State Street & The Loop, Chicago
A Pablo Picasso sculpture was unveiled in Chicago on August 15, 1967 at Daley Plaza (then Civic Center Plaza). It is 50 ft. high and weighs 162 tons. The sculpture is made of steel fabricated by the US Steel Corp. in Gary, Indiana, and was assembled in Gary, disassembled, and reassembled at its present location.
Picasso was approached by Chicago architect William Hartmann in 1963 to produce a sculpture that would fit in with the Civic Center building. When a scale model was agreed upon, 3 charitable foundations paid for the fabrication. Hartmann took a check for $100,000 to Picasso who immediately refused it, saying, "This is my gift to the people of Chicago." Picasso never saw his finished sculpture in person.
The sculpture, which has no official name, was once controversial, but has become a well-known city landmark.
In the first half of 1999 I was fortunate enough to live for 5 months in downtown Chicago and must confess I did really spend quite a few hours of my life watching the live performances at the Blue Chicago Nightclubs. LOL.
All Blue Chicago clubs are located on Clark Street, Chicago's downtown.
Officially announced there's only two clubs but on reality there's also (there was in 1999) a 3rd club right on the basement of the Blue Chicago Store.
The one located on the basement is not being publicized that much for liquor drinks are not licensed to be sold and for it's pretty much used for performances to younger visitors.
Back then, in 1999, the $7 dollar cover charge allowed free-entrance into the 3 clubs.
For general reference my personal 3-top must-visit "landmarks" in Chicago are Sam's Wines for Wine, Goose Island Brewery for Beer and Blue Chicago's 3 nightclubs for Music.
Besides those 5 months of 1999, I've also visited the city of Chicago in 2001, 2002, and twice in 2004. Every time I go to Chicago those 3 places referred above are the ones I never want to miss :)...
I highly recommend taking the elevated train platforms (Purple and Brown lines?) because they circle completely around the most interesting areas of Chicago's, with one of the stops just 20 paces away from the historical 'Chicago' Broadway sign ( camera died before I got that money shot), as well as many other important sites inside and near the Loop (wikipidia the loop to learn more about the loop!)
i.e. Chicago Stock Exchange - A Gothic city like building.
MORE HUGE TOWERS TOO
Chicago Loop Alliance offers free 3 audio tours:
- Theatre (10 theatres),
- Art (17 art structures)
- and Landmark (23 landmarks).
You can experince them online or download the audio to your MP3 player, print out the pdf. map and you are ready to begin.
The MP3 tours are pretty big, so make sure you have enough memory left on your player to upload them:
- Theatre tour is 21.3 Mb,
- Art tour is 31.4 Mb,
- Landmark tour is 46.4 Mb.
NOTE: Tours are not available in other than English language.
We went on a Landmark Tour the other day. Spent 2 hours and have not even finished it. It was OK, learnt some interesting facts. Like: Macy`s department store is 2nd largest in the world and Harold Washington Library was the largest library in the world when it opened in 1991.
When in New York City you find Macy's, in London you find Harrods. And in Chicago you find Marshall Fields. Their Christmas window displays are beautiful. You have to literally stand in line to get a chance to look at the displays.
A great alternative to Michigan Ave. as far as shopping because it does get crowded on certain parts of Michigan Ave. It is alot quieter down here especially on the weekend. The Theatre District is here also.
Marshall Field's Department Store
Huge department store on State St., much like that of Macy's-fame. But this is better than Macy's (I've been to Macy's). Ok, yeah, it's still just a department store inside, but outside it's all decorated at Christmas, and there's always the large clock on its corner. Get some Frango mints while you're here!
Whether you go to Marshall Field's for the shopping or for the displays or for the magnificent interior, you should go. The shopping is probably higher priced than most department stores, but this is a very prestigious store!
Chicago's City Hall is a handsome neo-classical structure that was built between 1909 and 1911 by the noted architectural firm of Holabird & Roche. Between 1906 and 1907 they constructed its twin, the County Building on the east half of the block. Together the two structures form a monumental civic edifice that covers an entire city block and measures 337 feet along LaSalle and Clark Streets and 214 feet along Randolph and Washington Streets.
before the Magnificent Mile of Michigan Avenue there was State street! this was the old shopping area of chicago before it was eclipsed by the nearby magnificent Mile. It begins on the Near North Side at North Avenue. For much of its course, it lies between Wabash Avenue on the east and Dearborn Street/Lafayette Avenue on the west. It runs through the heart of Downtown Chicago and ends at the southern city limits, intersecting 127th Street along the bank of the Little Calumet River. State Street became a shopping destination during the 1900s and for a little tidbit info: is referred to in the song "Chicago," sung by Frank Sinatra where Frank refers it to "State Street, that great street. Today, the only two main department store chains that remain are Macy's (formerly Marshall Field's) and Sears on State but there are other architecutal landmarks as well. Best of all, it is just 2 blocks from my hotel so I stroll around the area during my chicago stay.
Chicago is mostly known for the Loop which is the name of the old " L" Subway looping around the downtown and the central businees area and the various architectural wonders of the downtown area. the famous loop is bounded by the Chicago River to the north and west, Harrison Street to the south, and Lake Michigan to the east. The Loop abounds in shopping opportunities, including the Loop Retail Historic District, although it competes with the more upscale Magnificent Mile area to the north, and with suburban shopping malls. It includes Chicago's former Marshall Field's department store location in the Marshall Field and Company Building; the original Sullivan Center Carson Pirie Scott store location (closed February 21, 2007); and Sears on State. Chicago's Downtown Theatre District is also found within this area, along with numerous restaurants and hotels (like the Travelodge Downtown where I stayed) and is the home of the beautifully spaced and magnificent chicago high rises like the Willis Tower, Hancock Building, AT & T Building, Aon Center to name a few.
This area does not only have a couple of event houses such as Theatres (Chicago) but also plenty of shops, banks, some restaurants. The red line (CTA) Metro is running underneath it...
State street is one of the main streets in Chicago paralel with Michigan avenue. Lot of shops (better prices than Michigan avenue), restaurants, theatres (Chicago theatre) etc.
The Magnificient Mile is perfect for shopping and there are many art objects such as Calders'sculpture or Picasso'structure or Chagall paintings...