With today's first option, two club-wielders can loop the 6,200-yard links of Phillips Park Golf Course, an 18-hole grassy monolith first braved in the mid-1920s. Bisect wide-open fairways with a well-struck drive on the club's front nine, a links-style layout advantageous for long hitters who can evade strategically placed sand-traps and roaming fairway trolls. The hilly back-nine places a higher premium on orb-mashing precision with tighter, tree-lined fairways and picturesque water hazards. Phillips Park employees will help ward off putt-defying hunger pangs with a complimentary hot dog and chips (a $6.50 value), and both divoteers will be granted a small bucket of range balls (an $8 value) to warm up before the round or use as eyeball facsimiles to terrorize gullible children at the next local carnival.
Back when Jill Card and her husband were going on their first date, he told her to wear “jeans and a cute top.” More than two decades later, the couple decided that would be the perfect name for Jill’s clothing boutique, where women of all ages and sizes can now find their own jeans and blouse or sweater for a first date, a night on the town with the fellow jury members, or a day spent hanging around the house. Her shop’s apparel quickly earned awards and media attention and enjoyed enough success to launch a second shop just 14 months later and a third boutique three-and-a-half years later. The laudations still pour in; the shop was named the Best Place to Buy Women’s Jeans by West Suburban Living magazine in 2012 and 2013.
To earn this praise, Jill selects a wide range of jeans from brands such as Silver, Level 99, Miracle Body, Jag, Miss Me, Liverpool, and Kut from the Kloth, enabling denim-seekers from multiple generations to find styles they like. Her friendly staff is likewise well versed on the fit and style of every jean in the shop. She also offers free basic hem alterations. To pair with the jeans, Jill's stores overflow with cute tops, sweaters, blouses, and jackets from labels including Nick & Mo, Boho Chic, Insight, BB Dakota, Kensie, and Tulle. Jill and her staff also adorn shoppers in necklaces, scarves, and accessories.
Arming Windy City's flower followers with a bevy of buxom blossoms since 1889, Amling's Flowers brightens occasions across the spectrum with its fresh floral arrangements. Built from the fruits of partnerships with independent petal peddlers, Amling's artistic arrangements help express emotions fit for a range of occasions, from birthdays to funerals to the first of many joyous parking citations. Lilacs soothe schnozes and seers with a sense-pleasing blend of lavender roses and fragrant hydrangea ($39.95), while the Cotton Candy's bursts of roses, carnations, and chrysanthemums issue forth with pastel explosions not seen since Gregor Mendel cross-bred hyacinths with a stick of dynamite ($34.95+).
Ulta's licensed staff, which partakes in ongoing training to keep skills sharp, creates customized looks and expert image enhancement using acclaimed beauty products. Like a loaf of bread in a space shuttle with a broken sunroof, hairstyles can grow stale between salon visits. A 45-minute coif-cultivation session, in which the stylist takes into account face shape and lifestyle, energizes follicles and forges a salon-fresh look. In the one-hour Dermalogica facial, an aesthetic augur examines skin in order to customize a course of cleansing, toning, and moisturizing session with Dermalogica products. The treatment leaves skin impeccable, like a recently buffed and oiled slab of marble.
With dozens of imported olive oils, Italian vinegars, and exceptional spice blends, the bleu olive helps shoppers festoon homemade salad, pasta, and meat dishes with phenomenal flavors. More than 30 flavored and single-varietal extra virgin olive oils grace the worldly shelves, fetched from foreign climes around the globe to ensure peak harvest and consummate freshness in any season.
Born as a humble street cart in Chicago, Suzette's Creperie has moved to the cozy comforts of downtown Wheaton. Whether diners nibble within the bistro walls or out upon the open-air patio, they'll be free to indulge in a variety of French-inspired fare, including crepes, quiches, and dinnertime entrees. Crepes include savory selections such as spinach soufflé topped in swiss cheese ($12.50 at lunch), or beef bourguignon, braised in red wine for six hours and then rolled into fluffy tubes of satisfaction ($15.50 at lunch). Quiches, served with a side salad of baby field greens and balsamic vinaigrette, include fillings such as lorraine, broccoli and cheddar, or spinach ($10.50 each), while large-scale entrees (available during dinner) include crab cakes with habanero lime sauce ($20) and duck confit with wild mushroom risotto ($21.50), which singlehandedly sends a warning to humankind's two biggest threats—ducks and mushrooms.