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Do you consider yourself a foodie with more of a refined palette? Then Chicago Gourmet 2012 is the perfect Chicago event for you!

According to its website, “Bon Appétit presents Chicago Gourmet is a celebration of food and wine showcasing more than 100 of Chicago’s finest restaurants and chefs, as well as hundreds of renowned vintners, spirit makers and premium breweries from around the world.”

Hosted in Millennium Park, September 28-30, guests can enjoy two days filled with cooking seminars and demonstrations from internationally renowned chefs, master sommeliers and wine makers; book signings; and best yet—a chance to sample hundreds of delicious gourmet creations, wines and other spirits.

The fun doesn’t end there. Chicago Gourmet will kick off Friday with the Hamburger Hop—a fun (and mouthwatering) showdown where top Chicago chefs battle in a friendly competition to create the city’s best burger. And on Saturday and Sunday, the Grand Cru will offer participating guests exclusive wine tastings of some of the finest wines in the world.

Hungry? We are, too. Reserve your spot and purchase your tickets for Chicago Gourmet 2012 today!

And since we’re only minutes away from Millennium Park, book your stay with Broughton Hotels of Chicago – City Suites Hotel, The Majestic Hotel or The Willows Hotel!


September in Chicago means one thing: Oktoberfest time. These annual celebrations are a pretty big deal with the locals considering Chicago’s rich German heritage. Honestly, could you think of a better way to welcome the fall season than enjoying a beautiful Indian summer day with homemade bratwurst in one hand and a cold beer in the other? Check out just some of these local Oktoberfests and celebrate German heritage—Chicago style:

The Berghoff Oktoberfest
September 12 – 14, 2012
John C. Kluczynski Federal Plaza
At the corner of Adams and Dearborn

The 27th annual Berghoff Oktoberfest is the largest and longest running Oktoberfest in Chicago. The festival will offer traditional German faire (bratwursts and beer, of course), traditional performances by Johnny Wagner Band and nightly performances by other local favorite bands. Take your picture with the official mascot, Herman the German, for a chance to win cool prizes, and watch the official Prince and Princess of Oktoberfest get crowned! With free admission and open to the public daily, there’s something in store for everyone!

Oktoberfest Chicago
September 28 – 30, 2012
St. Alphonsus Church
Lakeview – At the corner of Lincoln, Wellington and Southport

St. Alphonsus’s Oktoberfest ends Chicago’s outdoor festival season with traditional German flair. With $5 admission, locals and visitors alike can experience authentic German food, polka dance lessons, the “oom-pah” of German bands, the music of area headliner bands and tons of activities for kids (“Kinderfest”). Festival go-ers can also experience this Oktoberfest like a true Bavarian—by becoming a Brewmaster! For $100, each Brewmaster will receive a commemorative 2012 Oktoberfest stoneware stein; discount-priced stein refills; two free homemade bratwursts; four weekend passes to the festival; three complimentary beers; and more.

So whether you’re German or not, raise your stein, wear your favorite lederhosen and dance to German and Bavarian music! Celebrate Oktoberfest in Chicago!

And don’t forget to book your stay with Broughton Hotels of Chicago – City Suites Hotel, The Majestic Hotel or The Willows Hotel!


Have television shows like Dancing with the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance turned you into a dance fan? Well, if you are in Chicago, you have a chance to witness amazing choreography live…and for free!

During the week of August 20-25, the Chicago Dancing Festival will return to Millennium Park for its sixth season of dance performances and events. Each showcase will feature the greatest dance companies from Chicago and across the country, in works that range from ballet to hip-hop and everything in between. And on Saturday evening, the grand finale titled Celebration of Dance, will take place under the stars at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion for a breathtaking evening of dance.

According to its website, the Chicago Dancing Festival “was founded by internationally renowned choreographer and Chicago native, Lar Lubovitch, and highly esteemed Chicago dancer, Jay Franke, to produce and promise the finest of dance to Chicago. It was founded to heighten awareness of dance in Chicago, increase accessibility to the art form and provide aspiration for local artists.”

Check out Choose Chicago for the Chicago Dancing Festival’s 2012 schedule and don’t forget to book your stay with Broughton Hotels of ChicagoCity Suites Hotel, The Majestic Hotel or The Willows Hotel – today!


Looking for something fun for the family to do at the end of the summer? Come to the 54th Chicago Air and Water show!  The Air and Water show will be taking place at North Ave. Beach. Chicago’s second most popular festival began in 1959 and has been held every year since.  Approximately two million people attend each year, making it the largest free admission air and water exhibition of its kind in the United States.

ImageThis year the Chicago Air and Water show will take place on August 18 and 19. The 54th show will be headlining the U.S. Navy Blue Angels, the U.S. Army Parachute Team Golden Knights and the U.S. Navy Parachute Team Leap Frogs.

Chicago has plenty of other events taking place nearby North Ave. Beach to keep the crowds busy. As long as the crowds don’t become overwhelming, there are multiple volleyball courts on the beach where family and friends can play. Not interested in being upfront and center to the show? Millennium Park is home to the Crown Fountain, and home to the Pritzker Pavilion, which is showing Dvorak: The Spectre’s Bride. Families can also go biking through Chicago’s famous World Fair, the Midway or go to the Museum of Science and Industry.

Find details about the 2012 Chicago Air and Water Show at and book your stay with Broughton Hotels of Chicago today!

lollapalooza: an extraordinary or unusual thing, person or event; an exceptional example or instance

Over the last 20 years, Lollapalooza has come a long way, but one thing stays constant: the festival is for the fans.

This weekend (August 3-August 5), Chicago will play stage to music legends from around the globe. What once started as a traveling punk-rock road show (put together in 1991 by Jane’s Addiction frontman, Perry Farrell), Lollapalooza, or Lolla, has made its home on the 115 acres of open green space in Chicago’s Grant Park and has evolved into a larger-than-life music festival.

Today, thousands of fans from around the world come to partake in this three-day festival of endless performances. Lolla’s multiple stages feature 130+ artists in a variety of genres from hip-hop, electronica, reggae, indie, rock, modern roots and more! This year’s headliners include: the Red Hot Chili Peppers; Jack White; The Shins; The Weeknd; Bloc Party; and more.

Yes, Lolla is primarily a music festival, but there is plenty more to do in between sets. Your pass will get you into a host of entertainment venues in Grant Park: meet your favorite band at the f.y.e. Autograph Tent; play the latest video games at the Playstation Loft; munch on some Chicago favorites, like Franks ‘N’ Dawgs, Wow Bao and Goose Island Brewpub, at Chow Town; and much more.

Check out information on Lollapalooza 2012, and book a room with Broughton Hotels of ChicagoCity Suites Hotel, The Majestic Hotel or The Willows Hotel – today!

Chicago doesn’t have shortage on its summer street festivals, but the Taste of Lincoln Avenue (July 28-29) is one you do not want to miss.

This event takes place in the heart of the Lincoln Park neighborhood—home to many of Chicago’s oldest and most favored restaurants.

What once began as a small neighborhood fund raiser, the Taste of Lincoln Avenue is celebrating its 29th year and is one of the largest neighborhood festivals in the city. Six city blocks are covered with 300 food vendors, arts & crafts vendors, kids activities and 40-plus music acts that showcase a wide spectrum of genres including pop/rock, local tribute bands, down home blues, country and more!

The Taste of Lincoln Avenue is family fun for all. When your start to feel full, take a short break from the food and check out the festival’s other features:

– Kids’ Carnival: It’s very popular and free! From noon-6:00 p.m. each day, kids can enjoy kid-friendly entertainment acts, inflatables, art & craft activities, a petting zoo, pony rides and more!
– Lill Street Craft Fair: Taking place on, where else, Lill Street, this stand-alone craft fair showcases handmade and DIY art from noon to dusk each day.

And since all of our hotels in the neighborhood, or really close by, book a room with Broughton Hotels of ChicagoCity Suites Hotel, The Majestic Hotel or The Willows Hotel – today!

Calling all foodies! Your favorite Chicago summer event is here again—the annual Taste of Chicago!

Every summer since 1980, Chicago’s beautiful Grant Park has been host to the world’s largest outdoor food festival, with upwards of 3 million visitors attending the event every year!

From July 11-15, visitors and locals alike can choose from a wide variety of the Windy City’s most popular cuisines, featuring 70-plus local restaurants and more than 300 menu items. Each vendor will be serving six items, two of which are special “Taste of” sample-size portions, so there will be something to please everyone—even the pickiest eater.

Need to take a breather in between sampling dishes? There will be live music (featuring headliners: Jennifer Hudson, Death Cab for Cutie, Roshon Fegan, Chaka Khan and Dierks Bentley), and fun family activities, too!

While admission is free, food and drinks are purchased through tickets sold at the Taste of Chicago (strips of 12 for $8).

This is an event not to miss! With tons of food and great music in the country’s most beautiful city, how could you not have a great time?

There are many ways to enjoy a concert in the city, but listening to the beautiful sounds of classical music and sitting under the stars and Chicago skyline at The Grant Park Music Festival makes your summer concert experience a unique and unforgettable one.

In its 78th season, The Grant Park Music Festival is the nation’s only free outdoor classical music series. Each summer, the Festival provides beautiful classical tunes to all of Chicago in the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park.

And this weekend, June 29 and 30, The Grant Park Chorus will be celebrating its 50th anniversary with a special performance of Stravinsky’s Les Noces, Whitacre’s Cloudburst, Tormis’ Raua Needmine and Orff’s Carmina Burana. Conductors Carlos Kalmar and Christopher Bell will share the podium for an unforgettable program.

You can sit in the comfortable Seating Bowl or lounge on the gorgeous Great Lawn—with the gorgeous Chicago skyline backdrop and the Jay Pritzker Pavilion’s supreme acoustic system, every spot in Millennium Park makes “the best seat in the house.”

Find out more information on the Golden Anniversary Choral Spectacular today.

Come celebrate Chicago’s largest fiesta with tons food and fun at the Cinco De Mayo Parade on Sunday, May 6! Kicking off at noon, guests can enjoy two fun-filled hours of marching bands, Chicago-area organizations, politicians and Mexican dancers.

Taking place in the heart of the city’s Pilsen neighborhood, the parade is the main attraction of a three-day celebration that kicks off May 4, with more than 110,000 people in attendance every year. The festivities will continue in Douglas Park with live music, food vendors, dancing, carnival rides and games.

The Cinco De Mayo Parade is held every year to commemorate the victory the Mexican forces had over invading the French army in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.

Multicultural and family-friendly, the three-day Cinco De Mayo celebration in Chicago is guaranteed fun for all! For more information on parking and places to eat, check out CBS Chicago.

It’s the sweetest season of the year in Chicago! No, it doesn’t involve trick-or-treating or scavenging for candy-filled eggs—it’s maple-tapping time! The annual celebration of nature’s sweetest gift occurs all over the Chicagoland area; and this weekend, March 24-25, the Chicago Park District will host the 2012 Maple Syrup Festival!

Visitors can enjoy music and storytelling, take a stroll through the sugar bush, watch collected sap boil down into syrup, sample fresh maple syrup right off the fire and even try tapping a tree themselves! Approximately 50 trees in Chicago’s nature preserve will be tapped for sap collection. After all, it does take 40 gallons of sap to produce only one gallon of maple syrup!

Head to the North Park Village Nature Center this weekend and take part in one of Chicago’s sweetest traditions! It’s fun for all ages!

Check out more on the Maple Syrup Festival today!