Chicago Trip 2019

My view arriving in the windy city

Today’s blog is going to recap my latest travel. On Boxing Day 2018, Porter Airlines offered a great promotion – 30% off select flights. One of the offerings that caught my attention was the city of Chicago.  If you know me, I love to pull the trigger on a great deal.  So last weekend I flew out to the windy city and here’s a recap of what I did.

Arriving in the Chi

I arrived at Chicago Midway Airport around 11am local time. The first thing I thought upon my arrival was how I would get into the city. Luckily, I checked my Lyft app and there was a promotion offer for 50% off six rides!  I couldn’t believe it, what perfect timing.  My 40-minute Lyft ride into downtown Chicago was only $6 USD!

Once I checked into my hotel at the Hampton Inn Chicago Downtown/Magnificent Mile, I picked up my online shopping mail that I sent to my address. This is a great way to save money if you don’t want to get hit with pricey Canadian shipping and duties fees. Always mail it to an American address if you can, it’s cheaper in the long run.

Cloud Gate aka The Bean
Cloud Gate aka The Bean

The Bean / Buckingham Fountain

After settling in at my hotel, one of the first destinations that I wanted to check out was one of the city’s top tourist attractions – The Bean. It is a stainless-steel structure that debuted in 2006 and its actual named is called Cloud Gate. But “The Bean” has a nice ring to it as well lol.

When I arrived there, there were hundreds of people taking selfies and group pics. It turns out that it is also a cool visual to take your wedding day photos there too. I saw some great bride and groom shots take place. This was nothing short of genius and definitely a memory to remember.

Buckingham Fountain
Buckingham Fountain

Up next was the iconic – Buckingham Fountain, the centre piece of Grant Park. I really enjoyed taking in this spot. This historic fountain has been a mainstay for over 90+ years. I was able to capture some beautiful shots. Truthfully, I only know about this water fountain because it was used in the intro for the TV show Married…With Children 😂.

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Dear Summer ’18 Part 2

Old Port Crew
Old Port Crew

The second half of my summer adventures picked up pretty quickly from the previous blog post.   Now in the month of August, I continued to travel and took a few more trips to some familiar places.

Montreal – August 10-12

One of my all time favourite cities to visit is Montreal, Quebec.  It is roughly a six hour drive and me and my friends make the trek for a number of reasons.  Primarily we love to go for the food, the fashion and all the cultural elements that make the 514 unique.   It was my 11th time visiting and it never disappoints.

Basilique Notre-Dame
Basilique Notre-Dame

We rented this Airbnb loft that could sleep our crew of 11 in Old Port.   It was a very nice place, formerly situated in a business building with very modern touches inside the unit.  What was pretty cool about the location was that it was within walking distance of the historic Notre-Dame Basilica.  This cathedral has been around since the 17th century!  I was able to wake up early on the Sunday morning and attend 8 am mass.

The architecture inside is immaculate, so well crafted and visually astonishing.  Heck, I only knew the place because Celine Dion famously wed there in 1994 lol.  It was my first time going there and even if you are not roman catholic, I recommend you stop by and explore this magnificent church.

Le Bremner Chef Sample Dinner
One of the main dishes served at the Le Bremner chef sample dinner, mango with steak

I also had a chance to take in the fine dining that Old Port has to offer.   The first night we dined at the Vieux-Port Steakhouse and surprisingly to my friends, I elected not to order a steak (you’ll find out why later in the blog post).  Instead I had lobster linguine and it was alright, nothing special but nothing bad either.

The next night, four of us attended a chef sampler dinner at Le Bremner, operated by chef, TV personality and restaurateur Chuck Hughes.  It was my first time experiencing a chef sampler dinner and it was nothing short of amazing.   All of the food presented to our table was fresh with the menu being unique for that particular day.

The size portions were not grand, but there was more than enough food to feed our group.   After attending this dinner, you learn to have a greater appreciation for culinary chefs and the reasons why they use certain spices and ingredients in their cooking.  You can literally taste it in your mouth!  Click here to view my Montreal gallery.

MTL Boyz
MTL Boyz

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