Arrival/Check-In: A thick fog stubbornly clung to the Chicago skyline, obscuring our view of the 82-story building that houses the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel. The lucky occupants who live in the condos and apartments on the upper floors know what it is like to be a mythological god reigning from the clouds. Arriving at 10 a.m., after an 18-hour Amtrak journey, it almost seemed miraculous when we were told our room was ready.
Guest Quarters: After waving our room key to activate the elevator — a wonderful security feature — we passed through a hallway covered in white wallpaper and bold graphic lines depicting Chicago neighborhoods. Our king room, with a park view, had dark chocolate walls and a bright turquoise carpet. The built-in wardrobe was covered in a textured silver which was repeated on the bathroom ceiling. A curved, black-lacquered minibar with a drawer filled with wine glasses was tucked beside the wardrobe, and a high-backed gray chair occupied the corner. In addition to the standard lamps on each bedside table, a pair of chrome gooseneck reading lamps could be twisted to the perfect angle for late-night reading. A sliding wooden door with a frosted glass panel divided the bedroom from the large bathroom. The black tiled floor was flecked with specks of silver so bright they cast twinkling shadows on the walls. A pair of bathrobes and Anne Semonin bath amenities completed the modern retreat.
Services/Amenities: The Chicago Radisson Blu Aqua is the first U.S. hotel for the brand. Well known by international travelers, Blu properties offer luxurious accommodations. While waiting for a business associate, we warmed ourselves beside the lobby’s 50-foot-long fireplace built into a mirrored wall covered with interconnected brass Egyptian medallions. Felini, a bar and restaurant serving contemporary Italian food, occupies two floors. Upstairs, the view of the sleek exhibition kitchen is open to all. Burning off those calories after dinner is easy at the hotel’s 8,000-square-foot fitness center with an indoor basketball court, indoor and outdoor pools (the rooftop pool is open seasonally) and a one-fifth-mile jogging track that circles the exterior of the building. In addition to a business center with free printing, the hotel has a game room with a card table and a pool table, as well as a media room for intimate movie viewing.
The Experience: Located steps from Millennium Park and a short walk to the Magnificent Mile, the hotel is in a building that received the 2009 Emporis Skyscraper of the Year Award. The waving lines of the balconies give the structure a modern fluidity.
Big amenities, smart looks and an efficient staff make the Radisson Blu Aqua a cool choice for the traveler who wants it all.
- Less than 10 minutes for check-in
- Separate tub and shower
- Large vanity
- High-quality towels
- Powerful, unattached hair dryer
- High-quality bed linens
- Large, flat-screen television
- Large desk with convenient outlets
- Complimentary in-room WiFi
- Complimentary bottled water
- Stocked minibar
- Ample lighting
- In-room coffeemaker
- Iron and ironing board
- On-site restaurant and bar
- 24-hour room service
- 24-hour state-of-the-art fitness center
- Turn-down service
Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel Chicago
221 N. Columbus Drive
Chicago, IL 60601
tel 312 565 5258
Qatar Airways is expanding this year, adding eight new destinations to its network. The list includes:
United Airlines’ environmentally friendly efforts lessen the impact on local U.S. communities.
Hotel Indigo recently launched its Clues to the Neighborhood initiative, a fun way for travelers to discover experiences in property neighborhoods. Clues to the Neighborhood uses curated artifacts to artfully present travelers with a new look at a locale, with the hope of leading them to local museums, shops, music venues, restaurants and bars.
The city took its name from Athena, goddess of wisdom, strategy and war, and protector of the city. The financial, political and administrative center of the country and an all-powerful city-state in antiquity, Athens is a major center of culture. A visit to the first-ever museum dedicated to Byzantium, a stroll around the National Garden and a trip to the Olympeion archaeological site will take you back through time.
Travelers in Las Vegas can enjoy a new dining concept at Wynn Las Vegas starting March 19. A new restaurant, Elio, will debut, offering an energetic environment and thoughtful menu items reflecting Mexico’s rich culinary traditions. Small plates focus on seafood and produce, while entrees are shareable. A lounge offers agave-based spirits.
ForwardKeys.com found an increase of 4.5 percent in 2019 was significantly slower than the 6 percent growth in 2018 and the average over the last decade of 6.8 percent per year. The increase last year was less than expected, but projections for quarter one of 2020 is more optimistic. Bookings are expected to grow 8.3 percent when compared to the same period in 2019.
Looking for a truly unique travel experience and considering a new vehicle? The Volvo Overseas Delivery Program is the perfect solution to create your own adventure of a lifetime. Volvo allows you to custom order your new automobile tailored to fit your needs and desires. They will fly you to Sweden to pick up your Volvo so you can drive and explore Scandinavia and Europe on your terms for up to two weeks.
Château Élan Winery & Resort reopened in Braselton, Georgia, following a $25 million comprehensive renovation. The first major refurbishment since the resort’s inception in the mid-1980s pays homage to the estate's 16th-century charm, while taking the property into the future. Now, the resort offers 251 brand-new guestrooms and 24 suites, four new food and beverage venues, an immersive spa, pool terrace and new lobby. The winery likewise received a facelift.