Summer Send Off To-Do List Chicago

by Amanda on September 17, 2021

Dear friend,

Summer is “technically” over – but that doesn’t mean it’s time for parkas and parking space dibs just yet. In fact, many believe that Autumn is the best season to get out, explore and try some new activities that you may have overlooked during the busy summer months.

One of the benefits of working with so many different clients is that we have the benefit of receiving amazing recommendations from all of you. This month we’ve compiled a quick list of random awesomeness to get you out, keep you moving and enjoying our amazing city.

From hidden hikes and candlelight concerts to urban kayaking and mystery picnics – we at Chicago Home Partner have you covered. Best of all, these experiences are COVID-friendly and embrace social distancing practices.

Remember that mother nature can turn quickly, so get out while the getting is good!

Be Safe and Be Well,

Your friends at Chicago Home Partner


Wildcat Canyon In Starved Rock State Park

Located only 2 hours west of Chicago, Starved Rock is an incredible spectacle offering over 13 miles of hiking trails, numerous cascading waterfalls, and 18 different canyons. The Wildcat Canyon which offers the largest and most impressive waterfall and canyon combination, especially in the current climate.

Chicago Candlelight Concert Series

Enjoy a host of concerts illuminated by candlelight and performed by live musicians in some of the most iconic venues in Chicago. From Ella Fitzgerald to Queen, the Candlelight Series has something for everything in amazing settings like Salvage One, The Stan Mansion and Theater on the Lake. Tickets can be purchased online and social distancing is enforced.

The Morton Arboretum’s Human+Nature Exhibit

Internationally renowned artist Daniel Popper created five 15- to 26-foot-tall sculptures exclusively for the Arboretum featured in various locations across its 1,700 acres, leading guests to areas they may not have explored before. It is his largest exhibition to date anywhere in the world. Human+Nature is included with timed-entry admission to the Arboretum.

Art on the Mart (Downtown)

Art on theMART is the largest permanent digital art projection in the world, projecting contemporary artwork across the 2.5 acre river-façade of theMART. Art on theMART is the latest iconic milestone on Chicago’s visionary trajectory of public art. Visible from the South side of the Chicago Riverwalk, projections are displayed nightly at 9:00 and 9:30PM.

Historic Chicago Kayak Tour

A guided excursion on the Chicago River’s Main Branch to paddle through a spectacular modern urban setting while imagining the city’s early historical locations. Spend 90 minutes paddling the Main Branch of the river, as your lead tour guide stops periodically to tell stories and share detail about Chicago’s rich history. All skill levels are welcome!

Locals Tour: West Town Street Art Walking Tour

Take a locals-lead tour of Chicago’s mile-long street art corridor under a historic train line in Chicago’s Fulton Market meatpacking district. The B_Line is an accessible immersive art experience that began as a quest to resurrect one of Chicago’s most rare displays of public art. Learn more about the artistic heritage of Chicago, and discover unique outdoor venues while chatting with local experts.

Game Night at Kanya Lounge

Looking for a place to unwind and play some ping pong or billiards in a chic space? Maybe you’re looking to step it up a notch and finally see what axe throwing is all about? Maybe… just maybe… you need to blow off some COVID steam just break something? Whatever your fancy, Kanya Lounge has it coupled with an amazing lounge and cocktail area. Just do it.

Spray Paint and Sip at Studio W.I.P.

Looking for a fun and unique way to tap into your creativity? Well, get ready to grab some spray paint and unleash your inner street artist with our urban art workshop. This interactive Chicago spray paint workshop will allow you the opportunity to create your very own original piece. Plus you’ll get aquatinted with the ins and outs of working with spray paint and stencil application

Mystery Picnic Date – Lincoln Park

Brimming with charming eateries and interesting boutiques, Lincoln Park is a perfect neighborhood to spend the day exploring! Start by solving personally curated clues and riddles that’ll take you on a journey to collect your special gourmet picnic food bit by bit. Each clue you solve will lead you closer to your next picnic food pickup and even closer to your final stunning picnic location.

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Best of Chicago Outdoor Dining 2021

by Amanda on July 20, 2021

Dear friend,

After a year’s hiatus, we at Chicago Home Partner are more than excited to announce the return of one of our favorites.  That’s right Chicago – it’s time to grab some friends, pack up the stroller, leash up your pups and get outside to enjoy some of the best al fresco dining our city has to offer. 

Al Fresco:  From the Italian word al fresco meaning “in the fresh air”.

Dining:  From the French word diner meaning “to have dinner”.

Al Fresco Dining:  A tradition of eating outside during the summer.

Over the years, we have tried to provide you with our favorite destinations whether Northside, Southside, Westside or The Loop. Regardless of cuisine or location, we have strived to provide you with the best of the best, year after year.  That’s why this year we’ve searched through the archives and are pleased to announce… The Chicago Home Partner Top 10 Al Fresco RestaurantsREOPENING EDITION!

Where this list may be FAR from complete, you’re sure to find a new spot you haven’t tried yet that may quickly become a favorite.

Remember that these warmer days will be gone before we know it so get on out there and share your favorites on our Facebook page at Facebook.com/ChicagoHomePartner.

La Palapa  –  Bridgeport –  2000 W. 34th St.  773-376-9620

Palapa:  (def) – a traditional Mexican shelter roofed with palm leaves or branches.
So you might not think “Palapa” when visiting Bridgeport, but this seafood/shellfish spot is not to be missed.  Settled along an “urban” part of Damen, (yes North Siders it DOES go past Grand Avenue), this mariscos place provides seating in the sand (parking lot), nestled amongst palm trees (fake), a loud norteño band, thatched umbrellas, and a giant rubber shark perched atop the restaurant.  If that doesn’t get your heading to the South Side tonight, know that their ceviche is top notch, the garlicky langoustines are outstanding and best of all – your own bucket of beer.

Smoque BBQ – 3800 Pulaski –  (773) 545-7427

Hands down the BEST barbecue in the city of Chicago, Smoque doesn’t waste your palate on tons of sauce, instead creating meaty BBQ dreams that melt in your mouth (can you tell we liked it!)  Pulled pork, ribs and our personal favorite the brisket are all smoked daily and ready for your dining pleasure.  Don’t forget to try the panko-baked mac-and-cheese to go along with your piles of meaty goodness!

La Creperie:  2845 North Clark Street, (773) 528.9050

Really?  A Crepe restaurant consistently ranks among the top of CHP’s list?  Well, when it comes to outdoor dining La Creperie takes the cake.  A quiet garden with twinkling lights welcomes you and creates a wonderfully intimate atmosphere right off Clark Street.  Come for dinner with a party or dessert with that special someone and order the Nutella/banana crepe with a scoop of hand made vanilla ice cream.

Tango Sur:  3763 North Southport Ave., (773) 477.5466

There isn’t a ton of outdoor seating, you’re right on Southport and you’re going to wait a bit to enjoy this Lakeview gem – but one bite of the steak vesuvio and you’ll forget everything else.  This authentic Argentinian steakhouse is not to be missed – nor is the Vesuvio – stuffed with spinach, garlic and mar del plata cheese.  This is one dish that will keep you coming back.

90 Miles Cuban Cafe:  2540 West Armitage, (773) 227.2822.  

Hot Chicago evenings on the patio dining on Lechon and Tostones while sipping on a Mojito.  It doesn’t get much better than this and no one serves up better Cuban food in the city than 90 Miles.  Toasted Cuban sandwiches, amazing flaky empanadas, garlicky yuca chips and some seriously potent café con leche.  However the big draws here are the spacious front and back patios along Armitage avenue, allowing customers to enjoy these delicacies in the heat of Chicago evenings.

Park & Field:  3509 W Fullerton Ave., (765) 426-6657

Chicagoans have been enjoying the spacious 6,000-square-foot patio at Park & Field since it debut. In keeping with the old-timey vintage gym theme, guests can also play bocce on the outdoor courts, huddling around the fire pits sipping cocktails.  PF also provides and amazing farm-to-fork dining experience, a full ice cream menu of vintage favorites AND a dog menu for your favorite patio-pal.

Gather – 4539 N. Lincoln Ave., (773) 506-9300

Features a 40-seat, covered terrace in Lincoln Square features shareable dishes like a “Gathering Board” of charcuterie and pickled vegetables, to be accompanied by summery wine coolers served by the glass. Community Food + Wine aims to set itself apart with a reputation for quality, creativity and engaging service with a focus on locally-sourced ingredients and an approachable wine list.

Parson’s Chicken & Fish– 2952 W. Armitage, (773) 384-3333

Another of the “picnic table garden” entries this year, Parson’s does an excellent job of providing comfort food in a laid back atmosphere.  Make sure to try the hush puppies, pimento toast, and save room for a piece of pie from Bang Bang bakery around the corner.

Reno – 2607 N. Milwaukee Ave., (773) 697-4234

40 sidewalk seats make for an amazing afternoon of excellent pizza and hipster-watching at this Logan Square gem.  Their wood-fired pizzas are amazing and taste direct from Italy, especially the Paulina (pepperoni, jalepeno, pesto and mozzarella) and the Hang Ten (spicy coppa, red onion, grilled pineapple and mozzarella).

Longman & Eagle, 2657 N. Kedzie Ave., 773-276-7110

Avoid the loud and cramped interior and head to the sidewalk café.  Whether dinner, lunch or brunch, this Logan Square staple delivers amazing food and an unbeatable drink list. Reservations are now being accepted and walk-ins are added to their waitlist while enjoying cocktails at the bar. Don’t miss their brunch offerings which are second to none!

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Our Favorite 2021 Home Trends For Everyone

June 7, 2021

The last year has been tough on all of us.  Where some are emerging from their homes for the first time in what feels like forever, the CHP team has been consistently on the front lines, showing property in the most competitive market in years. During this time, many CHP clients have become reacquainted with […]

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Perennials – Chicago’s Favorite Flower Family

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One of the most common things we’ve heard from buyers this year has been how excited they are to plant something. Whether full on landscaping, planters for a roof deck or pots for a terrace – it seems that many have developed a green-ish thumb during quarantine and are itching to show off their skills. […]

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The 2021 Chicago Home Partner March Madness Pool

March 3, 2021

This year, we are proud to announce the 13th Annual Chicago Home Partner March Madness Pool!  I would like to invite you, your friends and family to participate in this fun online competition. The more the merrier… or at least the more competitive! Best of all… the winner walks away with a $100 AMEX gift […]

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The 2020 Chicago Market Report and 2021 Outlook – Chicago Home Partner

February 9, 2021

Dear Friend, As your Chicago real estate market experts, we take immense pride in releasing our annual “Chicago Real Estate Roundup”.  We’ve had quite a year in 2020 and it’s time to see if even with a global pandemic, our predictions were correct. 2020 brought a lot of external factors on our local market, but […]

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Make Your Socially Distant Holiday One To Remember

December 1, 2020

Dear friend, The most recent request to downplay holiday gatherings due to spiking COVID numbers have hit us all hard. These weeks leading up to the holiday season are usually some of the most memorable times in the city.  The stringing of lights in Lincoln Park Zoo, the windows at Macy’s, the opening of Christkindlmarket […]

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Socially Distant Fall Fun – Orchards Nearby Chicago

September 28, 2020

Dear friend, I hope this finds you and yours healthy, happy, and relatively sane considering the state of the world!   Most of us are trying to squeeze as much outdoor time from these remaining months as possible.  Mother Nature can provide us glorious warm weather one day and slapping us with freezing rain the […]

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Chicago Home Partner’s Local Getaways 2020

June 30, 2020

If you’re like us, these months of quarantine have put you in an antsy state – looking to get out and do something while still protecting yourself and others around you.  Maybe you finally started taking advantage of the hundreds of nature preserves in or around the city.  Or maybe you’ve revived the “Sunday Drive” […]

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CHP’s Favorite Online Experiences Under Quarantine

May 6, 2020

Nowadays, we hear the word “quarantine” and automatically picture a long list of things we’re not allowed to do.  No lake. No coffee with friends. No 606. No restaurant date nights. The restrictions seem overwhelming.   But perhaps we need to shift our mindset and think of all the opportunities this slower lifestyle offers? Instead of […]

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