Chicago has achieved having the perfect balance of the charm of the Midwest and hustle and bustle of a big metropolis. Each neighborhood is different and teeming with art, museums, shopping, plenty of amazing culinary creations—all with stunning city and lake views.
You may have never considered Chicago as a beach destination, but the Midwest’s largest city also boasts quote the selection of amazing beaches. Pack a picnic and head to Montrose beach, or head to North Avenue for beach parties, music festivals, and beach volleyball. You'll most likely run into newlyweds taking photos along the shore with an amazing background of the skyline and blue waters of Lake Michigan.
2. THE ARCHITECTURE
After the Great Chicago Fire burned down most of the city’s predominantly wood-framed buildings in 1871, architects came together to form a stronger city structure thus leading to the originality of Chicago architecture. Erik Larson’s famed novel, The Devil in the White City, tells the story of the World’s Columbian Exposition when many of the city’s most famous buildings were designed.
The Willis Tower is the second-tallest building in the United States and home to The Ledge, a glass box extending out past the building’s 103rd floor, offering spectacular views of downtown Chicago and beyond. Take an architectural boat tour to learn more about each building’s history while sipping cocktails.
Chicago has no shortage of unique and inventive craft cocktails. Stop by Conrad Chicago Hotel's 20th floor restaurant, Baptiste & Bottle, for enticing craft bourbon cocktails. Enjoy an interactive cocktail tasting with the Macallan rare cask "virtual reality" experience unlike no other.
Chicagoans don’t really need a reason to drink, but just in case, there's a celebration for everything—either way. Christkindlmarket, "St. Patrick’s Day River Dying," Jazz Festival, Blues Festival, and Taste of Chicago are just a few of the many celebrations in the Windy City. You can find a bar crawl for pretty much any holiday including Valentine’s Day and a festival for your favorite foods from lobster to ribs to burgers. Spring Awakening, Lollapalooza, and Riot Fest are a few of many music festivals that bring the world’s top artists to one city. Navy Pier even has fireworks twice a week during the summer because why not? The Cubs World Series had reportedly one of the largest celebrations in history!
Chicago is a city of many names. When it was rebuilt after the Great Fire of 1871 it became the Second City. Once the playground of mobsters and corrupt politicians bellowing “hot air,” Chicago became known as the Windy City. Chicago’s contribution to the labor force including factories and influence in the nation gave it the name the City of Broad Shoulders. Above, Navy Pier, was built in 1916 along the Chicago shoreline. Don't miss a ride on the iconic centennial wheel!