Originally the midway point of the World Columbian Exposition, today the Midway Plaisance Park is a one-mile long park that has remained a green area, supported by the University of Chicago. Boasting cross-street bridges with a breathtaking view of the buildings along the Midway, the area has been refurbished with an ice skating rink for winter and expansive gardens during the summer. The word ‘Plaisance‘ is French and defines a pleasure ground of nature.
Midway Plaisance Park, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 745 2470
Known as the Palace of Fine Arts at the World Columbian Exposition, this building originally housed the Field Museum before it moved to the South Loop in the 1920s. Currently, The Museum of Science and Industry is one of the largest science museums in the world. Well known throughout the United States, the museum hosts the Apollo 8 spacecraft, the Pioneer Zephyr, which was the first diesel-fueled passenger train, a 3,500-square-foot model train, a trip to a replica coal mine and a German submarine captured during World War II.
Located in Chicago’s Burnham Park, Promontory Point offers spectacular views of the city’s skyline and a great place to relax. The point was constructed as a man-made peninsula that juts into Lake Michigan and can be accessed by the Lakefront Trail, a tunnel that passes under Lake Shore Drive at the east end of 55th Street. Promontory Point also offers a variety of special events such as outdoor movies and guest performers. Designed by Alfred Caldwell, the point offers the beauty of harbor beaches and exquisite natural meadows.
Promontory Point, 5491 S Shore Dr, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 742 5369
Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, the Robie House in Hyde Park is an example of his contemporary prairie-style work also located on the University of Chicago campus. Tours are available that even include private spaces not readily available to the public. The Frederick C. Robie House is a national historic landmark and was designed in 1908 for the assistant manager of the Excelsior Supply Company. Robie and his wife Lora had selected the property in order to remain close to the University since she was a graduate from the school.
Frederick C Robie House, 5757 S Woodlawn Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 312 994 4000
Coming to Chicago as a community organizer after graduating Harvard Law, Barack Obama lived at 5429 Harper Avenue in Hyde Park, if you are interested in sharing the legacy of the President of the United States. After viewing his apartment, you may want to see the Hyde Park Hair Salon and the chair where he used to get haircuts. Meanwhile, for those who love the written word, stroll through 57th Street Books, located at 57th and Kimbark, which is another Obama favorite.
57th Street Books, 1301 E 57th St, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 684 1300
When looking for professional theater, the Court Theatre on the University of Chicago campus provides innovative productions and classic plays that have included Waiting for Godot, Agamemnon, Wait Until Dark, and The Glass Menagerie. Attended by over 35,000 people each year, the award-winning Court Theatre puts on five plays per season. It has been named the most consistently excellent theater company in America by the Wall Street Journal.
Court Theatre, 5535 S Ellis Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 753 4472
After visiting the historical culture of Hyde Park, the Valois cafeteria is one of the Obama family’s recommended restaurants. After walking in the front, a sign indicates the President’s usual orders when in town. The restaurant provides comfort food with American specials such as feta omelets for breakfast and a huge variety of beef dishes. In service for over a decade, Valois greets customers with walls of murals that celebrate the Hyde Park neighborhood. It has been said many times that if you live in Hyde Park, Valois is a family tradition.
Valois Restaurant, 1518 E 53rd St, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 667 0647
By Karla Sullivan