Anyone who has had the pleasure of visiting Chicago’s Near North Side may find it hard to believe that this area was once covered in ponds and greenery. The land began to take shape shortly after Potter Palmer (of Palmer House Hilton fame) bought a mansion on Lake Shore Drive (which was hardly the multilane commuter artery it is today). It wasn’t long before the area became home to some of the most well-known names in Chicago including the McCormicks and the Wrigleys, rooting the Near North area in luxury and elegance.
It doesn’t take much to see that the lifestyle of this Chicago neighborhood hasn’t strayed far from that of its founders. The land is still occupied by some of the wealthiest folks in Chicago and most of its natural beauty has remained intact. One thing that has certainly changed though, much to the delight of Chicago socialites and tourists, are the numerous bars, restaurants and boutiques that have sprung up over the years.
Near North now has one of the widest ranging spectrums of upscale shops and elegant dining in Chicago. Fashionistas, epicures and energetic types alike will feel right at home in this haute neighborhood. Foodies will also appreciate and enjoy stocking up on fresh fare at the Division and Dearborn Farmer’s Market, which runs from May through October. And from April through December, they can take one of the Chicago’s Near North Food Tasting and Cultural Walking Tours to get a better handle on local eateries.
Keeping in line with its upscale vibe, Near North packs in some of the most lavish homes in all of Chicago. The architecture in this area is jaw dropping, offering a mixture of deluxe townhouses, contemporary condominium buildings and vintage residential buildings. It isn’t surprising why so many home buyers seek out properties in this prime Chicago neighborhood.
That said, you’ve probably already guessed that real estate here isn’t cheap. There is a good selection of affordable homes in the Near North, but those living the single life have a better chance of scoring a real estate deal in this Chicago neighborhood. Many studio flats and tiny one-bedroom apartments are as low as $120,000. Beyond that this sophisticated neighborhood is reserved for the high-end market. Stately mansions, modern condos, luxury homes and pent house suites are among some of the best properties in the Near North and generally start in upper hundreds of thousands. Tree-lined streets surrounding pristine landscapes make these homes all the more attractive.Chicago neighborhood and real estate information