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Carbide and Carbon Building, Chicago

4.7
#254 of 604 in Things to do in Chicago
Architectural Building · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
The Carbide & Carbon Building is a 37-story, 503ft landmark Art Deco skyscraper built in 1929, located on Michigan Avenue in Chicago. It was converted to a hotel in 2004.
The building was designed by the Burnham Brothers as the regional office of Union Carbide and Carbon Co.. It was designated a Chicago Landmark on May 9, 1996. It was transformed into the Hard Rock Hotel Chicago from 2001-2004. The $106 million conversion was directed by Lucien Lagrange & Associates. The hotel began hosting guests on January 1, 2004 and after its bar and restaurant were completed, it celebrated its grand opening on April 21, 2004, The current hotel capacity is 383 guest rooms and 13 suites. The Hard Rock Hotel is set to close on December 1, 2017, and will reopen in 2018 as the St. Jane Chicago Hotel, named for Nobel Peace Prize-winner and noted Chicagoan, social activist Jane Addams.
The exterior of the building is covered in polished black granite, and the tower is dark green terra cotta with gold leaf accents. The use of stylized representations of leaves on the building's exterior was an intentional reference by the architects to the prehistoric origins of subterranean carbon deposits in the decay of ancient plants. The ground floor was specifically designed to display the products of Union Carbide and Carbon's subsidiaries. The lobby features black Belgian Marble and Art Deco bronzework trim. The exterior base is black granite with black marble and bronze trim, whereas the central shaft is clad in dark green and gold terra cotta and the greenish cap (which looks from a distance like malachite but is not) is trimmed in gold leaf.
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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
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  • Yet another iconic building, art-deco style and reminded me of a mini Empire state building in the style and shape, worth finding and staring up at it.  more »
  • The Carbide & Carbon Building is a 37-story Art Deco skyscraper located on Michigan Avenue. Its' unique look can be recognize by the gold leaf decorations on it. It was built in 1929 as the regional.....  more »

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