Chicago - off topic

Discussion in 'Central – From Da Nort Woods to the Plane States' started by xscoobysnack, Feb 5, 2013.

  1. xscoobysnack

    xscoobysnack Been here awhile

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    Hello all,

    A few of my family members and I are planning on traveling from western Canada and spending a week in your fine city in late June/early July. None of us have been there before and I was wondering if you could recommend a decent hotel, preferably near the Mag Mile. I've been going blind looking online and all the hotels are becoming a blur. I'm not cheap but definitely can't afford the Trump or 4 Seasons. Any and all suggestions are welcomed! Thanks.
    #1
  2. Cannonshot

    Cannonshot Having a Nice Time Super Moderator

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    Recommend you PM bradatlarge as he often offers information about Chicago. He will be very helpful.

    In fact, just today he posted some visitor information.
    #2
  3. bradatlarge

    bradatlarge Insha'Allah

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    :lol3

    Yeah PM me, pssst that article was a joke.
    #3
  4. bradatlarge

    bradatlarge Insha'Allah

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    The Hilton on S Michigan or the Westin River North are usually good value for the money, assuming there isn't a major event at McCormick when you are planning to visit
    #4
  5. Bronco638

    Bronco638 Nobody Home

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    Staying anywhere near the Mag Mile isn't going to be "cheap" (but that's a relative term anyways). You might be able to find something in your price range in one of the closest suburbs, like Rosemont (near O'Hare). Then, you could make use of the train (the "El") to get downtown. Chicago also has a great light rail system (Metra) if you wanted to stay further out. For instance, Itasca has a Holiday Inn Express that's within walking distance of the Itasca Metra station. You could stay there, walk (or drive - parking is a $1.25 or $1.50) to the Metra station and take the train into Union Station (35 - 50 minutes depending on the time of day - morning/evening trains are quicker). Round trip, into Chicago, is $9 (or, you could buy a 10-Ride ticket and share). Chicago's Loop area can easily be walked.
    #5
  6. bogieboy

    bogieboy Long timer

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    Theres a good bit of truth in it though....portillos is a must, hole in the wall diners are a must, deep dish after midnight while drunk out of your mind....well thedrinking can be optional... Mag mile is way over rated... Then again what do i know... Im just a poor whiteboy from the south side.....LOL:rofl
    #6
  7. xscoobysnack

    xscoobysnack Been here awhile

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    I'm sure the Mag Mile is overrated for anyone who lives there. I'm in Calgary Alberta, host of the Calgary Stampede. We have thousands of tourists invade every year and those who live here are usually trying to get out!
    I'm PM'ing Bradatlarge right away. Any insider information is always useful. Thanks.
    #7
  8. kfsinc

    kfsinc Chaingolian Observer

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    tons of options in Chicago:

    Boutique Hotels -- Alerton, Sutton, and others can be in the $150/night range. Old, but updated and very cool. Close to Mag Mile, but on quieter streets.

    Chains -- Marriott / Hilton / Sheraton brands -- lots to choose from will be in the $200/ night range as they cater to the expense account crowd. The W on the lake can be had for $140 / night. Good views, smaller rooms. Urban hipster and wanna be crowd. Also look at the extended stay hotels: Hilton Homewood Suites, Marriott Residence Inn. Usually the same price as a regular hotel, always a bigger room and often include breakfast. Hilton Homewood is a block of Michigan.

    The Palmer House sometimes has good rates too. It's a cab ride from the Mag mile

    Parking: usually pretty expensive ~$50 per night isn't out of the question. Consider taking Amtrack or Metra into town. If you're flying, take the El from either airport. Plenty of cabs. You don't need a car in downtown.

    Entertainment: Plenty of Broadway type shows, Second City, Local bars with live music, concerts on Northerly Island.

    Fun: Go to Navy Pier, rent bicycles, bike the lake front -- from Obama's house on the south to Evanston on the north -- will take pretty much all day. Lots to see.

    Beaches are awesome on nice days. Great little restaurant / cafe on Oak Street Beach. More rowdy crowd on North Beach.

    Food: Portillo's for beef and dogs, pretty much any local place for Pizza. Chicago Pizza and Oven Grinder is a nice twist. Uno's is a mob scene. Most every bar has good food. Avoid the chains. House of Blues is worth a trip, Sunday Gospel Brunch is a hoot.

    Tours: Architectural tour by boat is great way to see the city from a totally different perspective. Dinner cruises are a rip off, but do offer a good view of the city from the water.

    Music: Buddy Guy's Legends is an old standby/tourist place, but can be good. Blues Chicago is close to mag mile and well worth the trip. Green Door and others have local acts. Check out Metromix or wxrt.com for dates/times/groups.

    Rush/Division area is a scene after dark. Plenty of smaller bars or large crowds. Hugo's and Carmines are good eats, but expensive. Gibson's is my favorite when I'm with customers (expense account).
    #8
  9. bogieboy

    bogieboy Long timer

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    you forgot maxwell street for polish, and house of blues...

    i second chicago pizza and oven grinder, athough it is very UN chicagostlye pizza.... LOL it is however VERY good....

    if you are taking kids, you definately want to hit the Field museum, as well as the Museum of Science and Industry. figure a full day for each....also, Shedd aquarium, and adler planetarium are good stops to hit to, kids or not...

    also, amtrak doesnt like you taking it for short trips like from the burbs in to the city.... i dont believe they will sell you a ticket unless you are connecting to another train heading out of union...
    #9
  10. xscoobysnack

    xscoobysnack Been here awhile

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    Well, I bought the flight tickets tonight. We will be staying at The James as they were willing to deal a little bit with the number of rooms and the length of stay. I'm really looking forward to this trip. Too bad it's so far away still. Thanks guys!
    #10
  11. Bikaholic51

    Bikaholic51 Electric Kaiser

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    Summer in Chicago is a great time. Lots of neighborhood fests and free music in the parks down town. :clap You have to work really hard to not have a good time in Chicago. Do a little research a week or two before you get here. Millenium park has free concerts on some weekdays.
    #11
  12. bradatlarge

    bradatlarge Insha'Allah

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    The James is good. Nicely done.
    #12
  13. Paper

    Paper In need of vacation

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    Hold it..

    People go to Chicago on purpose??:huh

    I'm flying out of ORD on Monday and back on Thursday and the only part of it I'm looking forward to is passing through the last toll booth Thursday evening..:lol3

    Although I did have a nice day at the Art Museum while getting my passport fixed.. Even though they had my old one, they were shocked my name isn't Daneil..:ddog
    #13
  14. exoff-roadgoat

    exoff-roadgoat Will ride for food

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    A whole week? In Chicago? Sounds like a trip my wife would like....Myself? A week in Calgary sounds good. The ride there and back would be the bonus.:ricky:ricky:ricky:ricky:ricky
    #14
  15. bradatlarge

    bradatlarge Insha'Allah

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    Oh hush, you.
    #15
  16. Paper

    Paper In need of vacation

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    I'm sorry... :(:

    I did have a nice lunch that day at the Bergoff, while I did feel a bit ripped off to pay $5 for a beer made in Monroe, Wis, but the Kalberwurst and onion on rye rocked!! :clap
    #16
  17. bradatlarge

    bradatlarge Insha'Allah

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    Ugh, you were two blocks from my office. Where is the love?
    #17
  18. Paper

    Paper In need of vacation

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    That visit was July of 07'...

    I would like to make another visit to the Art Museum, though..
    #18
  19. bradatlarge

    bradatlarge Insha'Allah

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    C'mon down. I'll buy lunch
    #19
  20. kfsinc

    kfsinc Chaingolian Observer

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    Late night chow and show:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wieners_Circle


    The Wieners Circle is a hot dog stand in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois. It is famous for four things: its signature Maxwell Street Char-dogs, hamburgers and cheese fries, and the mutual verbal abuse between the employees and the customers during the late-weekend hours.

    Sometime in the early 1990s (circa 1992) Larry Gold, one of the proprietors, called a drunk and distracted customer an "asshole" in order to get his attention. This set-off the late-night abuse culture of the restaurant. The atmosphere can range from playful to hostile. The language used by both the staff and customers during these hours is notoriously foul and aggressive, and sometimes racist. As the wait-staff is largely black and the clientele middle-class to wealthy white, the more racist epithets have led to the rare physical altercation. Customers commonly request a "chocolate shake," which is code for asking one of the female employees to shake her breasts. Reports have indicated that female employees lift their shirts to shake their naked breasts, in exchange for tips over $20.00.
    #20