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nanabee Aug 2nd, 2007 07:29 AM

2 days in Chicago - What should we not miss?
We will be in Chicago for 4 days (but two will be at the ballpark), from August 17 - 21.
I love museums, old buildings/homes, good restaurants, art galleries.

Thanks for your suggestions.

DeeBoz Aug 2nd, 2007 08:23 AM

Art Institute of Chicago
----on Thurs/Fridays the museum is open from 10:30a.m.-9p.m.; Museum is free on Thursdays and Fridays after 5pm

Milennium Park
---Tour the structures and garden that make up Milennium Park....from Cloud Gate (the Bean) to checking out one of the free concerts that may be scheduled there at the Pritzer Pavilion-----If you like bike-riding...close by is the McDonald's Cylce Center where you can rent a bike and cyle right along the lakefront.

Navy Pier
----great location to do many things....There are two theaters there....shops and restaurants...also you can pay for a boat ride...or ride the ferris wheel to get another view of the city.

For shopping
....Michigan Avenue (magnigicent mile)...lots of high end stores and boutiques...Water Tower is a nice stop as it has many shops, food court, etc.

Across from Water Tower
---check out the John Hancock building...but go to the Signature Lounge (not the restaurant)...from there you can order a drink or two and enjoy a spectacular view of the city. I'd skip the Signature Restaurant in the same building which is quite pricey. Head up to the Signature Lounge for desert and drink.

For Restaurants----lots to choose from...

Maggiano's - Italian Food
Weber Grill---great grilled food
Nacional - latin cuisine
Chicago Chop House (steaks, ribs, etc)
Shaw's Crab House (Seafood)
Catch 22 (Seafood)

Lord_Mesron Aug 2nd, 2007 08:29 AM

The Field Museum and Navy Pier (boat tours).

hlsam Aug 2nd, 2007 08:46 AM

Take an arhictecture tour through the Architecture Foundation - just took one a few weeks ago. You'll see a lot.

nanabee Aug 2nd, 2007 12:40 PM

Thanks so much DeeBoz, Lord Mesron, and hlsam. I really appreciate your suggestions. Can't wait to see your great city.

msdotliz Aug 2nd, 2007 12:51 PM

Gold Coast. A must

missypie Aug 2nd, 2007 01:16 PM

Frank Lloyd Wright's Robie House (on or at least near the University of Chicago campus).

Citylghts Aug 2nd, 2007 01:18 PM

The restaurants on Navy Pier are overpriced and mediocre at best. There are hundreds of better places in the city to eat.

Maggiano's can be found in Washington, Las Vegas, Atlanta or Denver. For more restaurant suggestions try You can enter a neighborhood, price range and cuisine and get a list of suggestions.

I second the suggestion of the river tour. Check for schedules and info.

hop_along Aug 2nd, 2007 01:31 PM

What you should not miss:
1. Riverboat tour (Architecture Foundation).
2. View of the city and shore from the Hancock Tower Signature Room.
3. Walking along Michigan Avenue and exploring the side streets with all sorts of good restaurants and sidewalk cafes.
4. Chicago-style hot dogs.
5. Lincoln Park and its various attractions if time allows.

nanabee Aug 2nd, 2007 02:17 PM

This information is great, I am really looking forward to checking out as many of these places as possible.

MissyPie I have enjoyed many of your travel posts!

Thanks again to everyone.

nanabee Aug 2nd, 2007 02:19 PM

Hop Along; do you buy the best hot dogs on the street from vendors or is there a special place you recommend?

taitai Aug 2nd, 2007 02:26 PM

Architectural Boat Tour
Millenium Park
Walking along the Lake front from Oak Street Beach up to Fullerton
Art Institute and Museum of Contemporary Art

I would avoid Michigan Avenue area unless you live in a super rural area that doesn't have chain stores. There really isn't anything there that can't be found in pretty much every other big or moderate sized city or mall in you really need to go to Chicago to see a Pottery Barn and Victoria Secret?

Instead, I would visit Wicker Park and Lincoln Park. You will be able to see beautiful tree lined streets filled with brownstones and old Victorians as well as sample unique boutiques and nice restaurants.

I agree with Citylights. Avoid the big chains like Weber Grill and Maggianos and search out more unique chef-driven restaurants in which Chicago is quite rich. Metromix is a great place to start.

Have fun

nanabee Aug 2nd, 2007 02:34 PM

thanks taitai - wicker and lincoln park sound perfect for our tastes.

TwoFatFeet Aug 2nd, 2007 02:40 PM

If you want the best hot dogs or sausages in the known universe, go to Hot Doug's. It's a bit of a trek, but worth it. It's on California north of Belmont.

TwoFatFeet Aug 2nd, 2007 02:41 PM

Meant to include a link.

Seriously delicious. Long line, worth the wait.

nanabee Aug 2nd, 2007 02:58 PM

yum, don't mind the wait!

Thuel Aug 2nd, 2007 03:01 PM

Need to stop by this place for sure!!

nanabee Aug 2nd, 2007 03:05 PM

so that explains the Cubs poor winning record!
can't they give the ole goat a bath!

hop_along Aug 2nd, 2007 05:25 PM

nanabee: I'm not a Chicago authority, merely a recently returned tourist who delighted in the great hot dogs (no street vendors that I saw). .... Here's a good place to start:

hills27 Aug 2nd, 2007 07:34 PM

If you are going to an afternoon game, Tango Sur would be a great place to go for dinner afterwards. Very reasonable Argentine-style steaks and not a long walk from Wrigley. No reservations, but if you go right after the game, it shouldn't be a long wait. Also, there are some cute stores you can window shop if you do have a wait. Note, it's BYOB. So, when you leave Wrigley, walk northwest on Clark. At the corner of Grace, there's a liquor store. Then walk west on Grace until you get to Southport (about four blocks). Make a left and Tango Sur will be on your left.

Other food suggestions:

Frontera Grill - Rick Bayless's casual restaurant (on Clark between Illinois and Hubbard). Great food and fantastic margaritas. You can call 312-661-1434 for same day reservations. Make sure you call early.

Smith & Wollensky for lunch on the patio overlooking the river if the weather is nice (State Street and the river). Best burger I've ever had.

Le Lan - great French Vietnamese restaurant (on Clark less than 1/2 a block south of Chicago). One of my favorites.

Pegasus - Greek tapas on a rooftop. Not the best Greek food in Chicago, but a fun atmosphere and a phenomenal view of the skyline. Go early if you don't want a wait, though the view is so great I usually don't mind.

Brasserie Jo or Mon Ami Gabi for steak frites.

Lunch while shopping on Michigan Avenue - skip the crowds and crappy food at the chains and go to Cafe Spiaggia, Spiaggia's less expensive little sister (980 North Michigan, about a block north of Bloomingdales, second floor of office building). Great views.

...or Tucchi Benuch on the 4th floor of the Bloomingdales mall.

Pane Caldo - small, intimate Italian restaurant and Jennifer Aniston's fave when she's in town. Located on Walton about half a block west of Michigan.

I strongly suggest making reservations in advance. August is a very busy time here.

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