Michigan Avenue is one of the most famous boulevards in the world. Known for its shopping, the Magnificent Mile, that stretch of Michigan Avenue from the Chicago River to Lake Shore Drive, is known for its shopping, with exclusive boutiques and large department stores. This area is more than just a great place to buy things; it’s also a great place to call home. Living on Michigan Avenue puts convenience and luxury right at your doorstep.
With its status as a tourist destination Michigan Avenue is one of the busiest streets in Chicago. While parking is scarce and can be quite expensive, public transportation and ridesharing services are plentiful. Several bus lines service the neighborhood, and the red line is just a couple of blocks away. To easily find a cab head to one of the several hotels where they line up for guests and patrons.
Food & Drink
One of the best things about living on Michigan Avenue is the sheer quantity of excellent restaurants within walking distance. For upscale Italian cuisine there’s no better restaurant in Chicago than Spiaggia. On the other end of the spectrum, and the other end of Michigan Avenue, Billy Goat Tavern serves up “cheezborgers cheezborgers” for less than $4 in its subterranean location. The Purple Pig is the spot for small plates and great wine, with beautiful outdoor seating. Another spot with a beautiful patio is Eno Wine Room. Located in the InterContinental Chicago Hotel, this gem offers cheeses and chocolates to go with your wine. For an expansive menu done well visit the second floor Grand Lux Cafe, a sprawling restaurant with cuisine for everybody.
When you want a view to go with your cocktail, take the elevator 96 floors up to the Signature Lounge. Located in the Hancock Building, it’s two floors higher than 360 Chicago, formerly known as the Hancock Observatory. For a less lofty experience, on all levels, head to Streeter’s Tavern. This basement bar is a popular hangout for cheap drinks, pool, and beer pong. Beer lovers will be in awe at Howells and Hood. Named for the architects of the Tribune Tower, this sprawling bar has over 100 beers on tap.
In addition to being great for beer Howells and Hood’s patio is also good for your four-legged friends. Jake Melnick’s also offers great beer, some of the best chicken wings in town, and water bowls for thirsty dogs. This neighborhood also features one of the best pet stores in Chicago. Tails in the City will pamper your pooch like the prince that he is. Taking your dog for a walk couldn’t be easier; just head to the lakefront path.
Attractions / Entertainment / Events
The hardest part about living on Michigan Avenue is deciding what not to do. The Museum of Contemporary Art showcases the complexity and talent of today’s artists. Tuesdays this is one of the most popular places to visit during the summer, with a morning farmers market, evening concerts on the terrace, and free admission all day long. The Loyola University Museum of Art is also free on Tuesdays, and it provides a detailed look into spiritual art. Also on Michigan Avenue is the always free City Gallery, located in the historic Water Tower. For theater, Broadway Playhouse offers an intimate experience and Lookingglass Theatre showcases more experimental plays in the Water Tower Works building, one of the only survivors of the Great Chicago Fire.
Living in the Magnificent Mile means that you have a front-row seat for the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival. Hosted the weekend before Thanksgiving, this nationally broadcast event features entertainment all day long and is capped by a grand parade and fireworks.
Fitness & Health
While you could get your daily steps in just by exploring the neighborhood, Michigan Avenue is so close to the lakefront path that you can run, bike, and walk for miles and reach your fitness goals. During the summer you can take advantage of your proximity to North Avenue Beach and try standup paddleboarding. There’s also volleyball on Oak Street and North Avenue Beaches. For a complete fitness experience Equinox has a location in the 900 North Michigan Shops.
Shopping is the Magnificent Mile’s raison d’etre. There are three vertical shopping malls along this mile-long stretch, and in between are shops for every need. Tiffany’s, Crate and Barrel, Sak’s Fifth Avenue, and Under Armour all have impressive square footage. British imports Top Shop and Allsaints, Japanese apparel giant UNIQLO, and outdoors outfitters Patagonia and North Face offer merchandise that spans the globe. American Girl and The Disney Store appeal to children, and chocolate lovers can indulge in Hershey’s, Ghirardelli, Godiva, and Fannie May. Michigan Avenue is a shopper’s paradise.
While Michigan Avenue is known primarily for shopping it offers a well-rounded experience for anyone who chooses to live on the Magnificent Mile. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to see why we think this is a great neighborhood to call home.