Chicago’s State Street is a one-stop spot for some of the city’s best shopping. Locals head here for the blocks on blocks of modern malls, historic department stores, specialty shops, bargain options, and more. Visitors love the central location, just a few blocks from Millennium Park, the Riverwalk, Theatre District, and more classic Chicago sights.
Here’s where to go during your shopping spree on Chicago’s State Street.
Macy’s on State Street
Macy’s on State Street is part architectural tour and part retail heaven. The building — a National Historic Landmark — has an ornate exterior with towering granite columns and the massive Great Clocks that greet State Street shoppers. The inside is just as grand — don’t miss the shimmering Tiffany ceiling that soars above the first-floor cosmetics department.
Walk to the main escalators and you’ll see the Burnham Fountain, designed by famed Chicago architect Daniel Burnham. For a shopping break, head to the historic Walnut Room (the very first restaurant in a department store) where you’ll find tons of old-world touches, like Austrian chandeliers and century-old wood paneling. Make sure to order Mrs. Hering’s Chicken Pot Pie, a staple on the menu since 1907.
If you’re visiting in the spring, don’t miss Macy’s annual Flower Show. And over the winter, a visit to Macy’s holiday windows is a Chicago tradition.
State Street stores
For a true State Street shopping experience, stick to the stretch of State between Lake Street to Jackson Boulevard. That’s where you’ll find trendy shops, mega-retailers, local boutiques, and more.
Block 37, just across the street from Macy’s, is a hip shopping hub filled with cool stores and eateries. Browse shops like Anthropologie, AKIRA, Banana Republic Factory, Francesca’s, Sephora, ZARA, and more. You can also stop by Five Iron Golf, First Ascent Climbing and Fitness, and AMC Theatres.
Just down the street, Merz Apothecary is tucked away inside the famed Palmer House Hilton Hotel. This family-owned Chicago business features hard-to-find perfumes and colognes, old-school shaving products, and specialty toiletries. Around the corner, you’ll find AKIRA, the Chicago boutique that’s become a stylish Midwest staple. Expect loads of statement-making women’s clothing and personalized service.
Also on State Street, you’ll find all your favorite trend-setting stores, like UNIQLO, TJ Maxx, Nordstrom Rack, Express, Old Navy, Target, Journeys, and Zumiez, just to name a few.
State Street eats
All that shopping can work up an appetite. Here are a few of our favorite Chicago restaurants on and around State Street.
The Berghoff: A Chicago institution since 1898, this is a local favorite for traditional German food and beer.
The Dearborn: With classic tavern vibes and contemporary style, The Dearborn is always bustling. Grab a cozy booth and order up a few plates of modern Midwestern cuisine.
State and Lake Chicago Tavern: This contemporary gastropub, located inside theWit hotel, offers bistro fare with a laidback ambiance.
Sightseeing near State
If you’re shopping along State Street, then you’re in the heart of the Loop and within a short walk of some of the city’s major sights.
Millennium Park: It’s home to Chicago’s iconic Cloud Gate, aka “The Bean,” as well as Crown Fountain, the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Lurie Garden, and more.
Maggie Daley Park: Scale the climbing wall, cruise along the Skating Ribbon, play a round of mini golf, and explore so much more at this lakefront green space.
Art Institute of Chicago: Visit one of the largest and oldest art museums in the nation, home to the acclaimed Modern Wing and the largest collection of Impressionist art outside the Louvre.
Chicago Cultural Center: This cultural hub is home to tons of free things to see, like art exhibits, classical concerts, dance performances, and the largest Tiffany stained glass dome in the world. Plus, get an insider look at the city during a free tour with a Chicago Greeter.
American Writers Museum: The only museum of its kind in the nation, it’s a treasure trove of American literary history.
Chicago Riverwalk: There are a lot of reasons to love the scenic Riverwalk: panoramic views, majestic architecture, dinner cruises, kayak rentals, outdoor restaurants and bars, public art, and more.
Chicago Architecture Center: Chicago is a city of legendary architecture. The Chicago Architecture Center puts that legacy on display, with cool exhibits like a scale model of the city that includes 4,000 tiny buildings.