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Answered 2015-07-17 17:32:09

The Morrison Hotel, the "Hotel of Perfect Service," was a premier Chicago hotel by the 1920s. Located in the center of the city at the corner of Clark and Madison, it boasted 3,400 rooms, featured two lobbies, the Cameo Ballroom, and two large restaurants, the Boston Oyster House and the Terrace Garden Wonder Restaurant.

The Tower addition to the hotel, completed in 1927 gave the hotel the distinction as the World's Tallest Hotel and offered a spectacular view of the city and Lake Michigan. In 1965 the hotel was razed to make space for the First National Bank Building (known today as Bank One Plaza).

As a really big hotel, the Morrison made sure it was on a lot of postcards, which turn up pretty regularly on eBay. By the 1960s, they had a revolving restaurant on top of the building, which went -- when the hotel was demolished -- to the new Holiday Inn on Lake Shore Drive. That building is now the W Hotel, I think, and the room is still there, although I don't know if it still revolves.

My family had a sign shop serving the convention industry in the Morrison Hotel in the 1950s. I was just a kid then, but I remember the revolving restaurant on the top of the tower called the Carousel. I ate there many times. My dad married my stepmom in 1962 and we had the reception in the Cotillion Room which I think was on the second floor. There was also a drug store with a lunch counter in the lobby, a coffee shop right off of the lobby, and a barber shop at the front Madison Street entrance to the hotel.

The headquarters of the Democratic Party of Cook County was on the fifth floor and Mayor Daly (Senior) had an office there. There were also some colorful figures such as bookies and members of the Chicago outfit who hung out there.

I have a lot of good memories of the Morrison and wish hotels like that existed today.

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