The Chicago branch of Gray Line's global sightseeing operation organizes a wide variety of tours and excursions throughout the Windy City, from architectural tours that send passengers coasting on the river and lake for sun-drenched educational cruises to shopping odysseys at Chicago Premium Outlets, where travelers can zip through more than 100 stores and restaurants after being shuttled to the retail utopia. Blues outings treat music lovers to raw licks, soul food, and real tears at celebrated concert venues such as Buddy Guy's Legends and Rosa's Lounge.
Gray Line's cherry-red trolleys transport visitors and residents alike to famous Chicago sites. Just north of the river, the vehicles idle before the Wrigley Building's sparkling white terra cotta façade, which in the 1920s stood as the first major skyscraper outside of The Loop. From there, the trolley may motor north to the John Hancock Center, where elevators to its observatory sweep guests 96 floors in 39 seconds. The trolley could also steer south to the Willis Tower, which lost its maiden name of Sears after being charmed by a passing cumulus cloud.
Chicago Limo Net ushers its office-, nightlife-, and airport-bound clientele about the Chicago area in a fleet of luxurious, custom buses and limousines. Twenty-four-passenger party buses bedecked in low-level lighting, leather couches, dancing poles, and mirror-laden roofs bestow a nightclub-like feel minus the acute stares of gargantuan doormen. Smaller 6- and 10-passenger limousines present many of the same creature comforts in a more aerodynamic package for airport or around-town trips. Each party conveyance is piloted by a professional chauffeur with extensive knowledge of downtown Chicago, who will gladly take the fastest or most scenic route and can offer unique insights into the city, such as how to differentiate between the Willis Tower and the pier's ferris wheel.
Park Ride & Fly USA's car caretakers protect vacationing cars within 24-hour, well-lit parking lots near airports in more than 30 states. After dropping off their automobiles, customers can transport themselves and their luggage to the airport aboard one of the company’s complimentary shuttles or human-size hamster balls. While away, patrons rest easy knowing that their steel steeds are safe within fenced lots that are monitored by 24-hour surveillance. At many locations, shuttles also swing by the terminal to pick up returning travelers and reunite them with their respective vehicles, which are first freed of cloud-based artillery, including snow or recently rained molasses.
Stretch Limousine, Inc.'s professional chauffeurs crisscross Chicagoland in a luxurious fleet of sedans, limousines, and party buses. Ranging from the perennial Lincoln Town Car and stretch limo to expansive party buses and coach buses, the fleet has suitable transportation for any occasion. Due to the wide range of vehicles, the services attract wedding parties, bachelor parties, and sporting event transport, so Stretch Limousine has constructed packages that include fully stocked bars, VIP passes to clubs, and limousines outfitted with cans for weddings.
Nevada Ballet Theatre will launch its 39th season on October 15 with its Fall Series tribute to the late Robert Joffrey. This unprecedented performance will feature the combined dance powers of four of the nation's leading companies: Ballet West, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, and the Nevada Ballet Theatre. NBT dancers will kick off the evening with fluid, impressionistic movements that passionately recall the beauty of Degas paintings without subjecting the audience to overly talkative art historians with turpentine breath. Hubbard Street Dance Chicago will take the stage to perform the pas de deux from Gnawa, followed by Aspen Santa Fe Ballet's rendition of Jorma Elo's Red Sweet, a hyperkinetic blend of robotics and pirouettes. Danceophiles can also wiggle their feet fingers in anticipation of a special preview performance of Jiri Kylian's joyous Sinfonietta, danced by Ballet West.
Hertz Rent-a-Car is one of the largest general use rental companies in the world, aiming to provide customer-focused, cost-effective service. Their 90-plus years of experience—a good 20 years before cars had even been invented—gives renters the confident feeling of borrowing a car from a friend without concerns about misplacing said friend's dashboard hula girl. Choose from a wide range of vehicles perfectly suited for a family vacation or simply to give a snazzy new look to grocery store runs. The eco-conscious will appreciate the thoughtful options on display in the green collection, while the ego-conscious may prefer to browse the Prestige Collection's enviable envoy. One-day rentals start at less than $30. No matter what the model, Hertz's convenient pick-up and drop-off services offer peace of mind for weary travelers or clinical car-hoppers (available from Local Edition locations).