Kimpton's Hotel Monaco Chicago Unveils Renovation of New Lobby and Event Space

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Latest Upgrades Mark the Completion of Hotel’s Multi-Year Renovation.

The New Lobby in Kimpton's Hotel Monaco Chicago

With a coveted central location overlooking the Chicago River, the newly renovated Monaco Chicago showcases how globally inspired design can elegantly marry Chicago sensibility.

Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco Chicago today reveals the completion of a lobby and event space renovation featuring bold colors, playful textures and nods to the building’s rich history. Recently named one of US News and World Report’s 2013 Best Hotels and a Conde Nast Traveler Reader’s Choice 2012 winner, Monaco Chicago now boasts an entire floor of modernized meeting space, a glamorous new lobby, an updated bar at the adjacent restaurant, South Water Kitchen, and 191 refreshed guest rooms.

“The renovation first began with a guest room refresh in 2011 and we’re thrilled that the full makeover is now complete,” said Marco Scherer, general manager, Hotel Monaco Chicago. “The new look creates a fresh ambiance that combines comfort and style, and allows us to introduce great new features like communal lobby seating and fun culinary options for meeting breakouts.”

With a coveted central location overlooking the Chicago River, the newly renovated Monaco Chicago showcases how globally inspired design can elegantly marry Chicago sensibility. Raising the bar for Windy City hospitality, interior designer Susan Caruso of Intra-Spec Hospitality Design created a warm and graceful new backdrop for an unrivaled travel experience focused on care, comfort and fun.

Remodeled Lobby & New Living Room Offerings
As guests enter Kimpton’s Monaco Chicago, they are greeted by pops of color, whimsical patterns and rich textures. The vibrant backlit art at the front desk features vintage photographs of fashionable ladies in dramatic hats, a nod to the building’s origins as the D.B. Fisk & Co. hat factory. Beyond the alligator-fabric front desk, guests are treated to a harmonizing aesthetic of royal blue, cherry and lemon. On the walls, guests will find the juxtaposition of black and white photographs of Chicago architecture and a large flat panel TV playing popular movies filmed in Chicago. Lacquered finishes, exotic woods and comfortable seating combine to create a vibrant experience for lounging or casual meetings.

The 8-seat bar table with built in power outlets and high-backed chairs is ideal for business travelers seeking a social setting to get work done. “Power Packs” are available at the front desk for both convenience and entertainment: power up with an iPhone charger, drown out distractions with noise-cancelling headphones and keep busy with a tablet pre-loaded with music and books.

Hungry lobby loungers will now have their choice of food and drinks from the Tavern Menu of South Water Kitchen, adjacent to the hotel. The full beverage and small bites menu features homemade favorites like Duck Jerky and Spring Pea Flatbread as well as local draft beers and craft cocktails. In addition to complimentary daily morning coffee service (6:00-10:00am) and Hosted Evening Wine Hour (5:00-6:00 pm), guests can enjoy a rotating list of entertainment offered in the lobby living room. The line-up ranges from live music performed by local community college students to wine tastings and cocktail demonstrations provided by South Water Kitchen.

Renovated Event Rooms
Located on the third floor, the new meeting and event space is comprised of 4,100 square feet, including a 2,700 square foot ballroom. The pre-function area now features a graceful focal table as well as new mahogany and ebony consoles, geometric mirrors and artful silver lamps. Within the rooms, lush carpeting softens into curvaceous medallions complemented by amber hued walls. Luxurious new window treatments in tones of silver, black and fawn call attention to the large windows with views of the Chicago River.

Meetings are enhanced by the convenience of Monaco Chicago’s “Concierge on Demand.” Upon request, the concierge station can be moved to the third floor, strategically placed to be on hand to make reservations, arrange transportation or answer any other questions during meeting breaks or post-meeting.

Groups can also choose from new, playful food and beverage offerings:

  •     Making Whoopie – Brides, grooms and their wedding guests will now have the option of a new turndown service: upon request, whoopie pies and old-fashioned bottles of milk will be placed in each guest’s room near the conclusion of the wedding for a clever post-party treat. Members of the wedding party will also be invited to return to the Monaco for a future trip and receive 25% off their stay.
  •     Chicago-Style – A Chicago-native, South Water Kitchen’s Chef Roger Waysok took inspiration from signature Windy City cuisine to create new menu options. A Chicago-style hot dog bar is complete with all the traditional fixings including housemade relish, pickled peppers and poppy-seed buns, among other options. Flavored popcorn, inspired by local favorite Garrett’s Popcorn, is now an option for afternoon breaks with original combinations like bacon-carmel and toppings like ranch-seasoned salt.

Redesigned Restaurant
Recent renovations also included South Water Kitchen, adjacent to Monaco Chicago. The new look of the Tavern section of the restaurant is inspired by the “working man’s” tavern of the 1920s. The design team of VOA Associates Inc. used modest materials typical of this era to bring a feeling of honest simplicity to Chicago’s dining scene. A new tin ceiling, crisp white subway wall tile, a polished brass bar rail, and stone topped bar are all newly installed pieces reflective of the 1920s. Light and airy linen chandeliers, copper mirrors and antique metals bring an updated yet relaxed atmosphere to match Chef Waysok’s authentic Midwest cuisine.

Hotel Monaco Chicago is located at 225 North Wabash Avenue, Chicago, IL, 60601. For more information or reservations, please call (312) 960-8500 or visit /


San Francisco-based Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, a collection of boutique hotels and chef-driven restaurants in the US, is an acknowledged industry pioneer and was the first to bring the boutique hotel concept to America. In 1981 Bill Kimpton founded the company that today is well-known for making travelers feel welcomed and comfortable while away from home through authentic and unscripted customer care, stylish ambience and embodying a certain playfulness in its approach to programs and amenities. Adjacent to the hotels are locally-loved, top-rated, Kimpton restaurants. Kimpton leads the hospitality industry in ecological practices through its innovative EarthCare program that spans all hotels and restaurants. Market Metrix, a recognized authority and leader in feedback solutions, consistently ranks Kimpton above other hotel companies in luxury and upper upscale segments for customer satisfaction. Privately held Kimpton has been recognized by Fortune Magazine four times as a Best Company to Work, most recently in 2012. The company operates 58 hotels and 67 restaurants, bars and lounges in 24 cities. For more information, visit or call 1-800-KIMPTON.

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Jordan Frank
Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants
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