An Unexpected Night at the Hilton O'Hare

Hilton O'Hare (image courtesy; Hilton)

Despite the convenience of the Hilton at O'Hare, this was my first time inside the hotel. As a regular with Hyatt, all of my stays near O'Hare have been at the local Hyatt Regency, a modern property that I rank in my top 10 list of Hyatt properties in the United States..

Coming from Terminal 3, there are two ways to get to the Hilton. The easiest is to walk outside of baggage claim, cross the street, and enter the hotel through the doors near the bus/shuttle center. The harder way is to take the elevator down from baggage claim, walk to the bus/shuttle center, and then take another walkway to the Hilton. This is a much longer walk and when you have luggage, and a foot injury, ends up taking about 15 minutes. For reasons unknown to me, we took the longer route.

Hilton O'Hare Walkway
Hilton O'Hare Underground Entrance

Inside, the lobby looked like what I would imagine most Hilton properties in the late 1990s looked like. With lots of gold trim, light colored woods and an odd carpet style, it sure looked like the property hadn't been renovated in many years.

Hilton O'Hare Lobby (image courtesy;

Thanks to the limitless promotions that Hilton runs with various US airlines, I had secured Hilton Gold for another year, allowing me to use the priority check-in. With most, if not all, of the passengers from the Beijing flight being issued vouchers for the Hilton, the lines were long and grew longer as an entire 777 worth of passengers filled the lobby. Within five minutes, I was checked in and on the way to my room.

Hilton O'Hare

Tired from a long day of traveling, I was frustrated when my keycard would not open the door. Knowing that the lines downstairs were going to be incredibly long, I spent about five minutes trying to open the door. It opened for me on the 15th try.

The room was nothing special, but for being free and next to the airport, I was not one to complain.

Hilton O'Hare Guestroom
Hilton O'Hare Guestroom

It was pushing 9:15pm when we got into our rooms, and having not eaten since lunch time, we were starving. With over $100 in American Airlines food vouchers in hand, we met in the lobby and decided to eat at the Gaslight Club. The hotel also offers Andiamo, offering a variety of Italian dishes.

img_2472-impGaslight Club - one of three restaurants on-site

Inside, we were welcomed by one of the 'Gaslight Girls' and offered our choice of tables. Despite the late hour, the restaurant was quite busy.

Within minutes, our waitress came over to explain the menu and take our orders. We showed her the meal vouchers provided by American and were told they would cover everything on the menu...except for alcohol.

The prices were quite high, though with $174 in meal vouchers, I had no problem ordering a steak. My two travel companions also ordered steaks and an appetizer, figuring it would allow us to use up as much of the vouchers as possible. About twenty minutes later, our meals were delivered.

img_2475-impDinner at the Gaslight Club

Though I wouldn't say the steak was one of the best I've had, it was pretty damn good on an empty stomach. We passed on dessert and left with full stomachs, having spent over $100 in vouchers (and cash to offer a nice tip to our Gaslight Girl).

The rescheduled flight to Beijing had an 0930 departure time, so I did not get to explore the rest of the property. Sleep seemed like the #1 priority after such a long day. My only hope was that I would make it to Beijing the following day- as it stood, I would only have one evening in China before flying back to Chicago.

For a look at the fitness center, be sure to check out Rohan's report.

Hotel Info:

Hilton O'Hare

HHonors Category 5: 30,000 to 40,000 points required for one free night

Trip Reports:

An Attempt at American Airlines Flagship First Class - Chicago to Beijing

An Unexpected Night at the Hilton O'Hare


I'll be eternally grateful to the Hilton O'Hare because they bailed my wife and I out of a mess one time. We were both flying back from India on different flights. I made it home, but her flight from ORD to DFW was canceled because of weather. Of course, it was already 11 P.M. - and we both realized that she had accidentally put her pocketbook in my carry-on before we left India. Thankfully, I called them up, and the front desk clerk was kind enough to let me book a room for her with my credit card, even though neither one of us could physically present the card.

Not the most fantastic Hilton in the world, but I've been a fanboy since then...

Truffles July 24, 2015 at 04:12 am

I used to love this hotel, but it now trades solely on its location. Last time I checked in at 4pm my room was not ready and I had to wait half an hour. No problem I said, I'll get a coffee and wait. The coffee place was shut so I went to the bar. Still fairly empty at that time of day, but they said they had a minimum spend of, I think, 20 dollars. So in a four star hotel, it was essentially impossible to get a simple coffee mid-afternoon.