The brand-new Hotel Indigo – Minneapolis Downtown is a desperately needed upgrade from its IHG predecessor in the heart of the city.
While the drab exterior of the former Crowne Plaza remains, inside guests will find a more fun, mid-century modern aesthetic. The recently reopened hotel has a swanky lobby, comfortable enough rooms, and a host of other features including an onsite restaurant opening soon that make it a solid option for Minneapolis visitors. For the location and the price, which is sub-$200 per night for most dates including summer, the Hotel Indigo is a great value.
Many of the photos on the Hotel Indigo website are still just digital renderings rather than actual photos of the hotel, but – and I mean this in the best way – the place looks and feels like a rendering in real life, too. Everything is so new in the lobby that it felt like I was the first person there when I stayed in March, about two months after the hotel opened.
The Hotel Indigo is a great higher-end option for business travelers, visiting sports fans, and IHG loyalty members, and is a welcome addition to the downtown Minneapolis hotel scene.
Booking the Hotel Indigo-Minneapolis
The Hotel Indigo is an IHG Hotels property and is one of only two IHG hotels in the downtown Minneapolis area. There's a Holiday Inn-Express near the Minneapolis Convention Center on the south end of downtown, and now the Hotel Indigo in the heart of downtown.
The best way to book the Hotel Indigo if you're interested in earning IHG points or are working towards IHG status is directly with the hotel. Otherwise, the hotel is bookable on all different kinds of online travel agencies like Hotels.com, HotelTonight, and more.
Another reason to book directly with Hotel Indigo and IHG is if you're interested in using IHG Rewards points or free night certificates to book your stay.
The off-peak season rate for a standard king bed room at Hotel Indigo is 29,000 IHG points, but that rate goes up to 33,000 during the peak summer months.
The cash rates also go up in the summer, albeit just slightly. Overall, these prices are pretty great for the product you're getting. It's likely because the hotel is so new.
For our booking, we used an expiring free night certificate that we earned by holding the IHG® Rewards Premier Credit Card.
At Thrifty Traveler, we don't accept freebies. We use our own points, miles, or cash to pay for every single flight or hotel you see reviewed here – including this one!
Hotel Indigo-Minneapolis Location
The best thing about the Hotel Indigo might just be its location, right in the heart of downtown Minneapolis.
The hotel is about an 18-minute drive from Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) and about 28 minutes from the airport by train via the Metro Blue Line. The nearest stop – Government Center, where you can also pick up the Green Line to get to and from St. Paul – is just two blocks southwest of the hotel.
Its central location makes Hotel Indigo a great place to stay if you're catching a Minnesota Twins or Minnesota Vikings game, visiting the University of Minnesota, or going to the Minneapolis Convention Center for a conference or event.
The hotel also just blocks from the main downtown theater district, the restaurant and bar-clad North Loop neighborhood, and the Mississippi River and its surrounding parks.
From Hotel Indigo, you can walk or take public transportation nearly anywhere you need to go.
The lobby and check-in area is a definite bright spot of the Hotel Indigo, well-designed and comfortable with massive windows facing downtown Minneapolis. The front desk is open 24 hours a day for visitors arriving at any time.
The lobby is not a bad place to lounge around if you want to escape your room.
After check-in, the elevator lobby is just down the hall to the left. It's another well-lit and designed area. The hotel did not have many visitors on this snowy March night in Minneapolis, so the three working elevators were more than enough to be at my beck and call throughout my stay.
Even the hallways are swanky. The retro vibe was everywhere at the Hotel Indigo.
Rooms at the Hotel Indigo-Minneapolis
While the rooms at the Hotel Indigo are obviously updated and more than comfortable, there wasn't much to separate this hotel room from any other above-average business hotel.
I had a corner room, which was a little more spacious.
The bed was very comfy for my one-night stay. The television was large and brand new, too.
The side table had both regular outlets and two USB ports for charging my devices. The rotary-looking phone in place of the standard landline you'd find at most hotels was a fun touch. These retro phones are everywhere throughout the Hotel Indigo, including in the hallways and hallways and lobby.
The closet was doorless and spacious, featuring two cozy waffle bathrobes and a comfy bench underneath it, something I haven't seen at many hotels.
Across from the closet was a vanity mirror with a large mirror, a smaller magnifying mirror (another nice touch), and plenty of counter space.
The bathroom was small but clean, with those same cool retro touches found throughout the hotel.
The shower was spacious and everything in the bathroom seemed brand-new.
All of the soaps and lotions were from the vegan cosmetic brand Zenology.
One of my favorite parts of new or updated hotels is in-room Nespresso machines like this one. Having an espresso poured before I left my room in the morning was a nice treat. Brand-new machines like this one are easy to use, too.
The view from my room wasn't too shabby. I could see at least part of the Minneapolis skyline on this very snowy March night (excuse the glare on the photo). However, the hotel isn't as tall as other buildings downtown, so I'd imagine the views are stymied from rooms facing the other directions.
Overall, the room wasn't spectacular, but the bed was comfortable, everything was spotlessly clean, and it had several nice touches I appreciated.
While the room was unremarkable, the rest of the Hotel Indigo is much more impressive thanks to the recent redesign. It all starts with the swanky new lobby, a definite highlight of the hotel.
The fireplace and seating areas are stylish and inviting, but my favorite part of the whole hotel is this little library nook.
Near the front desk is a snack bar area with a variety of takeaway food and drink items for sale.
There's also a restaurant on site, The Starbar & Bistro, but it wasn't open yet at the time of my stay, about two months after the hotel's reopening. It's estimated to open on June 1, 2023.
Instead, the hotel served a free grab-and-go breakfast from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. It appeared to be a temporary fix for the hotel and while it wasn't super high-end, there were more options than I was anticipating.
Among the choices were pastries, cereal, oatmeal, fruit, breakfast bars, and more.
The “hot” food options were limited. I didn't sample the pre-packaged Nordic Waffles breakfast sandwiches, but they were one of the items being offered.
Across from the breakfast area was a cooler full of juices, various kinds of milk, and yogurt as well as a coffee and tea bar for on-the-go travelers like myself.
The Hotel Indigo fitness center was surprisingly large and more substantial than I thought it would be. It featured 10 cardio machines, lots of weightlifting machines, and more space than you'd need.
There were also medicine balls, free weights, foam rollers, and various other fitness accoutrements.
The parking situation for Hotel Indigo is acceptable but in no way nice. You park in the lot adjacent to the building and can enter the building through the garage, which is pretty seamless. You can get a hotel nightly rate on the parking, too, but it wasn't much of a discount. It's a pretty typical city parking garage. No special treatment for hotel guests, I'm afraid.
If you're arriving via an Uber, taxi, or walking from the train, the check-in area has enough room for one or two cars. There's paid city street parking in front of the front doors as well.
The Hotel Indigo – Minneapolis Downtown got a much-needed renovation from its Crowne Plaza predecessor. The updated rooms are mostly unremarkable, but the swanky lobby and surprisingly large fitness center, among other things, make up for it.
With its fresh design and central location in the heart of downtown Minneapolis, this brand-new hotel is a great option for Twin Cities visitors.