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24 Hours in Gold Coast

Monday, December 31st, 2018

It’s the holiday season which means Chicago has a lot of visitors. Whether you live downtown and have guests coming to visit, live in the Chicago suburbs and are looking for a downtown stay-cation, or are a visitor yourself, check out our “24 Hours In Each Neighborhood” posts. Here’s a great way to spend a day in Gold Coast!

10:00 AM

John Hancock Center

Stop by the John Hancock Center’s 360 (the new name for the observatory) where you can view Chicago and beyond the horizon from the 94th floor glass lookout. The observatory also includes the Tilt display– floor-to-ceiling windows that tilt out from the building for an even more exhilarating view of the Gold Coast and city.

Want to enjoy a drink over 1000 feet above the city streets? Come back later in the evening to take in the view from the Signature Room, a high-end restaurant on the 96th floor and cocktail lounge on the 95th floor.

11:00 AM

Water Tower Place

Water Tower is host to 111 shops as well as the Chicago Sports Museum, Broadway in Chicago Playhouse, and the American Girl Doll experience.

12:00 PM

Ralph Lauren

Tourists and Chicago residents alike enjoy dining at Ralph Lauren in the Gold Coast. Come for the dover sole or crab cake and stay for the upscale ambiance!

1:00 PM


The Museum of Contemporary Art features minimalist, surrealist and conceptual photography collections, and permanent works by René Magritte, Cindy Sherman and Andy Warhol. The exhibits change frequently and often include interactive installations, like tunnels lit to simulate the experience of being inside a black-and-white film, making anything inside them turn grey (including your clothing and friends). The MCA features pieces from 1920 and later. Illinois residents get free admission on Tuesdays (just be prepared with your zip code at the door). The gift shop is also a fantastic place for chic, minimalist housewares and quirky books and jewelry.

In the summertime, the MCA hosts free live jazz music on the terrace 5:30 to 8pm every Tuesday.

4:00 PM

Happy Hour at Lux Bar- Rush Street

Lux Bar’s happy hour is one of the best deals in Gold Coast. Stop by Tuesday through Friday from 4pm to 7pm for $5 wines and drafts as well as great food like the $5 avocado kale salad (which is massive), $5 burger, or $3 truffle fries. Sit inside near the social bar or dine al Fresca along the flower boxes that line Rush Street’s sidewalks.

5:00 PM

Shopping on Rush Street

Rush Street is arguably one of the best shopping strips downtown. Between Vera Wang, Versace, Dior, Tom Ford, and many boutique appointment-only design houses, you’ll be able to find many high end shopping options. Additional shops like Aritzia and Lululemon have stores on Rush Street as well.

8:00 PM

Dinner at Gibsons

If you’re looking for an old time, classic Chicago steak house, Gibson’s in the Gold Coast is the place to be. As one of the most famous dinner spots in the city, there is a scene every night at this local original. Gibson’s is famous for its steaks, martinis, oysters, and large lobsters.

10:00 PM

Night Life on Division Street

Grab a beer at one of many dive bars or dance the night away at the Hangge Uppe. Many bars on Division Street are open until 4:00 AM on weekends.

Looking for luxury apartments for rent near the Gold Coast? Contact us today! We’d be happy to keep you in the Loop!