Chicago Luxury City Guide: The biggest city in the Midwest, Chicago is more than just the ancestral home of the country's beef industry. Although much of the city's best restaurants are devoted steakhouses, Chicago is the home to some of the country's most savant grade eateries and also has a nightlife teeming with theatre, music and more.
Bordered by Lake Michigan, the city of Chicago has a famous political and cultural heritage, dating from the time of notorious gangster Al Capone to President Barack Obama. Since the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, Chicago has continued to rebuild and revitalize, becoming the great metropolis it is today.
Chicago's wealthiest neighborhood is known as the Gold Coast, extending from the lakefront. Homes in the area are 19th century brownstones as well as luxury high-rise apartment houses that were predominantly built in the 1960s. Close by are the high-end shops of Delaware, Rush, State, Walton, and Oak Street where you can find amazing boutiques from Adriano Goldschmidt, Furl, Graff, Hermes, Kate Spade, Prada, Prates, Todd’s and YSL as well as Bulgaria, Chanel, Louis Vuitton and St. John. Celebrity sightings can also be common in this area, which is in walking distance of the Newberry Library, Chicago History Museum and other institutions of higher learning.
Lincoln Park is another of Chicago's high-end neighborhoods, home to urban professionals and their families. The Lincoln Park area has been revitalized to include high-end retailers like Restoration Hardware, lulu lemon athletic, Rugby Ralph Lauren, Pottery Barn, Barneys New York CO-OP, L'Occitane en Provence, BCBG Max Azria, Abercrombie and Fitch, United Colors of Benetton, Marc Jacobs, Club Monaco as well as an array of coffee shops and bars. The area is named after Lincoln Park, which contains a zoo, an outdoor theatre, a rowing canal as well as ponds and a large statue of General Grant. It is also the location of the Chicago History Museum and the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum.
Must Sees & Do's:
Chicago offers visitors an array of cultural choices from its many museums celebrating the Second City. In an effort to get everyone to enjoy the city's museums equally, the museums work together to offer free admission. Some of the city's most beloved attractions are free year round, including Lincoln Park Zoo, Millennium Park and Navy Pier.
The Lincoln Park Zoo offers a stunning array of animals, from lions to apes as well as special features for the kids like bears and wolves and turtles. The zoo has special exhibits year round and helps support conservation efforts right in the heart of the big city.
Millennium Park is the newest addition to historic Grant Park. Featuring stunning architecture from Frank Gehry and other famous artists from around the world, Millennium Park is a merging of art and outdoors. Tours and events take place in the park daily and visitors are encouraged to enjoy every part.
Navy Pier is the most popular tourist destination in the Midwest. Despite its hundred-year old history, Navy Pier continues to be a Chicagoland favorite, with its perpetual carnival like atmosphere that extends into Lake Michigan, there is always something going on. Navy Pier includes a movie theater with IMAX, shops, restaurants, ever-changing events as well as rides, making it a favorite for generations.
While in Chicago, don't miss Shedd Aquarium, the Art Institute of Chicago, or the Field Museum - an especial childhood favorite.
Wining and Dining:
Chicago is best known for its steakhouses, so if you're in the mood for beef, head to Gibson's Bar & Steakhouse, a favorite with celebrities because of its private booths and generous martinis. Right in the heart of Chicago's restaurant row on Rush Street, Gibson's is one of the city's best steakhouse, serving up huge portions and delicious seafood. Also on Rush Street is Le Passage, one of the city's hippest nightclubs.
While in the Windy City, hit up the restaurants serving the nation's latest culinary obsession: molecular gastronomy. These chefs are at the top of the avant garde movement and they all have restaurants in Chicago: Moto's Homaro Cantu, Alinea's Grant Achatz, and Avenue’s Graham Elliot Bowles.
Enjoy music at the House of Blues; get your funny at the Second City comedy club, which has launched the career of more than one well-known comedian or for something a little different head to the Baton Show Lounge, with its female impersonators.
For the VIP:
Chicago is home to many of the country's most indulged persons, from the President to actors and even Oprah. Enjoy some of the city's Midwestern friendliness like the celebrities do by indulging in some of the city's most luxurious services:
Cruise along the historic Chicago River in one of Chicago VIP Cruise Tour's boats. Learn about Chicago's unique architecture and history from one of the company's knowledgeable guides. While the city of Chicago offers an array of affordable transportation, from the Elevated Train to city buses, nothing says luxury like an exotic car.
While one exotic car rental is nice, more than one is downright decadent and that's just what The Chicago Exotic Car Tour lets you do. For the same price as one rental car, The Chicago Exotic Car Tour allows you the amazing opportunity to drive five luxury cars in one unforgettable experience.
The JustLuxe City Guides have been created for you, our discerning readers, to highlight the most sophisticated, the most popular and the most elegant locations in every destination.
Our local concierge continuously strives to ensure we feature the best of the best in luxury services, dining, hotels and more. Every city offers new things to enjoy, cultures to immerse yourself in and sights to see. We have sought out the best places to see, be seen or just be.