A Long Cold December Weekend in Chicago: What I saw, Where I visited, and What I wore!

Chicago currently is my favorite city – no question about it.  Why?

It is a non stop 3 1/2 hour flight from Tucson to Chicago Midway, easy train access into the city, along with transfer trains to get you to your hotel and anywhere else you want to go.062

Chicago is  beautiful! 067The river running thru  the city is gorgeous030 031Large sidewalk promenades for walking, buildings that express so much history, the city is clean, great neighborhoods to visit, great shopping, restaurants, museums, and parks.  Chicago reminds me of Paris and the man who designed the city wanted Chicago to reflect Paris. He did a good job!

I especially enjoy visiting during the Holiday Season because of the festivities and fan fare Chicago has to offer.   Below are some of the highlights of  our long weekend ( Steve my husband joined me)

Day 1

Barneys New York never let’s me down, I would have to say it is my equivalent to the ” Tiffany s” experience as Audrey Hepburn explained in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  For example as I was waiting for the elevator to Fred’s I tried on a $1200.00 fur hat that was electric purple and the quick thrill made me smile!  I also enjoyed thumbing thru books that were the size of door frames, and smelling candles that were so divine I naturally had to take a seat at Fred’s bar to settle down and  absorb all these little luxuries. Within minutes Steve and I were enjoying Martini’s with blue cheese olives and instead of the boring bar nuts and cheese/sesame crinkles that accompanycocktails, we were served Hand Cut fries with Goddess Ranch Dressing.  Cheers!

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Perhaps I forgot to mention how cold it was:  16 degrees, but that didn’t’ stop us because the Chicago agenda had just begun.  I didn’t care how cold it was:  Next stop Chicago Theater to see if we could get tickets to Seinfeld.  Yes we managed to get the last 2 tickets out of 3,553 seats. SCORE!!!!  We also got lucky with our timing and joined in on a Historic Tour of the Chicago Theater. The organ was quite impressive along with all the rich red velvet interiors.photo (31)photo (24)

Macy’s was right around the corner (former Marshall Fields) so it was only proper we payed a visit to see Santa and see the amazing Christmas Tree.photo (20)

As I said before I love public transportation , so we headed to the subway station and jumped on the red line to go shopping at Buffalo Exchange and dine at a neighborhood restaurant. Steve and I both found some treasures at Buffalo.  I found a pair of J Crew electric blue suede pumps,011 Steve found a Marc Jacobs Black Wool Short Coat.002 We proceeded to celebrate at  Mana Vegetarian Restaurant which  was delicious.  Who needs beef when it is this good!  I have the menu on my fridge to inspire me to eat and cook healthy!003

Day 2

Off to the Chicago Museum of Art via Michigan Avenue.063  Really cold again,but  thanks to heat warmer inserts I can manage being outdoors for short periods of time. Steve is tougher than me- he can do without them.  But hat, gloves, coat, scarf are all mandatory.003

The museum never disappoints, along with the Terzo cafe.  We had a insightful visit and I always  explore a new wing because my nature is  to continually visit the impressionist wing.  I accomplished both on this trip.  A few new sightings and one favorite:017

014019So close to the museum is Millennium Park and the “Bean”  is  the main attraction.029  The ice skating rink was in full swing and  my question is how can people be ice skating when it is 18 degrees??? BRRRRR028

Logan Square  has become the trendy hot spot and was a new destination for us. We stumbled upon Billy Sunday for a cocktail before our dinner at Telegraph Wine Bar.  Billy Sunday was amazingly fun with young stylish hipsters, cool cocktails served in vintage bar ware and the interiors were modern with a classic twist.  This bar was so swank, I loved it!billy sunday 2 billy sunday  Telegraph Wine Bar did not have the same energy or vibe, but the food was delicious.

Day 3

SNOW EVERYWHERE!!!!052  How beautiful it was to see the snow  the moment  we walked out of our hotel, the Talbott which is located in the Gold Coast. 042 We walked in the snow  down Michigan Avenue to the Chicago Architecture Foundation.043048045 Today was the day for the “Loop” history walking tour. To say the least not the best day for an outdoor tour that consisted of  standing on platforms to discuss the History of the L Train, but we did it and froze our fannies off in the process.  I did learn about the history of the library in my opinion a little gaudy.061 Also learned about the man who developed and built the loop. He was a shady character who made friends with the mob, and had only one ulterior motive which was to make $$$$$, rather than be interested in the welfare of the people.  To make a long story short- the L Train (elevated) is still used today and provides cohesiveness to the downtown area .

Bacino’s pizza is a favorite stop.  After the architecture tour we shuffled in the Bacino Bar, took all the layers off and thawed out while enjoying wine and deep dish pizza.   Delicious and so satisfying!photo 4

Bundling ourselves up again after lunch,photo (30) Steve needed a power nap and I needed  Neiman’s!  As I strolled thru the Cosmetics counter some how I got lassoed at the Yves Saint Laurent counter and without much struggle I sat down in “the chair”. An hour later with much needed applications of  extra hydration, eye soothing gel, concealer, eye shadows, eye liner, lipstick in other words the works I walked out beautiful, refreshed and a little bag of new products and goodies.  What a treat, I  enjoyed every minute of it!

Seinfeld!!!!!!photo (16) The night had come for laughter and Jerry Seinfeld made it happen.  What a great comedian/performer.  This is our 3rd time seeing him live and all three performances have been fantastic.  If you ever have the opportunity to see Seinfeld go!  Walking back to the hotel I was in awe over these icicles.073

Day 4

The brunch I had been waiting for!  I am not a huge brunch fan but  it took a month in advance to get in this popular place, and Sunday Brunch was the only reservation  available.  I am talking about RL Bar (Ralph Lauren).  The vibe, totally clubby with rich leather chairs, dark mahogany ceiling and a eclectic display of paintings with Red Sconces to pop and pull it all together. photo (22) The room was beautiful, the patrons were beautiful, the champagne glasses were beautiful and the food was delicious.  I had a Lobster BLT which has ruined me for life!

A visit to Lincoln Park is always a treat because there is so much to see and do. 111079 We first visited the Conservatory with an incredible display of Christmas Poinsettias,  mini train, and the tropical lush plants that just get bigger and better every time I visit.096097  The zoo is free and you can stroll at a leisure pace especially in the winter with hardly anyone else there.  The Giraffes are always my favorite. 102101103 As we continued to stroll in the park on the way to the bus stop – a mini fashion photo shoot seemed in order since I was wearing my vintage beaver fur and the moment of opportunity was perfect.  Strike a pose!081

After a 20 minute power nap we headed back on Michigan Ave to the Chicago Symphony‘s performance of Yule Tide Celebration.113  We had box seats, the view was superb as was the performance.  I wore a black long leather skirt, Satin Red Vest and Lace Jacket. photo (26) I could also be comfortable and warm with my Aqua Italia boots that no one could see under my long skirt.  This is called fashion winter strategy!  I also wore my canadian boots during the day which were totally reliable.019

Our last meal in Chicago was at Le Colonial in the Gold Coast Neighborhood, a block from our hotel.  The cuisine is Vietnamese.  A  delicious dinner  was followed by a nite cap at the Back Room Jazz Bar which proceeded to a spontaneous Ladies Dance Contest in which I decided not to hold back and resulted in ” most applause” for the best dancer!!!119  That was a lot of fun I won’t lie!

What a fantastic winter holiday, I can’t wait to return to Chicago and discover new places while re- visiting my favorites.  The beaver coat is hung up in the closet again, waiting for another cold visit.  Until then—-110