Chicago City Guide-Sleep, Eat and Fun!
If you don't know by now, Paulina is literally running all over the world with a curious spirit and calculated approach to travel. She doesn't miss a beat. So when she sent me her top picks for Chicago, I thought 'PERFECT!' the TIU Tour Stop is going to be their last stop next week. Check out some great spots if you're still planning your trip!
Guest post by contributing writer, Paulina of @PKtravels
Being based out of Detroit, there is a limited number of destinations for an easy, fun weekend getaway. However, Chicago is a great choice!
Here are my top 3 suggestions on where to sleep, eat and fun things you can do while you’re there:
Where to Sleep:
Kinzie Hotel Located in the River North district, you are steps away from the action. This contemporary boutique hotel offers specific packages depending on the type of weekend you’re trying to have, and the amount of time you’re staying. I enjoyed the Valentine’s Day Love Potion package which included a mixologist visiting my room with a custom bar cart. What a way to start the night! I recommend booking the Corner City View Room to indulge in Chicago’s architecture, even from your bed.
Hotel Felix Also located in River North, this boutique hotel is Chicago’s first hotel with Silver LEED certification (for all my eco-conscious girls out there!). The rooms combine sustainability without compromising on the aesthetic front. Troquet River North is right by the hotel, which had a great happy hour to enjoy steps away from my room!
Freehand Chicago Freehand offers a range of accommodations from hostel/dorm style bunk beds (perfect for solo travelers), to penthouses which are ideal for larger groups. Although I have not stayed at this property before, the restored art deco building located in River North is on my list for the next Chicago weekend adventure!
Where to Eat
MingHin Cuisine Ever since having genuine Dim Sum in Hong Kong last year, I make it a point to visit a city’s respective Chinatown district whenever I travel now. MingHin is as real as it gets on this side of the world. With two Chicago locations (Downtown and Chinatown), you are bound to enter the Dim Sum heaven with your first bite. Don’t be turned off by the wait for a table; the service here moves extremely fast and you will likely be seated within 10-15 minutes max.
Giordano’s Deep Dish Pizza Let’s be honest – this review would not be complete without a mentioning deep dish pizza that Chicago is famous for. Before my first visit to the Windy City, I’d never had this type of pizza before… and somehow managed to convince myself that I’d hate it (maybe I hoped I’d hate it as a safety precaution to my waistline). Regardless, I tried my first deep dish pizza at Giordano’s and absolutely loved it! Granted, this is not something one should eat often, but when in Chicago, make sure to grab a personal pizza and indulge!
Firecakes Donuts Firecakes is a gem that I stumbled upon completely by accident while wandering the streets of Chicago. With a few tables outside, Firecakes has a donut for everyone… although the Chocolate Hazelnut Long John was the one that stole my heart. Depending on the season, they also had ice cream donut sandwiches which should be enough of a reason to swing by for a sweat treat while in town.
What to Do and See
Chicago Architecture Foundation (CAF) River Cruise If you didn’t know, Chicago is known for the vast diversity of architectural styles. The CAF River Cruise is the best way to learn and marvel at the buildings lined along the Chicago River. Since the boat is moving rather slow, this is a perfect opportunity to snag some stunning shots of the cityscape and skyline!
Millennium Park is located in the Loop area of Chicago and is where Cloud Gate (otherwise known as The Bean) is located. The Crown Fountain is also worth seeing which is an interactive work of art combining videos and water features. The fountain is only operational between May and October.
The Willis Tower (also known as the Sears Tower) offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city with a small twist. The Skydeck portion of the observation deck provides an opportunity look through the glass balcony to the streets over 1,300 ft below! As an engineer, I understand that I shouldn’t be worried about the safety of this attraction. However, I found stepping on “the ledge” is to be somewhat of a nerve-racking experience. If the Willis Tower is on your itinerary, I suggest going there first to avoid the crowds!
Other attractions worth seeing are the Lincoln Park Zoo, Shedd Aquarium, Museum of Science and Industry, and of course Navy Pier.
Now you're ready to spend the weekend in Chicago!
Tag me in your travels and DM me at @pktravels to let me know what you think!