Been there, done that: Chicago

Staff writer Gloria Goodale took in the city's art, skyscrapers, and steak.

Where did you go?

Chicago, for an extended-family gathering to honor my mother.

Where did you stay?

At The Drake, the grande dame of old Chicago pomp, remodeled in the 1990s, now restored to evoke an era of slower elegance.

What did you do?

Took a 90-minute architectural boat tour through the Chicago rivers, which offers spectacular perspectives on the city's impressive array of towers – Sears, Lake Point, Tribune, etc. – and a lesson in the past 150 years or so of American architecture. We then took in the touring blockbuster exhibit at the Chicago Art Institute, "Cezanne to Picasso: Ambroise Vollard, Patron of the Avant-Garde." This look at an important collector of young artists during a formative period in modern art provides a great overview of the important movements in art around the turn of the last century, from the brilliant colors of the Fauvists to the deconstructions of Cubism and the elegance of Impressionism. Also, slipped out of the hotel across Lake Shore Drive for an early morning walk on the Lake Michigan beach.

Where did you eat?

Steaks at the Drake Bros. Steak House that were so massive we all had to split them and excellent French cuisine (personal dessert soufflés to die for!) at The Ambria, one of the city's top restaurants.

Where have you been? Write us at Weekend.

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