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The fabled Chicago Historic Water Tower that survived the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 is a North Michigan Avenue landmark. North Michigan Avenue is a shoppers’ mecca. From Water Tower Place Mall to Westfield Shoppingtown North Bridge, shopping is the primary activity along this Magnificent Mile. The Museum of Contemporary Art is located along this corridor. Upscale shops and boutiques line Oak Street, located just west of Michigan Avenue. The Gold Coast, just north of upper Michigan Avenue, and Streeterville to the east, are among Chicago’s most affluent neighborhoods.
An offshoot of the hustle and bustle of the Loop, River North houses a chic district of art galleries that ranks second only to Manhattan’s Soho area. Trendy new restaurants and clubs reside on West Ontario Street and dot the surrounding streets.
Old Town is noted for its 19th century Victorian homes and even retains some of its original cobblestone streets. The area boasts the celebrated Second City improvisational comedy group and the oldest summer art fair in America, as well as numerous boutiques and restaurants. The Chicago Historical Society is located in Old Town.
This popular residential neighborhood offers sights, sounds, and tastes of a varied kind. The free Lincoln Park Zoo, world renowned blues clubs, dance clubs, restaurants of every cuisine, and quaint shops comprise the mosaic that is this neighborhood. Sprawling out from DePaul University is an area along Halsted Street that encompasses Chicago’s “off-Loop” theater district and blues clubs.
This restored area boasts architectural treasures, as well as jazz and blues clubs, bookstores, shops, restaurants, and galleries. The Auditorium Theatre and the Spertus Museum of Judaica line South Michigan Avenue facing Grant Park. The Shedd Aquarium/Oceanarium, The Field Museum of Natural History, and The Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum reside here. You can also visit the Prairie Avenue Historic District, and enjoy the Glessner House Museums.
The pulse of the city still beats in “the Loop” where the Macy’s store (formerly Marshall Field’s) and Carson Pirie Scott remain venerable veterans of State Street shopping. The Art Institute of Chicago, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Harold Washington Library Center, and multiple theaters lend the area a cultural edge. The financial district remains one of the Loop’s most active provinces. Lively restaurants dominate this area.
This burgeoning artistic community is Chicago’s hottest new neighborhood. New trendy shops, galleries, restaurants and nightclubs abound, and the visitor will also find a wealth of coffeehouses, performance art and poetry readings. In early September, Around the Coyote, an arts festival, attracts thousands of visitors to this community.
This near west side neighborhood is considered one of the trendiest and most fun Restaurant Row neighborhoods. Historically, the area housed wholesale produce, meat merchants, and restaurant supply houses. The stalls and streets teemed around the clock with food service buyers and chefs purchasing their goods and equipment for the next meal. In the past decade, most of the business has moved near to the airport, leaving behind attractive buildings, cobblestone side streets, and a tradition of fine and fresh food.
For years, Lincoln Square has been the center of Chicago’s German community. It is still a favorite shopping destination, featuring some of the remnants of the Old World personalized service where visitors can choose from a diverse selection of European and American merchandise. Lincoln Square is a popular destination for fine dining, with a number of ethnic cafes and restaurants. Here you’ll find the Old Town School of Folk Music, which offers live entertainment regularly.
This charming north side community was first settled by Swedish immigrants and still has many Scandinavian restaurants and shops. A highlight of the neighborhood is the Swedish American Museum that chronicles immigration to the Midwest. The museum recently added a children’s area that tells the story of immigration in a fun and colorful way.
Chinatown emerged around 1912 and is one of the most vibrant communities in Chicago. Colorful pagoda towers and the Chinatown Gate greet visitors to the various businesses, import shops and restaurants which feature Chinese delights as simple as dim sum to gourmet, multi-course feasts.
This north side neighborhood has become a port of entry for many immigrants. Its diverse cultures have earned Uptown the reputation as Chicago’s “United Nations.” Its shops, restaurants and cultural facilities reflect the diversity.
Located just north of Lincoln Park is Lakeview, a fast paced neighborhood that is alive with the comings and goings of the young professionals. Nightclubs and restaurants stay open late, keeping the area active until the wee hours. This neighborhood is also home to the city’s largest gay population. The north section of Lakeview is known as Wrigleyville. The area is named after its famous historic resident Wrigley Field, home to the Chicago Cubs. At the northern tip of Wrigleyville is Graceland Cemetery, the resting place of many Chicago legends and leaders.
The Ravenswood community is a neighborhood noted for its commercial, industrial and residential diversity. The area offers a rich mix of commercial history including the birthplace of such nationally prominent firms Bell & Howell, Abbott Laboratories, Deagan Musical Instruments, and others. Today the Ravenswood Industrial corridor is home to over 200 firms including manufacturers, artists and tech companies. The neighborhood that surrounds the corridor has beautiful Victorian homes on large lots. Commercial and retail establishments range from eclectic artists and specialty shops to a potpourri of coffee and lunch spots. Ravenswood is home to several noted cultural institutions including the Old Town School of Folk Music and the Conrad Sulzer Library.
For a quick trip around the world, visit Devon Avenue west from Ridge Boulevard. In the West Rogers Park neighborhood, formerly a solidly Jewish community, you’ll discover more than 60 ethnic restaurants, bakeries and shops catering to Indian, Pakistani, Russian, Middle Eastern, Mexican, kosher, and other tastes.
A neighborhood of simple, red brick 2-flats with neatly groomed lawns, Ukrainian Village is located south of Division Street between Damen and Western Avenues. Built and settled by Ukrainian immigrants after 1900 and still occupied by their descendants, the district reveals a variety of Ukrainian shops and restaurants along Chicago Avenue, as well as the Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art. Other highlights include the Ukrainian National Museum and Holy Trinity Russian Orthodox Cathedral.
Greektown is a colorful ethnic business community located west of the Loop. The area is famous for its great collection of Greek restaurants, cafes, and bakeries. There are also a handful of import shops that sell Greek-related goods.
From the Polish Museum (984 N. Milwaukee Avenue), travel north on Milwaukee Avenue to experience some of the oldest Polish immigrant settlements in the city, including West Town, Logan Square, Avondale, Portage Park, and Jefferson Park. Some of the highlights along the way include St. John Cantius Church at Milwaukee and Chicago Avenue and the Copernicus Center at 5216 W. Lawrence Avenue. Also, lots of Polish restaurants and delis dot the way.
Logan Square is a neighborhood that surrounds the intersection of Milwaukee Avenue and Logan and Kedzie Boulevard. The square is marked by the 1918 Centennial Monument. This beautiful stretch of Chicago’s 28 mile boulevard system is also the best place to see the city’s most beautiful graystones. Logan Square, one of the city’s oldest Polish immigrant settlements, is now home to a diverse population of ethnic and economic backgrounds.
In the shadow of the University of Illinois at Chicago, centered on Taylor Street west of Halsted, is one of the oldest communities in the city. This area is famous for its family-owned Italian restaurants and residents who are primarily of Tuscan descent. McCormick Place, Soldier Field, and the United Center are nearby.
Before World War II, Pilsen was home to the nation’s largest Bohemian-American settlement. In fact, Pilsen derives its name from a city in Bohemia. Now home to Mexican immigrants, it is alive with colorful murals on local buildings, authentic Mexican restaurants and the acclaimed Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum. The east end of Pilsen is home to a community of artists.
Bronzeville was the center of African-American culture, literature, politics, and entrepreneurship in Chicago and the Midwest. In the 1920′s, this city within a city was commonly referred to as “the Black Metropolis”. Today, many influential Chicago African-Americans and residents of Bronzeville are restoring the community to its original glory. A refurbished ‘L’ station named Bronzeville/IIT, a 14 X 70-foot bronze map and a walkway honoring 91 important African-Americans in Chicago were completed in time for the 1996 National Democratic Convention.
Located between Sheridan Road and Broadway Street, Argyle Street is the focal point for Chicago’s Southeast Asian community. The strip bustles with the activities of shopping and eating in the dozens of Vietnamese, Laotian, and Cambodian establishments as well as numerous Thai, Chinese, and Filipino shops and restaurants.
The Oriental Institute, Smart Museum of Art, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Robie House and its parent, the University of Chicago, provide the nucleus of Hyde Park. This area began as a small New England-esque town, flourished as a result of the University founding in 1892 and the World’s Columbian Exposition hosted in 1893. The Museum of Science and Industry still stands as a legacy to that event. The DuSable Museum of African American History also resides in this neighborhood.
If the neighborhood you are looking to buy or sell is not listed above, call us at 312-501-2001 or 312-278-8563 and we will refer a real estate expert for you to work with. Information was provided by CityofChicago.org.
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