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The Ritz-Carlton Chicago unveils $25 Million Renovation

April 20th, 2010

The Ritz-Carlton Chicago steps into the limelight with the largest restyling in the hotel’s history since its 1977 opening. During the first week in May 2010, the $25 million project unveils a dramatic new lobby, restaurant and bar, promenade, ballroom and Presidential Suite. (The re-design of the hotel’s guestrooms and suites was completed in 2009.) The Ritz-Carlton Chicago renovation was designed by Brayton Hughes Design Studios. The Ritz-Carlton Chicago (a Four Seasons Hotel) offers a setting of unmistakable grandeur, ideal for business or leisure, centered in the prestigious shopping and cultural mecca of North Michigan Avenue. (See all of LastMinuteTravel.com’s 5 Star Hotels along the North River.)

“We are very fortunate to benefit from Ownership’s long-term commitment, which has allowed The Ritz-Carlton Chicago the luxury to move forward in the current economic climate as it is,” says The Ritz-Carlton Chicago’s Regional Vice-President and General Manager, Patrick Ghielmetti. “This renovation marks a new and exciting era for The Ritz-Carlton Chicago.”

Lobby
The vision for the Lobby was inspired by a highly-styled era with its deep woods and rich earth tones. A blend of contemporary and traditional is created with graceful upholstered wall coverings; large graphic-patterned carpeting in hues of gold, champagne, caramels and chocolate browns; and Breccia Oniciata marble flooring. Stepping off the 12th floor elevator, the Lobby’s captivating views of the city’s skyline come to life. A sky-lit fountain centrally anchors the room, surrounded by natural scenes of Art Nouveau plaster relief; stylish sofas; glass-topped, antique bronze hammered coffee tables; glass floor lamps; pedestal rosewood tables with marble insets and Paris influenced lounge chairs.

“This living room environment allows guests to feel the comfort of home, while also being able to congregate and socialize, and drink and dine in an easy setting,” explains Ghielmetti.

More gorgeous photos below the jump:



Event Space

A newly tailored Promenade, accentuated with floor-to-ceiling windows, leads up to the Hotel’s redesigned 9,000-square-foot Ballroom, a premier destination for storybook weddings, extraordinary galas and memorable events for over 30 years. Trend meets tradition, blending the currently fashionable with the Hotel’s classical ambiance, providing a beautiful backdrop to any event. Crisp champagne palettes and traditional drapery and carpet patterns are designed to illuminate the room’s original 400,000-piece, cascading crystal chandelier and to highlight its spectacular full-length views of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. Adjacent function rooms include the Concorde, Vendome and Salon.

Business guests can also now “Wii-juvenate” their meetings or corporate events at The Ritz-Carlton Chicago with a Wii package, featuring games like Guitar Hero III, Tennis, Bowling, Boxing, Golf and more. This unique offer makes for a perfect team building activity.

Presidential Suite
The spacious new 2,900-square-foot Presidential Suite presents a stunning blend of contemporary and traditional designs. The re-imagined two-story Suite boasts a spiral staircase featuring new interiors and floor-to-ceiling two-story window views of Lake Michigan. The spacious two-bedroom Suite also includes a kitchen; living, dining and study rooms; and three full and two half baths. A media room, baby grand piano and Bose surround sound stereo system add to the Suite’s splendor. Amenities include a 24-hour personal assistant with in-room business center; transportation to and from the local airport via a Rolls Royce Phantom; and a daily in room 90 minute massage.

deca RESTAURANT + BAR
The Magnificent Mile welcomes a vibrant new neighborhood eatery, with deca RESTAURANT + BAR. The name says it all…a 2010 approachable concept and sure to be a “10” with its brasserie-influenced cuisine, inviting art deco-inspired décor and engaging, sophisticated bar.

The restaurant evokes a casual, comfortable elegance, from its warm earth tones to its glassware, morning to night. Executive Chef Mark Payne and his innovative culinary team have created authentic menus that celebrate classic dishes with inventive twists, and feature locally-sourced and fresh ingredients.

Dishes include Steamed Mussels served with French Fries; Leeks Vinaigrette, with Fourme D’Ambert Blue Cheese and Caramelized Walnuts, to name a few of the appetizers. The Fruits de Mer is a dramatic Tower of Fresh Seafood and Shellfish. Salads include: a fresh Ahi Tuna Confit Salade Nicoise; Green Asparagus with Burrata Cheese, Spring Peas and Basil; and Maine Lobster Salad. Sandwiches stand on their own, with such specialties as Croque Madame and Char Grilled Wagyu Burger.

Among other dishes showcased are: Crispy Boneless Half Chicken with Fingerling Potatoes; Flat Iron Steak Frite; Mediterranean Roasted Sea Bass; Trofie Pasta with Clams, Parsley, Lemon, Chili and Broccoli Rabe; and Pizzettas. There will be “Plats de Jour” every day of the week. “Deca” dent desserts, created by Pastry Chef Eric Esrella, include Lemon Tarte with Sable Crust and Fresh Raspberries; Pistachio Ice Cream Profiteroles with Warm Chocolate Sauce; and much more.

The wine list offers over 40 wines (50% of the wine list) served by the glass. Across and behind the fountain, the chic and engaging deca bar area is furnished with sophistication and comfort in mind, with stylized wing back leather chairs surrounding the bar and cocktail tables and upholstered ottomans, all resting on handmade area rugs. Mini Kobe Beef Sliders; Crispy Calamari; Crab Gratin; and Artisan Cheese, served with Preserved Walnuts and Crispy Fruit Bread, are tasty bar menu bites.

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