The largest convention center in the Western hemisphere is a state-of-the-art venue with a lot of personality.
Perched near the shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago’s sprawling McCormick Place is the anchor of one of the city’s most up-and-coming communities. Offering a staggering 2.6 million square feet of exhibit space and comprised of four state-of-the-art buildings—the West, South and North Buildings, and Lakeside Center—the entire LEED Gold-certified campus is connected by dramatic pedestrian promenades and sky bridges perfect for a scenic urban stroll. Between meetings, visitors can stop in for fresh morning pastries at La Brea Bakery, grab a coffee at Starbucks and meet colleagues for a healthy lunch at 23rd St. Café & Market, featuring produce plucked from the complex’s very own rooftop garden (one of the largest in the U.S.).
And while the convention center itself is quite impressive, the adjacent McCormick Square is where attendees can go to unwind after a busy day. Home to five hotels, the new Wintrust Arena, the award-winning Aire Crown Theater and more than 20 bars and restaurants, this flourishing district is popular with convention goers and locals alike. Hear live music at Reggies, indulge in Chicago-style pies at Pizano’s Pizza & Pasta, see what’s on tap at Motor Row Brewing. Or spend some down time at nearby Museum Campus, home to the Adler Planetarium, Field Museum of Natural History, Soldier Field and more of Chicago’s most notable attractions.
If you’re planning a summer event, make sure to put some time on the itinerary to lounge in the sand at 31st Street Beach, or go bird watching at the McCormick Bird Sanctuary in the lakefront Burnham Park. Both spots can clear the mind and help your attendees stay focused.
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