The rooms were in need of renovation, or at least new carpet and a fresh coat of paint. Part of The Homestead's appeal is its post-war charm so I didn't mind the authentically old bathroom fixtures, for example, but the tiles were cracked and the sink dripped all night, and those kind of details make the place seem a little rundown for the price.
I normally stay at the Hotel Orrington in downtown Evanston when I'm in town, but that venue was totally booked -- that's how I discovered The Homestead, and I'm so glad I did. The location was an easy walk to the Northwestern campus and downtown, on a beautiful tree-lined, residential street just outside the clutter of the city. Every staff member I encountered was extremely friendly and helpful.