Friday, February 8, 2013

Don't Come to Chicago Looking for Capone's Lexington Hotel, Well, Sorta

From the Nov. 2, 2012, Chicago Tribune "The Lex rocks with style, amenities" by Sharon Stangenes.

Today, you'll find a free pinball machine and a 24-hour fitness center at the Lex, one of the South Loop's newest and most distinctive apartment buildings.  It has 296 units ranging in monthly rent from $1,549 for a 598 sq. ft. one bedroom to a 1552 sq. ft three bedroom penthouse for $3,244.

Only, this is not the original Lexington Hotel, headquarters of Al Capone, which was razed in 1995. The new Lex is on the former's site.

That hotel was built in 1892, to provide a place to stay for those coming to the 1893 World's Fair, the Columbian Exposition.    It was designed by Clinton Warren, who also designed the Congress Hotel.  Al Capone left the Metropole Hotel (one block south) in 1928 and took over the entire fifth floor as his headquarters for his various business interests.  Those entering the lobby would meet armed men.

Of course, in 1986, there had been that much-hyped Geraldo Rivera TV program for a look at Al Capone's vaults which turned up nothing.

Well, sometimes in historical research and search, that happens.

Anyway, It's Gone.  --RoadDog

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