One of the perks of my job is traveling the country, and I get so excited when one of my trips takes me back to the city I was born in: St. Louis, Missouri. Yes, it's the Midwest, but that's what makes it so great. There's so much to do and see...and in my case, EAT! That green stuff I'm chowing down on is a bowl full of charred shishito peppers. Don't ever underestimate St. Louis restaurants, because many match up to the quality you'll find in cities like New York and San Francisco.
For this particular trip, I chose to stay at The Chase Park Plaza Hotel, which is located in the Central West End of St. Louis. My stay at "The Chase", as locals call it, was fantastic! Hence, the need to review it for any of you who are headed to STL and searching for a hotel in the area.
The Chase is actually a historic part of St. Louis dating back into the 1920's. Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis, Jr., Henry Kissinger and President Jimmy Carter all stayed here. When you check in, you walk into a grand lobby with beautiful wood accents and a huge chandelier. The hotel is made to accommodate any kind of traveler. So, you'll see a mix of people from those traveling on business to leisure. As I entered my suite on the 9th floor, this beautiful tray of healthy gifts and champagne was waiting for me!
I couldn't be more thankful to The Chase Park Plaza Hotel for the caliber of service I received. Their attention to detail and providing the best possible experience for you is really on point! Whether you're a local (or former local like me) or from out of town, I know you'll be impressed. Here's a pic of the king-size bed in my room, which I melted into every night.
My suite had multiple windows, a few of which overlooked the hotel pool. In my opinion, this is one of the most luxurious features of the hotel because of how nicely it's maintained and the architectural design surrounding it. There are not many hotels in St. Louis with pools, and this one is private so it's rarely overcrowded.
I was down by the pool within minutes of settling into my room! I could not wait a second longer!
The vibe at The Chase is classic and upscale. Every morning, towels are placed on all the lounge chairs, cucumber-lemon water is prepared and set out, and a complimentary breakfast is available within the executive lounge. I can tell you this because I woke up at 6am every morning to photograph the property and watched the staff set everything up.
The columns and archways near the pool remind me of exquisite gardens I've visited in Europe, and you almost forget you're in the Midwest. Play the video below to see exactly how I experienced this serene moment!
The pool itself is far from ordinary, too, with a gorgeous sculpture and fountain that you can swim or hang out under.
Off to the side of the pool area is a patio restaurant & bar (that extends indoors) called Chase Club where I put down my camera for a few minutes to sip on some cocktails. I recommend ordering a magarita and the Hawaiian poké appetizer. They're delish!
My first night at The Chase, I spent watching The Infiltrator at the movie theater located within the hotel. It's incredible because the theater is located steps from the main lobby. They even serve alcoholic drinks and coffee, along with popcorn and all the typical sweets. It really is an unexpected treat for the tired traveler who just wants to recline and be entertained!
The next morning, after having the sleep of my life in the softest bed EVER, I ordered room service. I kept it healthy though, with the exception of that mini croissant you see on my plate. I'm not perfect, ever since falling off the wagon of my gluten-free lifestyle, I indulge in a croissant here and there. What I'm also not showing you is the side of crispy bacon to the left. I had to maintain some integrity, haha!
The Chase is not one of those hotels that rips you off or overcharges you. All the portions are plentiful, and I struggled to finish anything I ordered. That's definitely the Midwestern way, but I mention it because throughout my travels I've stayed at a lot of hotels that overcharge you for the smallest servings or the most insignificant things. It drives me crazy, and this was one of the few times I didn't feel that way at all.
Even when I went down to the Aveda Salon & Spa on the lobby level, they were so accommodating! I was nearly 20 minutes late for my "stress fix" massage appointment after losing track of time and they still gave me my full hour! Folks, this doesn't happen on the East Coast! If you're late, you're screwed. Every minute of my relaxing and luxurious spa experience was pure nirvana. And I'm a tough critic considering I'm basically a huge walking knot from all the workouts I do.
My last night at The Chase was spent dining at The Preston, a fairly new restaurant addition to the hotel that is being met with rave reviews, including mine! This is where I discovered the shishito peppers and fell in love :) but it's also where I tried the most exquisite shareable entrés and desserts. The Charred Octopus and Seared Irish Salmon plates are a MUST. Nothing on the dinner menu is over $20, which is nice.
The concept at The Preston is that you order several dishes to try and share among your group. But by dessert, I definitely recommend you look out for yourself and selfishly order the Milk Chocolate Panna Cotta which arrives smoking to your table. Don't ask me how...all I know is that is smokes up and then reveals itself as one of the best (edible) indulgences of your life! See for yourself below!
So that was a little window into my luxury St. Louis vacation. #ChaseIsThePlace! It's one of those hotels where everthing is built into 1 place but there's still so much to explore in St. Louis outside of the hotel. Stay tuned for my BEST OF STL blog coming soon! Feel free to leave any comments and questions below.
For Chase Park Plaza Hotel reservations, call 314-633-3000.