Hotel at a Glance: Hotel Chicago
Marina City, with its cylindrical towers that look like giant corncobs, is one of the most-photographed buildings in Chicago (you might have seen it on the cover of Wilco’s album Yankee Hotel Foxtrot). Hotel Chicago is tucked behind Marina City, and it’s a convenient home base for exploring the city. Millennium Park, Museum Campus, and the shopping on State Street are minutes away, and the surrounding neighborhood is flush with restaurants, art galleries, and iconic Chicago attractions.
- Chic guest rooms: Sophisticated decor set amid 42-inch flat-screen TVs and pillow-top mattresses with 320-thread-count sheets.
- Break a sweat in the 24-hour fitness center.
- Walking time to Millennium Park: 10 minutes
Chicago’s River North: World-Class Art Galleries, Restaurants, and Nightlife near Downtown
Bordering the Loop on the northern side of the Chicago River, the River North neighborhood is where the skyscrapers of downtown give way to the award-winning restaurants and trendy nightspots of the North Side. Once an industrial area, River North is today home to architectural gems—look no further than The Contemporaine residential building on Wells Street—as well as eateries to suit every appetite and budget. Your options range from inventive Peruvian cuisine at the newly opened Tanta Restaurant to Chicago classics like Portillo’s. You could spend days working your way through the offerings at Eataly, an Italian mecca with 23 separate restaurants and food stalls.
In addition to its formidable culinary presence, River North boasts the country’s largest concentration of art galleries outside of Manhattan. Born around the same time that Jim Nutt and other Chicago Imagists rose to prominence, the River North Gallery District runs along Chicago, Superior and Huron Streets, occupying century-old, red brick warehouses that have been converted into lofts and exhibition spaces.
Amid River North’s restaurants, condos, nightclubs, and galleries, you’ll also find the leaders of Chicago’s rapidly growing tech sector. Among the companies that have offices here: Google, a gaggle of digital startups at the 1871 co-working space, and, yes, Groupon (we’re in the old Montgomery Ward building, where the mail-order catalog was born).