omni chicagoConvenience and comfort; two things that are non-negotiable when traveling – especially when you’re running a race. Two weeks ago I ran the Chicago Marathon, and spent three lovely days at theOmni Chicago Hotel. While I enjoy running marathons, the stress of tackling 26.2 miles can be daunting. When I’m in city I don’t know very well, I really need my new home away from home to be accessible, accommodating, and a place where I can relax. After staying at the Omni Hotel at CNN Center in Atlanta a few weeks ago, I was confident I picked the right spot. Here’s the rundown – no pun intended – on the hotel.

The Location

The hotel is located right in Chicago’s Magnificent Mile – perfect for shopping, dining and sightseeing.  We walked to Giordano’s Famous Stuffed Pizza right after checking in and marked one of Chi-town’s must do restaurants off of our list. It was also convenient for the marathon. It was an easy cab or bus ride to the start at Grant Park; in fact, if I wasn’t running that day I could’ve walked there instead.

chicago marathon_008_resizedThe Room
This Omni property is an all suite hotel which was perfect since my husband, Napoleon, came to cheer me on. I had lots of race stuff to layout and plenty of space to do it. There was a mini wet-bar and comfortable separate, living area so I could get ready early in the morning while Napoleon slept in. The room is also ideal if you’re traveling with kids; there’s enough space to use an air mattress and the doors between the two rooms provide plenty of privacy.

The Staff
I walked in the hotel asking questions; “How can I get to the race start in the morning?” “Is there a Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s nearby?” What’s the best place for breakfast? I had a long written out list and they patiently took the time to help me with all of my needs. The concierges even got me a reservation for two at Carmine’s for a pre-race pasta dinner when the city’s Italian restaurants had been booked for weeks. He quickly became my new best friend.

chicago marathon_003_resizedThe Kids
Napoleon and I left the kids at home this trip but noticed a wide-variety of guests including many families with children. The Omni properties host the Omni Sensational Kids Program providing kids with a backpack filled with fun goodies when they check in and milk and cookies delivered to their room on the first night.  I shared in my last post that I didn’t realize Omni, synonymous with luxury, is also kid-friendly. I was pleasantly surprised during my stay in Atlanta; and saw the same welcoming atmosphere in Chicago, too.

Website: www.OmniHotels.com

Until next time; I’m off and running …

Disclosure: I stayed at the Omni Chicago Hotel at a media rate; as always, my thoughts and opinions are all my own.