Road Trip to Chicago’s Gritty, Colorful Past
Nov20

Road Trip to Chicago’s Gritty, Colorful Past

It’s hard to escape Chicago.  It doesn’t matter where you go on this big blue marble of ours, Chicago seems to follow us around.  Museums in Seattle feature items salvaged from demolished Chicago buildings.  Las Vegas has dozens of Chicago eateries, including Al’s Beef, Garrett’s Popcorn, and a second Giordano’s location under construction.  Asia is dusted with Dan Ryan’s Chicago Grills.  Tokyo has...

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CBRE Urban Photography Contest Now On
Jun02

CBRE Urban Photography Contest Now On

There are almost as many photographers in Chicago as there are sights to photograph.  So if you’re a shutterbug at heart, here’s a chance to prove your stuff. Global real estate giant CBRE is now accepting entries for this year’s urban photography contest. Of course, choosing a favorite photograph is like choosing a favorite child.  The good news is that you can enter up to 24 different photos. Chicago was not...

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Eight Weird And Wacky Facts About The Newberry Library
Feb16

Eight Weird And Wacky Facts About The Newberry Library

Books often hold mysteries and strange facts, but the library buildings holding them are generally less interesting. Not so with Chicago’s stately Newberry Library at 60 West Walton Street. The Newberry Library has some very interesting architectural elements, and wealthy benefactor Walter Newberry—who gave the library its name—well, let’s just say that his life ended in a manner worthy of a book. I learned these true tales of the...

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Frozen Chicago From Above
Jan25

Frozen Chicago From Above

Thanks to Spy Tim for dropping a link in our Tip Line to this video by Soaring Badger Productions taken by one of those toy quadcopters.  It’s a tour of the downtown Chicago shoreline on a frosty frosty Chicago day. Quadcopters were all the rage this past Christmas, and high quality videos are starting to flood the video sharing sites.  Expect to see a lot more of these sort of videos. It’s a nice video, with lots of...

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Best Places to View the Chicago Cityscape
Oct31

Best Places to View the Chicago Cityscape

Home to the first skyscraper, Chicago, Illinois, set a precedent of what can be accomplished with imagination, perseverance, and a little bit of iron and steel. Architectural visionaries and engineering geniuses pioneered the way, creating the blueprints of what is now Chicago’s remarkable cityscape. Here at Expedia Viewfinder, examining and learning about architecture is one of our favorite ways to explore any location. Because its...

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Your OHC Photos: Lombard Spy Matt
Oct21

Your OHC Photos: Lombard Spy Matt

Lombard Spy Matt was in attendance at Open House Chicago this past weekend.  He’s also among the shutterbugs who sent in their photographs from the Chicago Architecture Foundation event for us to share with you. Enjoy the show below.  And if you have any pictures to share, e-mail them to...

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Your OHCPhotos: Logan Square Spy Daniel
Oct21

Your OHCPhotos: Logan Square Spy Daniel

Logan Square Spy Daniel was first out of the box to share his Open House Chicago photographs with us. It’ll be a few weeks before all those sign-in sheets are tallied and the Chicago Architecture Foundation can figure out how many people attended this year’s event.  Last year was 55,000.  This year’s goal was 60,000. Check out Daniel’s photos below.  And if you have any pictures to share, e-mail them to...

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Slice of Life: Bright Lights, Big City
Oct20

Slice of Life: Bright Lights, Big City

As much as we dread Chicago winters, they make for spectacular nighttime skyline shots. What? An architect in Houston once explained to me that skyscrapers in Chicago tend to be brighter than those in southern, warmer cities because those buildings use glass that is designed to aggressively keep the sun and heat of the day out.  The result is dimmer office building windows at night, and less pretty nighttime skyline photos. This...

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Slice of Life: Ping Tom Boardwalk
Oct13

Slice of Life: Ping Tom Boardwalk

One of Chicago’s fastest growing neighborhoods is also one of its oldest.  When Chinatown was relocated from The Loop in the last century, it landed in a hardscrabble, industrial corner of the city, amid rail yards, factories, and a shipping channel. Today, Chinatown is surging with new life as more and more families move ino the area from smaller ethnic enclaves in the suburbs and other cities.  If you’ve wandered the...

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Slice of Life: The Other North Shore
Oct10

Slice of Life: The Other North Shore

Some of the best views in Chicago are from the John Hancock Center (875 North Michigan Avenue).  And some of the most coveted views from that building are of Chicago’s north shore. Before you reach the “North Shore” communities like Wilmette and HighParkLakeOakForest, there is Chicago’s own north shore, a lovely string of beaches and parks lined with more residential high rises than most cities have in their...

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