A Hip(po) Chicago Weekend – January 28,29,30

A Hip(po) Chicago WeekendI had the good fortune of being in Las Vegas this week for a work conference and it inspired me to put a unique spin on what to do this weekend.  What’s so unique about Vegas is that you can be transported to a variety of different places around the world just by walking down one street.  I stayed at New York, New York, but I also visited Paris, Venice, and Cairo.  It was pretty sweet.  So, why not take a tip from Vegas and do a little traveling this weekend?  All without leaving the fantastic city of Chicago, of course!

Paris

Let’s start with my favorite city in the whole world.  You can eat at a variety of restaurants this weekend or head over to the Alliance to watch movies or learn how to cook!  Le Petit Paris offers some real French treats that you can’t find in many other places in the city.

The Chicago Alliance Francaise is always offering many different ways to experience French culture.  You can take cooking classes, watch French movies, or visit their French library.  I personally take my French lessons here and love it.  I am a huge fan!

Venice

Chicago is known for it’s most famous Italian, Al Capone.  Why not take a trek through little Italy this weekend?

Taylor Street is definitely a good place to start.  You will have a variety of restaurants and cafes to choose from and you can never go wrong with Italian food.

Want a unique spin on your pizza instead?  Chicago Pizza and Oven Grinder was rated the best pizza in the world by Travel Channel and offers unique pizza pot pies and delicious salads.  Be prepared to wait, as they don’t take reservations and bring cash — no credit cards here!  Additionally, head to the small fenced in park across the street — that was the site of the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.  Say hello to Al for me.

Finally, did you know Chicago has an Italian Culture Institute? Can’t hurt to learn some more about your paisans!

Cairo

Middle Eastern food is some of the best around, so expand your palate and hit up some of these fun restaurants!  For starters, Semiramis offers premier Lebanese food.  It’s also BYOB so it makes for a cheaper dinner!

Hala In Restaurant is ranked at the top of the list on Yelp!  Just looking at their menu made my mouth water.  Looking to sit back and relax?  Why not try hookah?  Chicago Hookah Review will provide tips, ratings and a full Chicago hookah directory!  I tend to like fruit flavored tobacco the best, and don’t be fooled — it is not good for you.  While the tobacco doesn’t have nicotine in it like cigarettes, inhaling smoke into your lungs is never good, so exercise caution!

New York

Ah, New York.  I speak the words and have to sigh and stare whimsically out of my window like Carrie Bradshaw.  Who doesn’t love New York?

If you aren’t feeling the pizza recommendations under Venice, why not try some New York style pizza?  Renaldi’s is quite delicious, as is Gigi’s.

What about shopping?  While we don’t have 5th avenue, we do have the Mag Mile, Oak Street and State Street which do quite well!

Finally, Chicago is only second to New York in terms of theater offerings, so hit up the Chicago Theater District and be fully entertained!

Be hip(po)!  Have fun!  Enjoy your trek around the world this weekend! But most importantly, have a fun and safe weekend!

~Corie Scarpaci

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Listen to Ashley Lobo on Chicago radio,
WBIG AM 1280, Thursday mornings between 9-10,
with JoAnn & Ryan!

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