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The Top 10 Things To Do And See In Uptown Chicago

Many Chicago neighborhoods come close, but not many surpass the rich and culturally colorful history of Uptown. From things to do, bites to eat, and places you ought to see, here is a simple guide to some highlights of Uptown.

Beauty House Beauty Supply • 1041 W Wilson Ave

Look no further: anything you’ve been looking for, here is where you’re going to find it. This Uptown cosmetic shop is perhaps the finest beauty house in the city. Hair enthusiast and product junkies alike will find that this long-time staple is like a candy shop. Bags are checked in at the front door, and if you’re using a plastic card, your purchase must total $10 and onward. But, beyond that, there are endless aisles full of all your hair, hair care, skin, nails, and jewelry needs.

The Godfather’s Famous Pizza • 1265 W Wilson Ave

Another best in the city, “Godfather’s Pizza” is too mouth-watering for words. They’ve got stuffed pizzas, and puffed pizzas, pan pizzas, and thin crust pizzas, right on Wilson Avenue. There’s an eclectic menu full of other classic Italian bites, delivering to nearly 30 of Chicago’s 77 neighborhoods for only $2.50.

Green Mill Cocktail Lounge • 4802 N Broadway St

Nothing sounds sweeter than a cocktail lounge with connections to Chicago mob history. It’s been around since 1907, and can be seen in movies such as Thief (1981), Soul Food (1997),  and High Fidelity (2000) to name a few. While you won’t catch Al Capone sitting in his favorite booth, or Jack McGurn’s men literally being cutthroat, you will find the sweet jazz and blues and poetry performances incredible. Get in early, because this place has a tendency to fill up.

Montrose Beach

The beach of Uptown, and a superbly popular beach for beach-goers,  there’s plenty of fun in the sun to be had. Wind up playing volleyball, or sitting under an umbrella, enjoy the complimentary WiFi. There are concession stands, kayak rentals, water-sport rentals like jet-skis, and plans had been made for a simulated wave pool. There’s even a fenced-off dog beach for a man and his best friend to play.

Black Ensemble Theater Company •  4450 N Clark Street

This theater company is at the epicenter of productions involving Black-American culture. You’ll enjoy musicals celebrating infamous black musicians and performers like Marvin Gaye, Jackie Wilson, and Billie Holiday. One of the greatest aspects of this company is the role it plays in contributing to Chicago’s emerging Theater Town image. The company once performed at 4520 North Beacon Street, but have been performing in this new state of the art 50,000-square-foot Cultural Center since November 18, 2011.

West Argyle Street Historic District

Once a suburb called “Argyle Park,” and now Chicago’s first and only shared street, Asia on Argyle is just that. There’s a hodgepodge of Vietnamese, Chinese, Camboadian, Laotian, and Thai restaurants, bakeries and shops. Window shop and find duck roasting before your eyes. You’ll probably want to stop by Lao Sze Chuan and try the dry chili chicken while you’re there.

Wilson Red Line Uptown Station

While the Popeye’s is more of a throwback, and renovation of the Wilson Red line stop is already underway, the stone infrastructure of the Uptown Station will still remain in its architectural greatness. If you’ve traveled in and around Uptown during the past several decades, this station will always hold some sort of significance to you and bring you that good ole’ nostalgia.

 

Racial Reconciliation Mural • N Sheridan Rd & W Sunnyside Ave

The Unique Thrift Store on Sheridan is now something of the past, but for now, the mural along the wall of the building still stands. The mural has a rich history, which you can check out here, and is filled with symbolism and messages of faith. Completed in the mid-1990s, this art is worth taking a look at before anything could possibly happen to it.

Aragon Ballroom • 1106 W Lawrence Ave

The most awe-fulfilling factor that makes Uptown one of the greatest communities to ever grace Chicago is it’s very rich history. Not so long ago, people would flock to the ballroom from all over the city and surrounding suburbs, to partake in dance, concerts, and a melee of other uses. It was built in a Moorish architectural style, where the interior resembled a Spanish village, earning the Spanish name of “Aragon.” Today, the venue has continued to be used as the hot spot for concerts, live-recordings, and other events.

Riviera Theatre • 4746 N Racine Ave

This concert venue that fits about 2,500 people was built in 1917 at the intersection of Lawrence, Broadway and Racine. At one point, in the late 1980’s, it was a private nightclub. Since 2006, it’s been owned by Jam Productions. This June, catch Future Islands and Portugal. The ManBlack Daniels and Electric Guest in concert.

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Drink

5 Hotspots for Happy Hour in the West Loop

Chicago’s West Loop neighborhood is an increasingly popular place to live, work — and play.

In the West Loop (and beyond), Chicago restaurants and bars are reviving happy hour specials, since its citywide ban was lifted in 2015. Thankfully for us, there are a variety of specials to enjoy, from beer and wine, to craft cocktails and small bites. Pick your poison.

 

Try these 5 spots for happy hour in the West Loop:

 

Honey’s

Newer to the scene, Honey’s offers a spectacular environment for happy hour, Monday through Friday (5-7:00p) featuring cocktails, wine, beer and apps at the Atrium Bar. (Honey’s, 1111 W. Lake Street)

Nellcôte

Visit Nellcôte for a wood-oven gourmet pizza and a Modelo pairing for only $10, every Monday through Friday. (Nellcôte, 833 W. Randolph Street)

RM Champagne

Perhaps the prettiest alleyway in Chicago, find the patio at RM Champagne for $1 oysters on Tuesdays. (RM Champagne Salon, 116 N. Green Street)

Cold Storage

Located inside the buzzworthy West Loop restaurant, Swift & Sons, Cold Storage offers $3 draft beer and fresh seafood specials every Monday through Friday, 3-6:00pm. (Cold Storage, 1000 W. Fulton Market)

The Betty

Head to The Betty for happy hour Tuesday through Saturday (4-6:30pm) for specials on beer, wine and bites — and stay for the ambiance and culinary menu. (The Betty, 839 W. Fulton Market)

Cheers!

 

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Drink, Eat

10 New Spots for Patio Season in Chicago

Summers in Chicago may be short, but the city’s patio scene is vibrant. From high rise rooftops to neighborhood patios, Chicago is home to a variety of cool outdoor spots to enjoy. We’ve rounded up 10 new outdoor places to visit, when you’re in the mood to take your food, drinks and revelry al fresco.

 

Here’s a look at new outdoor patios in Chicago for 2017…

 

Noyane

Chic, upscale spot offering Japanese fare and cocktails atop the Conrad Hilton hotel with sweeping city views. (Noyane, 101 E. Erie Street)

Little Toasted

The space spans 3,000 square feet and it’s the same minimalist aesthetic used at parent restaurant, Slightly Toasted. There’s also an outdoor patio overlooking the river with seating for 250. (Little Toasted, 300 S. Riverside Plaza)

Cindy’s

Cindy’s has been a hotspot for the past few years and recently unveiled the addition of a new outdoor terrace bar, where guests can enjoy a selection of rosés, rotating large format cocktails, and boozy popsicles. (Cindy’s, 12 S. Michigan Ave)

Boleo

Located in The Loop, Boleo is a chic South American-inspired rooftop restaurant and cocktail lounge with a retractable roof. Guests can also enjoy Latin music every Wednesday through Saturday. (Boleo, 122 W. Monroe)

Cabana Club

Casual and hip hangout in Wicker Park. Here you’ll find an 180-degree view of the skyline, Mexican-inspired fare, and a full bar. (Cabana Club, 2018 W. North Ave)

LondonHouse

LondonHouse offers some of the most spectacular views of Chicago. Overlooking the Chicago River and city skyline, visiting the LH Rooftop is a one-of-a-kind experience. (LondonHouse, 85 E. Wacker Drive)

Mahalo

Bask in the sun at this Hawaiian-themed restaurant and rooftop in Wicker Park. Come for weekend brunch or weekday happy hour, featuring summery cocktails like margaritas and Mai Tais. (Mahalo, 1501 N. Milwaukee Ave)

AIRE

24 floors above The Hyatt Centric, AIRE offers a welcome escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. Enjoy craft cocktails, wine, beer and small bites at this rooftop in Chicago’s Loop. (AIRE, 100 W. Monroe St.)

Broken English

If you dig Mexican food and a more casual environment, head to Broken English. The new patio in Lincoln Park serves killer tacos and margaritas, plus it’s pet friendly. (Broken English, 2576-2580 N. Lincoln Ave)

Apogee

Set atop the Dana Hotel, the newly re-designed rooftop serves up creative cocktails, city views, couches and fire pits, plus rotating DJs. (Apogee, 2 W. Eerie St.)

 

Which spot do you want to visit most? Tell us your favorite Chicago rooftop or patio below!

 

 

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