Enriching Your Life Through Travel

Chicago Tour: The Glorious Gold Coast!

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Chicago Tour: Hilton Palmer House-Lobby

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Chicago Tour featuring the Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous!

When you talk about a Chicago Tour about the rich and famous you must consider where they lived – the famed Gold Coast. Located just north of downtown Chicago, it is nestled against the Lake Michigan shoreline. With streets lined with historic mansions and specialty boutiques, the Gold Coast is an intensely popular area for residents and visitors. And as the name implies, this area is one of the country’s most affluent neighborhoods.

Branching off of The Magnificent Mile is Oak Street, an upscale shopper’s dream. Retail includes internationally recognized stores, swanky boutiques and rare, designer fashions as well as many celebrated restaurants, including Michelin-starred winners and classic Chicago steakhouses.

This Chicago Tour of the Gold Coast will trace its start in the late 1800’s as the Astor Street District. Today’s Gold Coast incorporates this original district and extends beyond it. Its boundaries are now defined as North Avenue and Division Street on the north, Lake Michigan on the east, Chicago Avenue on the south and Clark and Franklin Streets on the west.

The original Astor Street District was named after John Jacob Astor, one of the richest people in the country. Although he did not live in Chicago, he was a respected citizen with several achievements and giving the area his name gave the neighborhood a status of wealth.

It was in 1875, that Lake Shore Drive became a popular spot for leisurely lakefront rides and the Gold Coast area became more frequently visited. In the ensuing two decades, Potter Palmer, the Chicago Archdiocese and James Charnley were among the first to build mansions in the area. Soon they were followed by other wealthy families, bringing up the status of the area and giving it a reputation as a neighborhood of influence and wealth. As the neighborhood became more densely populated, there wasn’t as much space for mansions, so high-rise apartment buildings were built.

Today’s Gold Coast retains all of the prestige and reputation of its past. Its name continues to signal wealth, and its inhabitants are intensely proud of the neighborhood in which they live…you’ll learn much more on this Chicago Tour with our expert guide.

Curious as I am by nature, I wanted to see what one might pay for a property along the Gold Coast today. Below is the listing I found known as MLS #09046272 – a detached single dwelling for a mere $17,000,000! (Just in case you are interested).


1516 Lake Shore Drive – CHICAGO, IL 60610 10 Beds 0.7 Baths – near north side

Embark on a once in a lifetime restoration of a Historic Chicago mansion along the highly sought after Lake Shore Drive. One of the Seven Houses on Lake Shore Drive District! A French Chateau inspired stone main house with four stories and nearly 12,000 sq ft of potential living space as well as a 2,400 square foot two story coach house. The location provides breathtaking, uninterrupted views of Lake Michigan and is just steps away from Lincoln Park as well as a short walk to the heart of Chicago and The Magnificent Mile! Classic details and features are found throughout this magnificent space including beautiful mill work, marble staircases, stained glass windows, stone walls, rich wood paneling and herringbone laid hardwood floors. Take the elevator or ascend the curved marble staircase adorned with stained glass windows and arrive on the second level with 16 ft soaring ceilings, impressive detail, and generous space. Own a part of Chicago history in this remarkable property!

As you visit the “Coast” you will view the timeless elegance and beautifully landscaped properties of these century old mansions. The “Rich and Famous” certainly knew how to build a home and provided a legacy to the city they knew and loved.

Please check out the complete itinerary for this Chicago Tour designed by Interlude Tours, and plan to see Chicago through the eyes of the wealthy.

Chicago Tour: Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous: 2 nights/3 days (click here for details)

Eadie, Interlude Blog Team

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