Friday, May 15, 2015

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago! I love ya. This city has a special place in my heart. Not only do I have family here, & my sister now goes to school here (reppin Columbia College for the little sis), I think Chicago is such a beautiful city. I like to think of it as a mini NYC. Lots of twinkling lights, a "fashion district," good eats, big windows, & a couple of very well known landmarks. Luckily I have been to Chicago during multiple seasons, so I have been able to see the sites a few different times under different circumstances. I have a few spots that I think are a MUST to hit when you visit Chicago. We just visited Chicago at the end of April slightly on a whim (it is about an 8 hour drive for us), & I can definitely say that these destinations were some of my favorites! Here is a photo diary of some of my trips to Chicago & the places we visited in this wonderful city.

Landmarks & Sites to See:

PC: Sophie Barker

"The Bean" The Cloud Gate Sculpture:
Who wouldn't love to take their picture behind/underneath/in front of the bean? You can go underneath the arch of the bean & get your picture taken with multiple "mirrored" images of yourself & the other bean visitors! It is fun to say you have been to one of the largest sculptures of its kind. Plus, it is located right in Millennium Park! Make sure you go on a clear day so that you can capture the Chicago skyline in the background!

For The Bean's address & information: visit The Chicago Traveler

Navy Pier: Navy Pier is one of my favorite tourist spots to hit when in Chicago. You get an all-in-one package when you visit the pier. Shopping, food, pretty landscapes, shows, etc! When we went to the pier it was Spring, but still fairly rainy & cold. Even with the weather conditions we decided to take the ferris wheel for a spin, & I definitely did not regret it! You can see pretty much all of the city from the ferris wheel. & The shopping arena was tons of fun. They even have fireworks in the summer every Wednesday & Saturday.

All Navy Pier information located on their website, at

The Skydeck at Willis Tower: The Willis Tower is a serious landmark. It is the largest building in the western hemisphere. I am not one for heights, but this is a must see! "The Ledge" is located at the very top of the tower & it literally extends you out 4 feet in a glass dome so that you can see the city from all aspects. It is slightly stomach-churning, but it is an exhilarating experience to see! Tickets are not too expensive, & it is a once in lifetime, when-in-Chicago attraction you just can't pass up. Check out photos of The Tower, The Ledge, & get all the information you need for a visit at The Skydeck Website {here}.

United Center/Chicago Blackhawks Game: I have to say this was one of the best times I have had visiting Chicago thus far. The Blackhawks game was unreal. So much energy & commotion. Any hockey game is fun to attend (in my mind), but going to a Blackhawks game in the heart of Chicago is definitely a good time. There are loads of die hard fans. Not to mention we got to go during the Stanley Cup. This made for an even crazier experience! It was the cherry on top of our trip. My voice hurt the next day from screaming.

For tickets & general info,

{Refer to the Links & Image for Original Image Source}:

PC: W. Brian Duncan via Battered Luggage

The Palmer House Hilton Hotel: We stayed here on our last visit to Chicago & it was a really beautiful building, located in the perfect spot. Within walking distance of a lot of restaurants & shopping, we decided that this hotel was definitely worth it for the price that we had to pay! The room rates are reasonable, definitely (like any other hotel) cheaper during the week. The architecture is timeless, & the lobby is something out of an old film.

Room rates & availability at

Food & Nightlife:

This outfit was perfect for Gibson's steak house, casual/classy. White pants (I got in California): Similar {here}|| Purple Dyed Chiffon Top: Forever 21 || Blush Pink Blazer: Target; Similar {here}|| Tan Booties: Crown Vintage via DSW {here}

{Refer to the Links & Image for Original Image Source}:

Gino's East Pizzeria

Shake Shack, Dunkin Donuts (I know right? it is super popular), Any kind of Pizza (Specifically Gino's East - this place is seriously to die for Chicago style pizza), cozy cafes, along with upbeat bars & restaurants can be found on pretty much every corner downtown Chicago. We had so much fun wandering around the city, where we would stop into random restaurants & bars to see their menus & what they had to offer. On one of our trips to Chicago we also stopped at Gibson's Steakhouse which was a really awesome experience. They had family style dinner, the food was amazing, & the service was great! As for nightlife, Rush Street has so many bars it is overwhelming, along with West Hubbard Street (River North). Be prepared for some jam packed places, & lines, but it is worth it for a fun night out! We speficially enjoyed The Social Twenty-Five Nightclub which is 2 stories & has great music & a cool atmosphere.

Shopping The Magnificent Mile:

The Magnificent Mile is unreal for shopping! It has pretty much everything you could possibly need. Beautiful shops from all ends of the fashion spectrum. High/low pricing, depending on what end of the "mile" you are on. Bring everyone, because no one will leave empty handed. It sure is dreamy.

To see all the shops, dining options, events along the mile, & more, visit

So there we have it. A "diary" of some photos I have taken on our trips to Chicago. I promise you, you wont regret visiting this timeless city. Make a weekend of it! Let me know if you guys visit these spots/landmarks & what you think of them! xx

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