Gracefully Blending Old and New in Chicago's Gold Coast!

First of all let’s get it right out there – I’m so happy about my listing for a special Condominium in the beautiful Walton-on-the-Park building at 2 West Delaware.  It is the best in Gold Coast living with restaurants and the Magnificent Mile a few blocks away.

Yet the building’s world is more tranquil than the bustle of Michigan Avenue – it is steps away from the world renowned collection of maps housed in the Newberry Library, shown above, where if you’re quiet and respectful a docent might let you look at a true 1500’s view of the New World, or browse through the deep collection of genealogical listings.

And let’s not forget Washington Square Park, with the Newberry on its border, donated to the City way back in 1842, paying mute witness to the flames of the Great Fire in 1871 as it roared northward after relentlessly jumping the Chicago River, and graced with a “brand new” design in 1906 by none other than the world famous wizard of landscaping Jens Jensen.  Also known as Bughouse Square, the park was the de facto home of vibrant debates in the days of the budding Labor movement and Suffragette rallies.  So-called “Soap Box Orators” could pull up a perch and find willing ears day or night!

I love this area, moving into a small apartment at 100 W. Chestnut 25 years ago and then treating the movers and my somewhat-helpful Mother to dinner at the long-beloved Tempo, where breakfast rocks with the fluffiest omelets in town! 

Then later living on the South side of Bughouse Square at 55 West Delaware, going to buy imported cheese and special Italian sausage at the Convito Italiano Mall and fresh fish specially flown-in daily to Burhops!  The longtime favorite for family-style Italian dinner in the neighborhood is still Pizanos, crowded every night and serving up deep dish that puts the more touristy Uno’s and Due’s to shame.

Fast forward 25 years, and with true Chicago-style resilience the neighborhood keeps its ambience even as modern, stunning high rises have been gracefully added to the mix.  Two of my favorite newer buildings are the Waldorf-Astoria Chicago and 10 East Delaware – it’s no mystery why, they were both designed by my partner Lucien Lagrange, blending in to the local streetscape on their lower levels while towering tall to take their rightful place in Chicago’s skyline!


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