Chicago Girls Weekend

Aug 9th, 2014, 09:28 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Dec 2010
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Chicago Girls Weekend

Three or four of us will be spending a weekend in Chicago. Any suggestions on hotels with suites for us? We like the River North area, or any other interesting neighborhood that doesn't require a car. Thanks.
wbrown is offline  
Aug 10th, 2014, 07:49 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
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Any hotel will have connecting rooms if you ask. If you book connecting rooms, you could get four beds and two bathrooms. A suite may only have two beds and one bath.

There are several suite hotels around the area including 2 Residence Inns, 2 Embassy Suites, Spring Hill Suites on North Dearborn, the Omni on Michigan Avenue, Hilton Suites on East Delaware and Homewood Suites East Grand.

You don't say when you're traveling or what your budget is. Hotel prices are very sensitive to big events and the city is a major convention destination, so that will affect and availibility. The Jazz Fest is Labor Day weekend and the Chicago Marathon is October 10-12 which draws around 45,000 people to the city. The following weekend is an opthalmology meeting with another 26,000 people.
Citylghts is offline  
Aug 10th, 2014, 12:02 PM
  #3  
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Thanks so much. We'll be going early November -- not a big travel time. And with 3 of us, hoping our room(s) would be $300 or less.
wbrown is offline  
Aug 12th, 2014, 06:28 AM
  #4  
 
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Hi, wbrown. This posting outlined option for a family of four.

But I would recommend the Homewood Suites on Grand, or the Embassy Suites on State Street. Both are located on super-convenient and comfortable streets to explore.

http://www.fodors.com/community/unit...cago-hotel.cfm

Hope you have a great time in Chicago. Maybe schedule an afternoon tea at the Drake or the Langham hotel, and drinks at NoMi, and a night of Improv at ImprovOlympic or comedy at Second City. If you want reccos on things to do, perhaps post again with the sort of thing you and your friends are hoping to do.
ChgoGal is offline  
Aug 13th, 2014, 05:45 AM
  #5  
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Thanks for the suggestions. My friends wanted to look at VRBO and found some nice 3-BR condos, but the cancellation fees were so steep that we decided against that. But going back to a hotel suite after that felt so cramped. So we Flemish House, which has a 2BR + LR (with day bed) + kitchen, and will try that out.

Currently, we have about 10 days of stuff on our itinerary for a weekend trip! CAF tour, Art Institute, Field Museum, self-walking-tour of public art, Armitage St and/or Wicker Park/Bucktown, U Chicago sites, SOFA, Driehaus and Addams Museums, Robie House (although I've been to Oak Park before), ... For nightlife, we're thinking of one night of music, one of improv/comedy, and one play.

Any thumbs up or down for any of this stuff, or other suggestions, appreciated!
wbrown is offline  
Aug 17th, 2014, 08:45 AM
  #6  
 
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The Flemish House is a very good choice in a choice location. Be aware, though, that this is a walk-up to the 4th floor.

CAF tour - definite yes. The River Cruise would be iffy, if that's what you meant. Chicago often has ice storms and/or snow by Halloween. Even if there isn't ice or snow, very likely it would be COLD.

Self-walking tour of public art - be prepared to bundle up. Layers are best.

Art Institute - definite yes.

Field Museum - if you feel compelled to do so. However, that time of the year, the weather may force you to be inside most of the time.

Armitage (assume you mean in Lincoln Park) - for expensive boutique shopping or the architecture? Great restaurants in the area and some of the best of Chicago theatre (i.e., Steppenwolf)

Jane Addams Hull House Museum - you might cross that off your list - not close to anything else you have listed

University of Chicago/Hyde Park - you will have to allow more than a quarter of your entire time. Takes a considerable chunk of time to travel there and back from your hotel - unless you are willing to pony up the $$$ for cab rides there and back ($20+ ea. way plus tip).

Wicker Park/Bucktown - Important! Check the CTA's website re: Blue Line station closures/renovations starting in mid-October. This will affect your travel plans there.

Take a look at the Harris Theatre (Millennium Park) or Old Town School of Folk Music's (in Lincoln Square) calendars to see if anything looks interesting to you.
exiledprincess is offline  
Aug 18th, 2014, 01:03 PM
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If time permits you may want to add the Cultural Center to your list. It is home to the largest Tiffany Dome in the world. It is just beautiful. It is in the Loop area not too far from the Art Institute.
gardendiva is offline  
Aug 20th, 2014, 06:54 AM
  #8  
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Wow, thanks for all this info. The travel advisory are especially helpful. And yes, the Cultural Center was on our list -- just forgot to add that.
wbrown is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2014, 06:51 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Hi, wbrown.

Nice location on your b&b! There are some pretty areas to explore--Dearborn Parkway and State Parkway (starting north of Division up to North Avenue) features some lovely architecture. The Pump Room might be a nice place for a cocktail one night.

Just wanted to let you know Steppenwolf will be staging a Conor McPherson play, THE NIGHT ALIVE, in early November, starring a great, great actor -- Fran Guinan. If you want a great theater experience, that's where I'd go.

http://www.steppenwolf.org/Plays-Eve...ex.aspx?id=622

Hope you have a great time. I second all of Exiled Princess' notes. I'd pass on U of Chicago/Hyde Park and Oak Park with your limited time.
ChgoGal is offline  
Nov 11th, 2014, 11:37 AM
  #10  
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We had a great time, and can't praise the Flemish House enough! Though billed as a B&B, it's really more of a 2-bedroom apartment with really nice hosts to help you out. We liked not having breakfast at a set time with others, since we so seldom get together. A quick trip to Trader Joes for scones, some fresh fruit, yogurt and granola, and a bottle of wine, and we were all set. (Coffee and tea provided in the fully equipped kitchen.) NOTE: for the other rooms and suites, there is a breakfast option.

Location was perfect, and walked everywhere until our last day.

Friday we were all together for a late dinner at Bistro Zinc, about a block from Flemish House. Excellent food, great atmosphere, and we were able to linger as long as we wanted.

Saturday we walked downtown via Mag Mile and started at the Cultural Center. The dome and all the mosaics leading up to it were spectacular! Off to the Art Institute for the rest of the day, then back to the room to rest. Dinner that night was at Le Colonial, also close to the Flemish House. The atmosphere and service were again great, and the Viet Nam good.

Sunday was the fabulous CAF architectural boat tour. It was a bit nippy, but definitely doable. A great overview of the architecture of the city, with history, culture, and humor thrown in. The docent obviously loves her job! We walked around downtown a little more, then back to the room to rest for a bit before walking over to Old Town. We did a little walking tour around the neighborhood (great neighborhood to wander through), stopped in a few shops, stopped into an artist's reception, then went to dinnner at Topo Gigios. A little kitchsy but fun. We had delicious Italian food and a great table for people watching. After, we walked about a block to see the Second City Revue -- hilarious!

Monday we were down to just two of us. We decided to check out a different neighborhood and went to Pilsen. It turned out that a lot of what we wanted to see was closed on Mondays, and we were too full from a big breakfast to eat in the neighborhood. So we got back on the train and went up to the Chicago History Museum. We spent most of our time wallowing in nostalgia at the 1968 exhibit, but also were able to squeeze in some time at the permanent Crossroads exhibit (made more interesting because we had a great orientation from the boat tour). A quick stop eating appetizers at an outdoor table (under strong heat lamps) at Tavern on Rush, which gave us some final people-watching time, then off to the airport.

It wasn't a packed-to-the-gills sightseeing trip -- we enjoyed spending massive amounts of time just walking the city and gabbing together. But it was the perfect trip for us, since being cross-country friends we don't get a lot of time together to catch up. At our last dinner, we decided to do it again every year at a different location. Any ideas on places to stay or itinerary for Toronto?
wbrown is offline  
Nov 11th, 2014, 12:31 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
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Glad it worked out so well for you. Chicago is indeed a marvelous city. LOVE the architecture tour on the river!
simpsonc510 is offline  

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