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    The Westin Michigan Avenue Chicago

    Chicago, United States


    Find and experience great local places nearby.

    With late checkout on Sundays and extended breakfast hours all weekend at participating hotels, you’ll enjoy extra time to explore your destination.

    Find the best of the local area.
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    Promontory Point Park
    5491 S South Shore Dr
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Best View of the Chicago Skyline
    By Dawn Welsh

    With loads of green grass, trees and playgrounds, there is something for everyone at Promontory Point Park. Overlooking the swimmers and sunbathers on the rocks below, one can sit for hours looking at the skyline and Lake Michigan. Locals have picnics, cookouts and gatherings all year around.

    This beautiful park space is easy to find on Lake Shore Drive, across from the grand Museum of Science and Industry. It's along the bike path as well so you can easily ride here!

    Read More
    Rootstock Wine & Beer Bar
    954 North California Avenue
    Chicago, United States
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    Off the Beaten Path and So Worth It
    By Dawn Welsh

    Rootstock crafts great drinks and bites with laid-back style and without pretension. Chef Duncan Biddulph pays attention to the details—he focuses on incorporating locally farmed produce whenever possible and produces their wine and beer in small batches.

    This spot is wonderful, especially for those who get a late start on the night—they serve food every evening (except Sunday) until 1am. The kitchen does not close because it may not be busy. The food is stellar and the selection of wines, beers, and spirits is beyond measure.

    I love this place and if you don't see anything familiar on the menu, go ahead and ask. They really know their stuff. PS: brunch is fantastic & served until 4pm.

    Read More
    Haymaker Shop
    5507 North Clark Street
    Chicago, United States
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    Artisan-Made Goods at Haymaker
    By Meghan McEwen

    The goods at Arrin Williams’s year-old Andersonville shop, Haymaker, are mostly handmade by local artisans. Powder-coated-steel side tables by David Greene, hanging plant holders made from reclaimed wood, and coveted leather bags by Chicago-based Winter Session combine to achieve the perfect old-new, high-low variety. (773) 681-0798

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    Sprout Restaurant
    1417 West Fullerton Avenue
    Chicago, United States
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    Great Tastes in Lincoln Park
    By Jack MacDonough

    Sprout was a suggestion from dear friends who had just returned to Chicago after years living and eating in NYC. Sprout has a menu that notes tastes not necessarily ingredients. Ask your server to explain what is what. This is not your standard fare. At the moment, I would say it is the most interesting place for food in Chicago, which means the Midwest.

    The exterior is pretty subtle, and we had to confirm we actually had arrived. The location is off the beaten path for such good food, but so well worth the trip.

    The chef is "Top Chef" alum (and first Chicagoan to appear on the show) Dale Levitski.

    Read More
    B.L.U.E.S. R&B
    2519 N Halsted St
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Blues Bar in Chicago
    By Jack MacDonough

    B.L.U.E.S. is not a big bar, but they play plenty of great blues (and have been voted best blues club on Chicago's North Side). Primarily local artists play in this comfortable, intimate setting. If you want a seat, push way in past the stage and you will end up sitting among the guest artists (who are even more friendly if you buy one of their CDs).

    Read More
    Haymaker Shop
    5507 North Clark Street
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Artisan-Made Goods at Haymaker
    By Meghan McEwen

    The goods at Arrin Williams’s year-old Andersonville shop, Haymaker, are mostly handmade by local artisans. Powder-coated-steel side tables by David Greene, hanging plant holders made from reclaimed wood, and coveted leather bags by Chicago-based Winter Session combine to achieve the perfect old-new, high-low variety. (773) 681-0798

    Read More
    Promontory Point Park
    5491 S South Shore Dr
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Best View of the Chicago Skyline
    By Dawn Welsh

    With loads of green grass, trees and playgrounds, there is something for everyone at Promontory Point Park. Overlooking the swimmers and sunbathers on the rocks below, one can sit for hours looking at the skyline and Lake Michigan. Locals have picnics, cookouts and gatherings all year around.

    This beautiful park space is easy to find on Lake Shore Drive, across from the grand Museum of Science and Industry. It's along the bike path as well so you can easily ride here!

    Read More
    Sprout Restaurant
    1417 West Fullerton Avenue
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Great Tastes in Lincoln Park
    By Jack MacDonough

    Sprout was a suggestion from dear friends who had just returned to Chicago after years living and eating in NYC. Sprout has a menu that notes tastes not necessarily ingredients. Ask your server to explain what is what. This is not your standard fare. At the moment, I would say it is the most interesting place for food in Chicago, which means the Midwest.

    The exterior is pretty subtle, and we had to confirm we actually had arrived. The location is off the beaten path for such good food, but so well worth the trip.

    The chef is "Top Chef" alum (and first Chicagoan to appear on the show) Dale Levitski.

    Read More
    Rootstock Wine & Beer Bar
    954 North California Avenue
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Off the Beaten Path and So Worth It
    By Dawn Welsh

    Rootstock crafts great drinks and bites with laid-back style and without pretension. Chef Duncan Biddulph pays attention to the details—he focuses on incorporating locally farmed produce whenever possible and produces their wine and beer in small batches.

    This spot is wonderful, especially for those who get a late start on the night—they serve food every evening (except Sunday) until 1am. The kitchen does not close because it may not be busy. The food is stellar and the selection of wines, beers, and spirits is beyond measure.

    I love this place and if you don't see anything familiar on the menu, go ahead and ask. They really know their stuff. PS: brunch is fantastic & served until 4pm.

    Read More
    Lincoln Park Conservatory
    2391 North Stockton Drive
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Wicked Garden
    By Matthew Keesecker

    See our full list of Where to Go in 2015.

    Constructed way back in 1890, the Lincoln Park Conservatory and Gardens in downtown Chicago boasts a mind-boggling array of exotic plants and flowers. The conservatory is home to four different display houses, as well as sculptures, outdoor gardens, monuments and a tranquil fountain. The irony is that while the sprawling gardens encompass a huge swath of land, it all resides right in the middle of the bustling Lincoln Park area, yet still remains one of the hidden gems of the Windy City. It has been referred to as a botanical goldmine, and is equally entertaining for adults and children alike. This place is indeed one wicked garden.

    Chicago is known for lots of interesting things, but this is one hidden gem that is both fantastic and free.

    Read More
    Haymaker Shop
    5507 North Clark Street
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Artisan-Made Goods at Haymaker
    By Meghan McEwen

    The goods at Arrin Williams’s year-old Andersonville shop, Haymaker, are mostly handmade by local artisans. Powder-coated-steel side tables by David Greene, hanging plant holders made from reclaimed wood, and coveted leather bags by Chicago-based Winter Session combine to achieve the perfect old-new, high-low variety. (773) 681-0798

    Read More
    Promontory Point Park
    5491 S South Shore Dr
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Best View of the Chicago Skyline
    By Dawn Welsh

    With loads of green grass, trees and playgrounds, there is something for everyone at Promontory Point Park. Overlooking the swimmers and sunbathers on the rocks below, one can sit for hours looking at the skyline and Lake Michigan. Locals have picnics, cookouts and gatherings all year around.

    This beautiful park space is easy to find on Lake Shore Drive, across from the grand Museum of Science and Industry. It's along the bike path as well so you can easily ride here!

    Read More
    Telegraph Wine Bar
    2601 North Milwaukee Avenue
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Speak Easy at Telegraph Wine Bar
    By Matthew Keesecker

    Located in Logan Square, and featuring one of the more eclectic wine lists I've seen in a while, Telegraph Wine Bar is the perfect place to swing by for a leisurely bite to eat and drink. The antique fixtures and lights provide a bit of a speakeasy vibe, and the rustic double bar and hardwood furniture definitely make you feel right at home and safe from prohibition-era raids. As you sip your craft drinks, unique wine, or small batch beer, enjoy indie tunes in the background. If you want a real local bar with a speakeasy feel, there's a seat at the bar with your name on it.

    If you're planning on having dinner as well, the menu is meat-heavy, which is not necessarily a bad thing unless you're vegetarian. The desserts are sizable enough to feed your party of four, if you even want to share (it's that good).

    Read More
    Ba Le
    5014 North Broadway Street
    Chicago, United States
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    En Chicago, le Bánh Mi Est Tres Bon
    By Joseph Hernandez

    Just steps from the colorful Argyle CTA stop in Chicago's Uptown neighborhood, Ba Le Bakery specializes in Vietnamese food—efficient, fast and tasty fusion food.

    You can’t go wrong with the Bun Thit Nuong ($7.95)—piping-hot grilled pork, cold rice vermicelli, veggies and a housemade lemon fish sauce—or any of the various Bánh Mi (from $5.95)—a deceptively simple sandwich of either meat or tofu, mayonnaise, vinegary pickled carrot, sweet daikon, jalapeno and cilantro between a fresh baguette. Though the place is bustling, it's never hectic. Grab-and-go is the name of the game, but it's worth it to order yourself a sandwich or two (they're that good!), then head to Lake Michigan—a short 10 minute walk east—for a little picnic action.

    You won't be disappointed, either with the bonne vue or the bahn mi.

    Ba Le Bakery, 5018 N. Broadway Ave., 773.561.4424

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    Fine Wine Brokers
    4621 North Lincoln Avenue
    Chicago, United States
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    Choice Wine
    By Matthew Keesecker

    Nestled in Lincoln Square, Fine Wine Brokers will truly cater to your needs. They have one of the more eclectic selections of choice wines anywhere in the city of Chicago. There are tastings on the weekends, and grand gala events every few months that often times benefit the local animal shelter with a portion of their proceeds. Pop in for a quick bottle for your evening event, or swing by to pick up some beer, wine, and other special libations, along with some cheese and cured meats.

    Read More
    B.L.U.E.S. R&B
    2519 N Halsted St
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    Blues Bar in Chicago
    By Jack MacDonough

    B.L.U.E.S. is not a big bar, but they play plenty of great blues (and have been voted best blues club on Chicago's North Side). Primarily local artists play in this comfortable, intimate setting. If you want a seat, push way in past the stage and you will end up sitting among the guest artists (who are even more friendly if you buy one of their CDs).

    Read More
    Ravenswood Used Bookstore
    Chicago, United States
    Show Map
    True Pulp Fiction
    By Matthew Keesecker

    Tucked away behind an unassuming storefront you will find a shop with a misnomer of a name: Ravenswood Used Bookstore (it's located in Lincoln Square, not Ravenswood). Our hero and proprietor, Jim, has gathered such an incredible collection of used books that even the most well-traveled 'bookies' will find themselves lost in a labyrinth of pulp and fiction and truth and narrative, and lord knows what else. I’ve found more than a few treasures over the years, and I’m sure there’s a treasure there awaiting you, if you simply take the time to stop by and take a book.

    With the sheer volume of literature that is crammed into such a small space, and everything precariously balanced just so, every time I go here, I swear I am one book-pull away from bringing down the house – ‘literaturally.’

    Transactions are made through cash or check, or even bartering if you have a work that Jim would like to add to his shelves for a future patron to discover.

    Read More
    Chicago Symphony Orchestra
    220 South Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, United States
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    Chicago Symphony Orchestra
    By Matthew Keesecker

    Going to the CSO is like visiting another planet where all communication is done through music. The space is dazzling, the crowd is cultured, and once the orchestra begins your heart will soar with each and every perfectly played note. If you are so inclined, you can even design your very own 'concert series,' which is a set of performances tailored to your exact taste. Visit their website for show times and tickets, and note that discounted prices are available for students.

    Photo: http://cso.org/

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    900 North Michigan Shops
    900 North Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, United States
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    Shop Til You Drop at the 900 Shops
    By Natalie Taylor

    I thought New York was a good shopping city but Chicago has pretty much the same big name shops and they're spaced out. The 900 Shops was probably my favorite space in terms of cleanliness, space and quality of shops.

    The best J. Crew is here and their staff are phenomenal. I really liked the Bloomingdales and the Club Monaco here as well.

    I found that the selection was much more varied and the quality of shops was better here and on Michigan Avenue than on State Street.

    There is also an ATM on the first floor because you will run out of money.

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