Venue of the Month: Virgin Hotel


Chicago Planner Magazine’s Venue of the Month is the Virgin Hotel Chicago, located in the heart of downtown Chicago.  With incredible Chicago views, the first of the Virgin Hotel chain also boasts its rooftop, Cerise, which is sure to be the place to go this summer.

Virgin Hotel's
Virgin Hotel’s “Chamber” Rooms

Richard Branson’s genius team not only chose Chicago as its first location for the hotel series, but they did so by renovating the Old Dearborn Bank Building, located at 203 N Wabash Ave.  It’s rooms, which have been dubbed “Chambers” are a nod to the minimalist trend.  With all the necessary modern day amenities including free, high speed Wi-Fi and lots of conveniently located plugs, the rooms emphasize functionality over unnecessary space.

This classic style SMEG refrigerator made for the Chambers of the Virgin Hotel.
This classic style SMEG refrigerator made for the Chambers of the Virgin Hotel.

Sliding doors separate the sleeping area from the main entrance, meaning you can receive room service without having to be disturbed.  We also have to high-five the designers for making accommodations for women, who make up an increasing percentage of the  $1.1 Trillion companies are spending on business travel annually.  Female friendly set ups include vanities and well designed closet space.  In addition, the hotel also prices their amenities like bottled water and snacks at competitive prices, similar to the convenience store around the corner, so you don’t have to be afraid to touch those really awesome refrigerators.


VirginHotel-SaladMenus vary from local Chicago favorites to European style breakfasts and Asian inspired small bites.  Ala carte & customizable menus are available.


The Executive Chef will gladly prepare menus to accommodate Vegans, Vegetarians and any guest with allergies.  Outside vendors are allowed only for Kosher items or very specific guest needs.

The Virgin Hotel makes their in-house accommodations friendly to outsiders.  So you don’t need to be a guest to enjoy any of their food and drink establishments.


Inside the street level restaurant, Miss Ricky’s

Miss Ricky’s is designed to be a modern American diner.  Open to the public for breakfast, lunch and late bites this location doesn’t require you to rent a room to enjoy.


The Commons Club

Normally at a hotel, you’d expect a regular check in area.  Not the case here. The Commons Social Club serves as a lobby space, where they even have a Social Hour with cocktails hosted nightly for guests of the hotel. Brunch is also available on Saturdays & Sundays.


Summertime Rooftop.  Need we say more?  Modern decor, classic cocktails and an exciting ambiance make this your summer hang out spot.
VirginHotelRooftop-BarCerise Rooftop 2


VirginHotel-TwoZeroThreeShare pastries, toasts and philosophy in this fast-paced “see and be seen” newsstand inspired coffee bar. At night, the bar transitions into a wine social serving a light menu of cheeses and charcuterie. Whether you need something quick, someplace to watch the world go by, or someone to clink with, you’ll never be short on an excuse to stop by.


The Manor, Virgin Hotels Chicago’s largest meeting space, is a perfect blend of historic and modern design.  The views are truly Chicago with the “L” visible from the southwest corners of the room. Natural light and a blank canvas allows us to transform the room to any event….large or small.

VH_Manor_rounds_social_windowsFor weddings they suggest 70-80 people for a traditional dinner and up to 120 people for a heavy reception.  They also have flexible space between their various food and beverage outlets so you m ay pair other venues for such events as weddings.  The 3rd floor can be used interchangeably for smaller to groups up to 120 people.  Custom designed furniture pieces allow for transitional setups from theater style, to schoolroom to full rounds.


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