Karen Giobbia
Park Hyatt Chicago Chef Concierge

I am thrilled to be celebrating 33 years as a concierge with Hyatt and 22 as the Chef Concierge at Park Hyatt Chicago.  I have a true passion for the profession and love creating memories for our guests every day.

What is the most important thing you have learned about travel?

Through the years, I’ve realized just how important and impactful it is for a guest to contact their concierge prior to or upon their arrival. As a member of the International Concierge Association, Les Clefs d’Or, we often work together on a domestic and global level to enhance our guests’ visit and assist with any travel needs and special requests.

What are some of your favorite cultural destinations in Chicago?
Chicago has so much to offer in the world of art and culture. At the concierge desk, our recommendations are tailored to each guests’ individual preferences, however, we have some amazing Chicago institutions close by including the Museum of Contemporary Art and Lookingglass Theatre.  A little further down the Magnificent Mile is another ‘can’t miss’ – the Art Institute of Chicago -- which was recently named the #1 museum in the world!

Whether it is a quick, inexpensive bite or an upscale experience, what are your favorite places to dine for lunch?
We are so lucky to live in a city that has become one of the most sought after culinary destinations in the country.  From our neighborhood casual Italian cafe, L’Appetito, to some of Chicago’s most iconic lunch destinations like our own NoMI Kitchen and RL Restaurant, there are so many places to choose from.  I could never pick a favorite!

What have guests been asking about lately? What kind of experiences are they looking for?
Chicago is known for its amazing architecture and more and more we’re hearing guests have an interest in seeing the city and its architecture in a unique way.  A few exceptional tour options include the Architectural River Cruise, specialized tours of the Frank Lloyd Wright properties and private customized multi-lingual tours of our city.

If you could learn to create one dish at the hotel restaurant, what would it be?

There are so many favorites on the NoMI menu but we are known for our fabulous sushi!  I’d love to get a hands-on experience with our sushi chefs to learn their tricks and tips for making the best rolls and putting together sushi masterpieces like the Katsura Platter.

What is your favorite piece of artwork in the hotel?
We’ve recently welcomed Sigmar Polke’s Siberian Meterorites into our lobby, which is very exciting! I love that it amplifies the presence of the real meteorites we have on display at our entrance and fits so perfectly with the décor and ambiance of our hotel.  Our Dale Chihuly sculptures, however, will always have my heart as they were specially commissioned for our property.

Is there an interesting fact about your hotel that many people don't know?
The original Park Hyatt Chicago, which had a European style, was closed and torn down in 1997 to build the current hotel that reopened in 2000.  To keep the memory of the former property we buried a time capsule containing several momentos and keepsakes that were part of the original building.

Tell us about a rare and unique experience you have curated for guests in your location?
Since we are a small boutique hotel, we have the luxury of being able to get to know our guests and create truly unique experiences for them. From last minute sunset dinner cruises on a private yacht, engagement proposals via horse-drawn carriage to front row tickets at sold-out events and over-the-top personalized birthday celebrations, we’ve done it all!

Is there a Park Hyatt hotel or resort in particular you are dying to visit?
As a lover of all things Italian, Park Hyatt Milan has always been a destination of mine.  However, I am really eager to visit the Park Hyatt Vienna now that it’s open.  My dear friend, Monique Dekker is the General Manager there and it has been too long since I’ve seen her!

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800 North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois, USA, 60611

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