Chicago: Part 1

If blurry, amateurish photos & sarcastic commentary recapping a stranger's trip are your thing, I hope you'll enjoy mine. If they're not your thing, go ahead and skip over this post. Just know that our occasional, somewhat anonymous, no expectations, virtual friendship might be in serious peril.

Chicago was a whirlwind, both the city and our trip. We crammed as much as we could into the 2 short days surrounding the wedding we were there for. Thank you to all for your input on where to go, what to eat, and what to see!
Our friends' wedding was outside of Chicago, here. Not sure who's tip-sier.....the camera or us:Photobucket

We're vertically challenged.......our offspring can aspire to be hobbits........or jockeys.
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(This pic is more for Mr. FC) I mentioned that the wedding was a fraternity brothers reunion of sorts. I wasn't lying; there's several more guys who didn't get rounded up for this pic. Scandalous stories & secret handshakes flowed freely all night. We're all in our 30's, it's time to move on, guys......

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Chicago Day 1: We made it to the city the following day, sufficiently hungover from the wedding festivities. Doesn't take much these days.
It was a gorgeous day (the rest of the trip was rainy & windy) and since our hotel room wasn't quite ready yet, we walked over to the shore. Hello Lake Michigan, I never realized how ginormous and impressive you are!Photobucket
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The Raffaello Hotel, where we rested our sore feet. Historic, charming, 4-star boutique hotel experience plus the hotel is on a quaint, quieter street off of Michigan Ave. Loved it (though the bathroom was a bit small). Tip: request a room overlooking the city if possible. Our room faced inward & the "courtyard" was a bit depressing.
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The silliest things make me giddy. Grasscloth wallpaper & a rain showerhead--this thing was heaven. Photobucket

Some hotel details that caught my eye:
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We dined at an upscale French-Vietnamese restaurant, Le Colonial, that night (I think there's one in San Francisco & New York as well). OH.MY.FREAKING.WORD. Our meal was perfection (believe me, I know my Vietnamese food), the ambience was amazing (it felt like we were in French Colonial times instead of smack dab in the middle of metropolitan Chicago), and the service was top-notch. And the food, I about lost my shiznit, the food! Each dish was delicate in presentation but complex in flavors; nothing was overpowering. The chefs there seriously worked their magic with blending spices, subtle sauces, and freshly fragrant herbs in such a harmonious way. We were blown away. Thanks again, Suzie, for such a stellar recommendation!! Photobucket
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not pictured because we devoured it like animals: bo sate (sautéed diced filet mignon with sate spice, yams, & string beans)

After dinner, we caught a performance of Hephaestus at the Goodman Theatre. Photobucket

Think Cirque du Soleil, but on a much smaller, intimate scale with a Greek mythology twist. If you go, I recommend springing for a balcony seat; we were amazingly up close and personal with the acrobats. The show-stopper: the 7-person pyramid on a sky-high tightrope. I don't think a soul in that theatre dared to breathe the entire time. My palms totally got sweaty. Photography was strictly prohibited, so pics from their site will have to suffice:
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So that rounds out Day 1.
I hope I did the brilliant city of Chicago some justice with the first part of my trip recap!
Part 2 coming soon (we were only there for 2 days).
Then I'll stop torturing you with my trip recap.
;o)

29 comments:

  1. Looks like you had a great stay. I've never been to Chicago (was always hoping I could score Oprah tickets but that dream is dead) but Ive always meant to make a weekend trip there so Im looking forward to the rest of the recap.

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  2. Eeep, great pics! And so happy to know I'm not the only one that runs around and takes pictures of her hotel rooms (and food) like a spaz.

    I mean, ahem, like a totally awesome and cool person.

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  3. You crack me up! Looks wonderful. We'll have to try that Vietnamese restaurant next time we're in town.

    Kelly

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  4. Oh my gosh, this makes me miss Chicago so much. I lived there for a couple years and met my hubby there (he lived a couple blocks away from Le Colonial - we ate there often - yum!). Such a fun city (in the summer). Can't wait to see the rest of your recap.

    Teresa

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  5. So glad you enjoyed my hometown! Can't wait to see part 2!

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  6. Even though I live in Chicago seeing pictures of the gorgeous hotel makes me want to plan a weekend to spend downtown. Great pictures and glad you had fun!

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  7. I'm drooling on my keyboard. That food looks soo good. I would eat almost anything wrapped in a beignet.

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  8. looks like you had a great trip! and i feel ya on the vertically challenged/ offspring aspiring to be hobbits bit hahaha = )

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  9. You are cute as a button...and it looks like a fun trip! Thanks for sharing, and love your blog!

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  10. I love me some Chicago! I hope to see the bean in part II!

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  11. You guys are freaking adorable! :)

    I'm so glad you loved Le Colonial! You're so right! Right smack dab in the middle of downtown, but the place is so romantic and once you step inside, it's like going back in time!

    Ahhh, I love the hotel- So chic!

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  12. That's Arrowhead where my husband and I's reception was :) Hope you had a great time!

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  13. FC you are so freaking cute! Looks like you guys had a great time! Great pics!

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  14. I love Chicago, so jealous of your fantastic trip!

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  15. I love that black ruffle dress!!!

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  16. Now I'm hungry! Looks like you guys had a great time. Great pics too!

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  17. I love Chicago, beautiful place to be.

    Peace, Love and Chocolate
    Tiffany

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  18. You're photogenic! And, isn't the Raffaello great? Inexpensive, pretty, and close to all the good stuff on Michigan. I love that place. Although, our bathroom was huge so I think you need to request that next time!

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  19. A. I'm so impressed that you were even in my state. I knew it seemed like the state was getting cooler lately. Now I know why. ;)
    B. Looks like a great trip. I love Lake Michigan, too.

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  20. Gorgeous photos! Glad your enjoyed your trip!

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  21. You are so pretty, FC! Your trip looks like fun and your hotel was impressive!

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  22. looks like you had a blast! I love your black ruffle dress, gorgeous!

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  23. Looks like a great trip full of laughs, good food and great sights! Oh, and your dress you wore....I love it!!!

    Molly

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  24. I've always wanted to go to Chicago--but ONLY during the summer. I have never seen your picture before, but you are so pretty! Talented, too. Almost hate you. Almost.

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  25. thank you for that tour. great pics. I especially love the look of that vine covered church. Might have to put Chicago on my wish list...bit far from Australia though I'm afraid!

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  26. I LOVE the black dress you wore, and the Vietnamese looks amazing, but you definitely need to try some in Houston next time!!

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  27. Great pics...Love the Pho...one of my faves! I'v never been to Chicago though, gotta go!
    www.madebygirl.com
    madebygirl.blogspot.com

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  28. What a fun trip! I am dying to visit Chicago. The Vietnamese food looks amazing!

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Let's get weird up in here.
xoxo
~Freckles Chick~