We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Gals weekend

Which Chicago hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
Chicago
Level Contributor
156 posts
Save Topic
Gals weekend

I am planning a gals (cousins) weekend April 4-6. The plan is to stay at the Seneca Hotel - it's one of the few in our price range. One cousin is originally from here, but has been in the Detroit area for many years. The other two grew up here, live in the suburbs now. So Chicago isn't new to any of us. All that being said, any suggestions for things to do? We would probably like shopping, dining, a quiet cocktail place. Museums if there are special exhibits that weekend. But I'm also looking for different things - like a cooking class, or a tour of something off the beaten path, or theater. Where can I go to an events calendar that would give me that info?

Thanks in advance for any help.

Illinois City...
Level Contributor
5,650 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Gals weekend

Hotel-wise, I'd rather recommend this deal through Travelzoo:

hotels.travelzoo.com/chicago-hotels/370693

Nicer hotel and should be about the same price as the Seneca - if not less.

Illinois City...
Level Contributor
5,650 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Gals weekend

There frequently are cooking classes at Sur La Table - see their website - which would be very close to the Seneca or the Ambassador East hotel, if you were to decide to go with the Ambassador instead. Unfortunately, they have not updated their schedule for April yet, but you could give them a call to see if they have anything planned yet.

Fox and Obel (fox-obel.com) also has cooking classes, but none are currently listed on their website.

If you're into cooking, the Spice House is a wonderful husband/wife run spice/herb store in the Old Town neighborhood, also not far from either hotel. They have an incredible range of fresh herb/spices, all of which are better in quality and price than your average local grocery. They also have blends based upon local neighborhoods, as well as gift sets. (http://www.thespicehouse.com/)

Rensselaer, Indiana
Level Contributor
6,989 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Gals weekend

psveron, the free Chicago Greeter program runs all year round. Is there any neighborhood of the city which you always wanted to visit but never got around to doing that? Here's your chance.

You can pick the neighborhood (or even the subject of interest) but you have to make reservations in advance, though. Go to the City of Chicago's website and you will see the hyperlink for it or simply just go to the Chicago Greeter website.

For cooking and wine classes:

The Chopping Block has two locations - one in Lincoln Square* and one at the Merchandise Mart. Refer to their website for their calendar.

Pastoral: Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine have many classes as well. They also have two locations, one in Lakeview on N. Broadway and the other in the Loop on Lake. For example, on Saturday, April 5, at 6:30 p.m., the one being held at the Loop location is Bubbly Indulgence: Cheese, Champagne & Other Sparklers. See their website for details.

With the issue of theatre, it's really a question of the type of experience you want. Are you looking for Broadway-type big extravaganzas? Or the Chicago-based, such as the Steppenwolf? Maybe you'd like to take in Shakespeare - the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre is a fine venue with class acts. Metromix and the Chicago Reader are good starting points. You might also look at the Broadway in Chicago's and Theatre in Chicago's websites.

Hottix offers same-day, reduced-price tickets. Take a look at their website and see what type of offerings they have.

But perhaps you might be interested in the ballet or some other type of dance performance. The Harris Theatre at Millennium Park is a very good place to consider. It is a house venue for some of the fine smaller troupes around the city - as well as for musicians, both local and transient. For example, the Hubbard Street Dance Company will be performing when you are here.

And speaking of classical music, a good place to begin checking for events around town is chicagoclassicalmusic.org. Also, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's.

Although this option is not available for you (I'm merely mentioning it for the benefit of others visiting slightly after you are), as their final performance for the year running April 10-13, the Newberry Consort will be performing "Españoleta". 17th century Spanish and Latin American music with dancers in full costume. The Newberry Consort is associated with the Newberry Library, Northwestern University's School of Music and the University of Chicago and plays medieval and early music garnered from original text on the antique instruments for which the were composed.

Now that we've finished speaking of the lively arts, let's talk about the venues in which they are performed. The Auditorium Theatre (a great historic location in its own right), the LaSalle Bank Theatre, the Chicago Theatre, the Cadillac Theatre and the Ford Center for the Performing Arts (aka Oriental Theatre) all have tours of the buildings. In addition, the Chicago Architecture Foundation offers walking tours which include some of these fine structures.

**SIDE NOTE**: I will say, though, one of my favorites (and I've done them all) is the Lyric Opera of Chicago's Backstage Tour. Again, this is not happening when you are here but I am mentioning this specifically for others because they are only available to the public 3 times this year - and ARE COMING UP VERY QUICKLY (March 2, 16 and 29th).

And, if both of these above options are still too expensive for your group, the Chicago Loop Alliance offers three free downloadable (to a MP3 device) walking tours of the Loop, one of which discusses the theatres in the Loop Theatre District. (The other two are for the art and landmarks.)

Inasfar as the museums, the Art Institute has the special exhibits of Edward Hopper (i.e., "Nighthawks") and the watercolors of Winslow Homer. And the Museum of Science and Industry has "The Glass Experience", highlighting the science, techniques and art of glass-blowing.

*Lincoln Square has a number of the exact things which you desire - shopping, dining - and, for entertainment, perhaps the Old Town School of Folk Music might be of interest to you. Nanci Griffith is performing on the 5th and The Infamous Stringdusters on the 6th.

Hope this information helps a bit!

Chicago
Level Contributor
1,460 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: Gals weekend

For cocktails, Cru Wine Bar might be really nice for you. It's an easy walk from the Seneca Hotel as well as the Ambassador East. www.cruwinebar.com

I really like some of the restaurants on Wells Street, including Trattoria Roma, Topogiogio (http://www.topogigiochicago.com/), Bistrot Margot (bistromargot.com), Old Town Brasserie. Metromix.com, Chowhound.com and LTHForum.com are good websites to check out.

If you'd like to check out some neighborhoods, I'd suggest looking at

http://southportneighbors.com/

http://www.sheffieldneighborhood.org/

Both are easy to get to.

Chicago
Level Contributor
156 posts
Save Reply
5. Re: Gals weekend

dvdmovie1

Thanks for the Travelzoo tip. I booked the Ambassador East for 135.00 nt. I was a little hesitant because of the tripadvisor reviews, but decided vintage charming works for just sleeping there!

Illinois City...
Level Contributor
5,650 posts
7 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Gals weekend

Glad you went with the AE. It really is a nice hotel, especially for a price of $150 and below. It has a neat history too, being such a celeb hangout for many, many years.

7. Re: Gals weekend

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 17 September 2009, 17:18