A Day (and Night) out in Lincoln Park - Iris Style!
The wait is almost over to experience the new Iris boutique in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood! Iris can’t be more elated to be in such a quaint yet exciting neighborhood, with such a rich place in Chicago’s history, and array of places to eat, drink, shop, and experience. The new Iris boutique is created after owner Audrey Olenick’s vision – vintage with a modern flavor, the Lincoln Park Iris is quaint and bubbling with personality, classy while being inviting enough to spend an entire afternoon taking in the atmosphere and shopping the Iris Collection! We would like to give you some ideas on ways to make an entire day (to evening) of it when you come and visit our new boutique – read on for some Iris favorites in Lincoln Park on where to go, whether it’s for a date, with friends, family, or just you treating yourself!
Fall in Chicago is one of our absolute FAVORITES – it is still warm enough out to enjoy the outdoors, but not so hot that our makeup gets melted off 😊 The lakefront is one of Chicago’s finest attributes, and the recent addition of the Shore Club at North Avenue Beach (1603 N Lake Shore Drive) makes it even better! This beach club offers delicious food, drinks, and a view of the beach down to the Gold Coast. We recommend reserving a cabana at the Oasis for a day date, or a day out with friends.
Another lakefront favorite activity is the Diversey Driving Range and Mini Golf (141 W Diversey Parkway), for those looking to get sporty! The driving range is an excellent place to practice your swing, and the full Diversey course is a well-kept and affordable golf experience within the city limits. For those looking for some lower-key golfing fun, the mini golf course is a great time, with 18 holes decorated with tiny waterfalls and footbridges - a lovely little golf enclave within the heart of Lincoln Park.
Particularly for those looking to take the kiddos for a day out, we recommend both the Lincoln Park Zoo (2001 N Clark Street), and the Judy Istock Butterfly Haven at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum (2430 N Cannon Drive). The Lincoln Park Zoo is possibly the best free activity in the city – with so many animals from polar bears to penguins to gorillas to zebras – kids especially LOVE this zoo! (Oh yes, there’s a mini train and vintage carousel as well!) You can pack a picnic lunch and make a day of it – it is big enough to spend the entire day taking in the sights and wildlife – with enough time to pop in to Iris afterwards 😊
The Judy Istock Butterfly Haven is perfect for those looking for an attraction that is less of a time commitment than the zoo - but is a super cool experience, where you get to see (and touch!) many exotic butterflies up close in one room. The space is really soothing and has little feeding stations where the butterflies land to eat and drink, along with a tranquil waterfall (with a turtle). Audrey’s nephew Ollie had a blast here! (Pictured above. Not pictured: Ollie dropping his stuffed dog on the turtle...oops.)
If shopping is the theme of the day, we have a couple of recommendations on either end of the budget spectrum if you are seeking apparel for Iris to accessorize: the Urban Outfitters Outlet is right down the street from us, and the deals there are unreal. The only Urban Outfitters surplus store in the country, this is where you can find all the amazing fashion and kitchy goods that Urban Outfitters is known for – at prices that are both too good and true! (All the more budget for accessories, right?)
For those looking for a higher couture experience, we recommend Calvin Tran at 2154 N Halsted Street. This break out fashion star was on Bravo’s Ultimate Collection – and he has brought his memorable personality and cutting-edge architectural silhouettes to Lincoln Park. Tran boasts loyal fans like Drew Barrymore, Aisha Tyler, Gina Gershon, Brooke Shields, Molly Ringwald, Michelle Williams, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Iman – see why at Tran’s Lincoln Park posh boutique! (Pictured above: Iris patron and friend Jenaeth modeling her new Calvin Tran look at his boutique.)
Chicago has countless unbelievably delicious signature food options, so we will pick just a few near Iris – otherwise we could go on forever! Chicago’s Pizza and Oven Grinder Company at 2121 N Clark Street has been a neighborhood staple since 1972. This historic building overlooked the infamous St Valentine’s Day Massacre (our block is said to have been the site of this significant event in Chicago gangster history), and is now home to CPOG - where people have lined up for decades to taste their delicious Pizza Pot Pies (pictured above) and famous oven grinder sandwiches. A must-visit, go put your name in, and stroll on over to Iris down the street while you wait!
Geja’s at 340 W Armitage Avenue has been serving up “Chicago’s Most Romantic Fondue” since 1965 – though fondue has come and gone as a culinary fad, Geja’s has never gone out of style. This is a Lincoln Park must for a date night - how can you go wrong with romantic atmosphere, melted cheese and chocolate, and wine? Buy your sweetheart some Iris jewels + Geja’s after = perfect date!
Last but not least, we recommend our neighbors Vanille Patisserie at 2108 N Clark Street, if you have room for dessert – this French bakery makes exquisite cakes and pastries, and has a selection of macaroons that is unmatched!
We hope our quick guide will have you looking forward as much as we are to officially opening at 2104 N Clark Street in the next few weeks – we can’t wait to become part of this fabulous neighborhood, and to see you there! We are super excited to host plenty of shopping and gallery events at this space – so get ready for some Lincoln Park shopping and soirees to usher in Fall 2019!
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