By Robin Mindt   Published Dec 14, 2002 at 5:20 AM

There's no reason to let the cold weather get the best of you this winter. Venture downtown and enjoy a steamy dip in one of downtown's great whirlpools. Massaging bubbles and maybe a little romance await. While you're downtown, you'll want to enjoy the Milwaukee Holiday Lights Festival and lots of great holiday entertainment downtown. Public Service Ambassador Connie gives you the inside scoop on where to warm up downtown.

Milwaukee Downtown, BID #21, presents a few of downtown Milwaukee's best:


161 W. Wisconsin Ave.
(414) 291-9622

The co-ed whirlpool at the Downtown YMCA has enough room for you and all your friends. For only $10 (for non-members), you can spend the day relaxing and maybe you'll even get some exercise. Windows provide natural light and the state-of-the-art filtration system and chemical control combat chlorine eyes. And please remember you have to wear a swimsuit. Special needs accessible.

Courtyard by Marriott Downtown Milwaukee
300 W. Michigan St.
(414) 291-4122

Take a break from holiday shopping at The Shops of Grand Avenue and enjoy a whirlpool room in the adjacent hotel. Some standard rooms include two-person, raised marble whirlpools with rates lower than you'd expect.

The Pfister Hotel
424 E. Wisconsin Ave.
(414) 273-8222

The Pfister's Heritage Suites offer four-person whirlpools elegantly decorated for you to enjoy after a night on the town. The luxurious suites also include three separate rooms located in the elegance of this landmark hotel.

Hotel Metro
411 E. Mason St.
(414) 272-1937

Three of the opulent Spa Suites at Hotel Metro include sloped Kohler whirlpool tubs adjacent to the king bedroom complete with romantic fireplace. Make your trip downtown cool with this retro-styled hotel.

Hilton Milwaukee City Center
509 W. Wisconsin Ave.
(414) 271-7250

The Hilton truly knows the meaning of the word "suite." Their Presidential Suite, for instance, includes four rooms including an expansive boardroom with all the extras and two baths, one with a marble whirlpool fit for a king. To wow your special someone, book a night in the Royal Suite, a romantic king suite with dining room, living room, king bed, lavish black whirlpool and a separate bath.

Howard Johnson Inn and Suites
176 W. Wisconsin Ave.
(414) 271-4656

Romantic and reasonably priced, the whirlpool suites at the downtown Howard Johnson Inn and Suites include two-person whirlpools for a great downtown getaway.

This week's "Top 5" list was chosen by Public Service Ambassador Connie Villalobos.


Age: 57

Her secret talent is: Tour Guide Extraordinare!

Loves to eat: Yes! She loves to eat.

Loves her job because: It's ever-changing, interesting, she's in contact with many people and she can promote Milwaukee.

If she had $10 million, she would: Buy a condo downtown.