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Old 19.07.2017, 21:15
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Really off-topic - Chicago

Will be spending some days there next month, downtown. Anything I really really need to do/see/eat??

I know I can read up on this but was wondering what you would recommend.
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Old 19.07.2017, 21:26
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

Chicago in the summer? Millennium Park.

Lots of free events - music, film, art, etc. and green. Bring lots of mosquito repellent.
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Old 19.07.2017, 22:10
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

My kind of town... Chicago can never be off-topic.

To get you started, ChooseChicago is a pretty extensive listing of what's happening:

https://www.choosechicago.com

Also pick up a copy of the Chicago Tribune, the major local paper, for daily events.

You'll find music galore, including free concerts. Pick any genre, you'll find something going on.

FYI, Lollapaloosa (a huge music festival) is IIRC the first week of August.

If you are a classical buff, consider heading north to Highland Park one night - Ravinia is the CSO 'summer home'.

Chicago is the home of the Blues, and the jazz scene is huge too.

Of the major museums, the Art Institute rivals - and IMO surpasses - many of the major European art museums. The Museum of Science and Industry, the Field Museum, the Aquarium, the Botanic Garden - all worth a visit. There are many small 'quirky' museums, galleries, exhibitions.

Chicago has a huge theater scene, you can sometimes even get last minute tickets at the box office. (Hamilton is sold out, but perhaps worth a try to see if there are any returns on the day...)

ETA:

Theater listings:
http://www.theatreinchicago.com

Chicago is known for improv comedy scene - Second City, the Annoyance Theater, and many smaller clubs.

If you are a baseball fan... a visit to the Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field might be in order.

And of course if the weather is fine... get thee to the beach! The lakefront is gorgeous, the beaches delightful. If you've never seen Lake Michigan, be prepared for serious awesomeness.

Speaking of which, a fun touristy thing to do is one of the boat trips.

And consider a tour - there are many, some themed such as the architectural tour. (Chicago is where FLW got his start - some of his best buildings are in Chicago. A detour to Oak Park, a near western 'burb is where his home and studio is, now a museum open to the public.)

And the food... glorious. Just glorious. Just about any and every thing your heart desires can be found somewhere in Chicago. Let us know what you like, and perhaps we can offer some suggestions...

Have fun!

Last edited by meloncollie; 19.07.2017 at 23:37.
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Old 19.07.2017, 22:13
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

Great ideas, thank you both!
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Old 19.07.2017, 23:20
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

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Chicago awesomeness
I love Chicago!!!

The food!!!

Among the many excellent food options, Chicago has a pretty sizable Greek community, and I definitely remember eating great Greek food. I am also a huge fan of the "Chicago-style" pizza which is really not a pizza but a delicious salty pie...nom.

Can I tag along? Sigh.
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Old 19.07.2017, 23:42
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

Windyyyyyy...
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Old 20.07.2017, 10:26
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

Lucky, lucky you! I had the good fortune to live in Chicago many, many moons ago (it was the time of Mayor Dally - father not son)! It is the most fantastic place, so much going on - I left part of my heart there, not in San Francisco! I still remember my time there as if it were yesterday. I walked past the Wrigley Building every day on my way to work - always made me think of Westminster! Enjoy every single minute of your stay there - I wish I could join you!!!!!!!


Chicago really is my kind of town, and always will be!
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Old 20.07.2017, 10:44
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

Thank you! Can´t wait to go there. So far only did a transit stop in Chicago (on my way to Cleveland) so this is a new and exciting experience!
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Old 20.07.2017, 13:50
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

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Will be spending some days there next month, downtown. Anything I really really need to do/see/eat??

I know I can read up on this but was wondering what you would recommend.
I LOVE Chicago, lived there for several years

Just a local’s guide to some aspects of Chicago, enjoy!

So here are some local recommendations of a few things to do from when I lived in ChiTown

About a kilometer south on Michigan Ave from the lake is the river right at Wabash. At that junction, there is a boat that gives Architectural Tours of downtown just in front of the Mariott hotel. If the weather is good, do it if you're feeling like it. It is a good tour, I think like $20 and it’s less than 2 hrs.

Taxis: You are obliged to use taxis or Uber, similar to NY (Avoid the train). People often cab around in Chicago - So, people will not let distance keep them from going somewhere or doing something, don't hesitate, cab it. Never need to call ahead, just look for one on the street, ask your hotel to call for one – light illuminated on top of the car indicates it is available, otherwise occupied. It's not too expensive and things are more spread out than NY and less accessible by train.

Coffee/Espresso: Not far from the center of River North in Chicago, at the base of the John Hancock building (Next to Cheesecake Factory), is a good Italian café - L'Appetito. There are probably better espresso in the city these days but this is well located.

Brunch: This is a popular meal in the US but especially in Chicago. Brunch or breakfast at Hotel Sofitel's is excellent but many of the hotels in the area have some that are even more elaborate (Four Seasons - it’s quite delicious as well)

Casual Eats: Big Bowl is an excellent place, one of our favorites. Great quality food for a 'fast food' kinda sit down casual asian fusion place - pretty reasonable price. Highly recommended and quite centrally located & close to where you will likely be at some point.

Pizza: Chicago has a reputation for their deep dish pizza, some Europeans won’t really care for it as it’s thick and almost like a cake. Pizzeria Uno/Due are quite popular and not far from city center but many locals might direct you to Giordanos which I think is very overrated. Lou Malnati’s is a good place near by as well

Dinner: Chicago people love to go out to eat and steak places are plentiful. It's Chicago and they love as many different places as possible. Gibson's is right near where I used to live and is quite famous in Chicago. There are better in Chicago but it is still pretty good, in my opinion. Surf and Turf (Steak + Lobster) is amazing here & around $100 - memorable. Cafe Iberico is an authentic Spanish Tapas place that has a great atmosphere and a launching pad for going out in the evening. Like in NY, people go to at least 3 or 4 places in a night and Café Iberico is a great start on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday night. Food is phenomenal and relatively cheap although best to go with a group. It can get busy so be aware that Chicago draws a lot of people going out to eat and waits are common.

Sushi: If the mood should strike you, Chicago has some awesome sushi and I listed it separately. Sushi Wabi, Roka Akor, Kai Zan, NoMI, Mirai are all among my favorites, but Sushi Mirai was always my preferred spot. It previously existed about 15 minutes by taxi from the city center but they opened up one near downtown area not long ago (I can’t vouch for how it compares to their other resto but could be ideal)

Bars: Chicago parties all night so it goes in stages...People will go to 3 or 4 different places on a normal night...There are the bars to get you prepped for going out or to pre-party...A drink or two to get started...Hotel ones are very popular...Sofitel, Peninsula, W and Hard Rock bars will have a nice atmosphere starting from 6—7pm....The bar at Le Colonial (Walking distance from River North) is lovely. The popular spots change all the time and this is best to confirm with the concierge at a hotel who will know where is good to go.


Spend your time walking on Michigan Avenue and into the Gold Coast. There will be a ton of people out and shopping malls will be within tall buildings along the walk

Museums are fantastic too but not sure how much time you'll have. MOCA is wonderful if you love contemporary art
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Old 20.07.2017, 13:51
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

Ravinia if you will be there in the summer, one of my favorite things to do in the summer in Chicago
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Old 20.07.2017, 13:57
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Re: Really off-topic - Chicago

Also, if you're into Al Capone, there are lots of historic sites where he was, ehmm influential.
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