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CHICAGO! Tips, restaurants and hotel advice!

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May 30, 2008, 11:44pm   #46
Krysta's Avatar
Another thumbs up for The James, I used to live one block away from the hotel so all my visiting friends/family used to stay at The James, it's a great hotel!
Jun 2, 2008, 10:31am   #47
eurobaglady's Avatar
Originally Posted by missjenny2679
Anyone who wants a shopping buddy while in town...call me!! I'm up for shopping any day of the week!!
I'm in! PM me anytime!
Jun 2, 2008, 6:09pm   #48
Oooh what a great thread! I'll be in Chicago June 19-23. Can anyone give some suggestions for nightlife, either clubs or lounges? I'll be there with five girlfriends and we're in our mid twenties. We're staying at the Hotel Sax which I believe was formerly the House of Blues. Is there anywhere close by that we can go to? TIA!
Jun 15, 2008, 12:14pm   #49
I'm planning a surprise (shhh! ) trip to Chicago for my BF's birthday in July. I got reservations at Alinea for the special day, but I have no idea where to eat for the other three days. I need some breakfast/lunch places and a couple of dinner spots.

I also trying to figure out what we should do while we aren't eating . I know there are some awesome architecture tours but there are too many for me to decide on my own.

We are staying at the OMNI and I'm not planning on renting a car (do we need one?), but taking cabs is no issue for us if they are easy to get.

Also, what should we do at night???

So basically, all I've done so far is the flights and hotel and Alinea. I need help with the rest! TIA
Jun 15, 2008, 1:30pm   #50
Liz_x3's Avatar
I've heard good stuff about Tru.
Jun 15, 2008, 1:34pm   #51
boxermom's Avatar
Try scrolling down for info on chicago. If search was working you could find lots of ideas.

The best boat tour for architecture is through the Chicago Architecture Foundation. Reserve ahead, as they are very popular and sell out. The Art Institute is worth a stop and also a stop at Millennium Park to see the "Bean" sculpture. The Omni is a great location for walking to a lot of things. The hotel can give you a route map of the trolley that runs in the summertime. I've never had a problem getting a cab.

Does he like baseball? If the Cubs are in town, ticket agencies would have tickets for a game. Seems like all the games sell out now.

I'll let others recommend restaurants and clubs. That's not my thing.
Jun 16, 2008, 10:40pm   #52
I really liked the melting pot in downtown.. celebrated my 2nd wedding anniversary there. The food is SO GOOD.
Jun 16, 2008, 10:53pm   #53
miamialli's Avatar
Alinea is an amazing experience. we did the "tour" menu, 24 courses! I would say to get the smaller menu, there were times when I was like "please, don't come out of the kitchen, I can't take anymore food!" it's also like 3 1/2 -4 hours of eating!

For a fun time, I would say check out The Wiener's Circle. It's a little hot dog place, but the ladies that work behind the counter "harass" the guests. It's hilarious. You have to go in the night time. here's a link to my recent trip on yahoo:
Jun 16, 2008, 11:26pm   #54
cakegirl's Avatar
I will be in Chicago in a few weeks for the first time and will be eating at Alinea as well!
Some of the others places we may go are Avec, Takashi, L20, Naha, and Hot Chocolate for desserts.
I was looking into going to the Frank Lloyd Wright house. They have several different tour options.
I will post about my trip when i get back- maybe I will have better suggestions then.
Jun 17, 2008, 7:33pm   #55
Krysta's Avatar
I used to live right near the Omni hotel, these are some of my fave cafes/restaurants that are walkable from your hotel.
- Volare is a great (but very busy/noisy) Italian, the food is delicious.
- Phil Stefani's (the one at 437 Rush), great Italian for dinner.
- Bijans on Erie/State is fantastic all day long, I'd recommend having brunch here. It's really laid back and casual, a lot of locals eat here.
- RL (the cafe at Ralph Lauren) is another good spot for brunch or lunch, it's a little over priced but the food is nice and I love their bellinis!!
- Quartino on State St is perfect if you want casual Italian for lunch, they do great pizzas, they have good outside seating, it's a nice spot for a glass of wine and a pizza.
- Pierrot Gourmet on Rush St (a stone throw from your hotel if you're looking for great coffee in the morning) is fantastic for brunch or lunch, I really miss this place!

Pops for Champagne is a really nice champagne bar on State/Ohio, I really recommend it.
Jun 18, 2008, 5:40pm   #56
Don't forget about Giordano's on Rush Street. The best deep dish pizza in Chicago.

if you are an SNL fan...you should definitely go to Billy Goat Tavern.

Go up to the Signature Lounge of the Hancock Tower for a drink....you get the same view as paying the $15 fee to go to the observatory, but you get to relax and have a drink or appetizer!
Jun 18, 2008, 10:14pm   #57
karwood's Avatar
Signature room for drinks during sunset. It is on the top floor of the Hancock Building. Spectacular view of the city! The also have an incredible brunch there on Sundays.

Restaurant-Topolobampa(Rick Bayless restaurant), Gibson's(great old-school steak house), Charlie Trotter, BOKA, Japonais,Tru. Gosh, the list is endless. This city has so many excellent restaurants. Also, The new Trump Building has a restaurant, Sixteen, I have only heard good things about it and it has a beautiful view of the Chicago River.
Entertainment-Redhead Piano Bar, Chicago Architectural Boat Tour, Cubs game at Wrigleyfield and during summer there are street festivals every weekend, a great way to check out a local Chicago neighborhood.

Have a great time and Chicago is at its BEST during the summer. You are gonna love it.
Jun 18, 2008, 10:22pm   #58
Krysta's Avatar
Sixteen is great! We went there for dinner and drinks just before we moved, I highly recommend it. My parents have been a few times since it opened as well and they rave about it too.
Jun 19, 2008, 10:01am   #59
IntlSet's Avatar
Le Passage is a fun lounge/bar, as is the Fulton Lounge. Both have fashionable, young crowds. Fulton Lounge is probably my favorite in Chicago... it's mellow but still upbeat, and everyone looks gorgeous. The drinks are delish, also.

Tru is fabulous. Fab-u-lous. Seriously. MK is also incredible, and decently priced at around $30-$50 per plate. Blackbird is also fabulous.

When in Chicago, I suggest staying away from those corporate-chain-type restaurants... Chicago's best are always family or independently owned restaurants that you simply won't find elsewhere. Take advantage of them while you're here.

Be sure to check out our beautiful museums... the Art Institute is not to be missed. I think the collection rivals if not overshadows the Met's. The Museum of Contemporary Art is also great... and conveniently located next to all the good shopping. The Smart Museum on the South Side is fantastic and may be worth the extra effort if you're a true art lover.
Jun 25, 2008, 12:16am   #60
Account Deactivated
Going to Chicago next month! Are there any good second hand designer stores near michigan avenue? I will be stayin at the Intercontinental on mich, and am looking forward to some good shopping!
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