and famous while being poor and relatively unknown?

This is an interesting hotel, quite different, in many ways, from other luxury properties I have visited. The Trump Chicago is two hotels in one. In addition to "basic" rooms and suites, the hotel features a spa floor. The 53 spa rooms come complete with healthy mini-bar items, in-room weights, yoga equipment, and Zen art and music.

A few notes of interest: Room service features a menu for kids, dogs, and cats (the menu for kids differs from the one for critters, FYI). The pet menu includes bottled water from Italy. Bella. Bottled waters from Tasmania, Wales and Argentina are available for humans (as, I am gathering, is the Italian brand for canines--the dog-worthy water was what I was provided as an in-room welcome amenity. Woof). The other H2O on offer is the Trump brand, which, as far as I can ascertain, is likely bottled in New Jersey.

The technologically-challenged (I include myself in that category) may have some initial challenges figuring out light switches, drape openers, and coffee makers. But give it a day or two and it will all make sense.

The elevators are slow as molasses. I waited 10 minutes to get an elevator from the spa floor (14) up to the penthouse floor (27). Said elevator never came. I eventually had to go down to go up.

Speaking of molasses, the food and beverage outlets in the hotel are stunning. A new outside terrace area serves up drinks and amazing views of Chicago. Sixteen, the property's restaurant, is one of the loveliest hotel dining spaces I've seen. An nineteen-foot-high chandelier, complete with 20,000 hand-carved Swarovski crystals, is the centerpiece of the main dining room, which also features 30-foot-high ceilings and curved walls paneled with Kazinga wood from West Africa.

For information on room rates and other amenities, click here.

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