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Macy's (fka Marshall Field's): Chicago's Department Store
London has Harrods. New York has Macy's and Bloomingdales. Chicago had Fields- alas it now has its name changed to Macy's. Recently acquired by the Federated Department Stores (and renamed), the very first Marshall Field's opened its Chicago doors in 1852 as a retail dry goods store. It burned to the ground in the great Chicago Fire of 1871--and again just six years later. It has stood the test of time, continuing to be a one-stop shopping destination as well as a tourist stop. It also recently had a major renovation.
During winter holidays, the State Street location sees thousands of visitors who don't always make it inside--they're busy enjoying the famous window displays.
There are 2 downtown locations - State Street and Water Tower. For the true Chicago experience I would recommend vistiting the State Street store.
What to buy: The store still offers exquisite merchandise--from signature Frango mints (now, sadly, no longer produced in Chicago) to Emerilware cookware endorsed by acclaimed New Orleans chef Emeril Lagasse. Designer clothing, shoes, jewelry, china, crystal, linens and furniture are beautifully displayed throughout. This department store holds its own across a range of price points, from junior threads by Ralph Lauren and Guess to fashion favorites like BCBG, DKNY, Laundry, Jones New York, Liz Claiborne and Theory. They also carry brands like Trina Turk and Nanette LaPore which are my favorites.
Be sure to check out the 7th Floor for high end food. The food court below ground is not bad either. During the holidays, it is a tradition for families to lunch around the giant Christmas tree in the Walnut Room of the State Street store.
- Family Travel
Marshall Fields: The Oldest American Staple - Department Store
Americans have invented department store shopping and this store opened in the late 19th century is not only a legendary luxury goods seller, but the building of the original store has beautiful architecture with inside courts, fountains, and a lunimous mosaic on the volted ceiling.
What to buy: Anything your pocket allows - mine was pretty empty, so I walked out with a fancy lipstick.
What to pay: My damage was a wooping $21 just for a lipstick!
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