In November I traveled for the first time in US, the destination was Chicago and the reason was not just travelling, this time was a Business trip!
I didn’t have expectation on the city as for me, US is something that we need to look with the right attention to really understand the real America… we are used to watch the American life in movies, series and I always had the fear to have been stereotyping America too much! At the end it is a land, with so many different shades and souls! not only a movie!
But more than what I think let’s just say some good places to visit or some activities to do in Chicago!
MUSIC: THE BLUES IN THEIR HEARTS
As I was in Chicago I had to go to some of the oldest bar where I could have listen some good music… I don’t like to go in too much famous bar. I prefer something smaller and authentic!
I chose “Blue Chicago”. It is like a small room where you can listen live blues. The entrance costs 10 dollars per head (to pay in cash!) and then you pay the drink. There are benches and stools to sit, very simple, and my advice is to arrive before' the show starts to find place. The music is very addictive and be collected around who plays creates a nice atmosphere in the location. At the entrance you will meet an old black guy that in my mind is there from when it opened a long time ago!!!!!
THE CENTER: HIGH PALACE AND THE BIG BEAN
I didn’t had lot of time to walk and I have to say the temperature didn’t help me. I decided to start from the hotel where I stayed (DANA HOTEL), towards millennium park, as there I could have seen the famous bean.
From the beginning part of Millennium Park had to include plans for public art works. A committee of all the artistic institutions was tasked to choose the artists to tackle these public art installations.
The committee pooled a list of 16–30 artists from all around the world with experience in large-scale outdoor works. At the end two artists remained:British artist Anish Kapoor and U.S. artist Jeff Koons.
The final decision was to let both the artists to build their works, in separate areas of the Park. The proposal of Koons became a challenge. The idea was to realize a 150-foot-long glass and steel slide raised 90 feet above the ground. The concept was to let visitors to observe the park from on high, then slide down to ground level. But this installation required other components, e.g. an elevator that could ensure access to the work for all the visitors.
At the end the solution was to move the other project, Kapoor one, to the space initially reserved for Koons. That space was also better suited to handle the 110-ton weight of the steel form. Koons’ project was scraped entirely. The name of the big bean is “Cloud Gate”.
But what is amazing about this bean? You can see the Chicago skyline reflected in the surface!
After have taken some pictures around it, inside it and more… you can continue just walking around the park and enjoy a cold coffee in your hands.
THE ART: AN IMPORTANT PART OF CHICAGO
In Chicago you can go in some of the world-class museums. One example is the Art Institute of Chicago, inside you can see more than 300,000 artworks from classic paintings like Georges Seurat’s "A Sunday on La Grande Jatte" and Grant Wood's American Gothic or you can explore an huge collection of contemporary art in the museum’s Modern Wing.
THE FOOD: THE TRADITIONAL DEEP PIZZA AND THE STEAKS
And when you will feel tired, cap off your day of sightseeing with a meal at one of Chicago’s best restaurants, the food is amazing.
One thing you have to taste is the “Deep Pizza”. For an Italian it is strange but it was good…. As for me is not an “Italian style” pizza!
Chicago's deep-dish pizza is part of the culture here. For what I understood, you can get the best pizza out of River North. I tried “Giordano” Pizza!
Another good thing I did was to eat a brunch! it was a dream...