Get Gay Travel

Chicago

Chicago at a Glance

Ranking as the nation’s 3rd largest city, Chicago has a history of sibling-city rivalry with LA and NYC, dating back to competing as host for the 1893 World’s Fair (which it won I might add!). Since then, it has matured past merely being the epicenter for Midwestern high society and now offers a culinary and cultural sophistication that can rival any global destination.

Chicago showcases some of America’s most daring and beautiful new architecture, all set against miles of the glittering waterfront backdrop of Lake Michigan. This diverse backdrop houses countless annual events like LGBT Film Festivals, International Male Leather, and the renowned Northalsted Market Days – the Midwest’s largest two day street-fair jam-packed with food, fun and ogling … and sometimes checking out the stuff for sale. On year-round display are museums full of “world’s only” exhibits like “Sue” (the world’s largest and most complete T. Rex) at The Field Museum and The Art Institute’s Impressionist collection – the world’s largest outside the Louvre in Paris.

Stroll and shop on the Magnificent Mile (read “label whore heaven”) for something fabulous to wear out in this “Foodie Mecca.” Chicago has a skyrocketing and bar-setting culinary reputation catering everything from exquisite romantic dining to hole-in-the-wall home cookin’. Follow that mind-blowing main course with a show. Chicago theatre is second only to NYC, featuring Broadway touring productions, Tony-Award winning regional theatre, and and the famous Second City Improv, launching ground for comic giants like Tina Fey and Steve Carrell.

Always ahead of the game, Illinois was the first state to revoke anti-sodomy laws and house one of the nation’s first recognized gayborhood: Boystown in Lakeview (note how those two go together). With Lakeview and Andersonville (aka Girls-Town) there’s nightly entertainment for every taste. The incredible selection includes chic and stylized speakeasies, hip and happening multi-level video bars, chill and calm neighborhood watering holes and sports bars, and even loud and loose mega-clubs like Circuit (two points if you can guess the type of clientele there!)

With so much for the gay resident and traveler alike, you’re bound to find your “Homo Happy Place” somewhere within the Windy City … and if you’re feeling up to the challenge, you might just find it twice.

Where to Stay


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

The recently renovated Amalfi Hotel Chicago – located in Chicago s exciting River North District – features a complimentary executive breakfast served
more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Hello Georgeous. You belong at the Ave. Located steps from the Magnificent Mile this new chic smoke free hotel features sophisticated contemporary… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Welcome to the Best Western Hawthorne Terrace an intimate and charming hotel nestled in the bustling Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago. We are just steps… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Delight in a revitalized downtown Chicago hotel fresh from a multi-million dollar transformation boasting contemporary surroundings and sophisticated… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Overlooking Grant Park on Michigan Avenue Chicago’s Essex Inn is an intimate 254-room full service hotel providing excellent views of the city Grant… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

The historic City Suites Hotel offers the upscale traveler an unmatched degree of service with upgraded premier amenities to complement its beautiful Art… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Our intimate boutique hotel is located in the heart of downtown Chicago steps away from shopping on Michigan Ave Navy Pier McCormick Place Merchandise… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Experience the grandeur of the Windy City by staying at Courtyard Magnificent Mile Hotel in Downtown Chicago. Enjoy full service amenities with the value… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

The sleek exterior facade designed by Chicagos Eckenhoff Saunders Architects will feature a stunning 28 foot high clear glass curtain wall offering passersby… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

The newly renovated Embassy Suites Chicago Downtown hotel is only three blocks from Michigan Avenue*s Magnificent Mile and walking distance from the American… more


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

Always a landmark of refined comfort with unrivaled Lake Michigan and city views steps from chic North Michigan Avenue shops and minutes from Chicago’s… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

The Homewood Suites by Hilton Chicago Downtown is located 15 miles from the Chicago O?Hare International Airport…. more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

This historic hotel was built in the 1920′s with an art deco interior design With the celebrity red-carpet treatment from the headset-wearing doormen… more

TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

The architectural grandeur of a bygone era comes alive at the Hotel Burnham: a Four-Star luxury boutique hotel in the heart of Chicago’s famous Loop. Located… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Hotel Indigo Chicago Downtown Gold Coast The newest member of the Intercontinental Hotels Group family Hotel Indigo is a branded boutique hotel that offers… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

Indulge yourself through an awakening of taste in the Hotel Monaco-Chicago. This elegant hotel was completely renovated in 1998 with a grand Living Room… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

This is a non-smoking hotel. Prepare to be wowed with unsurpassed style and energy. The hotel pulsates with music exotic architecture and decor and activity…. more

TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

Discover unrivaled services and a cool and contemporary ambiance off Michigan Avenue…. more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

The all-suite Renaissance Chicago O’Hare Suites Hotel is located in the heart of Chicagoland near Rosemont IL. close to many Fortune 500 companies. Our… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Sofitel is a 32-floor prism of glass designed by French architect Jean Paul Viguier with commanding views of Chicago…. more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

The Majestic Hotel affords the tranquility and dignity of a refined English country estate amidst the bustling energetic city life of Chicago. A restful… more


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

Located at Michigan Avenue near all major businesses and attractions The Peninsula Chicago features award-winning dining business center health club… more


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

Set atop Water Tower Place high above prestigious North Michigan Avenue and featuring exquisite décor and intuitive service The Ritz-Carlton Chicago… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

Just when you thought the classics were history&regthe Crowne Plaza Hotel Chicago-The Silversmith an example of the `Arts and Crafts&reg movement of the… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.

The Willows Hotel beckons the weary traveler to retreat from the Windy City’s frenetic pace of life. Less than 2 blocks from Lake Michigan in the heart… more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

Retreat from Chi-town’s bustle to the serenity of pillowtop mattresses 350-thread-count sheets and down comforters…. more


TAG Approved� Hotels are rated by the Travel Alternatives Group, an organization whose mission it is to rate the world’s gay-friendliest hotels, resorts, and inns. When you see a TAG Approved� property, rest assured that everything is pre-screened already for you, so you’ll feel welcome worldwide, from Key West to Barcelona.


This property has been recommended by Get Gay Travel based on our own experiences as well as those of our clients.

The W Chicago – Lakeshore offers a birds-eye (think seagull) view of things. Situated along Lake Shore Drive near the Navy Pier it’s the only hotel in… more

Where to Play

GET YOUR GROOVE ON 

Berlin

954 W. Belmont Ave.
Chicago, IL 60657

773-348-4975

(Off the Belmont Red Line and Brown Line “el” stops)

www.berlinchicago.com 

This favorite Chicago dive was voted Best Dance Club in Chicago by Rolling Stone and draws in a mixed, come-one-come-all crowd with its neo-hippie, Bohemian vibe.  Gays and straights, hipster twinks, drag queens, and goth girls -  everybody packs (very tightly *grope grope*) into Berlin after hours to shake their booties.   Thursdays are $1 drink nights, so get in line! 

Roscoe’s

3356 N. Halsted St.
Chicago, IL 60657

773-281-3355

(Off the Belmont Red Line, Brown Line, and Purple Line “el” stops)

www.roscoes.com 

This Boystown institution attracts a younger crowd.  With multiple bars in multiple rooms, you can kick back and relax, play a game a pool, or even grab some food at the outdoor café in the summertime.  With $12 mixed drink pitcher specials every night of the week, however, chances are the crowds will be on the dance floor.    

Spin Nightclub

800 W. Belmont Ave.
Chicago, IL 60657

773-327-7711

(Off the Belmont Red Line, Brown Line, and Purple Line “el” stops)

www.spin-nightclub.com 

Whether it’s drag queens hosting karaoke or hot DJs keeping you moving on the two dance floors, Spin’s diverse clientele has plenty to choose from in this cozy yet sprawling nightspot.  With $1 drink nights, things are sure to get dirty quickly.  No worries, though, every week there’s a shower contest… 
 
 

NEIGHBORHOOD GEM 

Sidetrack

3349 North Halsted St.
Chicago, IL 60657

773-477-9189

(Off the Belmont Red Line, Brown Line, and Purple Line “el” stops)

www.sidetrackchicago.com 

This sleekly designed, sprawling video bar is one of the hottest S&M bars (read: Stand and Model) in Boystown.  Over 30 video screens scattered throughout every room show the latest dance hits, disco classics, and even comedy clips and viral videos.  The big draw though is on Sunday and Monday nights, when everyone’s inner show-queen comes out front and center to sing along to their favorite musicals.  The frozen drinks are legendary, so grab a vodka slushy and sing out, Louise! 

Big Chicks

5024 N. Sheridan Rd.
Chicago, IL 60640

773-728-5511

(Off the Argyle Red Line “el” stop)

www.bigchicks.com 

This Chicago uptown favorite is an “alternative” gay bar in almost every sense.  Alternative to the sleeker Boystown scene further south, alternative in the girls, guys, and everything in between that crowds its hip, cultured space.  Thursdays are FKA nights (Formerly Known As) and draws the Chicago transgendered community and their allies.  But with its delicious, cheap food (free Sunday buffet, $1 burgers on Mondays) even more popular than its cheap drinks, every night is a draw for this beloved neighborhood fave.   

The North End

3733 N. Halsted
Chicago, IL 60613

773.477.7999

(Off the Addison Red Line “el” stop)

www.northendchicago.com 

Voted Chicago’s #1 gay bar, The North End is THE place to be if you want to kick back, play a game of pool, throw some darts, or just watch the game.  Plus, every Wednesday is karaoke night.  Sporty guy with a song in your heart?  Welcome home. 

Second Story Bar

157 E Ohio Street, Apt. 2 
(between Michigan Ave & St. Clair St)  
Chicago, IL 60611 

(312) 923-9536

(Off the Grand Red Line “el” stop) 

The proximity of this very divey dive bar to super-glam Michigan Avenue is a truly bizarre yet fantastic juxtaposition.  On the second floor sandwiched between an Armenian restaurant and a psychic (no kidding), you enter via a tall, seedy staircase (or creepy, depending on you ask) and take a trip back in time to the dive bars of the ‘80s, tired disco ball and frosted mirrors and all.  Luckily, the drink prices are reminiscent of the ‘80s, too.  Cheap, stiff drinks make this Chicago legend all the more fun, so go see what all the stories are about. 

Bobby Love’s

3729 N Halsted St 
(between Bradley Pl & Broadway St)  
Chicago, IL 60613 

(773) 525-1200

(Off the Addison Red Line “el” stop)

www.bobbyloves.com 

Young and old, twinks and queens of a certain age, everyone comes to Bobby Love’s for two reasons:  cheap drinks and karaoke!!  Friday night is karaoke night and boy is it a legend.  So grab some cheap liquid courage, channel your inner diva (or just use your outer one), and rock the mic! 

Lizard’s Liquid Lounge

3058 W Irving Park Rd 
(between Albany Ave & Whipple St)  
Chicago, IL 60618 

(773) 463-7599

www.lizardsliquidlounge.com  

Formerly Lost & Found (Chicago’s oldest lesbian bar), Lizard’s Liquid Lounge now draws a more diverse crowd, but is certainly still very much the place to be for Chicago’s gay girls.  The owner Liz will make you feel right at home and never let your glass get empty.  There are games on the tables (Connect Four, anyone?) if you wanna kick back and relax and feel like a kid again (if you drank as a child), or fire up the killer jukebox and play a round of pool or darts.  Liz’s has a cozy atmosphere and neighborhood feel, and Liz won’t be happy until you make it a regular spot for you and your friends.    
 
 

LEVIS & LEATHER 

Cellblock

3702 N. Halsted St.
Chicago, IL 60613

(773) 665-8064

(Off the Addison Red Line “el” stop)

www.cellblock-chicago.com 

The casual levis/leather scene in the front of the bar draws a more mixed crowd, including some daring ladies from the next door Kit Kat Club, but wander on back to the rear and you’ll find a more serious leather scene.  There are once-a-month specialty parties, like Squeal (for the fetish scene) and Furr (self-explanatory), but no matter when you come, the drinks are always cheap and the men are always gruff and sexy. 

Jackhammer

6406 N Clark St 
Chicago, IL 60626 

(773) 743-5772

(Off the Loyola Red Line stop “el” stop)

www.jackhammer-chicago.com 

Jackhammer is your father’s leather bar.  Read:  not interested in catering to a more mainstream, easily blushing clientele.  Downstairs is a separate bar-within-the-bar called “The Hole”, which adheres to a strict leather/fetish dress code on Friday and Saturday nights.  So have the proper amount of leather on (a bracelet won’t cut it) or be prepared to lose your shirt – leather, fetish, or skin (tattoos help) are all that’s welcome.  And they do mean welcome…The Hole is known is being very “friendly”.   

Touché

6412 N Clark St 
(between Devon Ave & Schreiber Ave)  
Chicago, IL 60626 

(773) 465-7400

(Off the Loyola Red Line stop “el” stop)

www.touchechicago.com/  

Just a few doors down from Jackhammer, Touché is sure to fill your leather and bear quota.  The front room is pretty laid back, with a dart board, poker machine, and a pool table.  The back room is, well, not.  (But you already knew that, didn’t you?)  Try crawling in the cage…maybe you’ll get out, and maybe you won’t want to.  Something different is going on every night of the week – these guys love their theme parties.  Whether it’s Hardcore Leather night on Tuesdays, Bear Chest Wednesdays, or the Gear Fetish party on the third Saturday of every month (featuring free buzz cuts from the bartenders), you would have to try (really, really hard) to be bored at Touché.  

BATH & BODY

Bijou Theater & Sex Club

1349 N. Wells 
Chicago, IL 60610 

(312) 943-5397

(Off the Clark/Division Red Line and Sedgwick Purple Express/Brown Line “el” stops) 

www.bijouworld.com 

The Bijou Theater & Club has been around since 1969 and is the oldest gay theater of its kind in the U.S., founded by Steven Toushin of the classic Bijou Video porn company.  On the first floor is a theater (a real theater, with a large screen and theater seating), lounge, and cruising garden. On the second floor are booths, glory holes, and a dungeon with various fetish and S&M props and accessories.  It’s lasted this long for a reason…see for yourself why. 

Steamworks

3246 N Halsted St 
Chicago, IL 60657 

(773) 929-6080

(Belmont Purple Express, Brown, and Red Line “el” stops)

www.steamworksonline.com 

This massive, three-story bathhouse is by far Chicago’s most popular, drawing clientele from across the wide spectrum of the gay community.  Steamworks is renowned for being immaculately clean and a voracious promoter of safe sex, thereby shattering the negative preconceptions many people have from the bathhouses from the ‘70s and ‘80s.  Steamworks is a hotbed for the hot men of Chicago. 

Paradise Sauna

2910 W Montrose Ave 
(between Francisco Ave & Richmond St)  
Chicago, IL 60618 

(773) 588-3304

(Off the Franciso Brown Line “el” stop) 

A traditional Korean spa featuring an open main room with a large hot tub, showers, warm tub, and cold plunge, Paradise Sauna is much more about having a true bathhouse experience than cruising.  A large locker room, nap room, and two steam rooms are featured in the basic pass, with scrubs and massages available to add on for extra fees.  There are separate facilities for men and women (it’s really the only bathhouse in Chicago with women’s facilities), and even a Japanese restaurant attached that will deliver to the lockerrooms. 

What to See

 

Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower)

233 S. Wacker Dr. Suite 3530

Chicago IL 60606 
(Enter Skydeck on Jackson Blvd.) 
312-875-9447

www.theskydeck.com

This 108-story landmark is the tallest building in the United States and the fifth tallest building in the world.  The Skydeck Observation Deck on the 103rd floor is one of Chicago’s most popular attractions, and on a clear day you can see four states.  The newly added (and potentially nausea-inducing) glass-bottomed deck The Ledge gives you a clear view of Wacker Drive 1,353 feet directly below you. 

Magnificent Mile

North Michigan Avenue in Downtown Chicago, from the Chicago River to Oak Street

http://magnificentmilechicago.com/

Experience the beating heart of Chicago along Michigan Avenue, where over 460 stores, 275 restaurants, and 51 hotels await you.  From Saks to Barney’s, from Prada to Marc Jacobs, you can shop ‘til you drop in this glamorous stretch of Chicago’s downtown.   

Lake Michigan

Chicago has 26 miles of lakefront open and free to the public for walking, swimming, biking, picnicking, and simply relaxing.  Lake Michigan is the second largest of the Great Lakes, and provides a glorious, shimmering backdrop to the city of Chicago. 

Navy Pier

600 East Grand Avenue 
Chicago, IL 60611 
(312) 595-7437

www.navypier.com

A mile-long playground on the lake, Navy Pier has a bit of everything, from rides to restaurants, exhibitions to entertainment, shopping to dining cruises and tour boats.  Whether it’s a ride on the 15-story Ferris wheel, a boat cruise on the lake, or a show from the Chicago Shakespeare Theater or the Chinese acrobats of Cirque Shanghai, you will never lack for entertainment on Navy Pier.  

Millennium Park

201 East Randolph Street 
Chicago, IL 60602 
(312) 742-1168

www.millenniumpark.org

This 24.5 acre new addition to the Chicago waterfront is a crowning achievement of Chicago architecture and urban planning, featuring the work of world-renowned architects, planners, artists and designers.  The Frank Gehry-designed Jay Pritzker Pavilion is the most sophisticated outdoor concert venue of its kind in the United States.  Located in the heart of downtown, Millennium Park is the new favorite of Chicagoans and should definitely be a must-see for any visitor. 

Field Museum

1400 South Lake Shore Drive 
Chicago, IL 60605 
(312) 665-7683

www.fieldmuseum.org

The Field Museum is one of the finest museums of natural history in all the world.  It contains over 21 million different specimens, only a fraction of which can ever be on display.  One of the biggest draws is Sue, the largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus skeleton currently known.  Situated on Lake Shore Drive next to Lake Michigan, the Field Museum is part of a scenic complex known as Museum Campus Chicago, which also houses the Adler Planetarium and the Shedd Aquarium.   

Art Institute

111 South Michigan Avenue 
Chicago, IL 60603 
(312) 443-3600

www.artic.edu

At over 1 million square feet, The Art Institute of Chicago is the second largest art museum in the United States, behind only the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.  It is home to one of the most impressive Impressionist and Post-Impressionist collections in the world.  Some of its most famous works permanently on display are a collection of over 30 paintings by Claude Monet, Grant Wood’s American Gothic, and Georges Seurat’s Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte 

Second City

1616 N Wells St 
Chicago, IL 60614

312-337-3992

www.secondcity.com

Second City is the world’s premiere theater and training ground for sketch comedy and improvisation.  For the past 50 years, Second City has been the launching pad for comedic luminaries such as Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi to today’s superstars Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert, and Steve Carrell.  Multiple shows play Tuesday-Sunday, so buy a ticket and check out the stars of tomorrow. 

Chicago Theatre

Whether it’s improv comedy, daring new plays, or revivals of classic favorites, you’ll have no trouble finding it in one of the biggest and most vibrant theatre scenes in all of the world.  Check out the Tony Award-winning Goodman and Steppenwolf Theatres to see the major players in town, the incredible physical productions of the Looking Glass Theater, and the LGBT-oriented About Face and Bailiwick Theatre companies.  Here are some links to those and more: 

http://lookingglasstheatre.org

http://aboutfacetheatre.com/

http://www.goodman-theatre.org/

http://www.steppenwolf.org/

http://www.bailiwickchicago.com/

http://www.victorygardens.org/

http://www.northlight.org/

http://www.stagelefttheatre.com/

http://www.broadwayinchicago.com/

What’s the Scoop?

Chicago Population: 2,853,114

The metro area includes almost 10 million people, including parts of Indiana. The estimated GLBT population is 288,478 at 3.1%. Within the city limits the percentage is around 5.7%

Airports

ORD – O’Hare International Airport

The second-busiest airport in the world lies on the outskirts of the city. Fortunately, you can take the L on the Blue Line all the way to downtown. This ride takes about 45 minutes to the Clark/Lake stop where you can transfer to any major line.

MDW – Chicago Midway Airport

You can take the Orange Line on the L and get to downtown in about 45 minutes as well.

GLBTQ Support Centers

Center on Halsted

Chicago has long been the center of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in the greater Midwest, and in 2001 a dedicated group of community leaders came together and shared a vision to create a united front and a focal point for this burgeoning community.

www.centeronhalsted.org

Howard Brown Health Center

Howard Brown Health Center is one of the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) healthcare organizations. With an annual budget of over $18 million, the agency serves more than 36,000 adults and youth each year.  Its diverse health and social service delivery system focuses around the following programmatic divisions: primary medical care, behavioral health, research, HIV/STD prevention, case management, social services, youth services, elder services, and community initiatives.

www.howardbrown.org/

Lowdown on Gay Rights

Statewide Relationship Recognition  

No Licenses marriages for same-sex couples

No Honors marriages of same-sex couples from other jurisdictions

No Relationship recognition for same-sex couples 

In 1996 an anti-marriage bill was adopted which prohibits marriages “between two individuals of the same sex” and declares such lawful marriages to be “against public policy.”  

Statewide Hate Crimes Laws:  

Yes Protection based on Sexual Orientation

No Protection based on Gender Identity 

Statewide Sodomy Laws 

The Illinois sodomy law was repealed in 1962. 

Statewide Non-Discrimination Laws 

Yes Sexual Orientation Protection

    Illinois law prohibits discrimination in employment, real-estate transactions, access to financial credit and the availability of public accommodations based on sexual orientation. 

Yes  Gender Identity Protection

    The definition of sexual orientation in the Illinois Human Rights Act includes, “gender-related identity, whether or not traditionally associated with the person’s designated sex at birth.”  775 ILCS 5/1-102. The Illinois Human Rights Act as it pertains to gender-related identity prohibits discrimination in employment, real-estate transactions, access to financial credit and the availability of public accommodations. 

Statewide Healthcare 

A same-sex partner may, under certain circumstances, make health care decisions for an incapacitated partner as a "close friend" under Illinois law. However, at least six other individuals are granted priority ahead of a partner (guardian, spouse, adult children, parent, etc.) and must be contacted first. § 40/25.  
 
An adult may execute a living will, designating another to make health care decisions in the event of incapacitation. The document must be signed by the declarant, or another at the declarant’s direction, and witnessed by 2 individuals. § 35/3. 

Statewide Employment Protections 

Yes Private employment protections based on sexual orientation.

Yes Private employment protections based on gender identity.

Yes Public (state) employment protections based on sexual orientation.

Yes  Public (state) employment protections based on gender identity. 

Statewide Parenting Laws

Who May Adopt:  Illinois law permits any adult individual or married couple to petition to adopt. This provision has been interpreted to permit lesbian and gay individuals and same-sex couples to adopt if it is found to be in the best interests of the potential adoptee(s). In 1995, a state appellate court affirmed that "nothing in the [Adoption] Act suggests that sexual orientation is a relevant consideration, and lesbians and gay men are permitted to adopt in Illinois." (Petition of K.M., 653 N.E.2d 888 (Ill. App. Ct. 1995)

Notes: Illinois law states that "a reputable person of legal age and of either sex" may petition to adopt.    

 

The legal information provided on this page is provided as a courtesy to Get Gay Travel clients. It is not designed to serve as legal advice. Get Gay Travel would like to thank the Human Rights Campaign and Lambda Legal for the reference materials. Due to the ever-changing nature of legal matters some of the information may not be current or comprehensive. 

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