A Parisian Escape in Chicago: The Sofitel Magnificent Mile

Adina Keeling Avatar
Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile Reviews - Enjoying my French 75 in Le Bar.
Enjoying my French 75 in Le Bar at Sofitel Chicago. Photo credit: Adina Keeling

An angular building cuts through Chestnut Street in downtown Chicago. With its striking exterior and chic, French-inspired interior, this 32-story building is one of the Windy City’s most elegant five-star hotels.

Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile is home to 415 luxury rooms, one of which I stayed in for two nights last month. From the attentive bellmen to the in-room Nespresso machines and touch-control room shades, this hotel is all about going above and beyond. Even the fitness center, which is already impressively equipped, offers a selection of green and red apples, and the bathrooms have both a bathtub and a shower.

Now, let’s talk about my favorite part: the hotel beds. I find most hotel beds to be more or less the same—soft with plush, white bedding—but my bed at Sofitel Chicago was different. Maybe it was the heavenly mattress topper, but in that bed, I could not tell where the blanket, pillow, or mattress ended or started. It all just felt like one big cloud that called my name every time I stepped into the room.

Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile Reviews - The fitness center’s hydration station, complete with a bowl of apples.
The fitness center’s hydration station is complete with a bowl of apples. Photo credit: Adina Keeling

But I didn’t come to Chicago to sleep. Luckily, the hotel’s great location made it easy to pull myself away from the beds and into this city’s vibrant downtown area where there are so many fun things to do. Located in the Gold Coast neighborhood, Sofitel Chicago is just steps from Michigan Ave, Chicago Water Tower Place, and the John Hancock building.

The hotel is also quite a popular wedding venue. In fact, on the weekend that I stayed at Sofitel, four different weddings were hosted here.

Here’s everything you need to know about Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile.

Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile Reviews - A photo of La Terrace, taken from one of the upstairs foyers.
A photo of La Terrace, taken from one of the upstairs foyers. Photo credit: Adina Keeling


At 20 E Chestnut St, Sofitel Chicago is just one block away from Michigan Avenue. The Magnificent Mile is a vibrant shopping district home to high-end stores, restaurants, and entertainment options. The John Hancock building, with its 360 observation deck and popular 95th-floor bar, is just a 5-minute walk from the hotel and Oak Street Beach is also within walking distance, just 10 minutes north.

You can reach Navy Pier in about 28 minutes, and the Chicago River in under 20. Millennium Park and the Art Institute are a 30-minute walk away. Save some time by catching the red line at the Chicago CTA stop, a four-minute walk from the hotel.

Read More: Prefer to stay near the water? Check out the Sable at Navy Pier


Service at Sofitel Chicago was, well, French. From the moment I stepped out of my Uber in front of the hotel, bellboys were rushing to help me carry my bags (thank god for that, because I overpacked).

Throughout my stay, the hotel staff were extremely friendly and more than happy to help me with any requests or needs. Every time I exited the hotel, there was someone holding the door open for me.

Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile Reviews - Our room at Sofitel Chicago.
Our room at Sofitel Chicago. Photo credit: Adina Keeling


Sofitel Chicago is French-inspired, and the rooms certainly appear that way. With a chic, grey-black color palette, rooms are decorated with stylish art and unique light fixtures. Touch-control shades cover wall-to-ceiling windows, which boast stunning city views.

All guest rooms come with a comfortable desk, a large flatscreen and a mini fridge. The marble bathrooms are stocked with Balmain toiletries, and there is both a bathtub and shower in each room. This was a great touch, and I felt like a queen pulling on my plush bathrobe after a relaxing soak.

Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile Reviews - Our guest room bathroom, with both a shower and a bathtub.
Our guest room bathroom, with both a shower and a bathtub. Photo credit: Adina Keeling

In addition to guest rooms, Sofitel offers superior rooms, luxury rooms, and a variety of suites, which take luxury to the next level. The hotel’s presidential suite was designed to resemble an urban contemporary penthouse and a large tub in the master bedroom sits beside a wall of windows.


Sofitel Chicago has several options for on-site dining. There’s a chic French restaurant called CDA, an outdoor dining area called La Terrace, and an intimate indoor bar and restaurant called Le Bar. My friend and I originally made a reservation for La Terrace, but the weather wasn’t cooperating, so the servers moved us inside to Le Bar.

Like the rest of the hotel, this bar is stylish with a lively atmosphere. We each ordered two drinks, margaritas first and then a French 75 and an espresso martini. The drinks were not particularly strong, but very tasty.

Dishes at Le Bar. Photo credit: Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile

We shared two appetizers (lobster beignets and shrimp cocktail), two entrees (the Atlantic salmon and steak frites), and two desserts (the creme brulee and sticky date pudding). Curiously, the salmon was served on a bed of bean puree, a combination I’d never tried but was actually really delicious. The date pudding was also exceptional. If you had told me it was chocolate, I would have believed you.

I was expecting the portions to be small, as they often are at fancy restaurants, but was pleasantly surprised by the sizes. And we ate every single bite if that says anything about the quality of the food.

If you’d rather dine in the comfort of your room, there’s always room service.

Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile Reviews - The fitness center.
The fitness center. Photo credit: Adina Keeling

Fitness Center

I’ve never seen a hotel fitness center like the one at Sofitel. This facility had everything you could possibly need, and more, including trendy new exercise machines I didn’t even know existed. Even my travel companion (a gym rat) was puzzled by some of the equipment.

In addition to treadmills, ellipticals, bikes, and weight machines, there was a Batak light board, a Swedish ladder bar, an area with exercise balls, and other machines that I couldn’t even begin to describe.

Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile Reviews - Another view of the hotel lobby.
Another view of the hotel lobby. Photo credit: Adina Keeling

My favorite part of the gym was a water/snack station, equipped with towels, water, and a selection of green and red apples.

Sofitel Chicago Magnificent Mile Reviews - Our wooden key cards.
Our wooden key cards. Photo credit: Adina Keeling

Other Amenities at Sofitel Chicago

Sofitel Chicago has hosted hundreds of weddings since its opening, a fact that doesn’t surprise me at all, given that four weddings took place there during my stay. To help couples plan, the hotel has a team of on-site specialists who will help with table settings, finding the best DJ, coordinating the menu, and more.

Sofitel Chicago also helps arrange rehearsal dinners, honeymoons, and all other nuptial celebrations. Event spaces include 10 meeting rooms, several spacious foyers, and a grand ballroom that looks out onto the John Hancock building.

While there is no separate spa, the hotel does offer in-room spa services, including massages, facials, and manicures.

The luxury hotel offers valet parking and limousine services. There is a 24-hour business center as well as fast, free wifi. The hotel is also pet-friendly, so feel free to bring your furry friends.

Adina Keeling is a freelance travel writer from San Diego, CA. She worked in local news for a year until her wanderlust drew her to Costa Rica, where she is now based while freelancing and traveling the world. She has lived in three different countries and traveled to 27. An avid solo traveler, Adina wants to empower other women to safely travel alone.
Read full bio

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *