- Room 55
- Jam out on some vintage stereo equipment or raid the mini-fridge
- Original art and natural light grace the sleep alcove
- Relax in the claw-foot tub
- Take a nap ... or do some work?
- A toilet inside the shower? Kinda genius.
- Get welcomed by the wolf
- Original photography above your work station
- A clever way to hold additional toilet paper
- Terrariums hang in many of the rooms, adding a bit of nature
- Kitsch-out with your own vibrant poster collection
- You heard 'em ... hipsters only!
- an extra-large shower begs an intimate party
The "Sleep" part of Logan Square's one-star Michelin restaurant Longman & Eagle's slogan "Eat Sleep Whiskey" is nearly ready to see the light of day. The six rooms upstairs, scheduled to open around Dec. 15, will welcome tourists and locals alike. But when you ask for your room, you'll have to keep a few things in mind: the biggest one is Room 55, the smallest is Room 13 and there is no "one" or "six."
Confused? Co-owner Peter Toalson (Empty Bottle) insists there is no real reason behind the off-kilter numbering system, except that this isn't meant to be the "usual" hotel experience. And, if he and co-partner/designer Robert McAdams (who also did woodwork for The Violet Hour and The Publican) are right, guests at L&E will be a part of something much greater than the sum of its parts.
For anyone who's seen the floor-to-ceiling columns and high-backed chairs at The Publican, McAdams' touch is clear from the second you start up the back stairs, with rich wood—much of it reclaimed—a part of, beside or under nearly every surface. It's a look, alongside the rotating artwork, vintage tape decks and whiskey fridges (at last!) that Toalson says you won't get in most of the city's posh downtown digs. "We were thinking about more than threadcount when we designed these rooms," Toalson said.
In addition to these artisanal flairs, the rooms include creature comforts that elevate them beyond the boutique, private European hostel feel you get when first walk in. Desks feature discreet lights and networking for doing business while your significant other sleeps. Free Wi-Fi runs throughout the Inn. And, for entertainment, we discovered new Apple TVs hidden behind the wall-mounted flat-screens so guests can play movies from their iPhones, connect to Netflix or stream music and movies from the restaurant's own library.
Each room also naturally has its own shower and toilet—and, in Room 55, a freestanding tub—but Toalson warns they aren't for everybody. Encased in clear glass—in one instance actually facing the bed—they mean that these rooms are appropriate for singles and close couples, but you'll probably want to book a separate one for your brother or buddies in from out of town. "Last thing we want to hear is 'oh man, I just saw that guy naked'," Toalson said.
Though the inn won't have a traditional concierge, the restaurant's bartenders, hosts and other staff will serve as local guides. "And we hope people can go downstairs, grab a drink at the bar and ask the people next to them," he added.
Coinciding with the guestrooms' opening, the restaurant downstairs will begin serving breakfast at 7 a.m. to accommodate guests and the public with coffee, pastries, and maybe a little hair of the dog to fight their hangovers or give them the energy they need to hop on the Blue Line across the street and explore the city.
The largest room will run $225/night, but prices go as low as $75 for a very comfortably sized single. That fee includes what we found to be the most enticing of amenities: two free drink tokens redeemable downstairs, which seemed a heck of a lot more generous than the usual mint on your pillow. Chef Jared Wentworth's menu will be available in every room, with $5 tacked on for room service if guests choose not to dine downstairs. And, given how packed the restaurant can be on any given night of the week, that $5 is pittance for what amounts to buying yourself an instant reservation.
Some of the other details that stand out include:
· A six-foot wolf hide guards the main entrance
· Guests are greeted with the sign: "Help Wanted, No Hippies"
· The wallpaper in one room is recycled from local concert flyers
· No word on threadcount, but local chambray sheets line the organic soy foam mattress in every room
· Terrariums hang in the rooms, adding a natural flair
· Original indie art keeps with the neighborhood's edgy vibe
· Free filtered, bottled tap water is available in each room