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Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

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Dallas, TX
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Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

My husband and I are taking an Amtrak trip from Dallas, TX to Chicago this September. We will get there on a Monday afternoon and will have all day Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and leave early Friday afternoon. Monday night I would love to go to a very special dinner for my birthday, so would appreciate any suggestions. I want to pack as much in on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Friday, we can take it easy and hit up a great breakfast and lunch place before heading back on the Amtrak. (Suggestions, please!)

I was shocked at the hotel prices, so I took a gamble and tried Priceline. I lucked out and was sold Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel for a fantastic price!

There are so many things to do I am not sure where to start first!

We won't have a car, so it's important that we can get around on the train or buses to places that are convenient to this hotel.

Some ideas we had (before scoring this hotel) were Wrigley Field, Museum of Broadcast Communications, Magnificent Mile, Chicago Cultural Center, Sears Tower Skydeck, Jazz Showcase, Field Museum, Adler Planetarium, and the Museum of Science and Industry.

I would love to hear from some experts as to what is conveniently located near our hotel, what is a MUST DO, and what are great places to eat, particularly something fancy for Monday night birthday dinner. We are not afraid to take public transportation so that's ok, too. Thanks in advance for your suggestions! :)

chicago
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1. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

very special for me would be alinea or moto, gt fish and oyster is my favorite restaurant but i dont think its very special

Chicago
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2. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

In your hotel is an excellent tapas restaurant. It may not be as fancy as you are looking for your birthday dinner, but it very good.

http://mercatchicago.com/

You are right on Michigan Ave so getting to the north end of Michigan Ave will be easy. You are close to the museum campus

Illinois
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for Chicago, Illinois
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3. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

Using public transit put just about everything convenient for you, including the airports.

http://www.transitchicago.com/

You need to prioritize your to/do list and we can offer suggestions. cityofchicago.org/city/…millennium_park.html is across from the Cultural Center.

You need to allow at least a 1/2 day for a decent visit at the MSI. MSI is 7 miles south of downtown. Field and Adler are across from each other. Check the calendar at - http://www.choosechicago.com/ - to see what's going on here during your visit.

www.chicagoreader.com and www.chicagomag.com for current dining and entertainment options. Please consider expanding your dining options beyond the downtown touristy areas. We have wonderful neighborhood dining options to choose from.

Chicago
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4. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

Henri would be a lovely place for a special dinner. A nice walk up Michigan Ave. If the weather is great it could be a beautiful night. It is a small place with very good food and great service. It rarely gets recommended here, but it really is special, I think.

S

Chicago
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5. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

Special: Everest, Las Nomades. Less expensive but still special: Table 52 (in an old carriage house but southern style food which may not interest you), Kiki's Bistro--very romantic southern French dining.

Chicago, Illinois
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6. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

Monday night is probably not the best night for your "special dinner." Many of the nicest restaurants are closed on Mondays. So unless it's absolutely necessary that the special dinner coincide with your birthday, I'd recommend switching your dinner plans around.

Your hotel is only a few blocks from the redline El station at State & Harrison Streets, which goes directly to Wrigley Field, among other locations.

Rensselaer, Indiana
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7. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

Because there are often delays on Amtrak long-distance routes, don't plan anything concrete that first afternoon into evening.

Totally agree with the rec for Henri on S. Michigan Avenue for your special dinner. They are open for dinner on Mondays until 10 p.m.

If you were willing to wait on your big birthday dinner until Wednesday or later, you could always go to the Signature Lounge for a drink first and then on to North Pond - in Lincoln Park. If you do, make sure that you tell them it's for your birthday when making the reservations. http://www.northpondrestaurant.com/

If you wanted to go to dinner at a great place fairly close to Wrigley Field - Wood Chicago on N. Halsted. They have both small and large plates - specialty cocktails. Or for a more informal bistro, Bar Pastoral on N. Broadway.

Two attractions that you don't have on your "To Do" list I would highly recommend are the Art Institute of Chicago (very near your hotel) and the Chicago Architecture Foundation's River Cruise. The main location of the Chicago Architecture Foundation is situated in the Santa Fe Building, also near your hotel.

To be honest, you may be a little underwhelmed at the Museum of Broadcast Communication.

If you go to the Cultural Center on a Friday, they may still have their free InstaGreeter tours operating. Also, look into the free Chicago Greeter service and enjoy exploring a neighborhood.

Dallas, TX
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8. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

Thanks for all the great suggestions! And I forgot about special restaurants maybe not being open Monday nights! I will have to look into Tuesday, instead! Thanks so much, I will look at all these suggestions and try to plan out our itinerary.

Dallas, TX
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9. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

GT Fish and Oyster looks REALLY good! I looked at their website, wow!

Dallas, TX
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52 posts
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10. Re: Things to do near Blackstone Renaissance Chicago Hotel

OK, I think I've got a logical itinerary. We hope to walk to everything or take public transportation.

Monday:

Visit Magnificent Mile area

Henri for birthday dinner (Less than 15 minute walk from hotel; open Monday)

Tuesday:

Art Institute of Chicago

Wrigley Field Tour

Wood Chicago restaurant for dinner

Wednesday:

Chicago Architecture Foundation's River Cruise

Chicago Architecture Foundation

Chicago Cultural Center

Sears Tower Skydeck

Jazz Showcase

Thursday:

Museum Campus

Adler Planetarium

Museum of Science and Industry

Field Museum

Friday we leave.

I tried to choose more restaurants but I wasn't sure what was near what I had planned. We may wing that! Everyone gave some awesome dinner suggestions, which I appreciated. We will definitely have to have pizza and hot dogs for lunches!