Call this post images of Chicago part 2. You can read images of Chicago part 1 here. For anyone inspired to visit our fair city I have put together some recommendations for where to eat, stay and shop during your Chicago getaway.
Chicago’s dining scene is ever evolving. It seems every week a new restaurant is opening somewhere in the city. With a population of around 2.7 million, Chicago is big and diverse enough to support a restaurant market with a great deal of variety. In previous posts I have written about some of my favorite restaurants around Chicago, Nico’s and the Bristol. If you want to start the day with a delicious breakfast the Little Goat diner on Randolph St. has some delicious offerings. Try the parathas burrito and if you can resist the fat Elvis waffles well then you are a better person then me. On weekends if you get to Little Goat after 8AM be prepared to wait up to an hour for a table.
If you like to sample local coffee roasters, try Intelligentsia, a Chicago based coffee company. Many restaurants and coffee shops around the country sell Intelligentsia coffee but the company is branching out and opening it’s own coffee shops around the city.
How can I talk about eating in Chicago without mentioning the thick crust cheese filled Chicago style pizza. I will be honest, I am not a fan, I prefer thin crust. However each to their own as they say, so while in Chicago devote one meal at least to sampling the world famous Chicago style pizza. The two restaurants to try are Giordano’s and Lou Malnati’s
Chicago is a popular convention town so there is no shortage of hotel rooms. The hotels I have stayed in are The Peninsula, The Sofital, Marriot, The Continental and The James. My favorite out of this list is the The Peninsula, why ? Because it is beautiful, regal and majestic. The hotel has an old world charm about it. A worth while treat is the afternoon tea service in the high ceilinged dining room. This is calorie busting goodness that you will remember as a highlight of your trip to Chicago.
In the last five years there has been two major trends in the Chicago retail scene. Firstly the high end designer labels have made a bee line to open in Chicago – Tom Ford, Dolce and Gabbana, Marc Jacobs, to name a few all have stores in the Oak St. and Rush St. intersection of downtown Chicago. These labels are expensive and exclusive but the presence of these designer companies has undoubtedly made Chicago one of the premier shopping destinations in the country.
Secondly, and sadly, many independent boutiques have closed all around Chicago. Unable to compete with increased internet shopping and rising rents these closures, in my opinion are a shame, as small businesses selling edited hard to find collections from small designers add interest, texture and depth to a city’s retail scene. Few however have survived namely P.45, one of the first independent boutiques to open in Chicago and still selling a great curated collection of clothes and accessories. One of the prettiest shops in the city is New Leaf florist. Selling some of the most beautiful flower arrangements in the city the inside is a botanical garden only you don’t just look you can actually buy what you like.
Well there it is. I hope you liked my images of Chicago. I am not a native of Chicago. I have lived here nine years and feel I have only scratched the surface of what this city has to offer but I am getting there. I will keep you updated with what else I find.
Thanks for reading