Choose Chicago Media Relations
Contact: Anna Polovick Waggy, Media Relations Coordinator

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS (October 17, 2018) – Recently named the “Best Big City in the U.S.” by Condé Nast Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards for the second consecutive year, Chicago continues to be a leading urban destination. With a vibrant theatre and nightlife scene, award-winning dining, iconic attractions and diverse cultural experiences, Chicago boasts an expanding hotel market and the best-connected airport in the nation. Check out what’s new and happening in Fall and Winter 2018 below, and visit for more information.

Aloft Chicago Mag Mile
, which opened on October 15, 2018, embodies its artistic roots, built on the former site of Chicago’s Contemporary Museum of Art, to help travelers “color outside the lines” of other more traditional hotels. Just steps from Chicago’s famous Magnificent Mile, Aloft Chicago Mag Mile is a vibrant new hotel that moves to the beat of its guests. Walk through Chicago’s architectural heritage, world-class shopping, spectacular nightlife and entertainment—all part of the Mag Mile experience.

Designed as a luxury lifestyle, four-diamond property and engineered to achieve LEED Silver certification,SOPHY Hyde Park is a 98-room hotel in Chicago's historic Hyde Park neighborhood that opened October 1, 2018. Developed by The Olympia Companies and SMART Hotels, SOPHY is near the site of the future Barack Obama Presidential Library, the University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Medical Center. A member of the Preferred Hotels and Resorts Lifestyle Collection, SOPHY Hyde Park features a bar, full-service restaurant with al fresco dining and a state-of-the-art fitness center. SOPHY also features artwork from contemporary Chicago artists and design elements inspired by the World's Columbian Exposition.

The St. Clair Hotel, the first property in The Red Collection, Red Roof’s first soft-brand, opened on October 1, 2018 just one block from the Magnificent Mile. Designed to offer guests an authentic upper-midscale experience at a value price, The St. Clair Hotel’s 208 modern, amenity-filled rooms have been revitalized, renovated and upgraded. An on-site restaurant is expected to open in the future.

The Wheelhouse Hotel opened its doors on September 1, 2018. Located in Wrigleyville, just steps away from Wrigley Field, The Wheelhouse Hotel marks Bedderman Lodging’s first-ever upscale endeavor and the first of its kind for the neighborhood. With an ultra-boutique and homey feel, integrated with outstanding service, The Wheelhouse strives to redefine how to play and stay in one of the city's most famous neighborhoods.

The first ever tri-brand Hilton, which combines a Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton Innand Home2 Suites, joined The Collection at McCormick Square complex on August 8, 2018, conveniently connecting to McCormick Place via a sky bridge. The Collection at McCormick Square is a complex that includes the McCormick Place convention center, the new 10,387-seat Wintrust Arena, the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place and the new Marriott Marquis Chicago.

The former Atlantic Bank Building, originally built in 1912 by iconic Chicago architect Benjamin Marshall, reopened as the Hotel Julian on October 1, 2018. With its iconic terracotta façade restored and enhanced by Hirsch Associates, LLC, the new hotel from Oxford Capital Group sits steps from Millennium Park. It includes a ground floor restaurant, About Last Knife (ALK), which features a folding glass wall separating its indoor and outdoor seating areas. The hotel is named for St. Julian Hospitaller, the patron saint of hospitality and innkeepers.

This winter, The Gwen Chicago is unveiling a ski cabin-inspired winter wonderland on its fifth-floor outdoor terrace, complete with a new pop-up bar, The Curling Cabin. Constructed exclusively for The Gwen, the wood paneled cabin will feature seating for up to ten guests, with additional standing room available on the cabin’s front porch. Guests can enjoy a selection of winter menu items and hot cocktails from The Gwen’s culinary team or reserve playing time on the hotel’s outdoor curling rink. The Curling Cabin will be decked out with lux ski lodge décor, complete with flannel furnishings, forest greenery and faux furs. In addition to the curling rink, The Gwen’s outdoor terrace will be decorated with miniature spruce trees, twinkling lights and life-size pink moose sculpture. Weather-permitting, The Curling Cabin will be open November 17, 2018-February 2019.

Construction is under way for The Hoxton hotel in the Fulton Market District, which is expected to be completed in 2019. The Chicago branch of the London-based Hoxton brand comes from prominent West Loop developer Shapack Partners. The Hoxton will stand 11 stories tall with 175 rooms, two levels of office space, ground-floor retail and a rooftop terrace. In addition, Boka Restaurant Group will open a restaurant and bar in the hotel. 

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill is transforming Chicago’s old Cook County Hospital into a dual-branded Hyatt House Hotel/Hyatt Place, accompanied by medical office space and retail. The 14-story, 167,000-sq.-ft., 200-room development will be the first hotel in the Fulton Market district to cater to extended-stay corporate travelers. Amenities will include an indoor pool, green roof, fitness center, bar and lounge. The hotels are slated to open in 2019 and 2020.

Hyatt Hotels is working on a new hotel in the West Loop set to open in 2020 across the street from the new McDonald’s headquarters. The 53-story office tower is currently under construction and will have 220 guest rooms, two levels of parking, a fourth floor sky lobby, a guest amenity level and ground floor retail space. 

Scheduled to open in 2021, the 58-story Equinox will have 165 hotel rooms and 370 residential units in the West Loop. It will include an on-site fitness club and parking for 150 vehicles accessible via Court Place.

Art on theMART
, the first-of-its-kind digital installation that launched September 29, 2018, is projected across 2.5 acres of theMART’s exterior river-façade, creating the longest-running and largest permanent digital art projection in the world. It features work by renowned contemporary artists, Diana Thater, Zheng Chongbin, Jan Tichy and Jason Salavon. Projections are displayed for approximately two hours a night, five days a week (Wednesday through Sunday), for 10 months of the year (March through December). Projections are visible to the public from Wacker Dr. and along the Chicago Riverwalk.

The Chicago Architecture Center (CAC), formerly known as Chicago Architecture Foundation, opened at its new location on August 31, 2018.  The new Center joined the bustling riverfront steps away from Michigan Avenue and directly across the street from the Chicago Architecture Foundation Center River Cruise aboard Chicago’s First Lady Cruises. The 20,000-sq.-ft. Center offers a launching pad for discovering the “first city of modern architecture.” Visitors discover world-famous tours, programs and exciting, new interactive exhibits that reveal the stories behind the city’s architectural marvels and breathtaking skyscrapers around the world.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) and the Department of Fleet and Facility Management (2FM) have announced plans to develop the Riverwalk Community Marketplace, a new concessions program to highlight existing vendors in the city’s culturally diverse communities. The program will feature a mix of food, beverage and retail facilities.

Chicago Detours is introducing a new free lunch-break tour of the historic Monadnock Building starting November 3, 2018. This 30-minute tour on Fridays at 12:30 pm looks at the building from outside to absorb its monumental architecture. The late-nineteenth-century skyscraper is particularly beloved by Chicagoans for its unique shape and structure, and stepping inside is like taking a step back in time with the building’s ornate staircases, historic lighting fixtures and old-time-style small businesses. The tour is free and reservations are required.

Bar Ramone
, opened on August 30, 2018 in River North, is a wine bar with the heart and soul of Spanish tapas. The wine program is curated by Lettuce Entertain You’s Ryan Arnold and Richard Hanauer and features a wine list of just over 100 bottles. The small plates menu is created by Chef Partners Hisanobu Osaka and Doug Psaltis. Favorites include house-made tomato bread, Spicy Padron Peppers & Bonito, Duck Confit Poutine and Bloody Mary Shrimp.

Crab Cellar opened October 10, 2018 as Chicago’s only unlimited Alaskan King Crab & Prime Burger experience located in Lincoln Park. Crab Cellar is open for dinner five nights a week from Wednesday through Sunday. The Prime Burgers are made with 8 oz. Slagel Farms Beef, Roquefort, crispy onions and dijonnaise, and the Alaskan King Crab Legs are served with melted Wisconsin butter. Guests will also have the option to add on unlimited lobster for a market price as well as rotating specials like fried chicken.

Galit, a contemporary Israeli restaurant, is set to open in Lincoln Park in 2019.  Zach Engel, who won the James Beard Foundation Rising Chef award last year, plans to open Galit near the Biograph Theater. Engel specializes in modern Israeli food. The new restaurant’s menu will reflect Engel’s Jewish-American heritage, as well as General Manager and Partner Andrés Clavero’s Cuban-Palestinian heritage.

The Hampton Social, the East Coast-inspired restaurant brought to life by Parker Restaurant Group, welcomed its third location of the concept in September 2018 in Chicago’s Streeterville neighborhood. The 8,700-sq.-ft. space evokes a Hampton lifestyle, offering a playful, beachy atmosphere and chef-driven coastal fare. With seating for more than 200 guests, the restaurant embraces a nautical design and boasts two spacious patios: a four-season covered terrace and a second floor rooftop. Guests can indulge in creative takes on seafood specialties and signature pizzas while enjoying an expansive wine list and refreshing sippers, including the highly-lauded pink “Frosé.”

KOVAL Distillery, Chicago’s first distillery since the 1800s, purchased their location in the heart of Ravenswood’s Malt Row and is undergoing major renovations. Throughout 2018, they are expanding their operations from 11,000 sq. ft. to over 45,000 sq. ft. A new roof, new skylights and overall upgrades to the facility will allow for significantly increased production of their organic, “heart cut” line of whiskey, gin, vodka, brandy and liqueur, as well as an expanded and enhanced visitor center and tasting room experience.

In Fall 2018, the team behind two Michelin-starred Oriole will open Kumiko, a bar in Chicago's West Loop neighborhood, led by Partners Julia Momose and Noah and Cara Sandoval. Embracing a philosophy similar to Oriole, Kumiko will offer a thoughtful experience filled with a deep appreciation and understanding for craftsmanship, as seen through the cocktails and dishes curated with purpose by Momose and Chef Sandoval. The drink menu will have between 11 to 15 cocktails and will feature spirit-free options as well. As a part of the cocktail program, Kumiko will also offer an omakase-style tasting menu at the bar that blends Julia and Noah’s creativity together.

Princi, a boutique bakery and café started in 1986 by renowned Milanese baker, Rocco Princi, opened a new store at the corner of West Randolph and Morgan Streets in the West Loop. It is the second stand-alone Princi location in the United States, with one in Seattle and another to open in New York later this fall. Starbucks is an investor and global licensee of Princi. On the menu are more than 70 items from founder Rocco Princi’s repertoire, honed over 30 years in his eponymous bakeries in Milan and London. There are more than 50 ingredients imported from Italy along with dozens of types of locally sourced produce. Menu items are prepared fresh daily by a team of masterful bakers, and commessas including cornettis, focaccia, pizza al taglio and more.

Queenie's Supper Club, a 270-seat full-service restaurant inside the United Center, opened September 14, 2018. Queenie's, a partnership between United Center Joint Ventures and hospitality partners Heisler and Levy, is a riff on the classic Midwestern supper club with a menu from Chef Dan Snowden (Bad Hunter). Chef Snowden’s menu features a variety of supper club fare from the thick roasted cuts of prime rib and tableside Caesar salads to the iconic fried walleye, broasted chicken, bacon wrapped scallops and whole roasted trout almondine. At the bar, diners can expect a perfectly poured Brandy Old Fashioned on tap, frothy Amaretto Sours and ice cream cocktails like the Orange Whip and Brandy Alexander.  Draft and craft beers from the Midwest are a focal point, which will change seasonally with the menu.

Split-Rail reopened for dinner service on September 14, 2018. Award-winning Chef and Owner Zoe Schor’s new menu offers classic southern fried chicken and essential accompaniments, plus a few crowd favorites from the West Town restaurant’s first year. The few menu holdovers are some of Split-Rail’s most loved items, including nachos with all the fixings, the house made hot link, a crunchy salad tossed with a spicy Caesar dressing and the ever-changing ice cream sandwich. The bar program, overseen by General Manager Michelle Szot and Bar Manager Brenna Washow, retains its focus on thoughtfully curated wines, champagne and well-crafted cocktails with a tongue-in-cheek edge.

TAO Chicago, a restaurant, nightclub and event space, opened in an 1892 landmark building on September 17, 2018. The menu features a selection of Asian-inspired specialties created by TAO Group Partner and Chef Ralph Scamardella, complete with Pan-Asian offerings from the sea, sky and land. Designed by Rockwell Group, TAO Chicago offers a distinct sense of arrival and discovery upon descending into the multi-level space. It is home to the most dramatic dining room in the city, intended to look and feel as if it has been there for decades and only unearthed recently to reveal the artifacts within.

Tinker to Evers, a sleek downstairs cocktail lounge that opened on October 4, 2018, is an elevated alternative to Wrigleyville’s ubiquitous sports pubs and beer bars. The intimate venue, which is playfully named after the famous Cubs poem written by Franklin Pierce Adams, presents a portfolio of unique cocktails crafted with fresh squeezed juices, aromatics and a wide range of unique, local craft spirits.

Union Full Board, which opened its doors on September 10, 2018, presents a neighborhood-friendly restaurant and bar spanning over 1,200 sq. ft. that comfortably seats 60. The food program showcases much of Evanston’s beloved Union Pizzeria fare. Chef/Partner Vince DiBattista offers a wide variety of freshly made small plates and entrees with a focus on local and organic producers. Guests can also get their hands on Union’s famed individual-sized, Detroit-style square cut pies. The drinks include classic signature cocktails, local craft brews on tap, a sizable global beer list and an extensive wine list. Union's footprint extends to the fifth story with an expansive open-air rooftop that overlooks the heart of Wrigleyville, which is

Brought to Chicago by the James Beard nominated Concentrics Restaurant group, VU Chicago is a 13,000-sq.-ft. concept located 22 stories above bustling McCormick Place. VU offers modern design, a chef driven menu and beverage program and views of the lake and downtown. The bird’s eye location is designed for al fresco and indoor drinking, dining and lounging with soft seating, fire pits, a wood fired oven and several private event areas such as a karaoke room, board room and club bar.

This fall, an impressive women-led team will bring Yūgen, a modern-fine dining experience, to Chicago’s West Loop. Helmed by Executive Chef Mari Katsumura, the restaurant will feature contemporary Japanese cuisine in a striking, reimagined space. Inspired by Chef Katsumura’s lineage, the word Yūgen represents an evocative concept in the Japanese language, meaning “the power to conjure indescribable appreciation for the simplicity of beauty.” All elements of Yūgen will be guided by this Zen ideology.

The Art Institute of Chicago
presents the exhibit Hairy Who? 1966-1969 September 26, 2018-January 6, 2019. As the Hairy Who, Jim Falconer, Art Green, Gladys Nilsson, Jim Nutt, Suellen Rocca, and Karl Wirsum—all recent graduates of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago—began mounting unconventional displays of bright, bold graphic work at the Hyde Park Art Center on the city’s South Side. Over a period of four years, they transformed the art landscape of Chicago, injecting their new and unique voices into the city’s rising national and international profile. The Art Institute is proud to organize this first-ever major survey exhibition dedicated solely to the groundbreaking exhibition group.

As the birthplace of modern blues, The Chicago Blues Experience, opening in 2019, will celebrate pioneering artists and generations of musicians who have been influenced by blues and continue to carry on its traditions. Situated near Millennium Park, it will be filled with history-driven interactive displays, tributes to local legends and Chicago blues memorabilia, as well as a performance lounge and restaurant.

On November 2, The Chicago Brewseum will open Brewing Up Chicago: How Beer Transformed a City, an exhibition hosted at the Field Museum. As craft breweries flourish today, this exhibition takes a deep dive into Chicago’s history with beer, highlighting the immigrant communities who drove that history throughout the 19th century.

TheChicago Humanities Festival 2018Graphic! will present the Fall Festival October 27-November 11, 2018. As the world becomes increasingly visual, it’s becoming increasingly commonplace for people to communicate not with words but through photographs, emojis, videos and Instagram stories. But is the visual proving better than narrative at making sense of life? Graphic! explores a rapidly emerging and evolving visual society, charting its expressions, potential and the limits across the past, present and future.

As a part of Art Design Chicago, the DePaul Art Museum will display Yasuhiro Ishimoto: Someday, Chicago September 6-December 16, 2018. This exhibit examines the work of American-born photographer Yasuhiro Ishimoto (1921–2012) through the lens of Chicago, where Ishimoto lived for over a decade and where he would continue to return throughout his life.

The DuSable Museum of African American History presents South Side Stories: The Art and Influence of Dr. Margaret T. Burroughs, 1960–1980 as a part of Art Design Chicago through March 4, 2019. The new exhibit explores influential Chicago artist and cultural leader Dr. Margaret T. Burroughs’s legacy as an artist, creator, activist and institution builder. It gives a nuanced illustration of how her legacy influenced artists, activists and cultural awareness on Chicago’s South Side between 1960 and 1980.

Hamilton: The Exhibition will premiere in Chicago on April 6, 2019. Created by Hamilton musical creator Lin-Manuel Miranda and producer Jeffrey Seller, this 360-degree, immersive exhibit is designed to take visitors deeper into the life and times of Alexander Hamilton, while at the same time chronicling the American Revolution and the creation of the United States of America. The exhibit will feature an audio tour narrated by Miranda. With a dynamic, interactive mix of in-depth scenography, lighting, sound, multimedia and music, Hamilton: The Exhibition will give visitors an experiential journey from Hamilton’s childhood in St. Croix to his untimely death in Weehawken, New Jersey. The exhibit will open on Northerly Island in a specially-constructed free-standing structure the size of a football field. Following its Chicago premiere, the exhibition will travel to select U.S. cities.

Prisoner of Love will be on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art January 26-October 27, 2019. The new video phenomenon Love Is The Message, The Message Is Death, by acclaimed artist and filmmaker Arthur Jafa, is a multilayered seven-minute montage of the black experience in America. The video tells a story of trauma and transcendence in a flurry of footage, from historic speeches by Martin Luther King and Barack Obama, to clips of cultural icons Beyoncé and Notorious B.I.G., the video flashes through concerts, home movies, news footage, music videos and sports matches, all set to the music of Kanye West’s Ultralight Beam. This filmic journey is the centerpiece of the exhibition, which includes a rotating body of work from the MCA Collection that complements Jafa's video and captures some of the same intense emotions about life in America today.

The Museum of Contemporary Photography will present The Many Hats of Ralph Arnold: Art, Identity, and Politics October 11-December 21, 2018. During the tumultuous 1960s and 1970s, the prolific Chicago artist Ralph Arnold made photo collages that appropriated and commented upon mass media portrayals of gender, sexuality, race and politics. Arnold’s complex visual arrangements of photography, painting and text were built upon his own multilayered identity as a black, gay veteran and prominent member of Chicago’s art community. A companion exhibition, entitled Echoes: Reframing Collage, also at MoCP, examines the parallels between Arnold’s work and 21st-century photo collage artists like Wardell Milan, Nathaniel Mary Quinn, Paul Mpagi Sepuya, Ayanah Moor, Krista Franklin and Xaviera Simmons, deepening the understanding of Arnold’s lasting contribution. The Many Hats of Ralph Arnold: Art, Identity, and Politics is part of Art Design Chicago.

Experience a unique look into the Pixar process, and explore the science and technology behind some of the most beloved animated films and their characters at the Museum of Science and Industry’sThe Science Behind Pixar. This exhibition gives an unparalleled view of the production pipeline and concepts used at Pixar every day. Participate in fun hands-on activities, listen to firsthand accounts from members of the studio’s production teams and even come face-to-face with recreations of Pixar film characters, including Buzz Lightyear, Dory, Mike and Sulley, Edna Mode and WALL•E. The exhibit runs through January 6, 2019.

The Richard H. Driehaus Museum presents Treasures from the White City: Chicago World's Fair of 1893 September 8, 2018-January 6, 2019, displaying original objects and memorabilia designed for and exhibited at the fair on the occasion of its 125th anniversary. The objects are drawn from the Museum’s permanent collection, as well as the Richard H. Driehaus private collection, and are exhibited in two galleries in the Nickerson Mansion, a building that not only stood during the World’s Fair in 1893, but also hosted a large reception to celebrate the event. The exhibit is part of Art Design Chicago.

The mysterious new WNDR Museum, which opened September 21, 2018, brings a Yayoi Kusama Infinity Room to Chicago, the first to go on view in the city. This pop-up museum features an educational, immersive and experiential installation that merge science and art. The room in question debuted last fall at New York’s David Zwirner Gallery where it was visited by more than 75,000 guests. Titled Infinity Mirrored Room: Let’s Survive Forever, the work is filled with reflective steel balls and a small mirrored column that itself encloses an even smaller infinity room.

The Obama Presidential Center is expected to open in 2021 in historic Jackson Park on the South Side of Chicago. It will include three buildings—a museum, forum and library—that will form a campus surrounding a public plaza. The Center is estimated to support nearly 5,000 new, local jobs during its construction and more than 2,500 permanent jobs once the Center opens. The Center will attract up to 760,000 annual visitors, and in its first ten years, is expected to have a total economic impact of $3.1 billion.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) Commissioner Mark Kelly, League of Chicago Theatres Executive Director Deb Clapp, and other civic, arts and theatre leaders announced plans to designate 2019 as the Year of Chicago Theatre. This citywide, year-long focus on theatre is the first of its kind in the U.S. The initiative will include theatre performances – including improv, dance, opera, puppetry and more – and special events for the public at hundreds of cultural venues, theaters, parks and neighborhood locations throughout the city. Its mission is to make 2019 a year in which the city of Chicago emphasizes the prominence of its expansive and innovative theatre industry.

Chicago Theatre Week, an annual celebration of the rich tradition of theatre-going in Chicago during which visitors and residents can access value-priced tickets, will take place February 7-17, 2019. Heading into its seventh year, Chicago Theatre Week is a celebration of the stories we share and spans a week and two full weekends. As a program of the League of Chicago Theatres, over 100 theatre productions are expected to participate in neighborhoods throughout the city and suburbs.

Ballet Folklórico de México de Amalia Hernández returns to Chicago November 10-11, 2018 at The Auditorium Theatre. The company is known for bringing traditional Mexican dance to international audiences. These colorful, vibrant performances include audience favorites like Deer Dance, inspired by the hunting rites of Mexico’s Yaqui people, and Charreada, or “the rope dance.”

Dear Evan Hansen, which is set to run at Broadway in Chicago’sOriental Theatre February 12-March 10, 2019, is the deeply personal and profoundly contemporary musical about life and the way we live it. Dear Evan Hansen features a book by Tony Award winner Steven Levenson, a score by Grammy, Tony and Academy Award winners Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (La La Land, The Greatest Showman) and direction by four-time Tony Award nominee Michael Greif (Rent, Next to Normal).

Experience the acclaimed new production of the legendary musical Miss Saigon, from the creators of Les Misérables, at Broadway in Chicago's Cadillac Palace Theatre November 14-December 8, 2018. The musical tells the story of a young Vietnamese woman named Kim who is orphaned by war and forced to work in a bar run by a notorious character known as the Engineer. Featuring stunning spectacle and a sensational cast of 42 performing the soaring score, this is a theatrical event not to miss.

The Chicago Shakespeare Theatre presents Fight Night October 23-November 4, 2018. Fight Night is a political and fun exploration in immersion. The show places five actors in the position of competing "candidates" in order to gain sympathy and, finally, the vote of the spectators. Only one of them will survive the relentless succession of eliminations. All tactics and possible strategies will be implemented to win the victory. The competition, which takes place on a platform reminiscent of a boxing ring, does not appeal to fists, but to words and looks.

Celebrate twenty years of Shakespeare on Navy Pier in a wonderland where fairies fly, a donkey bursts into song, and love potions can change hearts. Internationally acclaimed director Joe Dowling reimagines his lauded production A Midsummer Night’s Dream December 6, 2018-January 27, 2019 at Chicago Shakespeare Theater. Over the course of a night, the stories of royalty, quarrelsome fairies, young lovers and a troupe of aspirational players are woven into one enchanting tapestry backed by a vibrant score blending rock, jazz, blues and 1950s doo-wop. Shakespeare's raucous humor and wondrous imagery makes it easy to see why this play has remained an audience favorite for more than four hundred years.

The Gift Theatre's 2019 season will include a revival of John Patrick Shanley’s Pulitzer and Tony Award-winning drama Doubt: A Parable directed by Ensemble Member John Gawlik and featuring Ensemble Members Jennifer Glasse, Maryann Thebus and Michael Patrick Thornton (February 27-March 31, 2019) and the Chicago premiere of Hansol Jung’s Wolf Play, directed by guest artist Jess McLeod (October 18-November 24, 2019). Doubt: A Parable, presented as part of Steppenwolf’s LookOut Series, will be performed at Steppenwolf's 1700 Theatre in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood. Wolf Play will be presented at The Gift’s home in Chicago’s Jefferson Park neighborhood.

The Harris Theater for Music and Dance has announced the return of Beyond the Aria for five performances in the 2018–19 season. Produced by the Harris Theater in association with Lyric Opera of Chicago, this unparalleled series brings opera luminaries to the Pritzker Pavilion stage in intimate, cabaret-style performances with repertoire hand-picked by the artists and spectacular evening views of Millennium Park. The 2018-19 lineup boasts four Richard Tucker Award winners — Patricia Racette ('98), Michael Fabiano ('14), Jamie Barton ('15) and Tamara Wilson ('16) — along with other featured artists of Lyric Opera's blockbuster productions of Idomeneo, La Bohème and Ariodante.

Haven Theatre is pleased to present its fourth Director’s Haven, the company’s ever-growing initiative annually showcasing the talents of three rising directors. This season, Charlotte Drover directs Madame Rachilde’s surreal horror ballet The Crystal Spider, with translation by Daniel Gerould; Airos Sung-En Medill helms Josefina Lopez’ heartfelt and healing Simply Maria, Or The American Dream; and Dani Wieder directs an imaginative take on William Inge’s drama People in the Wind. The three productions, which will have the support of a full production team, will run back-to-back in one program. Director’s Haven 2018 will play October 15-31, 2018 at Haven Theatre’s resident home The Den Theatre in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood.

The Joffrey Ballet’s Swan Lake runs October 17-28, 2018 at the National Historic Landmark Auditorium Theatre. Art intertwines with life in Wheeldon’s modern re-telling of one of the most famous ballets of all time. Set in the studios of the Paris Opera Ballet, a company dancer falls in love with his beautiful partner, a star ballerina who is being pursued by an arts patron with bad intentions. A ballet-within-a-ballet, Wheeldon’s version combines classical elements with a touch of fantasy, as lavish sets and breathtaking choreography take hold in this timeless story danced to Tchaikovsky’s mesmerizing score.

Lyric Opera of Chicago launched its 64th season with Puccini's La bohème on October 6, 2018. This season, enjoy the best in opera at Lyric, from an unforgettable new production of La bohème and the thrilling new Siegfried to the long-awaited return of Idomeneo and the Lyric’s first-ever Ariodante. This season also brings eight mainstage opera productions, and a masterwork of American musical theater, Bernstein and Sondheim’s incomparable West Side Story. Lyric will also host the much-anticipated Chicago premiere of Jack Perla's An American Dream, plus special events featuring two of the most glorious sopranos in the world: Anna Netrebko and Renée Fleming.

The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago presents Relations, a performance by longtime friends and legendary influencers of black experimental dance, Ralph Lemon, Bebe Miller and Ishmael Houston-Jones, November 2-3, 2018. The artists, known for their unique contributions to the field of postmodern dance, come together for their first time ever as a trio in an improvised performance that pays homage to their past selves, gestures to the future of dance they have inspired in others, and testifies to their present-tense artistry. Houston-Jones, Lemon and Miller have influenced each other from afar for decades, but that kinship unfolds in real-time in Relations.

Teatro ZinZanni announced the premiere of Love, Chaos, & Dinner, the critically acclaimed show combining the best of cirque, cabaret, spectacle, live music, comedy and fine dining.  Presented by Randolph Entertainment, performances are scheduled to begin on April 5, 2019 at a brand new location in the center of the Chicago Theatre District.  The Spiegeltent ZaZou, a Belgian mirror tent filled with historic touches, will be located on the 14th floor in the Cambria Hotel Loop-Theatre District.  The previously forgotten space was discovered in 2017 during the renovation of the hotel when dropped ceilings were removed revealing the original grand space within the 1926 historic building. Broadway In Chicago will be handling the sales and marketing for Teatro ZinZanni.

TUTA Theatre Chicago presents the U.S. Premiere of Radio Culture, an intimate depiction of one day in the life of a young Belorussian, by writer and artist Maxim Dosko, in a new English translation by Natalia Fedorova and Amber Robinson, directed by Amber Robinson. Radio Culture will play October 17-December 2, 2018 at TUTA Theatre. Radio Culture is a fascinating example of the “New Drama” movement in contemporary Eastern European theater. By examining a single day in the life of a young Belorussian, as if under a microscope, Radio Culture reveals how change can germinate inside of a person even within a culture that resists change at every step.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Alderman James Cappleman, Jam Productions and Farpoint Development announced Chicago’s historic Uptown Theatre will be restored and reopened as the crown jewel of a revitalized Uptown entertainment district. The 93-year-old landmark building, vacant for more than 35 years, will be used for a variety of live performances and special events. The $75 million project will comprehensively restore the Spanish Revival-style building as a modern entertainment venue. Restored decorative finishes, new seats and a reconfigured first-floor will increase total capacity from approximately 4,100-5,800 people.

USA Rugby and TLA Worldwide, along with host city partners Chicago Sports Commission and Soldier Field, have announced that world-class international rugby will return to Soldier Field in Chicago for the latest edition of The Rugby Weekend. The iconic NFL stadium will play host to three captivating international rugby matches over the course of one day, featuring the USA Rugby Men’s and Women’s Eagles taking on New Zealand’s inspiring Maori All Blacks and the reigning Women’s Rugby World Cup champion Black Ferns. Six Nations Champions, and current number two on World Rugby’s World Rankings, Ireland, return to Chicago to take on Six Nations rivals, Italy. All matches will take place at Soldier Field on November 3, 2018.

The 312 RiverRun will connect the surrounding Irving Park, North Center, Avondale and Albany Park neighborhoods to three parks with one path for approximately two miles. Once completed, 312 RiverRun will transform the riverfront neighborhood on Chicago’s North Side into one of the city’s largest recreational hubs that provides residents with an unobstructed network of parks and recreational amenities. It will extend across 95 acres with facilities and programming for every athletic activity supported by the Chicago Park District. The project kicked off with the groundbreaking Riverview Bridge, which is anticipated to be complete by the end of 2018. A second project, the Irving Park Rd. Bridge and Multi-Use Path, due to be completed in late 2019, will extend a pedestrian and bike path under Irving Park Rd. and link California Park to Horner Park north. Completion of the Riverview Bridge and the Irving Park Rd. Bridge project will establish the full 312 RiverRun, providing a continuous path from Belmont to Montrose.

Tuk Tuk Chicago
officially launched on August 10, 2018. They provide a new alternative to traditional short distance transportation needs via 3 Wheeled Vehicles called Tuk Tuk’s. The vehicles are 100% electric and provide Chicago residents and visitors with entertaining, eco-friendly rides downtown, around some of Chicago’s great neighborhoods and key attractions.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel has announced the city’s eight-year plan to expand O’Hare International Airport – the largest and most expensive revamp in the airport’s history. This announcement marks the first major capital improvements to O’Hare’s terminals in more than 25 years. A new Terminal Area Plan for O’Hare will completely redevelop the terminals and concourses, with Terminal 5 to undergo an upgrade and expansion, Terminal 2 to be largely demolished and rebuilt to include a new international arrivals facility and renovations made to Terminals 1 and 3. These changes will expand gate capacity and set in motion a wide range of other improvements to significantly enhance airline performance and the overall passenger experience. Through a new capital program valued at more than $8.5 billion, O’Hare’s facilities will receive a major upgrade. With construction to begin in 2019, the transformation is expected to be completed in 2026.

The Chicago Department of Aviation is overseeing major modernization not only at O’Hare International Airport but at Midway International Airport as well. At Midway International Airport, a nearly $400 million modernization program is underway to improve travel to and from the airport including a larger security checkpoint for faster screening; more dining and shopping options; and an expanded garage for convenient parking next to the terminal. These modernizations are set to be completed by Summer 2020 and will improve the customer experience and meet growing demand for air travel through Chicago.

O’Hare International Airport has a number of new domestic and international air services. Air New Zealand announced a new nonstop flight between Chicago and Auckland starting on November 30, 2018. Once launched, it will become the longest nonstop international flight out of O’Hare International Airport to any international destination. O’Hare is also introducing new air services including:

  • Guatemala City via Avianca (October 2018)
  • Bogota via Avianca (November 2018)
  • Brownsville via United Airlines (November 2018)
  • Harlingen via Frontier Airlines ((November 2018)
  • Nassau via Bahamasair and American Airlines (November 2018)
  • Aruba via American Airlines (December 2018)
  • Grand Cayman via American Airlines (December 2018)
  • Honolulu via American Airlines (December 2018)
  • Key West via American Airlines (December 2018)
  • Palm Springs via Frontier Airlines (December 2018)
  • Providenciales via American Airlines (December 2018)
  • Sarasota via American Airlines (December 2018)
  • San Jose via United Airlines (January 2018)
  • Ft. Walton Beach via American Airlines (March 2019)
  • Panama City via American Airlines (March 2019)
  • Pensacola via American Airlines (March 2019)
  • Raleigh-Durham via Delta Air Lines (April 2019)
  • Athens, Greece via American Airlines (May 2019)

Midway International Airport also has new domestic and international flights including:

  • Burbank via Southwest Airlines (November 2018)
  • San Jose del Cabo via Southwest Airlines (November 2018)
  • San Juan via Southwest Airlines (June 2019, increase to daily service)


About Choose Chicago
Choose Chicago is the official destination marketing organization for Chicago, Illinois. Its mission is to bring regional, national and international business and leisure visitors to Chicago for the economic benefit of the city, the community and its membership. For more information, visit Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @ChooseChicago.