Amid the hustle and bustle of River North, the Dana Hotel and Spa in Chicago offers a bit of tranquility with its wonderfully appointed rooms and suites. The hotel always offered a bit of nightlife of their own with Vertigo Sky Lounge, which for eight years was their four-season rooftop lounge. Just announced is a new cocktail concept which will take the 26th floor space to even greater heights!
Stay tuned for that rooftop debut coming Spring 2017, and start planning your stay with this field guide to the Dana Hotel experience and the top area attractions to round out your stay.
Up Above, Rooms with a View
At the corner of Erie and State in River North you’ll find the Dana Hotel waiting to welcome you for a weekend stay. With its shiny facade of glass blended with smooth concrete, it's a contemporary architectural presence that seems very much of its moment.
As you walk into the lobby, don’t forget to pause and look at the elaborate kaleidoscopes near check-in. You’d do well to pause to take in the other pieces of art in the lobby, as they are also quite arresting. This is but a great prelude to the rooms themselves, which offer 24-hour room service, Keurig coffee makers, 37” flat screen TVs, comfortable robes, lux baths and much more.
For those who like to stay fit, there’s a 24-hour fitness center, complete with locker rooms and steaming facilities for those who want to unwind. You may also wish to book a treatment at the spa at dana as a way to pause amid the blur of a busy life.
Dana Hotel and Spa
660 N. State Street
An Evening Out at Lookingglass Theatre
A short walk away from the Dana you’ll find Lookingglass Theatre, located in the Water Tower Pumping Station on Michigan Avenue. Started in 1988 by a group of Northwestern University alumni (including actor David Schwimmer) this celebrated company has won a host of Jeff Awards (Chicago’s equivalent of the Tony) and a regional Tony Award to boot.
In recent years, they’ve crafted productions of "Treasure Island," "Moby Dick," and ambitious works such as "Thaddeus" and "Slocum: A Vaudeville Adventure," which looks at racial inequalities in early 20th century Chicago. You can buy tickets directly from the theatre's website, and if you’re looking for a bargain, you might also check out the HotTix website for day-of-performance deals. Additionally, you can check out the two brick-and-mortar HotTix locations in the Loop: 72 E. Randolph Street and 108 N. State Street.
Lookingglass Theatre Company
821 N. Michigan Avenue, located in the Water Tower Pumping Station
Step Back into Chicago’s Past at the Driehaus Museum
This grand manse, just a short walk from the Dana, was built by Samuel Nickerson as a testimony to his stature as a prominent industrialist during Chicago’s Gilded Age. In the 20th century, the building was home to a wide array of businesses (including an art gallery) until philanthropist Richard H. Driehaus decided to invest in the complete and total restoration of this amazing house.
Today visitors can venture forth into the home to view galleries that contain surviving furnishings paired with elegant, historically appropriate pieces from the Driehaus Collection of Fine and Decorative Arts, including works by designers such as Louis Comfort Tiffany and George A. Schastey.
First-time visitors can learn about the museum’s hours and plan their trip on the Driehaus Museum website and don’t forget to check out their amazing blog for tidbits about Chicago history, architecture and more. Also check out their programs for details about some of their marvelous special events.
40 E. Erie Street
At Freestyle, Linger Awhile with a Drink and Some Food
Start with something from their “Tandem” section at dinner, which includes brussel sprouts fried with jalapeño and cauliflower or their smoked cheddar mac and cheese. A close look at their beverage program will reveal a few gems as well. You might enjoy the green tea martini (completed with Bulleit bourbon and peach schnapps). Stay awhile and have a few tipples.
Moving on to the mains, you can start with a few pieces of sushi and I’d also suggest their roasted chicken or the wild rice squash bowl. Additionally, you can make your way through their dessert menu (and here I’d suggest the carrot cake).
Don’t rush through anything, although I know it may be tempting: after all, you have a lovely room waiting for you upstairs!
Located in the Dana Hotel, 660 N. State Street