Deciding where to stay in Chicago can be the trickiest part of planning your visit. At the end of the day, you will be walking a lot. It’s hard to pick a “central” location because there are SO many great things to do!
Generally speaking, our favorite hotel locations are either on The Magnificent Mile (a 1 mile stretch of Michigan Avenue) or close to Buckingham Fountain. That range is a little over 2 miles- north to south. Any hotel within those parameters is, what I would consider, a good location. A block or two east or west of those parameters is also a safe bet.
When selecting a hotel in Downtown Chicago there are several factors to consider:
- Will you have a car in the city? If you have a car, you will want to make sure to select a hotel with a parking garage or valet. This will cost you around $50-$60 per day extra. Most likely the better the hotel location, the higher the parking fee. Keep in mind though, if you try to save on your hotel parking fee by staying further away, you will most likely spend more on transportation. I highly suggest that you do not move your car. Hourly parking is difficult to find and expensive.
- What activities are you planning to do? Making a list of your top activities should help you narrow down your hotel location. Staying as close as possible to as many destinations makes the most sense. I like to use Rand McNally ahead of time to visually see all of my destinations mapped out. By entering 4-5 addresses you can get an idea of their locations in relation to each other and the hotels.
- What kind of transportation are you comfortable using? Chicago has phenomenal public transportation. You may decide that you’d like to stay further outside the city and make use of the trains. Additionally, in the city you can hop on a train or bus to easily and quickly change locations.
At the end of the day, you will need to decide your hotel priorities. Are you looking for value? Location? Accessibility? There are TONS of options so you need to pick what’s best for your needs!
Here are a few of our favorite hotels in Downtown Chicago:
Where do you like to stay when you visit Chicago?