When the Waldorf Astoria took over the swank Elysian Hotel in 2012, it preserved the sumptuous room decor, the 14,000-square-foot spa, and the Greek Classicism–meets–French 1920s aesthetic. Located on the first 27 floors of a 60-story luxury condominium high-rise amid Chicago’s toniest shopping district, the Waldorf Astoria Chicago feels surprisingly calm and intimate thanks to French-born architect Lucien Lagrange’s creation of a motor court entryway and a lobby reminiscent of an 18th-century Paris mansion (although the heated cobblestone porte-cochere means winter guests never step out of their Bentleys or taxis into snow). Guestrooms are some of the largest in Chicago, with amenities like TV screens embedded in mirrors that face deep soaking tubs, and gas fireplaces. Apart from street noise filtering up to rooms on the lower floors, the atmosphere is serene, and the service courteous and ultra-efficient even with a no-tipping policy. In 2017, acclaimed chef Michael Mina made his Chicago debut at the Waldorf, opening not one, but two, restaurants. Margaux Brasserie offers elevated French cuisine combined with locally sourced ingredients and Petit Margaux is a French patisserie on the lobby level.