The West Chicago Loop: A Guide to Eating, Drinking, Walking and Gawking
WEST CHICAGO LOOP The neighborhood feels like a separate city – an enclave of art deco warehouses and low-story brick buildings facing a wall of skyscrapers across the I-90 freeway. Once the site of a 19th-century outdoor produce market on Randolph Street and home to meat packers along Fulton Market two blocks north, the neighborhood is now a thriving development area. In order to preserve its distinct architectural heritage, Chicago has granted landmark status to 142 properties in the area, now known as the Fulton-Randolph Historic Market. A stay here puts you within scenic walking distance (along the Chicago River) of Michigan Avenue’s Magnificent Mile. Book meal reservations before your visit; Covid’s culinary withdrawal and staff shortages are heightening competition for tables at Chicago celebrity chef shrines, upscale food courts and bars where decibels can roar the trains elevated above Lake Street . Here we list some of the places that are worth the time and calories, as well as some great hotels and entertainment options.
The Chicago outpost of the Hoxton , a chain of British boutique hotels, combines coworking and hospitality in a new 12-storey tower. During the day, the modern sofas in the lobby fill up with people assiduously typing on laptops. The work ends with drinks at the basement bar or a meal at Cabra, a Peruvian-inspired rooftop restaurant accessed via elevators lined with vintage Chicago maps. Most of the 182 rooms are small, but with large factory-style windows. Guests participate in yoga flow classes, literary fairs, and digital philanthropy workshops. Starting at $ 139 a night, thehoxton.com
Occupying two floors of the former Free Methodist Publishing House (built in 1909), the luxurious, loft-like B&B publishing house  offers 11 rooms decorated with vintage oriental rugs, company safes and steam trunks. Hearty breakfasts, which can include homemade Ligurian olive oil cakes and gluten-free donuts, live up to the neighborhood’s gastronomic reputation. From $ 179 per night, Publishinghousebnb.com
EAT AND DRINK
A neighborhood staple, chef Stephanie Izard’s Little Goat Dinner  serves international versions of American breakfast classics including This Little Piggy Went to China, a cheddar cookie topped with eggs, Sichuan sausage and smoked blueberries. 820 W. Randolph St., littlegoatchicago.com
Convenient for lunch and with a Sunday Jazz brunch, the 50,000 square foot Dead time market  serves as a Chicago food tour with 11 restaurants and bars created by accomplished restaurateurs from across the city. The options range from artisanal chocolates to Michelin-starred plates; try Cleo’s Southern Cuisine Hearty Fried Chicken Sandwich. 916 W. Fulton Market, timeoutmarket.com