Thursday, November 16, 2006

Chicago > Crowne Plaza Hotel

Crowne Plaza Hotel Chicago-Metro is located at 733 West Madison, in the West Loop neighbourhood, and is within walking distance to Chicago’s Financial District and major shopping district along Michigan Ave. The hotel’s interior is tastefully done – it is sleek and trendy, while exuding luxury feel. I would highly recommend this hotel if you like to stay close to the happening city centre, especially so since it is pretty reasonably priced.

For Hotel Booking: Hotel Front Desk 1-312-8295000 Hotel, and Fax 1-312-6022199.


Crowne Plaza Hotel exterior © citi.zen



Crowne Plaza Hotel room interior © citi.zen



Crowne Plaza Hotel chaise lounge © citi.zen



Crowne Plaza Hotel bathroom © citi.zen

Chicago > the Snow *.. and Ice


Trees and snow © citi.zen

I had a thing with snow - whenever I visited a city that either occasionally or often snow during winter time, it surely would when I was there, and pretty heavily, too! It started to snow on the evening we arrived in Chicago. By the next morning when we needed to set off for meetings, our rented car was already covered by a thick layer of snow.


House and snow © citi.zen



Railway and snow © citi.zen


Frozen Lake Michigan © citi.zen

Chicago > the Arts

The Art Institute of Chicago museum is located at 111 South Michigan Avenue. We were there in the late afternoon and thought we would be chased out of the place within an hour. Therefore, we were absolutely delighted to find out that it would be open till 8pm - as it should be every Thursday!

Much to my surprise - pardon my ignorance, if you please - the museum has a great collection of paintings and artifacts. I have been particularly fond of Impressionism paintings and there I was totally captivated by the mesmerizing masterpieces of Degas, Monet, Manet, Renoir, to name a few…




The Art Institute of Chicago © citi.zen

The Art Institute of Chicago, founded in 1879 as both a museum and school, first stood on the southwest corner of State and Monroe Streets. It opened on its present site at Michigan Avenue and Adams Street in 1893. Built on rubble from the 1871 Chicago fire, the museum housed a collection of plaster casts and had a visionary purpose: to acquire and exhibit art of all kinds and to conduct programs of education. The collection now encompasses more than 5,000 years of human expression from cultures around the world, and the school's graduate program is continually ranked as one of the best in the country. Within the next decade, a new complex will continue this process of growth.

(Source: The Art Institute of Chicago)



The Art Institute of Chicago - Entrance © citi.zen


Relief on a monument © citi.zen

Chicago > the Streets + Buildings


Street view on a Saturday morning © citi.zen



Street and pedestrians © citi.zen



Buildings by the road © citi.zen



Church in the city © citi.zen

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Chicago > at Night...

Chicago's night views are mesmerising with the help of giant LCD display and light installation that gradually changes images/colours.


Chicago's night view © citi.zen





Shops at night © citi.zen


As it was near Christmas time when we visited Chicago, there were festival lightings and decorations everywhere in the city. Moreover, it was very surprising, and nostalgia too, to find a festival market set up between high-rise office buildings. The stalls sold a good variety of both folksy and exquisite traditional handicrafts, as well as mouth-watering snacks. As a sweet-toothed person, I just couldn’t resist the temptation and had to try the chocolate coated apple...


Festival market in the city © citi.zen





Chicago NBC5 building © citi.zen

Friday, November 10, 2006

Chicago > the Shopping !

Chicago is a great city for shopping. Shopping along North Michigan Avenue (aka The Magnificent Mile) alone would guarantee an uplifting and fulfilling experience!


Window display of a Department Store © citi.zen


Apple Store is located at 679 N Michigan Ave. Like Apple's other new retail shops that have sprung up in the whole US and the major cities in rest of the world in post iPod years, it has finally made the sensation of IT shopping equally inspiring as visiting boutiques selling designer wares.

Apple Store at N Michigan Ave © citi.zen


Marshall Field's flagship store @ 111 N. State Street, located in the heart of the Chicago Loop theater district, was opened in 1907 and is a part of history and a Chicago experience. However, the department store chain was acquired by Cincinnati-based Federated Department Stores on August 30, 2005, and this falgship store was officially renamed "Macy's on State Street" in Sep 9, 2006. I was lucky enough to have been able to visit the iconic store before Marshal Field's became history...

Logo of Marshall Field's is now history

Marshal Field's flagship store at 111 N. State Street


Bloomingdale's - 900 N Michigan Ave © citi.zen

Here is a list of the great shops that can be found along N Michigan Ave:

900 N. Michigan Shops Shopping Centers
agnes b. Women's Apparel
Apple Computer Electronics, Computer & Audio Equipment
Avventura Shoes
Banana Republic Men's & Women's Apparel
Bang & Olufsen Oak Street Electronics, Computer & Audio Equipment
Barneys New York Specialty Stores
Benetton Children's Toys, Clothing & Accessories
Bloomingdale's Department Stores
Boss Hugo Boss Men's Apparel
Bottega Veneta pecialty Stores
Brooks Brothers Specialty Stores
Bulgari Jewelry
Burberry Specialty Stores
Cartier Inc. Jewelry
Chanel Boutique Jewelry
Chicago Place Shopping Centers
Coach Store Specialty Stores
Cole-Haan Specialty Stores
Crate & Barrel Home Furnishings & Accessories
Ermenegildo Zegna Men's Apparel
Fratelli Rossetti Ltd. Specialty Stores
Frette Specialty Stores
Gap Men's & Women's Apparel
Giorgio Armani Specialty Stores
Gucci Shops Inc. Specialty Stores
Guess? Men's & Women's Apparel
Hermes Specialty Stores
Kate Spade Specialty Stores
Lalique Specialty Stores
LEGO Global Family Attractions Children's Toys, Clothing & Accessories
Louis Vuitton Specialty Stores
Marshall Field's (now Macy's on State Sreet) Department Stores
MaxMara Specialty Stores
Niketown Men's & Women's Apparel
Nordstrom Department Stores
Radio Shack Computer & Audio Equipment
Ralph Lauren Specialty Stores
Saks Fifth Ave. Department Stores
Saks Fifth Ave. Men's Store Men's Apparel
Salvatore Ferragamo Specialty Stores
Sony Gallery of Consumer Electronics Electronics, Computer & Audio Equipment
teuscher Chocolates of Switzerland pecialty Stores
Tiffany & Co. Jewelry
Timberland Company Men's & Women's Apparel
United Colors of Benetton Men's & Women's Apparel
Victoria's Secret
Women's Apparel
Virgin Entertainment Group Music Store
Water Tower Place Department Stores

(Source: Chicago Traveler)

Monday, November 06, 2006

Chicago > the City

Chicago was one of the destinations of my business trip in Dec 2005.

After listening to the rock band Chicago's songs a lot in the 70's and 80's, and having watched the fascinating and haunting musical movie Chicago - not to mention Chicago is THE city where Oprah Winfrey' Show is recorded - I was indeed very much looking forward to visiting the Metropolitan for the first time.

Before I started off my trip, I took a 'peek' at the city from the sky - on the net:

Chicago downtown aerial view - by Siqbal

Chicago is located along the southwestern shore of Lake Michigan. It is the largest city in Illinois and the third-most populous city in the United States. It was quite a scenic ride driving on the road between the city and the lake.

Chicago City along Lake Michigan © citi.zen

As the road lead us into the city, the skyline-defining Sears Tower immediately came into view. It is so humongous it drawfs all the buidlings surrounding it!


Chicago City View © citi.zen

Sears Tower, launched in 1974, was the world's tallest building until the opening of Petronas Towers, KL Malaysia, in 1997. It rises 110 stories to a height of 442m, but reaches 519 m if added with the television antenna.


Sears Tower © citi.zen


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