CHICAGO O'HARE: Country Inn and Suites

As I am one of the many "between jobs," I decided to take a week-long bartending course in Chicago. Because it was close to the school, I stayed at the Country Inn and Suites near O'Hare. Positives -- and negatives -- follow.

Kathy the manager and her staff were great: very pleasant and helpful throughout my stay. My king room was good sized with a comfortable bed, flat-screen TV, desk, wing back chair for reading, and in-room coffee maker. The air conditioning worked well and got the room cool enough for me to sleep, which was important considering it was August. 

Unfortunately, getting my hotel room cool enough is not always a “given.” Some hotels at which I’ve recently stayed have pre-set minimum temperatures that I find too warm. Troublesome trend, that. But I digress.

The hotel is fine for what it is: a basic, tourist-class hotel. It features an indoor pool and whirlpool, a small business center, a small fitness room, a guest laundry, and a breakfast room where complimentary breakfast is served. However, because the hotel appeals to families, kids are everywhere. This is definitely not a business hotel.

Further, the business center has only one (very slow) computer which is often monopolized by the aforementioned kids who are clearly not doing anything remotely connected to business.

The breakfast, on the one morning I tried it, was tasteless. Couple that with, shall we say, "energetic" kids everywhere and I decided it would be best to go elsewhere for my morning meal.

The hotel is fairly close to O’Hare airport so there is occasional jet noise, but it’s not directly in the flight path and the rooms seem reasonably well sound-proofed; just be aware. The hotel also offers a shuttle to and from O’Hare.

Finally, the property is in what could be better described as a neighborhood than a business district. There are strip malls and office parks nearby, but only a few small restaurants within easy walking distance. If you arrive without your own car, your options will be pretty limited.

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Photos by Carl Dombek
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