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What’s it Like to Live in Chicago’s West Loop Neighborhood

This post was sponsored by Marquette Management but all opinions and accounts of living in this area are my own!

Prior to calling the west loop neighborhood of Chicago home, I didn’t know much about this area at all. I guess you could say the apartment hunt came down to a being in the right place at the right time and needing an apartment ASAP. I’m so lucky we made that choice because since moving in I’ve fallen more and more in love with the west loop for its style, restaurants, location, transportation and proximity to local business that I frequent every single day.

The neighborhood has truly become a home and with the turn of each season it changes just a little bit with a new restaurant or  business that brings character and a true sense of Chicago style to the area. The mix of fancy and fast casual restaurants is perfect for date nights out or quick dinners when there’s nothing in my fridge (be sure to check out the list at the bottom!)  and there’s a true sense of community wherever you turn.

I’m excited to tell you more about a new building going up in Fulton Market that combines the classic warehouse style building, with with contemporary designs and unique amenities. THE MASON apartments located on Ada street, offers close proximity to all that the west loop and Fulton Market have to offer. Creatively managed by Marquette Management (the same group that manages the building I currently live in!), The building features a vintage and industrial inspired aesthetic, built with high-end amenities for a modern lifestyle.

The Mason, Fulton Market
THE MASON Fulton Market

That modern yet homey feeling is exactly what I love about this area. The warehouse meets modern aesthetic matches my own style (and love of exposed brick walls), and when I’m walking my dog down the street I always end up finding another little pocket with character, history, and style that I never knew existed before. I admittedly try hard not to leave this area (especially in the winter!) and have found from everything from a hair stylist that I love to the gym I go to nearly every day is located all right here.  

Think Outside the Loop

Living in the west loop you’re not compromising being close to the attractions in the loop and downtown Chicago. It’s great for people who work in the loop and are looking to cut down on commute time but not be too far from activities like the museums, broadway, and the riverwalk. Rob loves being just a short walk from his office and humbly brags about his short commute any chance he gets! When it’s warm out I love being able to walk to Millennium Park and Michigan avenue.

Grocery Stores, Transportation, Oh My!

For me being walking distance to grocery store was crucial and living in this area not only gives me access to one grocery store, but three! Whole Foods, Jewel-Osco, and Mariano’s are all within walking distance. You truly can’t beat it especially knowing that our winters bring snow storms, cold days and extreme winds! They are where I get all of my ingredients for recipes like this gluten free pumpkin chickpea blondies!

The proximity to transportation and the expressway has been the biggest perk I never knew I needed but can’t imagine life without. Walking distance to union station, ogilvie transportation center, the L plus easy highway access makes all your friends come over way more and getting place a lot less stressful.

The west loop and Fulton Market area gives you the best of both worlds—it’s not too crowded when you want to walk around or pop into a coffee shop but the nightlife is also waiting for you when you’re craving a fancy night off. Some of the best food I’ve ever had has been just a short block or to from my apartment! The end of Randolph is also home to La Colombe, and Smyth and the Loyalist–two places I frequent for a good black and tan and seasonal eats.  

Read on to check out my list of neighborhood hot spots!

Maggie Michalczyk, RDN

Dog Friendly

Just a few short blocks away from restaurant row you’ll find Mary Barteme Park, equipped with a dog park, plenty of green space and a great park for kids. Many of the businesses on Randolph also put on water bowls for dogs when it’s warm out and most all patios in the summer are dog friendly. My personal favorite summer activity is taking Pumpkin to Parlor Pizza for brunch and then to the park on a beautiful Chicago summer afternoon. There’s also a couple of great pet stores in the area plus a vet and groomer located right on Randolph street.

Maggie’s Picks: Best of the West

You knew I would have a thing or two to say about the food in the area! The truth is I’m still exploring a lot of the places  and my restaurant list is growing by the day but there are a few spots that we keep going back to that you should know about whether you live here or are just visiting!

Best Pizza— Order pizza by the slice and experience the unique roman-style pizza at Bonci. I love their different topping combinations. For a fun atmosphere, awesome outdoor patio, hit up Parlor Pizza! I’m a huge fan of their salads too.

Best Cozy Spot for Drinks – Across from Soho house you’ll find the very R&M Champagne Salon, a great spot for drinks for two with a romantic atmosphere and cute little French desserts.   

Best Sushi— a true hidden gem of the West Loop and Fulton Market, Tanoshii Sushi Mike’s is serving up some of the best sushi I’ve ever had. Their special rolls are so unique and flavorful and it’s a great place to go with a group!

Best Brunch Spot– This one is a tie between Little Goat Diner and Roister, and Beatrix. I love Beatrix for it’s trendy health forward dishes and Roister for brunch is more affordable than at dinner time and chic (I highly recommend the chicken sandwich!). Little Goat is a definite must if you haven’t been. I recommend going with something slightly outside of your comfort zone to be pleasantly surprised!

Best Coffee Shop– New on the block is Princi with its modern look and European flare. They have the best French pastries and artisan breads to pick up on a saturday stroll when you’re out to grab coffee.

Best Dinner for Two Swift and Sons and Aba. Two of my favorite restaurants in this area, both of these places are cozy and romantic in their own way and will leave you talking about the food long after you’ve been there! Aba is the sister restaurant to Ema in River North!

Best Place to Take a Group – Grab your girlfriends and enjoy food, drinks and fun at City Winery or Punch Bowl Social. I’d go with city winery if you want a more intimate setting and punch bowl social if you’re ready to play all the game!

And I can’t forget Greektown! Truly some of my favorite meals have been just a couple blocks away in Greektown where the seafood is always so fresh and the bill feels like a steal for the amount of food you get!

Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions that I can help answer about this part of Chicago. For more information and to set up a meeting or look at the floor plans of THE MASON click here!

XOXO

MAGGIE

West Loop Chicago


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2016-05-03T18:24:44+00:00

Carly

"Maggie did a great job of listening to my needs and offering practical, cost-effective, and sustainable solutions."
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