Chicago Like a Local Blog

Unique perspectives on the city from the people who live here.

Category - Architecture/History

A Walking Tour Through Ravenswood: Exploring Chicago A–Z

Deagan Building

The colorful Ravenswood corridor in Lincoln Square hugs the Metra right-of-away as it makes its way north through a clutch of North Side Chicago neighborhoods. Many of the former industrial buildings along this street now house a range of booming businesses (including craft breweries!), and spending an afternoon in these parts is quite pleasant. Why not take a short trip and visit a few of our favorite Ravenswood gems. Let's get started!


11 Free Things to Do in Chicago Right Now!

The Bean in Millennium Park

March in Chicago means that spring is here and summer is right around the corner. As the weather warms up, there are more and more FREE things to do around Chicago. Read on for some top picks to finish out the month.


Q is for Queen's Landing: Exploring Chicago A–Z

Buckingham Fountain Chicago Grant Park

Over the past 170 years, Chicago has played host to a range of royalty from all over the world. One of the more momentous visits was by Queen Elizabeth II on July 26, 1959, when she arrived by yacht for a whirlwind 14-hour tour of the city led by then Mayor Richard J. Daley, Governor William Stratton and other prominent persons. The next time you plan an outing to Chicago's lakefront, visit the historic spot in Grant Park yourself, aptly named "Queen's Landing."


View The Striking Images of African American Freetowns at the Newberry Library's FREE Exhibit

Photographing Freetowns exhibit at the Newberry Library

Photography aficionados may know Helen Balfour Morrison for her portraits of famous Americans, displayed in museums across the country, including the Art Institute of Chicago and MoMA. In 1935, Morrison turned her eye toward the rarely shown experience of African American "freetowns," small independent communities that formed after the abolishment of slavery. The photos capture an important piece of African American history, and are now on display at the Newberry Library's


Sightseeing in Lincoln Park: A Bridge off the Beaten Path

Cherry Avenue Bridge

If you’re a city wanderer like I am, you’re probably looking for those curious moments out and about as you walk around. Well, I have a real gem for you in Lincoln Park: the Cherry Avenue Bridge.


Take A Tour through the Landmark Palmer House Hilton with Award-Winning Historian Ken Price, Full of Stories from Chicago History

Palmer House Hilton Hotel Chicago

The elegance and beauty of the Palmer House Hilton earns it a spot at the top of luxury hotel lists and it's location in the heart of the Loop makes it a popular pick for business and leisure travelers alike. But beyond the gilded ceilings and prized art works, the hotel represents another kind of treasure—tangible Chicago history.


P is for the Palmer House Peacocks: Chicago A–Z

Palmer House Peacocks

Every major American city has a jewelry story that has appealed to high society, and Chicago is no exception. The city's first jewelry store was run by one Elijah Peacock, which he opened in 1837, the same year Chicago was established as a city. In a very real sense it predated the establishment of a nouveau riche class of Chicago residents. Nevertheless, the store served members of the moneyed elite, who stepped into the store through a set of doors that exemplified the riches


Escape the Elections & Stay Like a President: Chicago's Hotel of Presidents

Renaissance Blackstone

The
Renaissance Blackstone Chicago Hotel earned its place in history, and a spot on the National Register of Historic Places, in part for hosting twelve U.S. presidents, from Teddy Roosevelt to Jimmy Carter. Now you can get the presidential treatment during your Chicago stay—minus all the politics, of course. In honor of the presidential race, the iconic hotel is offering a "Stay Like a President Package," available through November 13 (a week after the presidential

A Bronzeville Itinerary: A Taste of the Art & Culture of This Historical South Side Neighborhood

Bronzeville Chicago

There are few Chicago neighborhoods that boast more history than Bronzeville, the famed South Side community that has been the foundation for the city's cultural heritage for a century. It was in the theaters and streets of Bronzeville where blues and jazz were nurtured, and in the churches that the gospel sound was developed.


Open House Chicago 2016: Free Behind-the-Scenes Tours at 200+ Iconic Chicago Buildings (Oct 15–16)

Congress Plaza Hotel Ballroom

The Chicago Architecture Foundation’s Open House Chicago, now in its 6th year, is a free public festival that gives you the chance to go behind-the-scenes at more than 200 iconic buildings across Chicago. This 48-hour program, taking place October 15–16, uncovers Chicago gems that are usually closed to the public. Here are seven downtown spots we can't wait to check out during Open House Chicago 2016.


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