• Spoken with Style

24 hours in Chicago

Chicago is our city, the place where my husband and I met and where four years ago I touched down, after my flight from London, and was captivated by the architecture, friendliness and ambiance.

My husband and I have moved many times since he was at University in Chicago and we have more packing and unpacking to go, although Chicago is definitely the city where we feel most at home, it's a pretty perfect city. We wish we could have stayed but alas, Chi can't compete with NYC in fashion credentials.

We are planning another trip in a few weeks and I thought I would share how we spend a day in this special place. Along the years we have discovered our go-to restaurants, favorite hotels and shops and whether your are a native Chicagoan, UK newcomers or visiting from another State, I think it's always useful to hear recommendations, especially those which are not sponsored or endorsed! So here's our 24 hours in Chicago...

9:00 am:

My husband introduced me to Do-Rite Donuts and I was initially skeptical when he said he would take me to his favorite breakfast place. I walked in and thought I would be having Donuts, I went and secured a seat, as this place gets busy, and they only have bench seating.

I was waiting to see what Donut he had ordered me when he mentioned he had ordered a surprise. Moments later the server handed me something wrapped in silver paper. My husband ordered an egg-white, bacon, cheddar cheese and tomato breakfast sandwich inside a fluffy soft brioche bun. I was extremely surprised that this small Donut place offered really delicious and filling breakfast options. Obviously we couldn't leave without sharing a Valrhona Chocolate Glazed Donut and yes, you guessed it. Absolute perfection! For us, it's a ritual, our day starts at Do-Rite.

Do-Rite Donuts

Our favorite location: 233 E Erie St, Chicago, IL 60611


10:00 am:

One of my all time favorites is Lincoln Park Zoo. It's is a 35-acre zoo located in Lincoln Park. The zoo was founded in 1868, making it among the oldest zoos in North America. It's also one of a few free-admission zoos in the US.

We went to the Zoo on the day we got engaged, it was definitely one of the best days of my life, (the day we legally married being first). We aim to leave ourselves three hours to spend there, it's great if you go when it first opens at 10 am. It's also a beautifully landscaped zoo, lots to do for all of the family and I would even spend a few hours by myself.

Lincoln Park Zoo

2001 N Clark St

Chicago, IL 60614, USA

Lincoln Park Zoo Chicago


1.30 pm:

For lunch on the go we head back Downtown to Michigan Avenue, to the The Shops at North Bridge (or locally known as the Nordstrom Mall) and we head to the Food Court upstairs. We love Mezza Grill. Mezza has tasty comfort food which is healthier than some of the other options in the mall. You can choose between a plate which is served with brown or basmati rice or opt for the Pita option. My regular choice is the Chicken Shwarma plate and for what the US consider "mall food" it's delicious, affordable and the portion size is perfect. We tend to eat inside but you can get the food to-go and stroll to the river for a more scenic view.

Mezza Grill

Mezza Grill Chicago


2.15 pm:

A quick stop for a draft latte at La Colombe. As with most things in our lives, we discovered La Colombe through a collaboration with Barney's. We exclusively bought the Barney's x La Colombe coffee blend for three years. Suddenly one day we hear that La Colombe have five cafe's in Chicago. We don't know how we missed it for so long, although now it's not only on our radar, but also our family and friends.

A quick tip, if you are unable to stop in regularly, you can always buy their brilliant frothy latte in a can. Available at Whole Foods and local grocery stores.

La Colombe

4 E Elm Street, Chicago, IL 60611