Midwest Living Review
Though the historic Columbia Club is a members-only organization, the building also serves as a hotel open to anyone. It's a good thing, because it would be a shame to miss the inside of this 1925 building. The club was originally founded in 1889 by supporters of President Benjamin Harrison (an Indy native whose home on Delaware Street is open for tours). One of the club's claims to fame is that every Republican president since Harrison has visited (at either this location or its previous locations) as either president or presidential candidate. However, these days, the politics are gone: It's primarily a social and business club. The first four floors are full of beautiful lounges, meeting spaces, restaurants and conference rooms, each filled with a variety of art and artifacts: Remington bronzes, Lincoln china, a table from Harrison's White House, windows designed by Tiffany and art by Indiana artist T.C. Steele. Floors five through nine are guestrooms (there are 96 total). The two top floors were recently remodeled into suites and larger rooms. Each room is decorated differently, and instead of humdrum hotel art, there are historical prints on the walls. We also like the historical cards that are tucked into the bed each day. The rooms on floors five through seven are smaller, making them feel cozier (even the bathrooms are charming). For a nice view, request a room overlooking Monument Circle. The basement fitness center (with pool) is a clean and nicely equipped. Most of the restaurants and lounges are open to hotel guests -- just a few are reserved for Columbia Club members only. We especially love the Crystal Terrace area on the mezzanine level (where breakfast and lunch are served), with its elaborate painted ceiling, huge floor-to-ceiling art glass window, crystal chandeliers and nice view toward Monument Circle. Staff is attentive and responsive, and the place is impeccably kept. Aside from hotel guests, the building is sometimes open to the public, such as during Indy's Devour Downtown event (two weeks in January/February and two weeks in August) when the Harrison Room restaurant offers prix fixe dining. The building is also on the Historic Preservation Association's walking tour. But your best bet for gaining access into this gem of a building (if you're not a member) is staying here. Rates range from $161 to $299/night.