Photo Courtesy Radisson Corp.
CHICAGO - Whenever I'm asked for a weekend getaway recommendation, Chicago always comes to mind. Relatively easy to get to, the Windy City offers most of the big city appeal of New York City without the hassle.
Since time is always much too short, we stay downtown. Virtually all of the top attractions are within walking distance or a short cab ride.
Chicago is well known for its beautiful skyline and there's a fabulous new face on the cityscape. The stunning Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel Chicago is the latest entry to the city's vibrant hotel scene. And this also gives us a glimpse of what to expect when the Radisson Blu Aqua opens at Mall Of America in 2013.
Ideally located near Michigan Avenue, Millenium Park and Navy Pier, The Radisson Blu Aqua marks the North American debut of the Minneapolis based Carlson Company's Radisson Blu Brand.
Designed by internationally acclaimed architect Jeanne Gang, the Aqua Tower, with its sexy wavy design, was recently proclaimed "Skyscraper of the Year" by Emporius, the international building database. It is the largest skyscraper designed by a female architect in the world.
Blu is clearly the new black.
The hotel's equally exciting interior blends perfectly to showcase Filini, the contemporary Italian restaurant and bar which serves up a myriad of fresh flavors.
Chi-Town offers foodies unlimited choices. A few favorites of mine include Coco Pazzo with superb Tuscan inspired dishes. For south of the border fare, check out Mercadito with a tequila menu that rivals most wine lists...a perfect compliment to the delicious tacos, guacamole and salsa choices.
A great joint for breakfast is Tempo at the corner of State Street (that great street!) and Chestnut. Hearty skillets as big as my head will take care of hunger pangs well into the afternoon.
For those of you flying into either Midway or O'Hare, reserving a private sedan in advance is only a fraction more expensive than a cab... not to mention much more convenient, and of course luxurious! My recommendation is Chicago Private Car service at (773) 594-9021... ask for Car 11 driven by Herman.
Chicago's Magnificent Mile is surely what comes to mind when thinking of the phrase "shop till you drop." All of the big names are here as well as some of the smaller boutique-type stores. Shoppers won't leave disappointed, but bring a few credit cards because you'll need them.
One of the great things about visiting Chicago is a feeling that each time I go there, there is always something new to discover... on its skyline, or otherwise.
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