Subject: Re: Help wanted - Chicago trip
Hello Sybil, My husband & I visited Chicago in June. We got a great deal on the Hyatt Regency through priceline.com - only $65 per night! It's not a unique hotel (very large and convention oriented) but it suited our needs. Located right on the river, about a block from Michigan Ave., so we were able to walk everywhere.

I've heard wonderful things about The Hotel Monaco which was only a few blocks away. I have a friend that will only stay there when she goes to Chicago and the Travel Channel featured it once on the Great Hotels show. It looks wonderful but sadly it was out of our price range.

You asked about where to eat...we had to do the Chicago thing and have a steak and deep dish pizza. For pizza we went to Giordano's - I prefer thin crust pizza but had to give the deep dish thing a try and ended up scraping off half the cheese - it tasted good though. Be warned that even a small pizza is huge! For steak we took a recommendation for Eli's which is about a block or two off Michigan Ave. at the Water Tower. We really liked the atmosphere - not too stuffy. It was expensive but the steak was wonderful! We both ordered filets and shared sides of mashed potatoes and creamed spinach. They're also famous for their cheesecake so save room for dessert!

We enjoyed looking around the original Marshall Fields (on Wabash, I think) while escaping a rain shower. The restaurant on the 7th floor (called The Oak Room, I think) looked very nice and surprisingly wasn't too pricy. Also pick up a box of Frango chocolates while in Marshall Fields.

The Field Musuem was fantastic...we easily could have spent half the day there if time had allowed. Also took advantage of a walk on the lake and the view from the Hancock Tour lounge (96th floor - which is free!). The view from the ladies room is great!

I do agree that Navy Pier was too touristy and crowded but they do have a wonderful stained glass exhibit that is free. It's indoors and air conditioned too so a nice break from the heat and crowds. Also, don't count on those free trolleys (I think they only run in the summer)...we would wait for 20 minutes for one only to find it was full when it came by! Easier to just walk for us.

We enjoyed our visit and still have plenty to see when we return. Jennie in Atlanta