We asked Deana of Deana Rose Jewelry to tell us what she would recommend a visitor do if they only have two hours or an afternoon to spend seeing Chicago. Deana, who says she approaches design “like a surprise waiting to happen”, has created designs that are carried in museums and boutiques across the country. Her pieces have also had “cameo roles” on network television dramas like The Good Wife which was based in the Windy City.
For Travelers Who Like: Given her love of beautiful design, it’s no surprise that Deana recommends that travelers who love architecture, history, and art go to see the former Marshall Field’s department store building (now a Macy’s).
Where to Go: Take an Uber or Lyft to 111 N. State Street. Luckily department stores keep late hours; so it’s a perfect sightseeing trip if you have to be in meetings all day.
What Makes It Special: The building has been declared a Chicago Landmark, a National Historic Landmark, and it’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The original building opened in 1893 but four additional building were added over the course of 20 years to form the existing, integrated structure. For years, Marshall Field & Company anchored Chicago’s retailing center in the city’s downtown “Loop”. When Marshall Field died in 1906, his store was the largest retailer in the world, both in sheer physical size and sales. It was the first retailer to offer a bridal registry, in-store dining, personal shoppers, an escalator, and to post prices on products so that buyers didn’t have to haggle with sales clerks.
You’ll marvel at the magnificent exterior which boasts 70 foot Ionic-style granite columns and two 7 ton clocks, once the subject of a Norman Rockwell illustration that graced the cover of the “Saturday Evening Post”. The interior features multiple atria: a 5-story balcony-ed atrium in the southwest corner; a 13 story sky-lit atrium in the northwest corner; and a newer atrium with a fountain in the center.
Do Not Miss: Deana advises visitors not to miss the mosaic vaulted ceiling, designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany, that covers the southwest atria. Measuring over 6,000 square feet, it is the first iridescent glass dome and is still the largest glass mosaic of its kind. Deana’s secret: the best view of this amazing atrium is from the store’s lingerie department.
Traveling to Chicago for business? We asked Hilary of H. Bune Designs to tell us what she'd recommend to a visitor who only has two hours or an afternoon to spend seeing Chicago. If you love architecture or history, she suggests taking the Chicago Architecture Foundation Riverboat Tour. Hilary, who loves the tour enough to have taken it three times, says it's perfect if your free time is limited because the tour only lasts about 90 minutes