Some cities just never get boring. Take Chicago. This city breathes nostalgia and history – atmosphere that takes you back to the Roaring Twenties, the hidden speakeasies, and swinging jazz clubs. iFly KLM Magazine went in search of the best tips – just for you.
Back in time at the Palmer House
If you’re looking for a hotel with atmosphere, then you’ve come to the right place. The Palmer House is located inside The Loop – Chicago’s city centre. It’s the oldest hotel operating continuously in the United States. Immense chandeliers and a towering ceiling with no fewer than twenty-one murals give the Palmer House the grandeur that might remind you of the chateaux of Versailles. The hotel is home to an intriguing love story, and the legendary Empire Room provided a stage for such great names a Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald. It doesn’t get more atmospheric than this.
The iconic Chicago Theater
One thing that you just can’t miss is the Chicago Theater. It dates back to 1921 and has been in operation since then. The glittering letters on its marquee make this building a real eye-catcher and the perfect spot for the real Chicago selfie.
Chicago is a real “city of neighborhoods.” It has no fewer than seventy-seven of them. And with so many, it can be hard to choose, but Old Town is a real highlight. Old Town is a district filled with stately Victorian homes and has a charming small-town vibe. It’s also one of the hippest neighbourhoods in Chicago with Wells Street at its heart. Here you’ll find countless boutiques and you’ll see twenty- and thirty-somethings populating their favourite watering holes or simply enjoying a hot dog on a nearby bench.
The best sandwich in Chicago
An Italian Beef sandwich is a typical Chicago speciality and the best-known place to get one is at Al’s Beef. Al’s now has multiple locations, but the original one is in Little Italy. It is “home to the great Chicago sandwich” and it’s a true institution. The ingredients? Ultra-tender, juicy, thin-sliced beef on a simple roll topped off with giardiniera (an Italian relish of pickled vegetables).
All that jazz
It should go without saying that a trip to Chicago is not complete without one final visit to a jazz [or blues] club. Even though this music was born in New Orleans, much of its history can be traced to Chicago and this city has its very own style. Andy’s Jazz Club is one of the city’s oldest and best – and it’s the place to be. It’s a small, intimate location and you can enjoy a delicious burger and a drink at the bar or one of its tables.
Interested in the complete story?
You can watch it in the special USA edition of iFly KLM Magazine.
Photography: Iris van den Broek
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iFly KLM Magazine is KLM’s online magazine. For more than six years, we have been inspiring millions of people around the world with remarkable travel stories and surprising tips about new and long-established KLM destinations. Subscribe to iFly so you never miss a thing.