Chicago’s architectural history has an inherent effect on the cubist-influenced design of the 221-room Godfrey Hotel Chicago, which opens in February. Designed by locally based Valerio Dewalt Train, the industrial façade of the building mimics the way geometrical blocks stack together in a Tetris video game. This layering of the building matched by floor-to-ceiling windows allows for some of the best—and newest—views of Chicago.
The hotel’s fourth floor boasts the largest northern lookout point to the entire southern Chicago skyline. Convenient for groups, the fourth floor also has 15,000 sf of indoor and outdoor meeting space. About 10,000 sf of the space is at I|O Urban Roofscape, the largest 12-month outdoor lounge and bar space in Chicago. It will transition from corporate daytime meetings to after-work happy hours to evening cocktails. The space is extremely visual, featuring a two-level fire pit, shimmering water features, a video wall and a retractable roof.
“I|O is a social hub,” says Sandi Robinson, senior events manager at the property. “People will want to come after work for outdoor cocktails, and the way that it’s laid out on the fourth floor, where the meeting space is, we can do teambuilding activities there.”
Despite I|O’s highlights, Robinson predicts that the Truss meeting space will be the most popular for groups. Named after the steel truss design of the building’s unique in-out shape, the 1,480-sf space has two large monitors and floor-to-ceiling windows. It’s the perfect space for an 80-person dinner, notes Robinson, with amazing views of the loop area.
The hotel’s crisp white interiors, designed by Gettys Design Group Chicago, match the sharp look of the exterior, with a recessed ceiling, spherical lighting fixture and structural seating. The technological elements in the lobby and fourth-floor areas will draw attention from on-the-go attendees. Custom-designed digital touch-screen concierge boards are available to help guests retrieve the latest information on everything from the weather to flights to local events. That information can be accessed from the guest’s smart phone to take with them as they explore nearby neighborhoods.
The property is located on LaSalle Street in the heart of the River North Gallery Art scene and just about five blocks from Michigan Avenue. “The hotel has direct access to the loop, so we have the best of both worlds,” says Robinson. “It’s good for the business traveler and social traveler as well.”