We’ve been visiting Chicago for years and when we heard Grupo Habita, one of our favourite hotel groups, was taking over a space in Wicker Park, a neighbourhood devoid of hotels, we were elated to say the least. Situated at the intersection of Damen, Milwaukee and North Avenues, perhaps the coolest and most bustling intersection in Wicker Park, you’ll find The Robey inside the only Art Deco skyscraper in miles, formally the Northwest Tower.
Originally built in 1929, The Robey has merged Americana and modern sensibilities in its remodel by Belgian duo Nicolas Schuybroek Architects and Marc Merckx Interiors, to house 69 guest rooms, a cafe and lounge (Café Robey and the Robey Lounge), two cocktail bars (The Up & Up and Cabana Club), as well as a 6th floor pool.
We had a chance to stay at The Robey earlier this summer during Pitchfork Music Festival which made for a great home base in our favourite neighbourhood to eat and drink. In addition to the hotels varied amenities, we enjoyed the layout of our light-filled room on the 11th floor over looking Wicker Park and the addition of a marble cafe table instead of the traditional desk you’d likely find in most hotels.
Other notable features of the room included cozy yet cool denim robes, a locally stocked mini bar, 400-thread count sheets (with a Woolrich blanket), a fine selection of magazines, Le Labo Santal amenities, and in room dining by Café Robey.
We also enjoyed many meals at Café Robey throughout the weekend including brunch, dinner, and cocktails. The French style American bistro offered an edited yet varied assortment of options for brunch and lunch, from heathy salads to avocado toast to sinful (yet reasonably sized) fried chicken sandwich. For dinner the menu balances vegetable forward items with a number of meat and fish options that are reasonable price and portion.
We also had the chance to take in the more casual lounge space on the second floor, which was a great place to work pre-flight after checking out of our room. Our visit would not have felt complete without a poolside hang at the Cabana Club on the 6th floor and of course a sky high cocktail at the Up & Up 360 views of the neighbourhood. Stand out cocktails on the menu included the ‘Game, Set, Matcha’a frothy mix of Vodka, Yellow Chartreuse, Elderflower Liqueur, Lemon, Egg White, and Matcha, as well as the ‘Follow Suit’ made with Jamaican Rum, Lime, Aperol, Orgeat, Bitters.
We adored our weekend at The Robey for many reasons. The vibe, the rooms, the amenities, all luxe, yet understated. Chicago needed a hotel like this and we cannot wait to return for another stay in the coming months.