Bogocite AS https://bogocite.com Curated Bookshop Thu, 06 Dec 2018 21:04:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.8 Pack Your Bags: 5 Fall Getaways Under $200 Round-Trip https://bogocite.com/pack-your-bags-5-fall-getaways-under-200-round-trip/ Mon, 11 Sep 2017 13:11:44 +0000 https://bogocite.com/?p=1445

There’s no disputing that fall in New York is a sweater-clad, apple-cider-scented paradise. But this season also happens to be one of the best times to nab a cheap flight out of town. Here, five ideas for an autumn getaway—all within three hours of NYC.

PORTLAND, ME (1 HOUR, 15 MINUTES FROM NYC)

For less than the price of your Uber to the airport—we spotted round-trip flights for $40—you can escape to one of the country’s most underrated cities, which boasts picturesque lighthouses, fall foliage galore and a top-notch restaurant scene. (We dream about the fries at Duckfat.)

MONTREAL, CANADA (90 MINUTES FROM NYC)

Head across the border to stroll cobblestone streets, feast on incredible pastries and practice your French before the city descends into its notoriously freezing winter. (Which, coincidentally, makes it a great place to shop for a chic cold-weather coat.)

CAPE COD, MA (1 HOUR FROM NYC)

Much like the Hamptons, this New England destination is mobbed (aka expensive) during the summer. But if you ask us, October weather is ideal for a seaside bike ride and Wellfleet oysters straight from the source.

SAVANNAH, GA (2 HOURS, 15 MINUTES FROM NYC)

The charming architecture, rib-sticking Southern eats and thriving art scene make it a destination year-round, but we’re especially stoked to take a pre-Halloween ghost tour in one of the most haunted cities in America. There’s something inherently spooky about all that Spanish moss…

CHARLESTON, SC (2 HOURS FROM NYC)

What’s that? You’re not ready to let go of summer just yet? We got you: Charleston temps stay balmy well into November—and last we checked, there were flights for about $100. (Oh, and we’ve got plenty of tips on what to eat, see and do.)

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How to Do Chicago’s 5 Best Tourist Attractions Better Than the Tourists https://bogocite.com/how-to-do-chicagos-5-best-tourist-attractions-better-than-the-tourists/ Mon, 11 Sep 2017 13:04:00 +0000 https://bogocite.com/?p=1437

Sometimes, the best city to visit is your own. You get to look at your hometown with fresh eyes AND you have all the insider intel to tour it like a pro. From the skyscrapers to the comedy scene, this is how we do Chicago better than the tourists.

INSTEAD OF WILLIS TOWER SKYDECK: COCKTAILS AT THE SIGNATURE LOUNGE

Yes, Willis Tower goes ten stories higher than the Hancock, but the latter’s got the edge in terms of wait time. Skip the lines and grab a cocktail at The Signature Lounge on the Hancock’s 95th floor. Along with your time, you’ll save yourself some money. (Skydeck admission is $23; a drink at The Signature Room runs $10 to $15.) And definitely excuse yourself to powder your nose, because the view from the women’s bathroom is one of the best in the city.

INSTEAD OF SECOND CITY: TJ & DAVE AT IO

Shoot west of Second City on North Avenue and continue on to iO (formally Improv Olympic). It’s here that T.J. Jagodowski (that guy from those hilarious Sonic commercials) and Dave Pasquesi (basically a Chicago theater icon) perform their long-running, entirely improvised show every Wednesday night. For an hour, they roll deep into a variety of characters, plots and subplots, which all interconnect in wild and hilarious ways. You will be awestruck. Guaranteed.

INSTEAD OF CHICAGO ARCHITECTURE TOUR: CHICAGO WATER TAXI

Save money, skip the crowds and see a piece of the Chicago River we bet you haven’t. How? Take the Water Taxi from downtown to Chinatown. You’ll disembark at Ping Tom Memorial Park, where dim sum at Ming Hin and sesame bubble tea from Joy Yee’s await. If you’re really dying to know all the lore behind Marina Towers, download an audio tour here.

INSTEAD OF THE BEAN: THE BEAN AT NIGHT (YEP)

OK, Cloud Gate is actually pretty cool. But good luck trying to get a photobomb-free shot of it during the day. Come back after sunset, when the crowds are smaller and the city lights bounce off it in some pretty amazing ways. While you’re out there, wander south to Michigan and Roosevelt for a shot of Agora, a staggering assembly of 106 headless iron figures.

INSTEAD OF NAVY PIER FIREWORKS: NEIGHBORHOOD FIREWORKS

Shhhh , you can actually see Navy Pier’s free Wednesday and Saturday night fireworks even better from Montrose Beach up north. Grab your crew and a picnic. On the Fourth of July, you’d be remiss to skip the massive displays put on by residents around Winnemac Park in Ravenswood.

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5 Gorgeous Upscale Camping Spots Just Outside Chicago https://bogocite.com/5-gorgeous-upscale-camping-spots-just-outside-chicago-2/ Mon, 11 Sep 2017 12:58:50 +0000 https://bogocite.com/?p=1429

There are many reasons we love Chicago, but February isn’t typically at the top of that list. That’s no longer the case, however, since we discovered a flurry of places that happily bend reality for us to make it seem like it’s spring—right now.

THE ORCHID SHOW AT CHICAGO BOTANIC GARDEN

The abundance of rare and exotic blooms at this annual show (February 11 to March 26) might tempt you into becoming a real life orchid thief. Fortunately, there are legal ways to get your orchid fix: Just stick around for the post-show sale on March 30. And sure, the flowers are pretty. But you know we’re secretly here for that greenhouse sauna experience.

SPRING FLOWER SHOW AT LINCOLN PARK CONSERVATORY

This hothouse is open year round, but is there any better time to visit than February? During the annual flower show (February 11 to May 14), you can admire azaleas, daffodils, tulips, hyacinths and hydrangea as well as kites and sculptures by Chicago artist Michael F. Thompson. Let a friend know where you’ll be—in case you decide never to leave.

TERRARIUM WORKSHOP SPROUT HOME

Need a bit of spring in your home? Attend a terrarium workshop at Sprout Home and create a pretty pint-size garden. If your thumb is more black than green, be careful not to overwater—trust us, we learned the hard way.

CHICAGO FLOWER & GARDEN SHOW AT NAVY PIER

This floral extravaganza (March 18 to 26) started all the way back in 1847, when it was an exhibition of prized fruits and flowers. Things are a bit grander today with 20-plus life-size gardens for you to walk through all inside Navy Pier. If that’s not enough, the preview party features a fashion show of clothes made entirely of flowers, because why the hell not?

BUTTERFLY HAVEN YOGA AT PEGGY NOTEBAERT NATURE MUSEUM

Yoga usually leaves us feeling pretty blissed out. We can only assume that adding butterflies to the mix will help us achieve moksha. Check the events listings for upcoming times, and if those don’t fit your schedule, you can always stop by the museum at 2 p.m. for the daily butterfly release.

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5 Places to Go Hiking in (or Around) the City https://bogocite.com/5-places-to-go-hiking-in-or-around-the-city/ Mon, 11 Sep 2017 12:43:48 +0000 https://bogocite.com/?p=1421

We don’t know quite how to break this to you, but it’s come to our attention that Illinois is rather, um, flat. But hey, what we lack in mountain ranges we make up for in literally everything else, and we’re home to more than enough natural wonders to suppress that occasional and unsettling urge to climb a steep incline. Here, seven of our favorite places to channel our inner green goddess.

STARVED ROCK STATE PARK

With 18 canyons formed by glacial meltwater, you’ll never run out of eye candy to swoon over at this beloved state park. The Illinois Canyon Trail, a 9.4-mile round-trip, is the ideal day hike. We especially love it in fall, when you can catch both the turning leaves and the tiny waterfalls scattered throughout.

Distance from the city: 90 miles or about a 2-hour drive

PALMISANO PARK

Listen, you don’t even have to leave the city to explore your outdoorsy side—Palmisano Park is located right in the heart of Bridgeport. Twenty-seven acres of verdant hills and a fishing pond mean you have plenty of opportunity to become one with nature. Just don’t be surprised when you go to quench your thirst and tiny birds flutter down to lift your canteen to your lips. P.S. Make it to the park’s highest point, dubbed “Mount Bridgeport,” which offers killer views of the city skyline.

INDIANA DUNES STATE PARK

Nicknamed the “Grand Canyon of the Midwest,” the Indiana Dunes State Park is so worth the drive, even when there is a bit of a nip in the air. The foamy breaking waves look all the more majestic while you’re wearing a wool sweater and sipping an apple cider, so head over there to get some glimpses of an autumn you might miss if you keep to the city.

Distance from city: 51 miles or about a 1-hour drive

WEST RIDGE NATURE PRESERVE

The 21-acre West Ridge Nature Preserve is a relatively new addition to the outskirts of the city. It boasts paved trails, a pond and the wide expanses that are often hard to find in more bustling parts of Chicago. We recommend you get your fill of nature, then fill up on pumpkin beer at Lincoln Square’s Chicago Brauhaus.

CASTLE ROCK STATE PARK

Sandstone bluffs, red-bellied woodpeckers and six miles of hiking trails—what doesn’t Castle State Park offer? If you’re immediately thinking, WI-FI, duh, then all the more reason to head out there and get some fresh air. The area is also home to top-notch cross-country skiing paths, meaning a fall trip could be just the beginning for you and yours.

Distance from city: 103 miles or a 2-hour drive

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5 Lakes, Quarries and Swimming Holes Near Chicago https://bogocite.com/5-lakes-quarries-and-swimming-holes-near-chicago/ Mon, 11 Sep 2017 12:30:21 +0000 https://bogocite.com/?p=1413

Don’t get us wrong, we love North Avenue Beach as much as the next gal, but sometimes we need a break from the crowds (and the club beats). In about an hour’s drive (as much time as it typically takes to find parking and walk to Castaways), you can reach one of these five lakes, quarries and swimming holes.

THREE OAKS RECREATION CENTER

It’s hard to believe this aquatic park and beach was once a quarry. The surrounding city of Crystal Lake has transformed it into a peaceful oasis where you can swim, fish, bike and hike. Talk about an extreme makeover.

INDEPENDENCE GROVE

This Libertyville refuge boasts some impressive stats: a 115-acre manmade lake and 400 feet of sandy beach. All that, and it’s just 30 miles north of the city.

LAKE GENEVA

The lake is the main draw, but the historic mansions, walking trails and cozy restaurants are nothing to skip. Plan to spend a whole weekend here.

CENTENNIAL BEACH

Naperville has become a top city for young families, so it only makes sense that this local watering hole is so kid-friendly. Little ones must pass a swim test to dive in; from there, they’ll have access to the water slide, pump and sprayers in the shallow end of the 6.2-million-gallon lake.

INDIANA DUNES

OK, so the dunes are technically on Lake Michigan, but with their rolling, sandy duney-ness and tall grasses, they can feel like another world—so yeah, we had to include them here. Swim, hike, paddle and bike your way along the 15 miles of coastline.

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The 5 Best Road Trips from Chicago https://bogocite.com/the-5-best-road-trips-from-chicago/ Mon, 11 Sep 2017 12:18:45 +0000 https://bogocite.com/?p=1405

It’s amazing how quickly three hours go by when that “next episode” button keeps popping up. But with the same amount of time in the car, you can transport yourself to romantic retreats, majestic waterfalls and (yesss) wineries. Forget battling the security lines at O’Hare—these five road trips are our top picks for your next weekend getaway.

BEST FOR BEACHES: NEW BUFFALO, MI

Travel Time: One hour and 15 minutes from Chicago

When to Go: June through September

What to Do: During a beach weekend, we encourage doing as little as possible. While away the hours sunning yourself or reading a good book on the long, peaceful beaches. After sunset, head to Redamak’s for the Velveeta burger, a gloriously gooey masterpiece that has become something of a legend since the restaurant opened in the 1940s. If you need something a little more exciting, there’s always the Four Winds Casino.

BEST FOR FOOD AND ART: MILWAUKEE, WI

Travel Time: One hour and 30 minutes from Chicago

When to Go: May through October

What to Do: Chicago’s not the only Midwest city with culture to spare. The Milwaukee Art Museum is reason enough to visit our neighbor to the north: Its soaring white brise soleil (that would be the winged structure rising over the roof) is practically begging to be Instagrammed. Once you’ve had your fill of the collection, nosh on artisanal cheeses, craft beers and fresh baked goods at Milwaukee Public Market. Of course, no visit is complete without a trip to Kopp’s Frozen Custard; hit up the scoop shop for one final treat on your way back home.

BEST FOR FAMILIES: LAKE GENEVA, WI

Travel Time: One hour and 30 minutes from Chicago

When to Go: June through September

What to Do: Get the kids (and yourself) out of the concrete jungle and into some fresh air. Options for boat rentals and tours abound, but if you stay at Grand Geneva, you’ll have the added bonus of a 50,000-square-foot water park just steps from your room. For dinner, head to Sprecher’s for pub food and craft sodas and beers, then savor ice cream cones from Scoopsas you stroll the Shore Path Walk until everyone’s sleepy.

BEST FOR HIKING: STARVED ROCK STATE PARK

Travel Time: One hour and 45 minutes from Chicago

When to Go: May through October

What to Do: You might be shocked to see Starved Rock’s cliffs, a rarity in flat-as-a-board Illinois. But that’s just one reason to check out the park: Its 3,816 acres also include massive waterfalls and miles of shady oak trees. (They’re a haven for bald eagles, so bring your binoculars.) You can easily cover the highlights in a day trip, but the charming 1930s lodge, with its roaring fireplaces and rustic timber walls, makes a compelling case for spending the night.

BEST FOR ROMANCE: GALENA, IL

Travel Time: Three hours from Chicago

When to Go: June through October

What to Do: With its rolling hills and narrow streets lined with 19th-century architecture, Galena feels like another country, let alone town. Spend an afternoon strolling hand in hand with your sweetie and popping into the many charming shops. Then wind down with a glass of wine at Galena Cellars Winery. Looking for something on the grander side? A sunset hot-air-balloon ride with Galena on the Fly should do the trick.

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5 Adult Summer Camps Within Driving Distance of Chicago https://bogocite.com/5-adult-summer-camps-within-driving-distance-of-chicago/ Mon, 11 Sep 2017 12:14:13 +0000 https://bogocite.com/?p=1397

Fountain of youth? Who needs one when these five adult summer camps help you relive the glory days. From digital detoxes to yogi superfests, they let you recapture your youth as you capture the flag.

CAMP WANDAWEGA

Booking a weekend at this idyllic Wisconsin resort is a bit like a wilderness choose-your-own adventure. There’s no programming, but there is one majorly impressive tree house, not to mention a lake, trails and bonfire. Grab your friends, pack some good food and books and snap some amazing Instagrams among all the Pendleton blankets and antique furnishings.

SOUL CAMP (JUNE 24)

Need a retreat in a rush? About an hour from the city, Soul Camp’s day camp option really packs it in. From fitness classes to meditation and intuitive readings, you’ll get rejuvenated in less than six hours. And if you find yourself wanting to stay longer, sign up for the four-day camps in New York or California.

CAMP HALCYON (JULY, AUGUST AND OCTOBER DATES)

Treat yourself to four days at Camp Halcyon in Wautoma, Wisconsin, for cabin bunking, wine tasting and chef-prepared meals. Did we mention the after-hours food bar? Yeah, sure beats standing in line at the canteen.

CAMP FOREVER FUN (JULY 28 THROUGH 30)

This western Michigan retreat offers everything you loved about sleepaway camp—archery, ropes courses, canoe races, yoga, climbing walls, arts and crafts and more—plus beer. And not just beer, craft beer. Of course, no summer would be complete without a campfire and s’mores…or an epic dance party.

CAMP NO COUNSELORS (SEPTEMBER 1 THROUGH SEPTEMBER 4)

At the other end of the spectrum, this multi-location (Chicago residents can head to southwest Michigan) camp has been compared to college—without the classes. All your drinks (and there will be many) are included in camp costs. They’ll fuel you through games of dodgeball, theme parties, a color war and late night DJ sets.

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5 Hotels So Gorgeous, We Just Might Stay in Chicago All Winter https://bogocite.com/5-hotels-so-gorgeous-we-just-might-stay-in-chicago-all-winter/ Mon, 11 Sep 2017 12:08:57 +0000 https://bogocite.com/?p=1389

Why should tourists have all the fun? Chicago’s stunning luxury hotels should be enjoyed by locals, too. That’s why we’ve dug up five of the city’s most gorgeous. Plan a weekend, or just a dinner, at one of these beauties.

THE LANGHAM CHICAGO

Talk about dramatic entrances. Elegant white marble, dramatic sculpture and soaring riverside views fill The Langham’s lobby. Don’t be surprised if you feel like pulling up a chair and staying a while.

THE WALDORF ASTORIA CHICAGO

The Waldorf Astoria’s Parisian-inspired architecture adds a little bit of Paris to the Chicago skyline. Indeed, with apartment-style rooms that feature wrought-iron hearths and tufted headboards, this may be the next best thing to the Left Bank.

CHICAGO ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION HOTEL

You don’t need to be a guest to enjoy this Michigan Avenue hotel. From the airy rooftop down to the gothic second-floor game room, its public spaces are some of the city’s most picturesque spots.

THOMPSON CHICAGO

Spend a weekend pretending you’re 007 at this Gold Coast boutique hotel. British designer Tara Bernerd has given it a sexy, mid-century style—plus, it’s got views to kill.

THE PENINSULA CHICAGO

The pool alone is reason to stay at The Peninsula. Located on the 19th floor, it affords views of Lake Michigan and the surrounding skyline from its 20-foot windows.

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