Whilst I was in Chicago I had the pleasure of staying at Chicago Getaway Hostel organised through Hostelworld. This is one of Hostelworld’s consistently top rated hostels in Chicago, and it’s pretty obvious why.
From my experience traveling around the USA, the country doesn’t have that many hostels, and the standards aren’t on the same level as the hostels in Europe.
However, this boutique hostel in Chicago is one of the best I’ve ever stayed in! In the world!
Firstly, the Chicago Getaway Hostel is in a great location near Lincoln Park that feels very safe. It’s a leafy neighbourhood with lots of university students. A short walk from the hostel you’ll find a bunch of really good restaurants serving all kinds of food including Thai, Italian, Sushi, Hawaiian and Mediterranean. Then there’s also Lincoln Park Zoo and North Avenue Beach. Yes there’s a beach in Chicago where you can sunbathe and swim in the waters of Lake Michigan!
The closest public transport stop to the Getaway Hostel in Chicago is Fullerton, where you can catch the CTA trains into the city. A standard one-way fare is $2.25 and it takes no time at all to get to all the sights.
Now for the hostel:
The FREE Breakfast
I’ve eaten a lot of free hostel breakfasts, and the breakfast at Chicago Getaway Hostel was definitely one of the better ones I’ve had. Often the breakfasts are pretty standard- toast, butter, cereal, maybe a cup of coffee…but this one exceeded my expectations of a hostel breakfast.
You get a choice of different flavoured bagels, cream cheese and spreads, bananas, oranges, oatmeal, cereal, tea and coffee.
It was a great way to start the day on a healthy note.There is a large kitchen where you can cook your own food, and there’s also a vending machine area at the back of the kitchen with snacks and drinks for purchase.
I stayed in one of the private rooms at Getaway Hostel, but there are also dorm rooms available. As you can see from the photo, my room was pretty swish. It had a modern design with a comfy bed, towels, air conditioning, a desk with lamp, a brilliant en-suite bathroom that looked like new, and an area to hang my clothes. Best of all it had a full-length mirror so I could actually see what I was wearing!
The Common Areas
The common area was also fantastic and really modern. Facilities included FREE Wi-Fi, computer workstations, FREE printing, FREE guitars, pool and foosball tables, lots of comfy leather seating in the lobby area, a clean kitchen, a TV room and a courtyard with sun loungers.
The Social Scene
The hostel was pretty social, with activities organised every day of the week, and the staff are really friendly. On Thursday nights there is a pub crawl which takes you to some of the bars nearby.
I went to Movies in the Park to watch a FREE movie with a few other people from the hostel, and that was my first outdoor movie experience!
We took blankets and drinks, and walked together to the park where there A League of their Own was showing.
Afterwards we went to The Weiners Circle nearby for hot dogs, which is a famous hot dog stand that even has its own TV show. They hurl insults at you when you order your food!
All in all I had a fantastic stay in Chicago Getaway Hostel, and would most certainly stay there again if I found myself in Chicago! I’ve been to a lot of hostels, and this is one of the best.
Like the sound of it? Book through Hostelworld here.