Millennium Park, Chicago

4.5 out of 5 stars 4.5 Stars - 85 Reviews

Randolph St & Michigan Ave

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    Serpentine bridge
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  • I CAN SEE MYSELF!!!CLOUDGATE SCULPTURE
    I CAN SEE MYSELF!!!CLOUDGATE SCULPTURE...
    by DennyP
  • MILLENIUM PARK..
    MILLENIUM PARK..
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  • Moustique's Profile Photo

    Lots of interesting artwork

    by Moustique Written Jan 19, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Hi rob!
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    In the winter you can ice skate on the outdoor rink, in the summer they have concerts. Even if there arent any special events you have to go take a picture with the the Cloud Gate, otherwise known as the bean. Its a good place to walk around and relax. Take in the art and people watch

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  • Jefie's Profile Photo

    A $475 million urban park!!

    by Jefie Written Oct 13, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    When I found out how much it had cost to build Millennium Park, I must admit that I was expecting a very large park, perhaps something like NYC's Central Park. On the contrary, Millenium Park is rather small, but its construction presented a major challenge since it was designed to cover the unsightly railways that run between downtown Chicago and Lake Michigan. In that perspective, Millennium Park is a very successful endeavour, and since its opening in 2004, it has attracted an average of 23 million visitors per year. Although it doesn't take much time to walk through it, I found myself reaching for my camera time and time again, especially on the AT&T Plaza where Anish Kapoor's sculpture "Cloud Gate" can be seen. This gigantic stainless steel "bean" reflects the buildings lined up across the street along South Michigan Avenue, which makes for very interesting photo options. Another feature I found quite original was the Crown Fountain, which is made up of two giant screens on which are projected the faces of Chicago citizens sprouting water through their mouth. So despite all the controversy surrounding the final cost of Millennium Park, I'd still say it was money well spent since the beauty and uniqueness of the park does a good job of reflecting Chicago's development throughout the 20th century, and taking it to new millennium :o)

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  • Marisola's Profile Photo

    Sit or Stroll in Millenium Park

    by Marisola Updated Sep 28, 2008

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Marie in Millenium Park
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    Absolutely beautiful park in Chicago with lots of things to do for everyone! You can walk around the gardens, see some modern art, have lunch, or just sit and watch the people pass by. There is also a lot of grass, in the sun or in the shade, so you can lie down for a siesta or read a book. When the weather is warm, there are also two fountains of water to splash in, and a dipping area to soak your feet. You can bring a lunch, or there is also a nice outdoor cafe and restaurant here called "The Park Grill," which I would recommend. Many nice concerts and performances are held here at the Pritzker Pavilion, so be sure to check their schedule. In winter, there's ice skating and snow! Come and see! >>See my travelogue for more pics!

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  • bladedragon's Profile Photo

    Milennium Park

    by bladedragon Written Aug 22, 2008

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    Bean side
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    There's this fountain which can show movie, and water can spray from the mouth of the person in the movie... difficult to imagine, just look at the pic.
    But to me, the highlight of Millennium Park is this sphere called "The Cloud Gate"a.k.a "The Bean".
    It's an interesting piece of art and seriously looks like a bean!

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  • apbeaches's Profile Photo

    Loved the Fountain & the bean

    by apbeaches Written Jul 7, 2008
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    Yes, the bean was awesome. We enjoyed getting under & alongside this huge metalic bean sculpture. It was particularly special to see a photo of European Tourists next to the sculpture in the NY Times Travel section the Sunday we came back.

    The huge fountains with the faces were very special. We enjoyed seeing the smiles, colors, expressions & mouths actually spitting water at each other

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  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo

    The 'Bean' at Millenium Park

    by Bwana_Brown Updated May 17, 2008

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    The crowd is enjoying Cloud Gate
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    Between the columns of the Millenium Monument and the Crown Fountain is the masterpiece of the Park, as far as I am concerned! It was a beautiful sunny day, well able to bring the allure of the stainless steel 'Cloud Gate' (also affectionately known as 'the bean') up to its full grandeur.

    Proposed by British artist Anish Kapoor in 1999, his idea was accepted by the city but it was not until 7 years and $23 million dollars later that it reached its completion! As the park brochures say: "the sculpture is shaped like an ellipse, and its legume-like appearance has caused it to be nicknamed 'The Bean'. It is made of 168 highly polished stainless steel plates, and stands at 33 feet high, 66 feet long, and 42 feet wide, weighing 110 tons. From a distance it could be mistaken for a huge drop of mercury, while up close its highly reflective surface captures and transforms the skyline, the downtown cityscape and even the passers-by into a wonderfully warped new vista. The artist...has referred to the sculpture as 'a gate to Chicago, a poetic idea about the city it reflects.' The 12-foot underbelly is called the "omphalos" or navel and multiplies reflections in a vortex."

    I just enjoyed its polished beauty as its curved shape resulted in many interesting reflections of all the people enjoying it that day!

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  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo

    Millenium Park - don't miss it!

    by Bwana_Brown Updated May 12, 2008

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    Millenium Monument
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    By 10:30 AM, it was still relatively early on a Sunday morning but I was ready for some green space after my hour and a half meandering stroll through the city streets - and Millenium Park fit the bill perfectly!

    Opened in the summer of 2004 (after years of battling) on the former site of a railway switching yard and parking lots, Millenium Park has an amazing assortment of attractions for people of all ages - with lots of green grass and a view out over Lake Michigan to boot.

    My first stop was at the Millenium Monument, featuring an arc of 40-ft Doric columns in the best classical tradition facing a lush lawn. Continuing onward toward the lakefront, the next thing you will run into is the strangely and futuristically-designed Jay Pritzker Pavilion (2nd & 3rd photos). For various concerts and events it can seat 4,000 comfortably with another 7,000 able to make use of its huge lawn with pipes for the sound system arching overhead. Closer to the main seating area are a series of stainless steel structures that provide the great acoustics the Pavilion is known for.

    A bit further on and back toward the street is Crown Fountain, another attraction that is great fun for children, and I enjoyed watching 'the show' myself. To quote the literature: "Designed by Spanish artist Jaume Plensa, it consists of two 50-foot glass block towers at each end of a shallow, sparkling reflecting pool. The towers project video images of diverse Chicago citizens, which Plensa claims is a reference to the traditional use of gargoyles in fountains, where faces of mythological beings were sculpted with open mouths to allow water to flow out." The final two photos show the crowd waiting for the 'face' to change its expression to one that results in it ejecting a stream of water into the splash pool below, much to the delight of the children.

    But really, the most amazing thing was 'Cloud Gate' - next tip!

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  • monica71's Profile Photo

    Millenium Park

    by monica71 Updated May 8, 2008

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    This is one of the newest additions to the city right in the heart of downtown (admission is free). It is a great place to visit when you want to experience contemporary architecture in an open area setting. The park has numerous pavilions, a theater, a nice flower garden, an ice rink, fountains and a nice promenade. There are also modern sculptures scattered around the park grounds. The Cloud Gate is always a big attraction, same as the fountains where you can see children and adults playing in the water during the hot summer days.
    I would say this place is worth a visit. You can take great pictures of the city and get a feel of what the Chicagoans like to do in their free time.

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  • Hopkid's Profile Photo

    Chicago's Great Wide-Open Space

    by Hopkid Written Feb 20, 2008

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    Gehry's Pritzker Pavilion
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    Chicago developed this underutilized and somewhat bland portion of Grant Park. The Petrillo Music Shell used to be in this area and was the center for the annual jazz and blues fests. The stage has been replaced by the Frank Gehry-designed Pritzker Pavilion. The structure above the stage can only be described as Gehry-esque. Fans of the architect will know exactly what I mean.

    Another icon of the park is the Cloud Gate, or more affectionately known as The Bean. It is a polished chrome elliptical structure that looks like, well, a bean! The neat thing is the mirror-like reflection and moving around it one can see the interesting reflections of Michigan Avenue's skyscrapers as they are distorted due to the elliptical shape of the steel plates. The Cloud Gate was designed by British artist, Anish Kapoor.

    Also very cool is the Crown Fountain. Consisting of two 50-foot glass brick towers, the water originates at the tops and cascades down all four sides of each tower. Supposedly video images are projected onto the tower faces, all part of Spanish artist Jaume Piensa's vision for his work. However we were there in the middle of a summer's day and all we noticed were the multitudes of kids running through the water. A great city summer scene.

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  • Millennium Park

    by LauraBach Written Dec 1, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Cloud Gate reflecting Chicago skyscrapers
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    Millennium Park is an interesting, fairly new park. It has a large fountain area where you can cool off wading or playing in the water. There are several large sculptures, some of which can be climbed in. The most well known sculpture is named Cloud Gate, although everyone calls it "the bean". It looks like a giant jelly bean. It is very shiny and reflective. Be sure to walk under the Bean and look up for an interesting view!

    The park also has a cafe, a bar, a skating rink in the winter, a large outdoor amphitheater with lots of live shows in the summer, and a garden area.

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  • jlynyc's Profile Photo

    Millenium Park

    by jlynyc Written Nov 3, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Ice Rink in summer

    This park is artistic and beautiful and so conveniently located to the downtown area! If it's summer, take in a free concert; in winter ice skate below the Cloud Gate ("the bean"). It's a peaceful, green oasis just steps away from busy downtown and the famous Lake.

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  • tuff's Profile Photo

    Millennium Park

    by tuff Written Oct 24, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    This is the city park which is right in the heart of downtown. The Cloud Gate is the most interesting piece of art work I have ever seen. From a distance it doesn’t seem much, but upon close inspection, this highly reflective seamless stainless steel reflects the skyline and the park.

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  • sabogg01's Profile Photo

    Millennium Park---Beautiful place!

    by sabogg01 Written Sep 19, 2007
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    We loved it here, we walked across the curvy bridge, played in the fountains, and looked at our reflections in "the bean." We arrived here around 8PM in August and did not have to deal with many other people in the park. I would recommend if you want privacy to come around that time during the summer months, because when we came back that evening it was packed! There are many neat sculptures and other things to look at, and best of all you can see all this for free!! This is a must see in my opinion! A+

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  • heryanta's Profile Photo

    The Cool Icon

    by heryanta Written Aug 26, 2007
    can you see tiny me in the center :p

    The "Cloud" gate of Chicago - or more affectionately called the "Bean" is an amazingly cool architecture masterpiece.

    Located on South Michigan Avenue at the Millennium park it is a huge bean shaped sculpture made from shining stainless steel. Like a mirror in a circus mirror hall it makes your reflection out-of-shape; but what makes this architecture so special is the way it reflects the Chicago skyline.

    It is an amazing sight, a large shining structure with buildings, parks and people reflected on it.

    An absolute must during a trip to Chicago!

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  • DJMist's Profile Photo

    BP Bridge

    by DJMist Updated Jun 7, 2007

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

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    If you ever see the BP Bridge in Millennium Park from above it looks like a doodle you might make on a page without thinking. It snakes its way from the park to Daly Plaza and is similar in style to Pritzker Pavilion. It is almost 1000 feet in length.

    I like what Gehry said, “Chicago, in my humble opinion, is, architecturally, the best American city traditionally and just visually. It's so exciting.”

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