Chicago's Union Station has recently renovated a gem of a space, The Burlington Room, formerly a lounge for women travelers in the heyday of train travel. This space will replace the Great Hall as an event facility, and I have no doubt that it will be incredibly popular. The beautiful architectural work was done by Goettsch Partners, as well as some very incredible restoration work from EverGreene Architectural Arts. Definitely check out the full coverage on Curbed Chicago to see the images of the space before the renovation as well!
Perched on the 20th floor of the Conrad Chicago, Baptiste & Bottle has a view of River North that is hard to be matched. I had the opportunity to photograph the space recently for Eater Chicago, and was really amazed at how well the design came together. We also got the chance to preview the menu over the weekend and were blown away by the food from Chef James Lintelmann. There may be a lot of tourist traps in the area, but this definitely doesn't feel like one of them. Excited to go back and get another serving of the 48-hour short ribs :-)
As a native of Grand Rapids, I had to jump on the opportunity to photograph Hopcat's newest location in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood. The new Clark St. space is practically two full restaurant spaces joined together. On top of that, there will be over 130 beers on offer. I have a feeling that this will become a staple much like it is in my hometown. Be sure to check out the full coverage over at Eater Chicago.
In celebration of it's 10th birthday, Rockit Bar & Grill spent five months redesigning their entire River North space. The interior designer, Kara Mann, successfully married River North sophistication with a rock-and-roll edge. The two styles join together seamlessly with upscale fixtures and materials in a dark space. Street art and floral upholstery, brick walls and brass taps, raw steel and marble - proving the phrase 'opposites attract' to be entirely true. Read more about the grand re-opening here.
I recently shot the sixth annual Minds Matter Benefit Gala for CS Magazine at the beautiful Grand Ballroom of the Hilton Downtown Chicago Hotel. Just across the street from 2015 NFL Draft's 'Draft Town', the energy was high that night. The Minds Matter Gala is hosted by The Northwestern Brain Tumor Institute to raise awareness and funding towards the fight against brain and spinal tumors. Take a look at some decor shots from the night below.
Hot on the heels of Virgin Hotel's Chicago opening, the rooftop has been revealed to the public adding to the list of great cocktails to enjoy whilst sitting amongst the Chicago skyline. We were very excited to work with Virgin Hotels again on this big project that has elevated their popularity even more!
On the border of Ukrainian Village and Humboldt Park, Boeufhaus has claimed a space to call home. The German influenced steak-house offers not only a great food and drink menu but a charming atmosphere, too. The space is filled with vintage pieces including the old icebox that was found on the property and originally used by a German butcher who used to occupy the same space. This stretch of Western Ave. is definitely growing quickly and is looking like a great spot to spend the evening. Check out the Eater Chicago article here.
First off, after having met a number of people within the company, I can confidently say that none of the Cards Against Humanity employees are horrible. Actually, everything about my visit to their headquarters was awesome! With a plethora of common spaces, the office had a strongly collaborative vibe. Really, what's more collaborative than a Moroccan hookah room? I'm guessing that's where some of the best cards have been thought up...
Chicago has graduated from plastic wrapped microwavable noodles to a more authentic and gourmet dish, sparking the beginning of the Ramen Renaissance. I was sent out by Eater Chicago to shoot the brand new Ramen Takeya in Fulton Market brought to us by the owners of Logan Sqaure's popular Wasabi. The decor was top notch and immediately transports you to a small steamy alley somewhere in Japan complete with neon lighting (Pac Man spotting!) and custom made chochin (paper lanterns). Plus, I was really excited to try out a new lighting technique - I really love the outcome and would love to know what you guys think! Check it out below...
One of the most striking things about touring this home was realizing that it was a bit like taking a portrait of its owners. The Bridgeport couple dreamed up every last detail of their ideal home and made it into a reality. There was no shortage of personality in each room, as the space serves as a canvas for their personal taste. The salvaged materials and simple but refined finishes matched the character of the neighborhood perfectly. Really glad to have gotten the opportunity to photograph this home!
FLATS Micro apartments appeal to individuals who thrive in small spaces just like Richard Smith does, the renter of the space I shot for Curbed Chicago. I have to say, I was impressed with how neat and tidy everything was and how I felt like I should go home and purge some of my old stuff. After chatting with him a bit, he told me how much he loves his apartment and the challenge of only keeping his most essential and prized possessions. Take a look below and decide if you could make the micro-move, too.
Occupying 40,000 square feet in the Woodfield Mall out in Schaumburg is the first Level 257: A Pac Man world complete with a restaurant and gaming galore. The Woodfield location is the first of what could be many more similar ventures by Namco Entertainment. It was seriously so much fun shooting this space for Eater Chicago. I got to speak with some of the essential players who had a hand in making this Pac Man world a reality and was clued in on the story behind the name. In the original game of Pac Man, you reach a kill-screen at level 256 (I wonder how many people have actually reached this...) Level 257 is Pac Man's next step! The space encourages patrons to be social with one another while playing games, so adults have the chance to go back and relive a piece of their childhood. Looking forward to an evening of "1 Up's" and "Filet Mig-Nom".
It's not often you get to walk into a strangers home and photograph their space. But now that Curbed Chicago has started a new series on the blog featuring their readers homes in Chicago, I have had the chance to meet some great new people and take a tour of their homes. Last week I traveled to Uptown and met Jarod, the homeowner of this great condo. He shared stories of his travels and how he came about collecting so many prints and pieces of art. And of course I have to give many thanks to my personal tour guide (the dog) who did a great job showcasing her favorite places to lounge.
If you enojoyed this real-life home tour, take a look at the rest the shoots I have done for Curbed Chicago's House Calls over on their site!
From the creator of the gastropub The Portage comes Community Tavern, a 'New-American' boutique steakhouse with a menu inspired by French cuisine. Driving up to shoot this new restaurant, I found myself thinking how little I have explored Portage Park. I was pleasantly surprised to find a great stretch of shops along Milwaukee Ave. that made me look forward to getting the chance to spend more time in the area. Just down the street from the Portage Theater, Community Tavern has a luxurious vintage flare that accurately reflects the history of the neighborhood. Really looking forward to seeing the coming success of this restaurant!
From cell phones to airlines, Virgin has taken the market by storm. Sir Richard Branson's next move starts right here in Chicago with the opening of the first Virgin Hotel. In the heart of The Loop, Virgin has transformed the ornate Dearborn Bank building into a mecca for today's business travelers. With lots of amenities, including a rooftop bar and a full restaurant, they promise a truly customizable experience for their guests. With Virgin Hotel Nashville and Virgin Hotel New York in the works, it will be really exciting to see how Chicago grows as the basis for this new brand.
Going out for cocktails in the West Loop is a chore. A chore, because of the countless fantastic bars and restaurants to choose from. Fulton Market Street, already populated with some of Chicago's most popular bars and restaurants, has a new neighbor with a lot to show. The Betty (839 W. Fulton Market) is a vintage inspired cocktail bar by Footman Hospitality complete with a taxidermy peacock and an antique player piano. I had a great time shooting this space and all of the little details that make up the warm inviting atmosphere, curated and designed by Studio K. Looking forward to going in and trying the build-your-own gin and tonic!
Check out The Betty's sister bar, Bangers & Lace - Evanston, which we had the pleasure of shooting a few weeks ago just before it's opening.
Where can you find delicate and ornate lace adorning the windows of a bar rated year-after-year as one of the Top 100 Beer Bars in America? Only in Wicker Park one might have said, but thanks to Bangers & Lace's northern expansion, this unique experience can now be had in Evanston as well. The new location may be significantly bigger, but Footman Hospitality has done a wonderful job filling it with elements that immerse you in a truly cozy and lodge-like atmosphere. I had the opportunity to spend some time photographing the new space just before the New Year, and even though I froze my butt off shooting the exterior, the icy-blue morning made for the most amazing light pouring in through the front facade. Thanks again to Darcy at The Door for giving me the tour!
Be sure to check out all the coverage at Eater Chicago.
Oak + Char may be simply named, but that is where the simplicity stops. I had the opportunity to tour and photograph the space for Eater Chicago prior to its opening, and whether you're rating the restaurant on its design/atmosphere or by the culinary output and experience of its staff, its most definitely a place to experience. I appreciated the detailed work that went into the construction, and the great organizational apparatus behind the restaurant in MBL Hospitality and Grapevine PR. Be sure to check out the entire article at Eater Chicago!
"Community Through Food". This is the mantra of The Kitchen, a Boulder-based restaurant group and charity focusing on community wellness through food. Just a few steps into The Kitchen's first midwest location in the historic Ried Murdoch building on the banks of the Chicago River, you can feel the mission-focused atmosphere. It certainly wouldn't be fair to reduce this feeling simply to strong branding, its much more a sense of purpose. Purpose in the creation of over 100 community learning gardens at schools across Chicago, and educational programs to encourage healthy eating and home cooking. I'm looking forward to trying some of the great dishes crafted by former Telegraph chef Johnny Anderes, especially their Monday night family-style community dinner benefitting The Kitchen Community. Be sure to check out all of Eater Chicago's coverage of The Kitchen Chicago here!
Catalyst; a person or thing that precipitates an event. While Marquette Companies' new development in the West Loop may not have precipitated the West Loop boom, it is most definitely entering the luxury apartment market at the right time. The 19-story tower designed by Brininstool + Lynch sports 223 units, and stands out in my mind for its clean furnishings and consistent design concept. I had a chance to take a tour last week and make some images for Curbed Chicago, be sure to check out their great coverage!