Chicago has always been known for its vibrant and diverse nightlife scene. From the Prohibition era speakeasies to the modern-day rooftop lounges, the Windy City has a plethora of hidden gems that cater to every taste and preference. Whether you’re a local or a visitor, exploring these hidden gems will undoubtedly give you a unique and unforgettable experience.
One of the most intriguing aspects of Chicago’s nightlife is its connection to the Prohibition era. During the 1920s, when the sale and consumption of alcohol were illegal, secret bars known as speakeasies thrived in the city. These hidden establishments offered a safe haven for those seeking a drink and a good time. Today, some of these speakeasies have been revitalized and transformed into modern-day haunts that pay homage to their clandestine past.
One such hidden gem is The Violet Hour, located in the Wicker Park neighborhood. Behind an unmarked door, you’ll find a sophisticated cocktail lounge with an intimate ambiance. The dimly lit space, adorned with plush velvet curtains and antique chandeliers, transports you back in time. The expert mixologists behind the bar create innovative and artfully crafted cocktails that are sure to impress even the most discerning palate.
Another hidden gem with a speakeasy vibe is The Drifter, located in the basement of the Green Door Tavern. This intimate space embraces its historical roots with vintage décor and live jazz performances. The cocktails here are exceptional, with a menu that changes regularly to showcase the creativity and expertise of the bartenders. The Drifter truly captures the essence of the Prohibition era and offers a unique glimpse into Chicago’s past.
Moving away from the speakeasies, Chicago’s nightlife has also evolved to include stunning rooftop lounges that offer breathtaking views of the city skyline. These hidden gems provide the perfect setting for a memorable night out.
One such rooftop lounge is Cindy’s, located on the 13th floor of the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel. With panoramic views of Millennium Park, Lake Michigan, and the iconic Jay Pritzker Pavilion, this hidden gem is a must-visit. The space exudes a relaxed and sophisticated vibe, with a menu featuring creative cocktails and a delightful selection of small plates. Whether you’re looking to enjoy a sunset cocktail or dance the night away under the stars, Cindy’s will undoubtedly leave a lasting impression.
For those seeking a more exclusive experience, LondonHouse Rooftop Bar is the perfect choice. Located on the 22nd floor of the LondonHouse Chicago hotel, this hidden gem offers stunning views of the Chicago River and the city skyline. The luxurious rooftop lounge features a refined ambiance, complete with plush seating and a sleek bar. Sip on handcrafted cocktails while taking in the breathtaking views of the city below – it’s an experience you won’t soon forget.
Whether you’re in the mood for a trip back in time to the Prohibition era or a night of sophistication on a rooftop lounge, Chicago’s nightlife has something for everyone. These hidden gems are just a glimpse into the city’s diverse and dynamic scene. So, next time you find yourself in the Windy City, venture off the beaten path and uncover the hidden gems that make Chicago’s nightlife truly one-of-a-kind.