Travelogue: Chicago with Kids, Part 2

April 2023
Where We Stayed: Homewood Suites by Hilton Chicago Downtown South Loop

Day 2, here we go!

  • We started the day at Stan’s Donuts — a much more delicious choice than the free hotel breakfast!
  • Our first activity of the day was the Sears (ahem, I mean, Willis) Tower Skydeck.  We took the Orange Line from Roosevelt to Quincy and made the short walk to the Sears Tower. We had the first time slot of the day, so it was delightfully un-crowded.
  • The highlight of the Skydeck was walking out onto the Ledge — a glass-bottom observation balcony that extends 4-feet outside the Sears’ 103rd floor. We all loved it and one of the kids even got on the ground and did a push up!
  • From the 103rd floor, we took the elevator back down and into the basement of the building for the Color Factory! The Color Factory is an immersive color experience.  You go from room to room experiencing whimsy, color, and fun stuff.  The kids LOVED it.  The experience ends in a ball pit… so fun!
  • Our time in the Color Factory’s ball pit worked up an appetite so we headed to JoJo’s Shake Bar for lunch.  We took the Brown line from Quincy to Merchandise Mart, then walked to JoJo’s. This place was a big hit with the kids — fun themeing and huge milkshakes… what’s not to like?!
  • From there, we walked to Navy Pier. Mike and the bookends went on the Ferris Wheel but Ev wanted nothing to do with that, so she and I stayed behind. We ended our time at Navy Pier with an archiecture tour by boat on the Chicago River.  My number 1 recommendation for tourists visiting Chicago is to do an archiecture tour via boat. Always fascinating, always different.  The only downfall for us was the weather — cold and windy and misty! Ooof.
  • Dinner was up next!  We walked from Navy Pier to the Sugar Factory. To say I didn’t like the Sugar Factory would be an understatement. Extremely mediocre food at insane prices. And the whole vibe was just not my thing. Or maybe I was exhausted by that point in the day. In any case, 1/10, would not recommend! But the kids liked it so okayyyyy.
  • We took the Red Line from Grand to Roosevelt and called it a night.

Stan’s is always delicious!
103 floors up!
I love how you can see the red flamingo (Calder’s Flamingo)
The gigantic Lite-Brite was my fav!
Design inspired by a champagne bottle — the green and gold.  It’s my favorite Chicago building.