By Sabina Benson
Teen travel blogger and eighth-grader at Roosevelt International Baccalaureate Middle School
| Chicago, “the windy city,” is full of people, art, music and great food. My parents and I were lucky enough to see the musical “Hamilton” there. Although that was most definitely the highlight of the trip, there was plenty to do. Here are some of my suggestions of what to do in Chicago in just 24 hours.
Where to Stay
We were literally only in Chicago to see Hamilton, so we only stayed one night. My parents and I stayed at theWit hotel, located right in the middle of the city.
Anywhere we needed to go was within walking distance. The suite was excellent since it gives parents and kids their own spaces to sleep at night.
The view was very nice too. The best part about the hotel is the location: it’s about a 15-minute walk to Millennium Park and Michigan Ave. There are so many great restaurants on State St. and Monroe, and the walk to the PrivateBank Theatre (where Hamilton is playing) takes less than 10 minutes.
We arrived in Chicago after driving from my grandparents’ house around noon, so we dropped off our bags and headed out for lunch. Chicago is famous for its pizza, so we went to Pizano’s Pizza on N. State St. We ordered a medium, thin crust pizza with sausage. While the concierge at our hotel said Pizano’s deep dish is not up to par compared to the Chicago standard (Giordano’s was his thick crust recommendation), he said their thin crust is heavenly. I have to agree. The restaurant had a very nice mood. There was great seating and the waiter seemed to be a nice person. There was a 30-minute wait, which gave us time to see “the Bean” in Millennium Park and check out the ice rink too.
For dinner, we went with another concierge recommendation and chose The Gage on S. Michigan Ave., right across from Millennium Park. The atmosphere is very upscale, and it seemed right off the bat like a place with really expensive food and drinks that most adults would thoroughly enjoy. The interior design was all very urban, and it had a very distinct upscale-meets-steampunk vibe.
I can say without a doubt that the food was very good. I ordered the fish and chips and loved it. But if you’re looking for a fun family meal with younger children, this isn’t the place.
After dinner, we walked straight to Hamilton. Amazing! Chicago is almost as big as New York when it comes to musical theater, and there are many good shows there right now. Here are some of my favorites. Check out my blog on seeing Hamilton here.
The Art Institute of Chicago is filled with so much wonderful art. You could literally spend days there. If you’re short on time, make sure to pick out some famous paintings that you know you want to see. The tickets are free of charge for kids under the age of fourteen and general admission for adults is $19. If you’re not sure exactly what you’re there to see, though, there’s a guide on the back of the Visitor Guide that gives you a detailed schedule on what paintings to hit up in an hour.
Hamilton brought us to Chicago, but I can’t wait to go back to explore so much more.
About the Author
Sabina Benson is thirteen years old and lives in San Diego. She has two younger siblings and has a great love for her two cats, Emily and Elliot-Charles. She loves to watch and perform musical theater, and is currently into “Heathers,” “Hamilton,” and “The Phantom of the Opera.” Sabina also enjoys playing volleyball, swimming, and fictional narrative writing.