Old Town is the perfect place for the Chicagoan who doesn’t want to compromise between history and the modern age, convenience and amenities. The landscape of Old Town offers its denizens an incredible architectural variety that include restored, historic townhomes as well as modern high-rise condo buildings. The main commercial drag of Old Town offers a fantastic selection of dining, drinking, and shopping in a less hectic atmosphere. The area is inherently walkable, both within the neighborhood as well as to points beyond. As a result, Wells seems to have a gravitational pull for some of Chicago’s newest and hottest businesses and professionals, who then settle into restored Victorians, rehabilitated factories, and sleek new luxury apartment buildings. Old Town has something for everyone who passes through those beautiful iron gates!
Who wouldn't love to meet friends for drinks after work, walking the short distance to gourmet grocer, and then heading upstairs to your apartment, with incredible views of downtown? Chicago's Old Town neighborhood features a unique blend of residential opportunities. The smaller tree lined streets in the area predominantly feature single family homes and flats with the northern historical part of the neighborhood having homes dating back to the Great Chicago Fire. The condo and apartment high-rises are located along the main corridor Wells street. At the southern edge of Old Town's Wells Street Corridor, a recent slew of luxury residential development has brought some of Chicago's priciest and most sought after rentals to Old Town. Check out our review of 1225 Old Town and learn more about what Old Town offers to Chicago's luxury residential market!
Old Town is well located for easy access to the Loop via public transportation, or to Gold Coast, River North, and Lincoln Park simply by walking. The Red and Brown Lines run directly through, and multiple CTA bus lines run along the main streets. Both parking and expressway access are less than desirable, but North Avenue offers quick entry to Lake Shore Drive.
Old Town is one of the rare areas of the city where the food options are just as crave-worthy during the day as at night, and new favorites sit alongside legendary establishment. During the day? One might see a single diner enjoying a crusty baguette or delicate crepe at La Fournette, only to see the same patron later on with a group of friends at the Old Town Pour House. Old Town offers some of Chicago’s most beloved and diverse options from the fine dining of Topo Gigio to French at Bistrot Margot and Mediterranean at Old Jerusalem. There are multiple food tours dedicated to Old Town only, and in a city with a culinary pedigree as diverse and exemplary as Chicago, that is certainly quite the stamp of approval.
Simply walking the streets of Old Town on a warm summer night is one of the greatest pleasures for the Chicagoan seeking a respite from the city. Both Old Town and Lincoln Park have laid claim to the venerable The Second City and Zanies comedy meccas, but we say that it is too close to call and too much fun to care. On the other side of the fine-arts spectrum, the annual Old Town Art Fair, one of the sources of the “Old Town” moniker, still comes to the streets each June, the beginning of the outdoor festival season in Chicago (with Old Town as a frequent host!). Craving a cafe experience? Get comfortable at Eva's Cafe for the afternoon (or check out one of these cozy cafes), then head to Joe's on Weed Street for music at its most personal.