Wanderlust: Chicago, IL
The bright lights of the big city shine close to home but offer plenty to explore.
THERE ARE UNLIMITED THINGS to do in the Windy CityÛÓand that poses a dilemma: How do you choose among 77 neighborhoods plus countless restaurants, bars, museums and attractions? Locals’ advice is to toss the guidebook and focus on finding the things you enjoy, whether it’s shopping or five-star dining, architecture or underground music. This “live like a local” approach to tourism may take you in interesting directionsÛÓeven if you mostly stick to the neighborhoods around downtown and the famous Loop.
A hotel offering a stay for under $100 in the Windy City sounds too good to be true, but LONGMAN & EAGLE offers not one but two of its six rooms for $95ÛÓand even better, you’d probably be willing to pay more simply because the rooms are so cool. All the rooms feature clever design elements, custom carpentry and original artwork. They’re a throwback to the days when travelers’ best bet was a room above the Michelin-starred tavern, but the only telltale remnant of those days is the sound of good times going on downstairs. And in that case, the best remedy may be to join in. The location is worth more than the asking price too, with easy access to landmarks like Wrigley Field and Lincoln Park.