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June 16, 2013

4

Picture Review of Chicago River Architecture Cruise

by Jason Dutton-Smith
Chicago Architecture Cruise - First Lady Cruises

Chicago, the gleaming and stylish city on the shores of beautiful Lake Michigan is always a pleasure to visit. A walk along its tree lined streets, beautiful wide avenues and manicured parks never fails to impress. The ‘city of big shoulders’ is known for many things but one of its most acclaimed features is its architecture. Chicago is after all the birthplace of the modern skyscraper

From the ashes of the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 grew one of the most iconic skylines in the world. All one has to do is take a stroll through the city and these magnificent structures will beckon like jewels. If it’s a truly memorable experience you’re after then a cruise on the Chicago River is a must. Many are referred to as ‘architectural cruises’, however they are so much more!

The river cruise that I had the pleasure of taking recently with the Chicago Architecture Foundation and First Lady Cruises was one of the most fascinating perspectives into a city and its history that I’ve ever experienced (look for the blue awning). I will never look at buildings in the same way again!

Chicago River Cruise Map

Chicago River Cruise Map (click to enlarge)

Sit back and relax as you cruise through the middle of one of world’s greatest cities. Our tour guide on board was a wealth of knowledge and really brought the city and its rich history to life with fascinating tales. The city’s architectural wonders both past and recent are a part of this history and the cruise guide offered many interesting insights on each of the beautiful and imposing buildings along the river. All guides are volunteers from the Chicago Architecture Foundation and passionate about their city and buildings!


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My favourite historic buildings?

The Wrigley Building built in 1920 by chewing gum magnate William Wrigley was inspired by a Spanish Cathedral and stands tall on the Magnificent Mile, towards the south end of Michigan Avenue. This impressive building has two towers of differing heights and a taller clock face facing all directions. An interesting note is Wrigley Building was the first city office block to include air-conditioning.

Wrigley Building on Michigan Ave - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Wrigley Building on Michigan Ave – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Second would be the Jewelers’ Building. Located at 35 East Wacker Dve this 40 storey building built in Greek Revival was completed in 1927. The ornate and unique trimmings with dome corners and interesting use of pier lines running vertical up the building in different sizes and decoration make it a fascinating art deco piece of its time. For the first 14 years jewellery merchants would drive into the building in their cars as the lower 23 floors had car parking per floor via an internal car lift for security.

Jewelers Building Chicago - 35 East Wacker Drive Chicago - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Jewelers Building Chicago – 35 East Wacker Drive Chicago – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Here are just some of the beautiful photos I took on this memorable cruise.

Boeing building on the river edge - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Boeing building on the river edge – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Balconies of design - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Balconies of design – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Chicago City Skyline - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Chicago City Skyline – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Chicago Architecture Cruise - First Lady Cruises - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Chicago Architecture Cruise – First Lady Cruises – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Marina City Chicago - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Marina City Chicago – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Reflective glass on rivers edge - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Reflective glass on rivers edge – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Interesting architecture from a Gothic era - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Interesting architecture from a Gothic era – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

First Lady Architecture Cruises - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

First Lady Architecture Cruises – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Unusual balcony design on CBD apartments - Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

Unusual balcony design on CBD apartments – Photo Credit Jason Dutton-Smith

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