Chicago’s 6 Hottest Spots & Hidden Gems

nordstrom white tie front blouse

mark graham monogram stripe tote-3
mark and graham monogram tote

nordstrom front tie blouse

nordstrom front tie white blouse

Hi friends!

Here are SIX Chicago hot spots and hidden gems you need to know about ASAP:

6 Chicago Hot Spots and Hidden Gems

  1. First up is Chicago’s new ACE Hotel. It’s adorable. Although it officially opens September 1st, the insiders are already going! Go for brunch on the patio {the restaurant is called City Mouse} and be sure to order the cinnamon cold brew. Doggies are welcome and my friend told me their outdoor bar is opening soon too!
  2. Use the ladies room at new hotspot, BLVD. It’s the prettiest Chicago bathroom in the entire city. Oh, and the restaurant is a jewel box dripping in chandeliers. It’s for sure the place “to be seen” and quite fancy. Hiding at the end of the menu is their hamburger (very unlike the rest of the menu). It’s delicious and the biggest bang for your buck. Get it.
  3. Saint Lou’s Assembly is a secret patio oasis disguised as a diner. We recently discovered this gem and can’t believe we hadn’t heard about it. It’s a 5 minute walk from Ogilvie and the outside is beautiful. Get the frosé.
  4. I lived around the corner from Chicago’s best kept beauty secret for seven years and NEVER knew about it. It’s that hidden. Tucked away below street level, this beauty store, called Bravco, carries every hair product and brand for a fraction of the cost. Their prices beat out any salon or online store. INCLUDING AMAZON. I bought Opalex, which is SO hard to find. Side Note: Rumor has it the Opalex you buy on Amazon is poor quality so you should always buy it in stores. Don’t quote me on that, but that’s what I’ve heard. Go to Bravco. You’ll die.
  5. City Winery Riverwalk. I’m specifically talking about the one on the river! My friend recently brought me here and you feel like you’re in Europe!  Apparently this is where all the cool people are going for happy hour this summer. It’s also a hot spot for boaters. Simply buy your glass of wine, then walk down to the steps by the river for epic people and yacht watching. Thanks Jess for taking me!
  6. Last but certainly not least, Shore Club is the most anticipated opening! Right by North Avenue beach, it’s the first three in one restaurant on Lake Michigan in Chicago. Cabanas are included! The pictures of the space are INSANE and I’m attending the grand opening next Monday. Don’t worry, I’ll fill you in. I don’t know for sure, but I think it may secretly already be open. But don’t quote me on that either!

Funnily enough, this monogram tote from Mark & Graham made it to every single one of these places too! With the exception of BLVD and Shore Club. It’s one of those totes that’s so easy to throw on, open and close. A bit of a Mary Poppins bag if you will. I’m taking it to the farmer’s market this morning and I also use it as a cute mini gym bag to Orange Theory. Plus it’s monogrammed. So obviously it’s amazing.

Also, front tie tops are HOT for Fall. They’re super cute too!

So tell me. Have you heard or been to any of these places yet? I’ve been to the city a lot recently, so I feel like I’m in the know. But let’s get real. It won’t last long!


P.S. The PERFECT Chicago 2 day itinerary; the best croissant and soup in Chicago and where all of Chicago’s top fashionistas eat.




stripe tote c/o Mark & Graham || front tie blouse {Only $49! Size down and comes in 3 different colors} || jeans {old but similar here} || gold star sandals || gold bangle c/o Gorjana {50% off! $35} || gold bracelet c/o marrin costello {sold out}|| gold cuff c/o pieces of me || sunglasses c/o Shopbop






  • Love this post Nicole! I am totally going to check out these spots! And love that white top on you – it sold out while I was checking out during the anni sale – even more bummed I couldn’t snag it considering how cute it looks on you! xxx, Nikki

  • You’re the cutest! Such a great round up and so happy to know about Bravco! Hope you’re having a great summer girl.

    Heidi || Wishes & Reality

  • Brittany Steinkamp

    I love Chicago!! And that City Winery Riverwalk sounds amazing – putting that on my list for the next visit!