Surrounded by Chicago’s finest culture, dining, and shopping — River North residents are truly spoiled.
This appropriately named ‘hood – located just north of the Loop across the Chicago River – has experienced a startling transformation in the past 40 years. Once a manufacturing district known as Smoky Hollow, River North is now one of Chicago’s elite residential areas. Residents enjoy beautiful views from their condos and converted lofts or the prestige of some of the most exclusive single-family residences in Chicago.
While you can easily walk across the river to the Loop, getting around Chicago is easy with the CTA Red and Brown Lines, the Kennedy/Eisenhower Expressways, and Lake Shore Drive.
River North Neighborhood Guide
In an excellent location just across the river from the Loop, River North residents enjoy one of the most attraction rich areas of the city.
River North residents are just west of Chicago premier shopping district, Michigan Avenue. Known as “the Magnificent Mile”, the area is home to historic department stores, high-end boutiques, and national chains. The area also has big malls like Water Tower Place and The Merchandise Mart, which also hosts big trade shows and expos.
Put simply, River North is one of Chicago’s restaurants havens. Everything from high-end dining to classic Chicago dives can be found in the neighborhood. Some favorite local restaurants include Il Porcelino, for some of the best Italian food in the city; Gibsons Bar and Steakhouse, a top steakhouse; and XOCO, with a unique take on Mexican street food. Looking for something familiar? Check out Portillos for killer hot dogs and shakes.
While River North has plenty of local bars, Rush Street is just a few blocks away. The hotspot for drinking and clubbing in Chicago, you can find dive bars, hip clubs, and Irish pubs on Rush. Some local favorites include the Signature Room, a classy bar on the 95th floor of the John Hancock Building, and The Hangge-Uppe, an affordable and fun spot on Rush Street.
Culture and Entertainment
River North is known across the city as the visual art hub of Chicago. Whether you are a serious collector or just a curious pedestrian, the area’s many galleries host the works of Chicago’s best local artists and designers. Another great option is the Museum of Contemporary Art, also located in the district.
That’s not all though! Music lovers can get their fill at the House of Blues, hosting intimate live shows since 1992, and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Theater, and Lyric Opera are just across the river.
Theater lover? The area is packed with great options including the Lookingglass Theater, with creative, acrobatic shows. You can also find Broadway Musicals just across the River in the Loop. And, of course, major Chicago attractions like Navy Pier, The Art Institute, and Millennium Park are a short walk away.
While River North doesn’t have many parks within its boundaries, it is ringed by great recreation options. In the summer, residents can walk to Ohio Street Beach. The beach is one of Chicago’s finest, with great swimming, volleyball, and nearby cycling and skating.
Some other great options include Ward Montgomery Park, a nice park along the Chicago River. And residents enjoy scenic walks along the Chicago Riverwalk. And, of course, Millennium Park, one of the top tourist attractions in America, is just across the river. The park hosts a popular free concert and movies in the park series.
River North Homes
With dramatic views and sweeping architecture, River North homes are one-of-a-kind. If you want a white picket fence, River North probably isn’t right for you. But, if you have a taste for high-rise or loft living, you’ve found your place!
The area’s housing stock is a mix between newer construction and developments and carefully rehabbed historic structures. Luxury condos, rental high-rises, and upscale townhomes make up much of the stock. The warehouses that once housed the industry in the area have often been converted into hip, upscale lofts. At the very top of the market, a few Victorian mansions can be found.
With its ideal location and world-class homes, River North is one of the most expensive areas in the city. The average condo in the area runs from $300,000 for a one-bedroom to over $1 million for a 3-bedroom with a river view. River North townhomes also go for over $1 million, while single-family homes can easily be in the $3 million dollar range.