When The St. Regis Chicago opened last May, it became the tallest skyscraper in the world designed by a woman—Jeanne Gang of Studio Gang. The skyline-changing 101-story tower sits at the mouth of the Chicago River, seeming to undulate like the waves of Lake Michigan below. Gang drew inspiration from a frustum (basically, a pyramid with its top cut off), a shape she tested by stacking red-and-white popcorn boxes. (“You can eat a lot of popcorn, and you can make a model,” she said in an interview.) While the building’s exterior is getting the most attention, what’s going on inside is also noteworthy. Here are four reasons to check in now.
The hotel’s 159 rooms and 33 suites fill the tower’s first 11 floors; the rest are reserved for residences, including a full-floor penthouse that’s listed for a cool $18.5 million. Rich blue carpeting echoes the lake, while amber and charcoal tones pay respect to the great Chicago fire. If you want to spread out, book the sumptuous Caroline Astor Suite (named for St. Regis founder John Jacob Astor IV’s mother) or the Presidential Suite, which is the largest in Chicago and even has its own gym.
Speaking of gyms, you won’t have a sad subterranean workout here. You can run on the treadmill while watching the Navy Pier Centennial Wheel turn, or do nighttime laps in the heated indoor pool while gazing at the sparkling city lights. Book a re-energizing massage at the 12,000-square-foot spa, and give yourself time afterward to relax by the fireplace under a plush faux-fur blanket, Champagne glass in hand.
Miru became one of the hottest tables in town immediately upon opening, serving Japanese fare—crispy rice with spicy bluefin tuna, miso black cod, otoro tartare—while effortlessly living up to the meaning of its name: view. Come summer, the outdoor terrace provides front-row seats for Navy Pier’s twice-weekly fireworks shows. This winter, Tre Dita, a Tuscan steak house from lauded Los Angeles chef Evan Funke, will join the fray, offering fine cuts and Funke’s acclaimed pastas.
What really sets a St. Regis apart is the service—specifically the hotel’s famed butler service. Guests are greeted upon arrival by their own butler, a part-host, part–personal assistant who’s happy to help in any way, whether its unpacking your suitcase, pressing a suit, or delivering a cappuccino and a copy of the Chicago Tribune first thing in the morning. You can even text the Butler Service Desk with requests, like finding a last-minute gift or surprising your kids with their favorite cupcakes when you don’t have time to run out and shop. Accepting this level of hands-on service can feel weird at first, but do yourself a favor: embrace it.