History of The Carleton of Oak Park
Built in 1928, the Carleton of Oak Park was billed as the Village’s high class hotel. Originally a residential hotel, the rooms were built and designed to have a feeling of home with special attention to amenities.
The Carleton Hotel’s name came about through a contest where the winner won $100, changing it from its original name of the Hotel Gowdy, named after its first general manager.
Today the Carleton is considered a boutique style hotel and a haven for discerning Chicagoans and visiting guests who appreciate the hotel’s historic charm, sophisticated hospitality and close proximity to downtown Chicago.
In May of 2000 the Carleton has expanded to the adjacent building, formally the Plaza Hotel. The Plaza was originally built in 1892 for the Columbian Exposition. The Carleton has capitalized on its beauty and historical nature by keeping the design elegant and showing its 1890’s classic charm. Now, over a century later, within the original walls of this historic building, the Carleton is proud to showcase the Grand Ballroom and 42 additional hotel rooms.