Navigating the Windy City – a bustling metropolis with a vibe all its own. Here are some things to check out among the skyscrapers.
Gallery: The Art Institute Of Chicago
Want to start with a culture fix? Head downtown to check out The Art Institute Of Chicago. It was founded in 1879, making it one of America’s largest and oldest art museums. You can expect to see Surrealism, Impressionism, American art, Asian art and modern art well represented.
Bar: I|O Rooftop Lounge at The Godfrey Hotel
The sky’s the limit in Chicago, thanks to its many rooftop bars, and they’ve all gotten quirkier over the years. Check out the I|O Rooftop Lounge at The Godfrey Hotel for dramatic skyline views, CBD cocktails and wagyu beef sliders.
Chicago has a global reputation for its house music heritage, and Smartbar is probably one of the most iconic nightclubs in America. The late great Frankie Knuckles, known as The Godfather of House Music, held a residency here. You’ll want to swing by.
Hotel: Conrad Chicago
Opened in late 2016, the Conrad Chicago sits just off Michigan Avenue (also called the Magnificent Mile) and oozes luxury. The Conrad’s restaurants were created with chef Richard Sandoval and included Noyane, a Japanese-inspired rooftop lounge. Fun fact: the hotel’s limestone façade was quarried with the same stone used for the Empire State Building and the Tribune Tower.
Coffee: Ipsento Coffee
Ipsento has two locations in Chicago – visit Ipsento 606 on 1813 North Milwaukee Avenue for chic surroundings and incredible coffee. If your afternoon coffee stretches into the evening, they also serve beer, wine and cocktails.
Museum: Field Museum
The Field Museum is a natural history museum well worth your time. Here you’ll find the latest scientific breakthroughs alongside fascinating ancient history. Say hi to Sue, the largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton yet discovered. (Named after the explorer who discovered her, Sue Hendrickson, to save you a Google on that).
Grab a slice of some Chicago-style stuffed pizza at Giordano’s. Their deep-dish pizza, founded in 1974, has become so famous that brothers Efren and Joseph Boglio have expanded their enterprise to 65 locations across the US. Kudos if you can finish a personal pan pizza: only professional pizza lovers need apply. Just look at that cheese pull…
Point Of Interest/Sculpture: Cloud Gate
This Anish Kapoor sculpture was installed in 2006 and is affectionately nicknamed The Bean because of its shape (a name Kapoor initially disliked but has now grown fond of!) It’s the focal point of the AT&T Plaza at Millennium Park, steps in front of the Art Institute of Chicago. Get your obligatory reflection photo for your Instagram feed.
Street food: The Fat Shallot
While this food truck now has two physical locations (one in Lincoln Park and one inside Revival Food Hall), see if you can spot their eye-catching red truck around town. Things to try at The Fat Shallot include the truffle aioli fries, the Texas toast BLT and a grilled cheese sandwich with sautéed spinach and caramelized onions.