I got pampered at a moms night out with Residence Inn by Marriott downtown Chicago!

Oh boy, where do I start?! Two weeks ago, I was invited to a “Moms Night Out” with Residence Inn by Marriott downtown Chicago. You could not have signed me up fast enough! A night away at a great hotel with wonderful people, getting spoiled in downtown Chicago, and learning more about travel and Residence Inn!

There was a small group of bloggers (the #RIMoms: Paula from Frosted Fingers, Lisa from Oh Boy, Oh Boy, Oh boy, Maria from A Savings WOW!, and Cindy from Traveling Mom), and two PR reps: Sara and Nina.

First–everyone was amazing. I had never met any of the other bloggers before (except online) and they were all so friendly and sweet. The PR reps were really great–they were personable and fun. It felt like we all knew each other for ages and I had a great time!

Second–Residence Inn and their staff are impressive. By the end of the trip I was like… “Can I work here? Do you have any openings? I want in!” We got to sit in on some behind the scenes stuff and everyone was like one giant family. You can really tell when people love their jobs and it makes all the difference in the world.

Third–let’s get to the fun stuff!

Residence Inn is more than just hotel rooms… it’s a residence. Sure they have their summer vacationers and quick trips, but the majority of people are here on an extended stay, which is longer than 7 days. That means they make this place like your home. They get a lot of business travelers, people displaced from their homes like after a fire, transplant patients from the hospital and the families visiting them, and families with kids.

Perks for you, as a mama? WALLS. Mmm hmmm. If you get a one or two bedroom suite, the bedrooms have WALLS. That means they are closed off from the main area of the hotel room and you can close a door to your sleeping children (or your noisy children, haha).

Residence Inn also offers free breakfast–and not your typical continental with toast and cereal. They had waffle makers and biscuits and gravy. Three nights a week they even have free dinners! Soooo great for families.

I stayed in a studio room (images above) with a complete kitchen (minus an oven–the 1 & 2 bedroom suites have those), pull-out sofa, and walk-in shower. It was gorgeous. OH and they have Paul Mitchell bathroom products 😉 <—the things that excite me!

We all arrived and had introductions while being treated to cheeses, meats, fruit, and wine! Yep, starting the day off right at 1pm, haha. We were introduced the general manager and the assistant general manager (both awesome ladies) and then we were on our way!

First, we went to Chicago Line Cruises for the architectural tour of Chicago. It was actually really interesting–probably because our tour guide was the coolest and she knew her stuff. It was like 100 degrees and we were sitting in direct sunlight–no breeze, no shade. I was drippppppping sweat, but about half way through the cruise I just… gave in to the heat, haha. I realized everyone else was one big sweaty mess too and there was no escaping it!

Then we walked a few blocks to Arbre Nail Spa. Ohhh, it was refreshingly cool in there. We all got a pedi or mani and were treated with (more!) wine–although this breastfeeding mama opted for water. It was really nice to sit and relax and get pampered! We chatted, watched old episodes of Sex & the City on their TVs, and–being the bloggers that we are–we all checked in on our phones, haha.

After that, we got a chance to head back to the hotel to shower before dinner. PHEW! And I had to pump because I was sans baby and you breastfeeding mamas know what that means! I want to thank the PR girls for being soooo so so understanding about my need to pump and making sure I had time to get all of that taken care of!! <3

We went to Quartino for dinner. They have a menu of small-plates so everyone pretty much picked one thing and we passed everything around the table to share. I went with cheese fondue and it was aaamazing, as was everything else! You can see I have no pictures of this part of the trip because I was a little busy eating 😉

Then back to the hotel to check out Sara’s suite and have some ice cream sundaes. Oh my, I can’t remember the last time I had one, but we had it all–homemade Bobtail Ice Cream, bananas, sprinkles, hot fudge, caramel, whipped cream, nuts, and waffle bowls. I’m drooling right now thinking about it. Again… no pictures… I was a little busy! Oh also because at this same time, my mom was texting me like crazy that she was afraid she didn’t have enough pumped milk left for Rebecca. AH! Not possible, I said, I left sooooo much behind for her!!! Turns out my husband missed an entire batch in the freezer so my mom was pretty short on milk. But no worries, she was asleep for the night at that point, and I made it home the next morning just in time 🙂 Ah the dilemmas of a moms night out!

So the next morning, we got to attend the hotel’s daily huddle. Everyone went around the room and said something nice about the person next to them and then they made their announcements. It was just a really nice way to start the day–as a team and as a family. The GM kept everyone updated with hotel projects, which I thought was really cool.

We did some more touring of the hotel and got to see the fitness center, laundry services, and conference room. We had a roundtable type discussion about traveling as a family and it was nice to be able to share ideas and express opinions that may be useful to Residence Inn and their future plans.

AND THEN…………..

…. just about one of the best surprises EVER! The GM and assistant GM arrived with all these cupcakes. OMG yummmm. They’re from a place called Sprinkles and I just can’t believe I’ve never been there before! New customer, right here!

It was a fantastic trip and I can’t thank Residence Inn Chicago and our PR reps, Sara and Nina, enough. It was a wonderful experience, truly a treat to see the hotel’s efforts and hear their stories (did you know it was THIS Residence Inn that created their mission statement? AND it’s a song that is sung to the guests on occasion during breakfast!).

Residence Inn downtown Chicago is absolutely a place I will return to. And just because this commercial ad is so darn cute, check out these penguins:

Find Residence Inn on facebook and twitter! Check out the other #RIMoms blog posts about our trip to see more great pictures!

~disclosure: I received everything above above at no cost, but all opinions are my own!

8 comments to I got pampered at a moms night out with Residence Inn by Marriott downtown Chicago!

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