Accommodations for the Urban Sketchers Symposium can be quite comfortable if you have a friend who’s nice enough to use thousands of accumulated Marriott points. My friend Phil had just enough points to score the Blackstone Hotel, just two blocks from the Goodman Center where the Symposium was centered in downtown Chicago. Thanks Phil!
The historic hotel was built by the Drake brothers, hiring architects Marshall & Fox to design it. It opened in 1910 and at the time it was the tallest building in Chicago. Noteworthy guests have included 12 consecutive presidents from Taft to Carter, Al Capone, and others. The Blackstone has also been used as staging for several notable films, including The Color of Money and The Untouchables.
The sliver of a view we had out our 19th floor room includes Grant Park and Lake Michigan off in the distance.