Tag Archives: Chicago Architecture Foundation river cruise

Chi-Town days 4-7

31 Jul

If you haven’t read about the first part of our Chicago vacation, then start here.

Tuesday morning we grabbed a quick breakfast and walked back to the River to board Chicago’s First Lady for an hour long cruise down the Chicago River where we learned all about the city’s history in terms of architecture and their amazing skyscrapers. This was one of our favorite touristy things of the trip. It was super informative, gave us a plethora of pictures, and besides the extreme heat it was a great day to be on a boat!

An Instagram of the Wrigley Building

Trump Tower

Willis Tower

Merchandise Mart

Marina City

One of my favorite skyline shots

After the tour we decided to try out some of Chicago’s famous deep dish pizza from Giodorano’s. As promised, it was delicious but not my favorite in Chicago. I was saving the best for last so Calvin could always remember the deliciousness.

The rest of the day was spent back at the hotel’s pool in an attempt to cool our sunburns from the morning’s river cruise. And for dinner we went to a local Irish bar called Kerryman’s where Calvin enjoyed a gigantic smoked salmon sandwich {seriously, there were two pieces of salmon on it!} and I had a delicious mac-n-cheese concoction {macaroni, gouda, grilled chicken, and potato chips on top}. It was also wine night so we got a bottle of 91pt Malbec for super cheap only to realize Chicago restaurants don’t re-cork the bottles for you. So you better believe we sat there and finished the whole thing so it wouldn’t go to waste.

Believe it or not, we decided that we could manage some dessert before we called it a night, so we headed down the street to Grand Lux Café {thanks for the recommendation Olivia!} and stuffed our already full bellies with cheesecake and cupcakes. We were those stereotypical Americans who let their stomachs control their minds on this day. But I’m only slightly ashamed.

Wednesday morning we slept in and spent the day wandering around more of the city and doing a little more shopping. We found Nordstrom Rack and were much more willing to pay their prices than those at Nordstrom we saw on Monday, so Calvin and I both got a few things. I also found my way into Anthropologie and got a little lost in all its two floors of prettiness. I tend to only shop the sale room at Anthropologie, which in Memphis is a tiny little nook at the back of the store. But in Chicago it’s pretty much half of the downstairs floor, so there was a lot more to choose from!

Oh, and their Anthropologie had this across the street.

So much cooler than Memphis. :)

When Calvin said he’d had enough, we went back to the room and ate some lunch and just relaxed. That night was the Cubs game, so we had to rest up to get ready for Wrigley!

We rode the L-train to Wrigleyville and went to a souvenir shop before the game to get Calvin a shirt. Hooray for that accomplishment! While we waited to get into Beyond the Ivy, we walked around and took lots of pictures. It was so fun showing Calvin Wrigley Field and all the famous Cubs stuff.

Finally it was time to go to our rooftop seats where we spent the rest of the evening enjoying our cool location and the endless supply of burgers, hotdogs, beer, and wine. The game got off to a rocky start and I was nervous for a little while, but the Cubs pulled out a win {5-1 against Miami} at the top of the 8th when they called it due to a rain delay.

Thankfully, we were able to go inside and stay dry until it died down enough to walk down the street to meet a friend who lived nearby. And then we rode the L-train back to our hotel and marveled at the novelty of practical and efficient public transportation. Seriously, Memphis needs that too. You think if I brought my list to the Mayor, he’d listen? So far that’s: Trader Joes, Crate and Barrel, a bigger Anthropologie, and better public transportation. Surely at least one of those things would be a better fit for the Pyramid instead of Bass Pro, right?

Thursday was our last day so we slept in, ate brunch at Grand Lux Café {we saw too many delicious things on the menu to just stick to one visit for dessert},

Exhibit A

and spent the rest of the day at Navy Pier. We had fun playing putt-putt and riding the Ferris Wheel, but it’s definitely just a touristy attraction. Everyone needs to say they’ve seen it, but it’s definitely not a place you want to spend a lot of time.

And for dinner we met our friend, Cody again and headed to Gino’s East for what we think is the best deep dish pizza in Chicago. Calvin was impressed, and for my pizza-loving guy, I was glad we could make that happen.

We ended our amazing trip with drinks on the rooftop bar across from our hotel: Rock Bottom Grill {and yes, Starkville friends—it may have the same name as our beloved Cotton District bar, but Chicago’s has Starkville’s beat}. I mean they brew their own beer and have a rooftop in the center of downtown Chicago. You can’t really compete with that.

And just like that, it was time to head home. Cities are so fun and Chicago is one of my favorites, but it’s always nice to come home. And no matter how much I complain about it or wish it had some of the great things other cities do, Memphis will always be home.