After my arrival from FRA, I took the shuttle to the Hyatt Regency ORD and arrived at the hotel within a few minutes. The hotel is located in Rosemont and within walking distance of a subway station. It had a modern interior with indoors elevators located in the middle of the lobby. It took some time to check in because this was a holiday weekend and lots of people were staying here. When it was my turn I was helped by a cheerful and nice agent who assigned me a comfortable room in one of the upper floors. Once I entered the room I took a shower and got a restful sleep.
View from my room
The following morning I decided to take advantage of the lunch buffet for USD 18.50 at the hotel's O'H American Grill restaurant located in the lobby. It featured a salad bar along with hot items that included salmon, pulled pork, grilled chicken, side dishes and a dessert bar. The quality was great and freshness of ingredients were optimum. The pulled pork was specially tender and flavorful.
After that satisfying lunch I took the van to the airport. It was rather slow when I arrived at the counter and I used self check kiosk to issue my boarding pass. Saturdays tend to be slow days as a general rule.
I then went to security and there were two ladies posted at the beginning of the line to make sure that passengers were complying with the carry on policy. The process was quick and soon I was on the other side.
I was then that I spotted this retro beauty in Continental's former livery.
Afterwards it was time to head to T2, but first we had to go through the psychedlic tunnel playing Rhapsody in Blue. It is always a highlight to go through this tunnel between UA T1 and T2 whenever one is in ORD.
Last year when I donated some toys for Chase during Christmas time, I received a couple of passes for any UA Club. I then did some research to find out which is the best UA Club in ORD and it turned out that there was a remodeled one opened at the end of 2012 according to this article:
At T2, I took a shuttle to the F concourse and I enjoyed the ride through the ramp.
I found the renovated club in front of gate F4 and checked in with the receptionist. She advised me that the pass I had was good for the whole day at any of the clubs and all I had to do was to show my ID if I wanted to visit another club since the information was already entered into the computer. I thanked her and proceeded to go up the stairs into the club.
First impression was great. The club had a very contemporary style and the warm tones gave a welcoming feel. The interior was designed by San Francisco based IA Interior Architects.
One thing that caught my attention was the clever use of vintage UA pictures paying homage to the airline's past.
The lounge provided nice views of the ramp and there were some great airplane spotting.
I also noticed some wear on the ceiling.
Afterwards I walked all the way back to the C-gates in T1, where my flight departed. I stopped by the UA Club there and the difference between that club and the renovated one was like day and night. I was welcomed by the agent and upon entering the place I saw that it was full of people. It seemed that every single chair was occupied and it just felt like an open room with lounging chairs scattered everywhere. I left and decided to wait in the gate area instead.
At around 30 min. before departure, I positioned myself in the Group 2 line (as an UA Explorer Card member, I have this priority). Boarding was orderly with priority given to wheelchair passengers and families traveling with children.
I took my aisle seat and moments later the passenger occupying the window appeared. Eventually my neighbor showed up and sat next to me. Then at the end of boarding a FA came to our row and asked my neighbor if he wanted to move to an empty seat next to his wife who was sitting towards the front. Initially he misunderstood and said no and everybody around had a laugh. Then the FA said to him you don't have a choice and he joined his wife. I was so glad that I had more space in this version of intra-European J cabin.
The cabin upon boarding.
There was a tall guy sitting behind who asked me not to recline my seat because it would crush his legs. Normally I don't recline it since this doesn't seem to make too much of a difference to me, so this was not a big deal, but technically a passenger is entitled to recline it if he or she feels like doing so. Good luck making that request on his next flight if he encounter a less accommodating person.
A nice surprise was the really nice FA that served me on this flight. She just had a great attitude and was always friendly and smiling. It's very hard to encounter these types of employees nowadays on UA.
I ordered a fruit plate which cost USD 7.99 and contained artisan cheese selections with crackers, fruit spread, grapes and chocolate. I ordered this once from FLL-SFO and it was great. This time the cheese selection was a bit stronger and there was a pungent smell when I opened the lid. Also, instead of a fig spread there was a container of Bonne Maman raspberry preserve. I still enjoyed it but I was surprised that they put a stronger cheese instead of a milder choice.
The flight was uneventful and pretty soon we arrived in SFO.
United Club (Concourse F)
Chicago - ORD
San Francisco - SFO
The renovated UA Club in front of F4 was a nice surprise. It was nicely designed and very pleasant. The staff was polite, but with the exception of the first agent that welcomed me inside, the rest seemed a bit robotic and lacked a certain charm in their interactions.
It was nice to have an empty seat next to me at the last minute and that certainly made a difference in comfort. Having an excellent FA also made a difference.
Flight departed a few minutes late but arrived 17 min. earlier.
Overall a good flight with UA.
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