This weekend it was snowy and cold in Chicago, which I actually don’t mind during this time of the year. My hubby and I decided to head downtown to walk around and figure out a place for lunch. We often just enjoy walking around with a coffee and just seeing where the day takes us. Michigan Avenue and the Gold Coast are favorite areas of ours to walk around and we definitely have a few of our favorite spots.
A few weeks ago, I was reading one of my coffee table books about the history of Chicago and inside were some amazing black and white photos of Christmas in Chicago. The photos of an old-fashioned Christmas really inspired me and thought it would be fun to take some of my own black and white photos. I love the whole vintage style and I think these turned out pretty well. I enjoy taking all my own photography for GGC and I will sometimes have my husband just snap photos of me out and about in the city.
It can be hard to think of what to do when it’s cold outside, so I’m sharing my favorite spots go on Michigan Avenue and around the Gold Coast when it’s cold outside. If you are planning to visit Chicago soon, don’t be afraid to come and explore Chicago during the winter, there’s still plenty to see and do indoors. Plus hotels and airfare are less expensive!
RL restaurant is one of my favorite restaurants in Chicago. I love the vintage gentlemen’s club vibe and dark wood and leather decor. The food is also really good and it’s not too expensive for a Michigan Avenue restaurant either. It’s a perfect spot for a delicious lunch. My go-to is the grilled cheese and tomato soup, which is perfect for a winter’s day. You can make a reservation on Open Table and if you get there early enough you can ask to sit by the fireplace.
Starbucks at Oak and Rush
I enjoy Starbucks but I don’t drink it every day, although I have to say during the holidays while I’m out and about it’s often with a peppermint mocha in hand. The Starbucks on Oak and Rush is a Reserve store and I really love to relax and even work on the 2nd floor. From time to time I’m lucky enough to sit right by the fireplace and I really enjoy their special drink menu. If you are looking for a different kind of Starbucks experience, you must go to this location.
The Bar at The Peninsula Hotel
If you are looking for somewhere that’s a little fancier and also a little cozy, then you will love The Bar at The Peninsula Hotel. You will feel like you are in your own private lounge with cozy chairs and couches.They also have a great fireplace and during the winter months, I really enjoy their hot toddy.
Of course, there are some of the best steakhouses in the Gold Coast, so you can take your pick. But, if you are looking for something a little different one of my favorite spots is Le Colonial. It’s French-Vietnamese and you literally can’t go wrong with anything you order. If you go you have to get their lychee martini, it’s absolutely the best in the city.
For a sweet treat, you will love Leonida’s, a hidden gem in Chicago. It’s right on the corner of Chicago Avenue and Rush Street, a street of Michigan Avenue. It’s one of the best places for hot chocolate in Chicago. I highly suggest ordering the Triple Chocolate, you will not be disappointed!
The Drake Hotel
If you are looking for a place for traditional afternoon tea, you have to make reservations at the Palm Court at The Drake Hotel. The Drake Hotel is such a beautiful historic hotel and it’s especially lovely during the holidays. Don’t worry if you can’t make it for the holiday season you can have afternoon tea at The Drake all winter long. It’s a perfect Sunday afternoon to spend with your friends.
The John Hancock
If you are here visiting, I do suggest you go to the John Hancock over the Sears/Willis Tower. Instead of going to the observation deck, go to the Signature Lounge on the 96th floor. Depending on the time of day you can get a seat right by the window. Any time of the year, the view is always stunning but I think it’s especially beautiful just as it’s getting dark and you can see all the holiday lights. Ask for the Godiva Chocolate Martini and make sure you stop by the ladies room, it’s also one of the best views in the city!
RH + 3 Arts Club Cafè
Walk around gorgeous Restoration Hardware and spend an afternoon planning out your dream home while you wait for a table in the cafè. You have to get a table right inside this beautiful greenhouse inspired cafè. With plenty of cozy couches, you can enjoy lunch, a few glasses of wine, or even afternoon tea. If you don’t want to wait for a table, you can get a drink from their bar to enjoy while you walk around all the floors of RH.
Of course, all the shopping!
I love spending the afternoon shopping on the Mag Mile! Make plans to go to one of the places I mentioned either before or after you go shopping, it makes for the perfect girl’s day! My favorite places to shop on Michigan Avenue are Nordstorms, LOFT, Banana Republic, Zara, Express, TJ Maxx, H&M and H&M home, and the newly opened Artizia in the Gold Coast.