Chicago - dinner and activity ideas

Oct 4th, 2005, 10:28 PM
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Chicago - dinner and activity ideas

We will be in Chicago the 9-11th of Dec w/ teen girls to see Wicked. Staying at Crowne Plaza Silversmith. Looking for restaurant suggestions in the vicinity of the theatre of by the hotel. Also, we have limited time so if you could suggest one or 2 things to do that afternoon w/ the girls - 18 and 16 - must see shopping area, museum, seasonal event....would be appreciated.
leahinsc is offline  
Oct 4th, 2005, 11:30 PM
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You should see the Marshall Field's flagship store on State Street. It's a landmark store, and a beautiful building in its own right.
It might be one of their last chances to see how department stores "used" to be. (Field's will become Macy's soon.)

If they're real shoppers, the Miracle Mile is a must, but not my first choice.

I'd also suggest any of the museums that Chicago is known for - choose based on their interests: The Field Museum (natural history, dinosaurs, mummies, biology, etc.), the Shedd Aquarium, the art institute, or the Museum of Science and Industry. They're all great.

Others will recommend Navy Pier (cold that time of year) and Watertower Place.

You could also make a trip to the top of the Sears or Hancock towers.

A ride on the El is always a good way to show non-city people (especially young ones) how the world works.
Worktowander is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 03:55 AM
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I just returned from a weekend in Chicago. Wicked was great! We ate at two great restaurants in the theatre area. I highly recommend both The Atwood (in Hotel Burnham) and Trattoria #10. Make reservations.
KathyK is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 04:05 AM
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I think the Field Museum would be good for our 8 yr old but our teen girls aren't interested in that type of thing right now. Maybe Marshall Field
KathyK - What type of food did Atwood have and what was the price range?
leahinsc is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 05:10 AM
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For really authentic Mexican food (NOT the Tex-Mex stuff served most places) try the places run by Rick Bayless. See this link
Curt is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 06:20 AM
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You are just a couple of minutes' walk from the Art Institute. There's something for everyone there - the famous collection of Impressionists, of course, but also antiquities, modern art, textiles, photography. Don't miss it.

Millennium Park and the lakefront would be my second must-see recommendation. Most outdoor events are gone with the summer, but there will be many other things to spark the girls interest. and have great listings.
patg is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 06:33 AM
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Go to

Get goChicago combo entrance tickets if applicable.

The Art Institute is a must for anyone of any age- even if it is for 2 hours in the afternoon.

The Aquarium is great for all and would only take about 2-3 hours if you omitted the dolphin show. Landings inside is very nice for lunch with a good view.

I just went to Atwood Cafe last week and the bill for 5 of us was $123 without the tip for a ladies lunch; we all had salads and wine. Trattoria #10 is downstairs and great but even pricier. But I do love their Butternut Squash Ravioli. The girls would probably like the pizza and or Mexican specialty places better, IMHO.

A good one for a group in the theatre district is Golden Buddha- and more economical. 312 Chicago is close as well but also pricey, IMHO. There are hundreds of restaurants that the girls would like, I'm sure. Heaven on Seven has a good view for a bite. But in my life the kids have liked the Watertower court food places just as well for a lot less money.

Check out and put in your hotel address and you'll get a ton of restaurants near to your location that you can ask about here on Fodors.
The downtown pros here don't all agree by any means.

Sorry to sound like a college faculty member, which I am- but there is more than SHOPPING in Chicago institutions. And your 16 and 18 year olds will love some of them. Art Institute absolutely.

You will be here for all the windows so do State St.- Field's/ Carson's etc. just for that. And bring clothing that covers your legs and arms. If you are coming from the South, shortie stylish jackets aren't going to cut it.

I wouldn't miss a stop at the Cultural Center, nor at the Harold Washington Library to see all the pink marble- just in walking around or walking through. It would take you little time.

You will love Wicked. Hair Spray is in that weekend at Cadillac Palace. I'm going on the 8th. That might be a very close thing to do as well- if you get sick of roaming.
JJ5 is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 06:45 AM
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The menu at the Atwood is American. I had spinach linguine with shrimp and asparagus in a lemon cream sauce. They also had fish, chicken, lamb, beef. The dessert menu looked great but we passed, as we had previously decided to go elsewhere for a late dessert. Our bill was $45 each, (one of us ordered a salad) including wine. Most entrees ranged in the $18-28 range. I hate to disagree with JJ5, she is such a good source of Chicago information, but I didn't think that Trattoria #10 was pricier than the Atwood. Dinner there was $40 a person, with wine, and 3 of us ordered salad. I don't think you'll go wrong with either choice.
KathyK is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 06:56 AM
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Trattoria #10 was pricer for lunch than Atwood was. I never went for a dinner. It was with my 26 year old son and my 35 year old daughter. They did order meat dishes though. Actually to me, $40 or $45 is pretty steep for a meal anywhere. I'm a SOUTH sider, you know.

But of the two Trattoria #10 is much quieter, if that is something you like.
JJ5 is offline  
Oct 6th, 2005, 04:30 PM
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ttt for bjechort
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