At some point or another, hostels are a necessary part of the travel experience. But, if this swanky new set-up is anything to go by, creaky beds and seriously questionable bathrooms are on the way out.
Located on the cusp of Chicago’s Wicker Park and Bucktown areas, The Hollander looks like something straight out of a Scandi homewares catalogue, but with beds available for a little as $50 ($40USD) per night. There are 20 rooms in total, and while the majority are shared, a small number of private rooms are available for a higher fee.
If you do decide to go all-in with the group lodgings (which max out at six beds), the company will hook you up with your new roomies on social media before you arrive, so at least you know what you’re getting into.
The Hollander occupies an historic former furniture storage depot called the Hollander Fireproof Warehouse, which was built in 1905, with interiors designed by French studios Cigue and Delordinaire. It’s owned and operated by Mexico’s Grupo Habita, the same folk responsible for the Art Deco dream that is The Robey, which is just around the corner.
On the ground floor is an oh-so-cool coffee shop called Metric Coffee Co., while bikes can be rented from Banker Supply Co. next door.
The neighbourhood is one of Chicago’s most creatively inclined, with galleries, trendy boutiques, a slew of cool cafes and bars, and the 606 – a former railway converted into green space like New York’s Highline – are all within walking distance.
It’s more expensive than your average hostel, but worth the investment if you’re seeking a more grown-up experience, we say.
(All photos: The Hollander)[qantas_widget code=ORD]Check out Qantas flights to Chicago.[/qantas_widget]
Kristen Amiet is a previous AWOL editor, bona fide travel addict, sometimes whisky drinker and full-time breakfast food enthusiast.