The Belden Stratford
** A very limited number of rooms have been blocked off for our party
at the reduced rate of $129.00 per night. **
To avail yourself, please call our hotel liaison Susan Richter at 773-880-2061.
Pros: This elegant hotel is most conveniently located to the ceremony! Literally right across the street from the event, and the luncheon is in the hotel. Many of the rooms are spacious.
Cons: Please be careful, they have a nonrefundable policy if you cancel with short notice, so once you book it's hard to change. Though they have good security, it is also a residential hotel.
Recommended places to eat near the Belden Stratford:
Del Seoul, for delicious Korean tacos
Frances' Restaurant and Deli, for sandwiches, soups and family fare
The Weiner's Circle, one of the most famous places to get a classic Chicago-style hot-dog (and fresh cut fries, too)
Toro Sushi, very fresh Japanese fare
Best Western, Hawthorne Terrace
Pros: Both Hawthorne Terrace and Willows are lovely hotels than include breakfast, in a very fun neighborhood with lots of shops and things to eat, located right in between the ceremony and the evening dance.
Cons: Can be a little pricey (Willows less so), though good deals can be found on Priceline.com.
City Suites Hotel
Pros: Most economical. A quick bus ride to the ceremony (southbound 22 bus on Clark , get off at Belden, walk three blocks east, a short train ride to the evening fun (get on at Belmont, take the northbound brown-line L to Montrose stop).
Cons: A noisy, party hotel, near the L train and lots of nightlife. (This could be a pro, depending on who you are.)
Places to eat near the Best Western and Willows and in Lakeview:
Ann Sathers, Swedish fare, one of the best breakfasts in the city (don't miss the cinnamon rolls!). Another location just east of City Suites, as well.
Falafill, inexpensive Middle Eastern sandwiches and salads with an exciting falafel bar to decorate your own!
Chalam Balam, Mexican-style tapas, dinner only.
The Bagel, solid deli food and family fare, plus baskets of challah bread, crunchy pickles and big bowls of matzoh-balls.
Instead of the city proper, some people who visit Chicago and have a car opt to stay in Evanston, which is a very nice, somewhat swanky small city just north of Chicago, really a next-door neighbor literally walking distance from the Rogers Park neighborhood where we live (frankly, as residents, we go here much more often than we go to downtown Chicago). It is a different experience than staying in Chicago, but some may find it more relaxing. If you stay in Evanston, it is about a 25-minute drive to the zoo and luncheon hotel, and 10 minutes to our apartment. Downtown Evanston is right near the Northwestern University campus and has several hotel options, tons of restaurants, a movie theater, and lots of shops all within walking distance of the hotels, and you may get a good deal on Priceline. Here are a few hotels you might like:
Hilton Garden Inn
Margarita Inn (B&B)
Places to eat in Downtown Evanston (tons anywhere you walk, but here are a few favorites we frequent):
Dixie Kitchen, affordable Cajun food, Obama's favorite restaurant and one of our's, too, (they serve Republicans as well); good brunch
Prairie Moon, southwest-inspired cuisine in a very nice Frank Lloyd Wright-y atmosphere
Pete Miller's Steak House, pretty fancy, but also offers a mighty fine burger
Tommy Nevin's, Irish pub with decent food
Mount Everest, solid Indian lunch buffet
Campagnola, a short car or train ride, for a memorable upscale Italian meal
Please let us know where you decide to stay!