I started a new project in Chicago this week. It’s actually a pretty decent commute, with a direct flight in Monday morning and back on Thursday evening. Both the office and the hotel are located in downtown Chicago, so I can walk to tons of shopping and restaurants – getting that “living in the city” feel that I’ve always wanted to try. I’m working with four guys I’ve worked with before… three of which were on the project where I decorated the project room with a Luau theme over the weekend to try to cheer everyone up, brought in an MC Hammer doll during go-live so that when we were stuck, we could ask “what would Hammer do?”, bought one of the guys a Snuggie as a going away gift, etc, etc. So… I’m expecting some fun times in the next year as well.
My friend, the project manager, was also on the project I did in Wisconsin last year… the one where we stayed in this total dive hotel that prompted me to rent an apartment so I’d stop walking into a lobby that smelled like a truck stop each evening? Yeah, that one. When he moved from that project over to this one, he was teasing me about staying in a much nicer hotel. Haha… go ahead, rub it in, whatever. Of course, I’m picturing basically any hotel as being nicer than that BW in Waupaca anyway, so no big deal… until I arrived at our Chicago hotel last night.
This place is posh posh posh with a capital POSH. I mean, it’s in-freaking-credible! I was all star-struck when we pulled in past a Bentley and a Rolls… as I was settling up with the cab driver, two gorgeous girls swooped down on my luggage to be delivered to my room while I checked in. I got out of the cab and one girl smiles like an angel and says “welcome, Mrs. X”. I did a double-take and said “whoa – how’d you know my name?”. She pointed to my bags and said that she read the luggage tag. Laughing, I replied “oh, cool! I was afraid the label in my underwear was sticking out”. Bahaha! [side note: I do not really label my underwear, smarty-pants].
The girl who delivered my luggage a few minutes later offered to show me around the room (yes, it’s that big and has some high-tech features that require some explaining). So we get to the bathroom, where she smiles and says “this is my favorite part” and then clicks a button on a remote… presto! There’s a TV in my bathroom mirror! A TV IN MY BATHROOM MIRROR!!! I was being a total goof, so I asked her to do it again… and again… until she finally handed me the remote and moved on to show me my valet closets and my city-light view.
After getting everything unpacked, I realized I was starving. I didn’t really feel like getting out anywhere for dinner, so I just ate at the hotel bar… which I was totally under-dressed for by not wearing a mini-dress and stilettos, mind you. The menu was kinda fru-fru, but I ordered their house burger – not really expecting a whole lot out of hotel food. OMG – that was the best burger (aside from the ones my husband grills at home) that I’ve ever had! And they had a pretty extensive beer selection, so I was able to have a rare treat of an ice cold Allagash White. Yum!
The fitness area is actually a spa/healthclub… which includes a gorgeous mosaic tiled lap-pool, sauna, whirlpool, brand-spanking-new exercise equipment, and the same attentive staff to bring me a chilled bottle of water when I’m huffing and puffing on the treadmill (like I was this morning). The spa services are pretty expensive, but I just might have to splurge.