DIY Hot Chocolate Mason Jar Gifts

Finished Hot Choc Jar
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With Thanksgiving just around the corner the holiday season is officially upon us! That means food, family, fun, & gifts. We recently created some fun hot chocolate kits in mason jars as gifts. These are easy to make! Here’s how you can create your own mason jar gifts this holiday season.

What You’ll Need

Here’s what you’ll need:

8oz mason jars, 2 1/2 cup measuring cups, 2 tablespoons, red & green raffia, miniature individually packaged candy canes, white chocolate hot chocolate mix, milk chocolate hot chocolate mix, mint chocolate chips, miniature marshmallow, 2 funnels, & scissors.

 

Step 1

Powder Mix

Using your funnel, place 1/2 cup of white chocolate mix in the mason jar. Make sure the powder is evenly distributed. Using second funnel, add 1/2 cup of milk chocolate mix to the jar, making sure the powder is evenly distributed.

 

 

 

 

Step 2Mint Choc Chips

Add 4 heaping tablespoons of mint chocolate chips. (Don’t forget to eat the chips that miss the jar opening!)

 

 

 

 

Step 3

Marshmellows

Add 4-5 heaping tablespoons of marshmallows. (Eat those stray marshmallows too!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 4Finished Hot Choc Jar

Seal lid on mason jar. Tie approximately 1.5 feet of both green & red raffia around top of jar. Secure candy cane to raffia. And voila, you’re done! You’ve got an easy, cute, & cost effective gift that is perfect for the holiday season & for keeping warm this winter. Plus they store well & stay fresh for several weeks.

 

 

Thanksgiving is only days away & we all have a lot to be thankful for. At the Homewood Suites Chicago Downtown, we’re thankful for our guest loyalty & for our fans. Hope everyone has a safe & happy Thanksgiving this year!

Summer is in the Air!

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It’s finally summer in Chicago & who couldn’t be more excited?? With the summer comes nice weather, sunshine, festivals, & fun.

Chicago_summer

So far this short summer, Chicago has seen some intense World Cup fan support. During the four US appearances during the 2014 World Cup, Chicago hosted viewing parties which only seemed to grow & grow & grow in attendance. During the last match against Belgium a viewing party was held at Soldier Field which almost reached maximum capacity & made national news!

World Cup viewing party

World Cup viewing party

Chicago also played host to the ITU World Triathlon Series which took place along the banks of Lake Michigan June 28 & 29. This elite sporting event pitted the world’s best triathletes against each other & also allowed amateurs to compete together. Gwen Jorgensen from the United States took home the first place finish from the Elite Women’s heat. Notably, this is only the third time the ITU World Triathlon Series has ever come to the United States so we’re honored Chicago was selected as the host for this great event!

Aside from sports, Chicago summers also mean free, fun events! Now through September 6 Summer Workouts take place at the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park each Saturday morning. These free workouts include Tai Chi, yoga, Pilates, & zumba. workoutsAlso included in free, fun events is the Millennium Park Film Series. Each Tuesday evening blockbuster hits are shown at 6:30pm at the Pritzker Pavilion for free! So far this summer we’ve seen Top Gun, Brigadoon, & Ghostbusters with more exciting films to come including O Brother Where Art Thou,  Dreamgirl, Wizard of Oz, & Avatar.

While summer is only getting Craft beerstarted & so much has already happened, there’s still so much more to look forward to! Coming up there’s the Taste of Chicago July 9-13, Windy City Smokeout July 11-13, Chicago Craft Beer Festival July 19 & 20, Lollapalooza August 1-3, Chicago Air & Water Show August 16-17, North Coast Music Festival August 29-31, & so much more!

Enjoy the beautiful Chicago summer while it lasts! Fall will be here too soon & before you know it, it’ll be snowing. As they say in Game of Thrones…winter is coming!

Lewis the Duck does Chicago!

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Lewis & Homewood Team

Lewis the Duck visited Chicago, IL recently! He was in town during May for a week and wasted no time in making his rounds through the Windy City.

Lewis at the Bean While in town, Lewis spent his first day being a tourist. He visited several landmarks including the Adler Planetarium, the “Bean”, the American Girl Place, Buckingham Fountain, Navy Pier, and more. People loved seeing Lewis on the streets, taking photos with him, and dancing with him as part of an upcoming music video.

Lewis in Chicago

 

LCH 2On Day 2 of his visit, Lewis spent time at Lurie Children’s Hospital with the children in the Family Life Center. He later visited the Ronald McDonald House where he did a reading & coloring activity.

 

RHM 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OLewis at Libraryn Day 3, Lewis went to the Carole Robertson Center for Learning where he had the opportunity to interact with over 5 classrooms! In the Homewood Suites Library at the Center for Learning, Lewis hosted reading circles, took pictures, & played with all the kids.

 

Lewis at Experient 1While in town Lewis the Duck also had the opportunity to meet some important hotel clients including Experient Travel & OnPeak.

 

Overall, we were honored to have Lewis the Duck with us in May. We’re looking forward to another visit later in June for some other fun activities!

Meetings with Perks

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Meeting

There are many reasons for a company or group to host a meeting: training, disseminate information, brainstorming, testing, etc, etc, etc. Whatever the reason may be, we love hosting meetings here at the Homewood! And don’t you think you should be rewarded for hosting a meeting with us? We think so too. That’s why we’ve put together a couple of different packages to offer groups & other organizations some additional perks just for allowing us to host your meeting.

Meetings with Perks

If you actualize $550 in meeting room rental and/or food & beverage spend, you can receive:

  • 3,000 bonus Hhonors points
  • Complimentary hot breakfast buffet (up to $180 per day)

If you actualize $650 in meeting room rental and/or food & beverage spend, you can receive:

  • 3,000 bonus Hhonors points
  • Complimentary hot breakfast buffet (up to $240 per day)
  • $50 credit towards audio visual equipment rental per day

View Offers

Doesn’t that sound great? But it’s not all! We’re also offering special perks to groups with sleeping rooms.

Groups with 3X Points & More

If you actualize $3,500 or more in guest room revenue, you will receive:

  • Complimentary beer & wine welcome reception for 1 hour (value up to $32)
  • 3X Meeting Planner Hhonors points
  • Discounted meeting room rental to $250 per day

If you actualize $4,500 or more in guest room revenue, you will receive:

  • Complimentary beer & wine welcome reception for 1 hour (value up to $320)
  • 3X Meeting Planner Hhonors points
  • Complimentary Meeting space

View Offers

It really doesn’t get more enticing than that, folks! Plus, with over 3,000 square feet of meeting space, we’ve got you covered for your next event.

Wrigley Comiskey

 

Love is in the Air <3

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It’s that time of year again, when love is in the air and everyone seems to be walking around with that twitterpated feeling. No I am not talking about actual twitter but instead that feeling you get when see that special person. First, your tummy ties itself in knots, then you start to flush and get that unbelievably huge smile on you face.

Bambi-Twitterpated-Suite-Original

There is nothing quite like love. So how are you and your sweetie going to celebrate this week? How about a Suite Deal? The Homewood Suites by Hilton Chicago Downtown is offering a Valentine’s Day Package to help you celebrate with the one you love.

Our Valentine’s Day Package includes:

  • Overnight accommodations in a King Studio or One Bedroom Suite
  • 2 Decadent Red Velvet Cupcakes
  • A Bottle of Prosecco or Sparkling Cider
  • Late Checkout of 2pm

Valid Feb 13-17. Must be booked at least 48 hours prior to arrival. If you need to cancel, please cancel 48 hours prior to arrival

See term, conditions and booking information here: http://homewoodsuites3.hilton.com/en/hotels/illinois/homewood-suites-by-hilton-chicago-downtown-CHIHWHW/offers/100058972.htm

While you are staying with us, also check out some other romantic Valentine’s Day ideas here:  http://chicago.metromix.com/stories/2722-valentine-s-day-in-chicago

Happy Valentine’s Day All!

Let’s Get Physical!!!

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10.9.8.7.6.5.4.3.2.1……HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!  Can you believe another year has passed us by?  Hopefully 2013 was a great year for you.  Maybe you traveled somewhere new, got married, bought a new pet or did something else extraordinary. 

Now that 2014 has begun it’s a fresh start for all of us.  Speaking of fresh, have your heard what Homewood Suites Downtown Chicago is doing?!?!?

We are now focused on being a Fit N’ Healthy Hotel!!!

You may be asking yourself what does that mean????

Well…………………………………….

·         Join us for healthier menu choices at our complimentary breakfast & dinner. 

·         Participate in our walking or running groups.

·         Download the Fitstudio App which allows you to follow simple workout routines in your spacious suite.

·         Write down your favorite healthy snacks, and let us shop for you with our complimentary grocery shopping service.   

Want to hear more exciting news?!?!?

We will be also offering a Fit ‘N Healthy Package which includes:

·         (1)Accommodations in one of our Suites

·         (1)Veggie and Dip Tray

·         (2) One Liter Bottles of Water

·         (2) Energy Bars

·         (1) Homewood Sports Water Bottle

·         (1) Pass to a / Fitness Yoga Class at Yoga Loft

That’s Not All!!!!!!!

 

Our health and fitness upgrades expand to our business or leisure groups staying with us too!  

 

Book 10 or more rooms with us, and we will bring the fitness and yoga instructor to your group.

·         Enjoy an hour yoga workout in our meeting rooms

·         Cool down with a healthy snack and water

We understand that maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important, and Homewood Suites Chicago Downtown makes it easier than ever!

Happy 2014!!!!!!!

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Offers Fit N Healthy

Tis The Season!!!

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Interested in doing something festive this weekend?

Why not check out The Christkindlmarket.  The Christkindlmarket has been coming to Chicago for over 11years.  Enjoy the open-air market in Daley Plaza. So come out and enjoy delicious German treats such as sausages, potato pancakes and much more. (And beverages too)

Don’t forget to check-out the  vendors too, and bring home some fun holiday items back home such as ornaments and hand carved crafts.

The Christkinlemarket operates Sunday – Thursday: 11:00 am – 8:00 pm and Friday & Saturday: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm.

The Christkindlmarket is located at 50 West Washington Street.  Be Merry, and Have a Safe Weekend!!!