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Wonderful Wedding Venues on the North Shore

armours house wedding cakeIronically the happiest time in your life can also be the most stressful! Yes, I am talking about wedding planning. If you thought finding your soulmate was hard enough, just wait and see what come next. Luckily, the North Shore has many wonderful venues that can help make the wedding of your dreams a reality and take the stress out of what should be a joyous time in your life. Whether it’s a highly experienced staff, picturesque setting and/or a flair for details, each of these venues offer something special; the stressful part may be choosing which one!

Armour House @ Lake Forest Academy
1500 West Kennedy Rd., Lake Forest, 847-615-3219

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this elegant Italian Villa combines old world charm with a contemporary style. It offers stunning options for both indoors and out, from the grandeur of the Great Hall to the brilliant colors of the floral gardens and manicured lawns. The Armour House is a full service venue that can handle all of the logistics for your big day including catering, table settings, lighting, floral arrangements, room décor and entertainment but they also allow outside vendors. They do have a minimum guest guarantee, although it can be negotiated depending on the season and day. Capacity: 250 seated.

Historic Charles Gates Dawes House
225 Greenwood St., Evanston, 847-475-3410

For a wedding on a smaller scale, the French Chateaux style mansion is a great option. Rooted in rich beauty and heritage, this two-acre lakefront home, built in 1894, was once the home of Charles Gates Dawes, the 30th U.S. Vice President under Calvin Coolidge. The interior of the Dawes House incorporates a Louis XVI-style parlor, library, great hall and English renaissance style dining room. Much of the interior is paneled in oak, with the exception of mahogany-finished cherry wood in the library. Ceremonies can be held indoors or out in the garden.

Winnetka Community House
620 Lincoln Ave., Winnetka, 847-446-3154

The Winnetka Community House has been playing host to some of the most beautiful events on the North Shore for over a century. Outdoors, the beautiful Arches Garden provides a timeless setting for a romantic wedding. Indoors, the Garden Room is an ideal spot for dinner, dancing and celebrating. It can accommodate anywhere from 75 to 200 guests (with a dance floor). Their exclusive full service caterer, Catered By Design, will help design the perfect menu and make sure every detail of your wedding is perfect.

Chicago Botanic Gardens
1000 Lake Cook Rd., Glencoe, 847-835-8370

We would be completely remiss if we did not include the Botanic Gardens on this list. This world-renowned cultural destination is the perfect venue for your wedding. They offer full-service day of event and planning assistance. This beloved jewel speaks for itself and with so many fantastic indoor and outdoor options to choose from, it has something for every taste!

Elawa Farms
1401 Middlefork Dr., Lake Forest, 847-234-1966

For those looking for a more rustic, yet chic venue for their nuptials, Elawa Farms is somewhat of a best kept secret on the North Shore. This onetime gentleman’s farm is now a center for education and enjoyment of architectural preservation, history, gardening and the environment, and offers a unique, intimate and picturesque venue for your special day.

The Grove Redfield Estate
1421 Milwaukee Ave., Glenview, 847-298-0095

The Redfield Estate is another wonderful and picturesque venue for weddings. If you choose to host your wedding here you can enjoy the private use of the entire historic home which features a Great Room with fireplace and loft, cathedral ceilings, chandeliers, a private brides room and a breathtaking two-story leaded glass window. Outside, you can have access to the gorgeous 30′ x 60′ outdoor covered pavilion with fireplace, as well as the main lawn. The Estate is suitable for up to 125 people. Rental dates may be booked up to 24 months in advance. Tents are not allowed on the grounds.

SPACE
1245 Chicago Ave., Evanston, 847-492-8860

Although known as a concert venue, on off nights, SPACE is a unique and fun place to host a wedding, combining urban chic with rustic charm. With its arched ceiling, barn wood floor, exposed brick, and gorgeous lighting, SPACE is the epitome of understated glamour. And since its primary use is as a concert venue, SPACE has everything covered when it comes to throwing a great party including a fully stocked and staffed bar, a stage for speeches and toasts, amazing sound system and plenty of café tables and chairs that can be set up for a buffet-style dinner or pushed to the side to make room for a dance party.

Woman’s Club of Evanston
1702 Chicago Ave., Evanston, 847-475-3800

The historic Woman’s Club of Evanston exudes timeless elegance and offers a variety of options depending on the size of your wedding. Choose from the dramatic two story Grand Ballroom which can accommodate up to 230 guests with a dance floor, and includes a full stage and large drop down screen for presentations or the more intimate Tea Room (120 people seated) on the first floor. Additional space includes the Music Room often used for dancing and a glass-enclosed Sun Porch which is wonderful for cocktail hours. While you must use one of their preferred vendors for catering, the list is varied and offers something for every budget.

Highland Park Community House
1991 Sheridan Rd., Highland Park, 847-432-1515

The Highland Park Community House is a beautifully renovated historic landmark featuring a red brick Colonial-Revival-style house with a spacious ballroom, large living room with bay windows, a commercial kitchen, newly renovated restrooms and three outdoor garden areas. The elegant ballroom features a vaulted ceiling with vintage light features, a hardwood floor, a performance stage and can accommodate 200 seated guests with a dance floor. It overlooks the North lawn and Heritage Gardens which offer an ever-changing panorama of color and can be utilized weather permitting.

Deer Path Inn
255 East Illinois, Lake Forest, 847-234-2280

Rated by North Shore Magazine as one of the North Shore’s best reception venues, the Deer Path Inn serves as an ideal setting for an enchanting wedding. With a highly experienced hotel staff, they will help you plan, arrange and coordinate everything you need for your special day. No detail will be overlooked. The Inn offers impeccable food and up to five beautifully constructed rooms designed in an old English style with enough dance space to accommodate up to 250 people. Whether a simple gathering of close family and friends to a formal affair, the Deer Path Inn can do it all. Note: The Deer Path Inn is currently undergoing a 15-month renovation, projected finish: Spring 2016.

Pinstripes
1150 Willow Rd., Northbrook, 847-480-2323

Now remember, this is not your ordinary bowling alley. While providing a fun and upbeat atmosphere, Pinstripes is still an upscale venue that offers private and semi-private event space that can accommodate 20 – 600 guests and features fine Italian/American cuisine. Their experienced event staff can help you with all the details including outside entertainment, AV equipment, table favors, specialty linens and more. Whether you chose to incorporate bocce into your cocktail hour or perhaps end the night with a bowling after party – that’s up to you!

Schram Memorial Chapel (service only)
1799 Patriot Boulevard Glenview, 224-521-2562

One of 47 Naval Air Station chapels built across the USA, Schram Memorial Chapel is the only one still operating. This historic nondenominational chapel served as a house of worship for thousands of servicemen and women passing through this military base during WW II and is a quaint and historic space to hold your ceremony. Couples of all faiths are welcome to marry at the chapel. The large stage/ altar can accommodate a wedding party of any size. Dressing rooms for the groom and bride are available. Main chapel can accommodate 150 pew seating. Additional seating options available.

Honorable Mention: There are also several county clubs that allow non-members to host private events at their beautiful facilities. These include: Highland Park Country Club, Ravinia Green Country Club and Mission Hills Country Club.

If we omitted one of your favorites, or there is a certain topic you would like to see covered, please leave us a comment! Additionally, we are happy to point out any of these locations as part of our Tour of the Shore, a must do for anyone considering a move to the North Shore. It’s a stress free way to familiarize yourself with the communities, schools, house values and amenities in the area. Call us at 847.881.6657 to find out more.

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Easter Fun & More on the North Shore: April 3-5

easter-fun_1427449817A little bit of southern soul hits the North Shore this weekend, along with a classical evening at Ravinia.  And alas, the Easter events hit full stride this Saturday. Regardless of what part of town you are at, chances are there will be an egg hunt close by. So whether you’re a fan of college basketball or not, there is still plenty of madness to partake in on the North Shore this weekend.

Robofest
April 3: 2 – 4 pm
Glencoe Public Library, 320 Park Ave., Glencoe

Celebrate the end of Robot Week and drop in for the carnival-style Robofest. There will be an assortment of fun, robot-themed activities for the whole family.

Rebirth Brass Band
April 3: 7 pm, 10 pm
SPACE, 1245 Chicago Ave., Evanston

If you missed last week’s Preservation Hall Jazz Band concert, then here’s your chance to redeem yourself! Whether seen on HBO’s Treme or at their legendary gig at The Maple Leaf, the Grammy-winning Rebirth Brass Band is a true New Orleans institution. The band has evolved from playing the streets of the French Quarter to playing festivals and stages all over the world. While committed to upholding the tradition of brass bands, they’ve also extended themselves into the realms of funk and hip-hop to create their signature sound. Come join the party! For tickets, click here.

Lone Star/Laundry & Bourbon
April 3 & 4: 8 pm
April 5: 3 pm
Oil Lamp Theatre, 1723 Glenview Rd., Glenview

Oil Lamp Theater presents two plays depicting life in a sleepy Texas town. It’s a comedic evening of fun as you visit the Lone Star State and drop in on the ladies and their men for insights on life in the South. No doubt you will come away at least believing the characters are bigger in Texas. The production runs approximately two hours including intermission. For tickets, click here.

BGH Classic Series at Ravinia Festival
April 4: Gates open at 6 pm, Concert: 8:30 pm
Ravinia Festival, 418 Sheridan Rd., Highland Park

Bennett Gordon Hall hosts the BGH Classic series with musicians from Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute (Ravinia’s Summer Conservatory) featuring musicians from the strings program. Ticket & dining package, $45 with promo code DINING during checkout and must be reserved in advance. All other tickets $10, which includes free parking in the South lot. For more info. and tickets, click here.

EASTER EVENTS
Thornwood Park Egg Hunt
Saturday, April 4: 9:45 am – 10:30 am
Thornwood Park, 2400 Thornwood Ave., Wilmette

Sponsored by the Come North Shore Team, this annual rite of spring is a wonderful celebration of the Wilmette community and hopefully warmer weather. Join neighbors and friends as you catch a photo with the Easter Bunny and scurry around with you kids to find the most eggs! Event starts at 9:45 am with the hunt starting at 10 am SHARP! Remember to bring your own basket.

Winnetka Park District Egg Hunt
Saturday, April 4: 9:45 am – 12:00 pm
West Elm Park, 1155 Elm St., Winnetka

Join the fun and excitement of hunting for goody filled eggs in Winnetka’s annual Egg Hunt (ages 8 and under). After the eggs are all cracked, stick around and get your picture taken with EB the Easter Bunny, bounce on inflatables and pet real bunnies! Children under three can hop on over to the “Bunnies in Training” pen where they can safely explore unfilled eggs. Please bring your own basket. (Rainout location: Skokie School Gym).

Kohl Children’s Museum Hosts Habitat Park Egg Hunt
April 4: 10 am – 3 pm
Kohl Children’s Museum, 2100 Patriot Blvd., Glenview

Get out your baskets and get ready to hunt colorful eggs that will be hidden all over the outdoor Habitat Park exhibit. It’s up to sharp-eyed little guests to find them all and discover special gifts inside: from candy to gift cards to 1-year Museum memberships! Tickets to participate will be $5 per child and can be purchased on the day of the event at the Museum’s admissions desk. In case of inclement weather, the Hunt will be rescheduled for Saturday, April 11th. For more information, go to: kohlchildrensmuseum.org.

Arboretum Egg Hunt
April 4: 10 am
Evanston Ecology Center, 2024 McCormick Blvd, Evanston

Your help is needed! Some of the birds in the bird sanctuary have misplaced there eggs in the arboretum. You can help find them, learn about salamanders and take part in activities and a craft. Bring a basket or bag for collecting. A special area is reserved for egg hunters 18 mo.–4 yrs., as well as for children with special needs. Pre-registration required. For more info, click here.

Little Beans Café Easter Party
Saturday, April 4: 4:00 – 7:00 pm
Little Beans Café, 430 Asbury Ave., Evanston

A fun Easter celebration filled with spring fun. Event includes photos with the Easter Bunny an Easter Egg hunt, pizza for the whole family, music and play. $30 for one child, $45 for two, $60 for three

North Shore Views is the most comprehensive online source for North Shore Chicago real estate and community information. Whether you are looking for market statistics, homes for sale or local events, North Shore Views has it all at your fingertips. Browse information regarding our communities, market data, luxury homes, lakefront property, schools and what you should know about making the move to the North Shore.

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Best Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives on the North Shore

Wddde can’t let Guy Fieri have all of the fun, so we’ve taken matters into our own hands. Just thinking about this list gets our mouths watering. And don’t even think about counting calories, sometimes you just gotta say what the heck! You can always exercise tomorrow.

Herm’s Place
3406 Dempster Rd., Skokie, 847-675-3663

Herm’s Palace is a great place to watch a ball game, chat with friends, bring the team, and have a great meal. This family run business treats everyone like a member of their own family. The menu is varied but they are best known for their dogs, burgers and massive milk shakes. If you are feeling particularly indulgent, we suggest the grilled cheeseburger – yes, that is a burger sandwiched in between two grilled cheese sandwiches – insanity! Kids love playing the arcade games and adults love the really cool mural of Chicago celebs, plus the fact that they now serve beer and wine!

Wilmette Chuck Wagon
1120 Central Ave., Wilmette, 847-246-0120

If you blink you might walk right past it, but the Wilmette Chuck Wagon is worth the stop. This long-standing Wilmette staple is known for its gyro meat and especially the Niki special (thin cheeseburger topped with loads of gyro meat), as well as tasty sweet potato fries and friendly service. You may also want to consider take-out since seating is limited. Either way, after a meal from here, your heart might not thank you, but your taste buds certainly will!

Sarkis’ Café
2632 Gross Point Rd., Evanston, 847-328-9703

If you can ignore the sometimes questionable service, small space and teenage crowd, the food is well worth it. The menu consists of mostly breakfast food (served throughout the day) and the famous Loretta sandwiches (French bread topped with cheese, mayo, green peppers, tomatoes and onions filled with your choice of meat). They are also known for their delectable omelets (see Disaster Special), delicious coffee and hash browns, cheese optional. Cash only.

Little Island
2600 Crawford Ave., Evanston, 847-866-7670

While many locals may refer to it as a hot dog stand, Little Island offers a lot more than just tasty red hots. Many rave about the burgers and there is no doubt that the cheese fries (fresh cut fries with the skin on and Merkts cheese) are the best around. Parking can be tricky since this hot dog “stand” is practically located in the middle of an intersection. It is a one man show and seating is limited but they do offer call ahead service for pickup. Outdoor seating when weather permits.

Superdawg Drive-In
333 S. Milwaukee Ave, Wheeling, 847-459-1900

For those looking to skip the drive into the city and take a drive back in time, the Wheeling outpost of the infamous Original Superdawg is one of the last true drive-in restaurants around. This locale has more parking than its city counterpart and also has covered picnic tables overlooking a forest preserve. In addition to the retro-style vibe, the over-sized, classic Chicago Superdawgs are a true crowd pleaser. Just don’t ask for ketchup. The Superchic also gets lots of raves not to mention the crispy Superfies and Super malts and shakes.

Charlie Beinlich’s Food & Tap
290 Skokie Blvd., Northbrook, 847-291-0420

Two words sum up the Charlie Beinlich’s experience, old school! Known for their shrimp cocktail, hamburgers and cheeseburgers, Charlie Beinlich’s is a no frills dive with a limited menu, and limited toppings for your burger (we’re talking cheese, onions and bacon). They keep it simple but fresh and people continue to come back for more. A North Shore classic. Closed Sunday and Monday. Cash only.

Kevin’s Place
808 N Waukegan Rd., Deerfield, 847-945-4577

Kevin’s Place is a small diner that serves up a huge menu and does not disappoint. Known more for its breakfast food, crowd favorites are the Triple Berry Crunch French Toast and KP’s potatoes. Beyond the delicious food, owner Kevin and his super friendly staff is what truly makes this place special. Kevin’s warm and engaging personality, especially his interaction with kids, keeps customers coming back for more. Open until 2 pm daily.

The Lantern
678 N Western Ave., Lake Forest, 847 367-5755

A casual, no frills tavern like atmosphere known for its free popcorn, homemade chips and a model train that travels around the ceiling. The Lantern advertises its burgers as the best in town and many would agree. Customers also love the cheese curds and fantastic beer specials.

Meier’s Tavern
235 E Lake Avenue, Glenview, 847-724-0477

Meier’s has been serving up burgers and other comfort bar food on the North Shore since the 1930s. Locals love it for its nostalgic vibe as much of the décor has stayed the same. It’s the perfect place to sit back and relax with a burger and beer (don’t expect any craft beers or glass plates – everything is served on Styrofoam). Good simple food, at great prices and tator tots that can’t be missed. Cash only.

If we omitted one of your favorites, or there is a certain topic you would like to see covered, please leave us a comment! Additionally, we are happy to point out any of these locations as part of our Tour of the Shore, a must do for anyone considering a move to the North Shore. It’s a stress free way to familiarize yourself with the communities, schools, house values and amenities in the area. Call us at 847.881.6657 to find out more.

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Fun Things To Do on the North Shore: March 20-22

bulldog easterRegardless of what it may feel like outside, Spring officially starts this weekend! And there are many events taking place this weekend to get you in the mood. So cross your fingers for continued warmer temps and let the Springtime fun begin!

Spring Shopping Preview
March 19 -21: 10 am – 5 pm
Shops on Westminster, 221 Westminster, Lake Forest

Ready for some Spring shopping? Look no further than the wonderful shops on Westminster and enjoy specials, sales, drawings for prizes, and a delightful showcase of the best of the season in apparel, accessories, home goods, cards, gifts and more. Participating merchants include Bedside Manor, Helanders, Initial Choice, Lake Forest Frame & Design Studio, Lillie Alexander Ltd., Mustard Seed, Sara Campbell, The Perfect Setting and The Village Optical Shop. All are located on Westminster Avenue in Lake Forest between Western and Oakwood.

Malott Japanese Garden Spring Weekend
March 21 – 22: 11 am – 4 pm
Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe

Celebrate the arrival of Spring and Japanese culture by writing a seasonal haiku, making a cherry blossom hanging scroll, or watching a suminagashi demonstration. Enjoy traditional storytelling, a koto harp performance, and take a walk in the Japanese Garden. For more information, click here.

Doggy Egg Hunt
March 21: 11 am – 12 pm
Centennial Park, 225 Sheridan Rd., Winnetka

Easter activities kick-off with the annual Doggy Egg hunt. Plastic eggs filled with dog treats will be hidden all over Centennial Park. If your dog finds the egg they get to keep it. In addition to the egg hunt, doggy participants will receive a giveaway. All dogs must be leashed. Please pre-register by March 18. $10 res/$15 non-res. For a full listing of egg hunts on the North Shore, click here.

Free Flutist Concert
March 21: 1 pm
Program Barn at The Grove, 1421 Milwaukee Ave., Glenview

Award winning flutist Jonny Lipford comes to town to celebrate the Spring Equinox with sweet music. Jonny specializes in playing Native American style flutes and other world flutes crafted using wood and bamboo and is known for his more contemporary and upbeat tempo. Sounds like a beautiful way to spend the afternoon!

One Book, Everybody Reads Kick-Off
March 21: 2 pm
Wilmette Library, 1242 Wilmette Ave., Wilmette

“One Book, Everybody Reads” is the Library’s annual spring community-wide reading and book discussion program in which the Library selects one book and then encourages the community to read the selection and participate in a series of related events. The culmination of the program takes place when the author visits Wilmette to talk about his/her book. This year’s selection is Some Luck by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Jane Smiley who will visit Wilmette 4/26. The series of related event kicks off this weekend when author Terra Brockman (The Season’s on Henry’s Farm) and documentary director Ines Sommer discuss her family’s multi-generational, biodiverse, sustainable farm in Central Illinois. After the discussion, tastings from the farm will be provided. For more information about the One Book Program and a full schedule of events, click here.

North Shore Views is the most comprehensive online source for North Shore Chicago real estate and community information. Whether you are looking for market statistics, homes for sale or local events, North Shore Views has it all at your fingertips. Browse information regarding our communities, market data, luxury homes, lakefront property, schools and what you should know about making the move to the North Shore.

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Best Brunch on the North Shore

boston-best-brunchIf there is one thing that people on the North Shore take seriously, it’s brunch! And who can argue? What’s better than spending a leisurely morning/early afternoon feasting on all of the sweet and savory treats that a serious brunch has to offer. And if you are really lucky you might even score a mimosa or two.

For the purposes of this list, we are going to skip the traditional pancake/breakfast type places that serve “brunch” on a daily basis. That’s a whole other list for another day! This list is focused solely on those restaurants where brunch is more of a special event, served only on the weekends to hungry folks looking for an indulgent meal to last them the whole day – well at least until dinner. And don’t forget, Easter is just around the corner. It’s never too early to make your Easter brunch reservations.

Prairie Grass
601 Skokie Blvd., Northbrook, 847-205-4433

The brunch at Prairie Grass is a North Shore favorite. With its extensive a la carte menu offering up tasty benedicts, fluffy omelets, gourmet pancakes and savory prairie grass favorites, it’s hard to choose just one thing. They also have a great kids menu. Brunch served: Sat: 10 am -2 pm; Sun: 9:30 am – 2 pm.

Pinstripes
1150 Willow Rd., Northbrook, 847-480-2323

Don’t be fooled that it’s a bowling alley. Pinstripes is an upscale venue whose bistro style restaurant stands on its own merit. And their Sunday brunch takes it to a whole other level. Served every Sunday from 10 am – 2 pm, the buffet style brunch offers made-to-order omelets, prime rib, fresh seafood, waffles, mimosas and bloody marys (extra fee), delectable desserts including a chocolate fountain and a whole lot more. Adults $20, kids 6-12 $12, 5 & under free! It’s quite a deal. Additional fee for Easter brunch which includes and egg hunt (9 am) and an appearance by the Easter Bunny.

Jolanes Restaurant & Bar
1100 Milwaukee Ave., Glenview, 847-375-6986

With its unique location in the ABT Design Center, Jolane’s offers patrons a casual yet contemporary dining experience with a bit if European flair. And their a la carte brunch does not disappoint. Offering tempting sweet choices such as Nutella crepes and brioche French toast served with real maple syrup, diners can also dabble in savory selections – we’ve heard the wagyu burgers are a must, not to mention their quiche of the day. Patrons love the enclosed sun room and their coffee also gets raves. Brunch served Sat & Sun: 11 am – 3 pm.

Guildhall
694 Vernon Ave., Glencoe, 847-835-8100

Everything at Guildhall has a quality of perfection, and the same can be said for their brunch. The a la carte menu features staples such as bagels and lox, lemon and ricotta hotcakes, and eggs benedict Guildhall style to the more innovative chorizo and hominy hash and smoked trout lyonnaise salad. In addition their menu of handcrafted cocktails and signature sodas is not to be missed. Brunch served Sunday: 10 am – 2pm.

Peckish Pig
623, Howard St., Evanston, 847-491-6778

This relatively new gastropub hits all the right spots. From its fun and lively atmosphere, to its cool and inviting décor, to the great service and we haven’t even mentioned the food. The a la carte brunch menu has a little something for everyone, but they had us at “Warm Bag Of House Made Donuts.” The food is fresh, tasty and reasonably priced and they usually have some great brunch specials not on the regular menu. Brunch served Sat & Sun: 11 am – 3:30 pm.

Happ Inn
305 Happ Rd., Northfield, 847-784-9200

The Happ Inn is an upscale family restaurant that always delivers. Although the brunch menu itself is somewhat limited, patrons are welcome to order off the main menu as well. Nothing here is too over-the-top, yet the atmosphere offers a bit more sophistication than your typical family style joint. Brunch served Sat & Sun 11 am – 3pm.

Saranellos
601 N Milwaukee Ave., Wheeling, 847-777-6878

Probably one of the best kept secrets on the North Shore is Saranello’s Champagne Sunday brunch. Known as an Italian restaurant, its brunch offering is sometimes overlooked, but for those in the know, it’s quite a delicious feast. For $29.95 (children under 12 half price), the buffet brunch features a chafing station, carving station, build your own waffle bar, eggs & omelet station, cold fish table, sweets table, salad, fresh fruit and more. Price includes 2 glasses of champagne or mimosas or selections of specialty coffee drinks and juices. (Bloody Mary bar, extra). Brunch served Sunday 10 am – 2 pm.

Deer Path Inn
255 Easy Illinois Rd., Lake Forest, 847-234-2280

Although on the pricier side, the Champagne Brunch buffet at the Deer Path Inn is a true bruncher’s dream. They have everything from bagels and eggs and meats to sushi and shrimp. The quality is top notch and if you come during the warmer months you can burn off some of your meal by strolling through the beautiful grounds and gardens. Unfortunately, if this sounds tempting, you will have to wait a bit to partake as the main dining area and hotel are closed for renovations until further notice.

Looking for something new? Jumping on the brunch bandwagon are some new to the North Shore restaurants who have recently added or are about to add brunch to their menu offering. May be worth the try:

House 406: 1143 ½ Church St., Northbrook, 847-714-0200
A la carte menu featuring Cocoa Krispy Crusted French toast, quinoa salad and other sweet and savory treats.

Taste on Chestnut: 505 Chestnut St., Winnetka, 847-441-0134
Offering buffet and a la carte menus. Sunday: 10 am – 2 pm.

Ten Mile House: 1700 Central St., Evanston, 847-905-0669
A broad a la carte brunch menu featuring salads, wood fired breakfast pizzas and lots of other mouth-watering breakfast and lunch entrees. Please inquire when full brunch menu will be rolled out.

If we omitted one of your favorites, or there is a certain topic you would like to see covered, please leave us a comment! Additionally, we are happy to point out any of these locations as part of our Tour of the Shore, a must do for anyone considering a move to the North Shore. It’s a stress free way to familiarize yourself with the communities, schools, house values and amenities in the area. Call us at 847.881.6657 to find out more.

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Best Day Spas on the North Shore

Earth-Spa-Treatment-LIf you’re look like me, the continuous cold temps have really taken a toll on your body. Whether it’s from too much shoveling or too much shivering, a little relaxing and pampering sound pretty good right about now. So join me as I take a break from the polar vortex and escape into one of these lovely day spas for a much needed staycation….sigh, even if it’s only for a few hours.

Antalee Wellness Center, Spa & Cafe
1834-36 Glenview Road, 2nd Floor, Glenview, 847-486-1130

All inclusive wellness is the goal of Antalee Wellness Center, Spa & Café. They offer a plethora of services and resources so you take control of your physical, mental, and spiritual well-being via custom, all natural and organic treatments. From skin, body and nail to naturpathic, acupuncture and DNA/cellular healing remedies, time spent here is well worth it. They also have an onsite café – but hours are limited and you must call ahead since everything is made to order.

Renu Day Spa
617 Central Ave., Deerfield, 847-940-9727

Renu Day Spa is a holistic spa that offers a full range of nail, skin care and massage services. It is known for its extremely clean environment and sterile practices along with a friendly and knowledgeable staff that make spending time here very relaxing. Waxing clients rave about the hard and soft waxing techniques that make their services almost pain free.

Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa
2171 Northbrook Ct., Northbrook, 847-272-9300
720 N. Waukegan Rd., Deerfield, 847-945-1888

This infamous and quintessential day spa and salon has two North Shore locations and features a diverse menu of Signature services including: skin care treatments, soothing massage therapy, facials, body treatments, manicures, pedicures, makeup artistry and a full-service hair salon. Expect to pay a little more at this top notch salon.

Olga’s Day Spa
500 Central Ave., Highland Park, 847-457-1533

Although this Highland Park institution came under new ownership in August of 2014, you can still expect the same quality of service but in an upgraded facility that features cutting edge spa services in a contemporary atmosphere. Their extensive service offering includes massage, skincare and body treatments, nail services, hair removal, make-up and yoga. Spa packages include lunch. They also have a party/event room and offer massage memberships.

Egea Spa
1521 Sherman Ave., Evanston, 847-332-2772

Egea Spa offers a clean and relaxing environment with 12 treatment rooms for massage, facials, waxing, body treatments and manicure & pedicures. They also offer a full range of medical spa treatments including medical peels, laser, Botox, fillers and more. Comfy robes and indulgent steam showers will round out your experience here.

King Spa & Sauna
809 Civic Center Dr., Niles, 847-972-2540

For a spa experience like no other, a visit to the King Spa and Sauna is a must. This unique, Korean-inspired, 24 hours spa provides a family oriented well-being sauna and spa experience. Upon $30 entry, you’ll receive a wristband, which everything is billed through, and a “uniform”. Shoes are removed and men and women are separated into two different locker rooms. Here, you can shower, soak in soothing bathes of varying degrees and receive additional intense massage and scrub services (recommended, extra fee). But be warned, this area is completely open and completely clothes free. So if you are not comfortable in your birthday suit, then you will want to bypass this part of the experience. After, you put on the aforementioned scrub-like “uniform,” and enter the coed area which has 9 different healing sauna rooms featuring various minerals that offer various healing benefits. Each is its own experience and you’ll want to test drive them all. There is also an ice room to cool down and a main common area with a movie theatre, food court (authentic Korean food), board games, and plenty of comfy recliners to relax in. Upstairs there is a designated napping/sleeping area. You can literally spend the whole day here!

If we omitted one of your favorites, or there is a certain topic you would like to see covered, please leave us a comment! Additionally, we are happy to point out any of these locations as part of our Tour of the Shore, a must do for anyone considering a move to the North Shore. It’s a stress free way to familiarize yourself with the communities, schools, house values and amenities in the area. Call us at 847.881.6657 to find out more.

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Fun Things To Do on the North Shore Feb. 27 – Mar. 1

No time to sit and relax this weekend. It is jammed packed with high octane activities that will either have you moving from the onset or bring you to youharlemwizards_header_logo r feet with their entertainment prowess. The only hard part will be choosing what to do!

Harlem Wizards Charity Basketball Game
Feb. 27: 7 pm
Highland Park High School Main Gym, 433 Vine Ave., Highland Park

Watch as local coaches, teachers and other notables take on the Harlem Wizards for a fun night of laughs, entertainment, basketball, photo ops and charity. The Harlem Wizards show brings oohs, aahs, and serious laughter inspired by sky-high slams, hilarious humor, dynamic energy, fan participation, world class tricks and basketball wizardry. 50% of the proceeds will go to Bear Necessities Pediatric Cancer Foundation as part of HPHS’s 2015 Charity Drive. Tickets available online at www.harlemwizards.com, at the HPHS bookstore or at the door the night of the event.

Pea TNPrincess and the Pea
Feb. 27: 8 pm, Feb. 28: 4:30 &8 pm, Mar. 1: 1 & 5 pm
Marriott Theatre for Young Audiences, 10 Marriott Drive, Lincolnshire

Now through May 3, discover if an ordinary maiden, Prince Wellington’s true love, can pass the “Princess Test” and live happily ever after. Based on the classic tale by Hans Christian Anderson, this one-hour musical presentation will delight kids and parents of all ages. For tickets, click here.

Little Sweethearts Family Dance
Feb. 28: 5:30 – 8 pm
Kohl Children’s Museum, 2100 Patriot Blvd., Glenview

Get ready for a magical evening of fun and dancing for the entire family! Make special memories as your little ones and you kick up your heels at the Kohl Children’s Museum first ever Little Sweethearts Family Dance. With plenty of rockin’ tunes, mini-line dance lessons, and musical games in store, they’re ready to get the party started! For more info. and tickets, click here.

Circuscope
Feb. 27: 7:30 pm, Feb. 28: 4:30 pm, Mar 1: 3 pm
The Actors Gymnasium at the Noyes Cultural Art Center, 927 Noyes St., Ste. #100, Evanston

Directed by spectacle-theatre veteran Vanessa Stalling and featuring acclaimed Chicago clown Dean Evans, Circuscope will transport audiences through surprising acrobatics, mime, live music and other-worldly design to a fascinating world on the other side of the microscopic lens. Playing through Mar. 22. For more info: click here.

River North Dance Chicago
Feb. 28: 8 pm
North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie

In celebration of the company’s 25thAnniversary, River North Dance Chicago’s dancers offer an evening of unparalleled grace and talent in an amazing performance featuring selections from their standard repertoire and exciting new works. The Company is dedicated to the creative advancement, presentation and preservation of jazz-based contemporary dance. Founded in 1989, River North Dance has since grown to become an internationally-acclaimed company known for combining athletic prowess and artistic perspective with bold, theatrical flair. For tickets, click here.

CircEsteem/Screen Break Kick-off
Mar. 1: 3:30 – 5 pm
Washburne Gym, 515 Hubbard Rd., Winnetka

The kick-off event for this year’s Screen Break, which encourage families to turn off their television sets and other video screens for seven days and experience together the adventure of a week with no screens, has families testing their circus skills with CircEsteem. CircEsteem is Chicago’s premiere youth circus with a mission of uniting youth from diverse backgrounds and building self-esteem through the practice of circus arts. Interactive stations will include: Scarf juggling, plate spinning, gym wheel, tight wire, feather balancing, face painters and balloon artistry. For more info: click here.

North Shore Views is the most comprehensive online source for North Shore Chicago real estate and community information. Whether you are looking for market statistics, homes for sale or local events, North Shore Views has it all at your fingertips. Browse information regarding our communities, market data, luxury homes, lakefront property, schools and what you should know about making the move to the North Shore.

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Best Book Stores on the North Shore

chair-and-fire-for-guardian-piece-590x394With no dramatic warm up in sight, it’s the perfect time to curl up by the fire and get lost in a great book. No matter what genre suits your fancy, the North Shore still has many wonderful independent book stores (thankfully), where knowledgeable staff members are on hand to help you find the perfect book for a cold winter day.

The Book Bin
1151 Church St., Northbrook, 847-498-4999

This small independent book store has been serving its loyal patrons since 1971. Known for its friendly and helpful staff, if they don’t have a book you are looking for they will happily special order it for you. Their children’s selection is ample and includes small games and toys. In addition, the store conducts a monthly adult book discussion group and has a rental library section where you can rent books by the day instead of purchasing. Closed on Sundays.

The Book Stall
811 Elm St., Winnetka, 847-446-8880

The Book Stall offers a fabulous, well-organized selection of books with a staff that really knows their stuff! Staff members tend to specialize in a specific genre so their recommendations are always spot on and patrons love the staff’s handwritten blurbs about their favorite picks so you can peruse at your own discretion as well. The store is always bringing in fabulous authors for meet and greets and other special events. The store also host several discussion groups and features a Children’s and Adult Book Club. For unparalleled service and a great community feel, the Book Stall is must!

Lake Forest Book Store
680 N. Western Ave., Lake Forest, 847-234-4420

Since 1949, this quaint, independent book store has been a town favorite. Despite its small size, it boasts a large selection of books that serves the needs of the town and surrounding communities. Known for its knowledgeable staff and exceptional customer service, the store has perfected the art of recommending books based on customers’ interests. And, should there be a book you’d like that they don’t carry, they are happy to track it down and place a special order for you. They also host several author and book events at the store and throughout the community, as well as a monthly book club.

Half Price Books
151 Skokie Valley Rd., Highland Park, 847-831-2820

Even though it’s part of a chain, this store feels like and independent book shop. Although you may not get a great return if you are looking to sell your books here, chances are you’ll score a great deal on any book you purchase – especially in their clearance section where books are marked down to $1-$2. In addition to recycled books, the store sells recycled video games, music, movies, comic books, board games. They also sell specially-priced new releases and hot bestsellers that are usually 10-20% cheaper than you’d find at big box stores.

Books on Vernon
664 Vernon Ave., Glencoe, 847-835-5180

A great neighborhood spot with a great selection of gifts and books for adults and children alike. Books on Vernon offers a relaxed atmosphere where customers, no matter what age, are welcome to stay and explore the shelves. In the back of the store is a small 50-seat theater that the Writer’s Theatre uses to stage shows.

Barbara’s Book Market
2651 Navy Blvd., Glenview, 847-904-7304

Barbara’s Book Market in the Glen Town Center is a good old-fashioned bookstore with plenty of space to relax, peruse and linger. Their event space enables them to host a variety of happenings including author appearances, book signings, open mic nights, holiday events, book clubs, corporate meetings, gallery shows, and free children’s story time that takes place every Tuesday at 4:00pm and every Thursday at 10:30am. They also sell children’s puzzles, activity sets, toys, games and educational materials and have a great selection of heavily discounted books.

Book Den
1043 Chicago Ave., Ste B, Evanston, 847-864-4449 1-6, closed Tuesday and Sunday Monday 2-6

The Book Den is a used book store that may be small in size but makes up for it by its breadth in selection and variety of books. The stocked shelves are filled with everything from favorite beach reads to German lit, to feminist poetry and everything in between; you can literally browse for hours. The pricing can’t be beat and they often have additional sales so inquire within. Hours are somewhat limited: Monday: 2-6, Wed – Sat: 1 -6. Closed Tuesdays and Sundays.

Squeezebox Books & Music
1235 Chicago Ave, Evanston, 847-943-9309

Squeezebox is a unique, boutique style, thematically used book and music store run by an equally interesting owner, Tim. You will be seduced by the selection each visit and will want to return often as you never know what gem will show up. Supporting all genres and eras, including children’s, in a well-organized but small setting, it is truly a treasure trove of vinyl and books in fabulous condition. Hours: Mon – Wed: 12 – 6, Thur – Sat: 12 -7. Open some Sundays.

Bookends & Beginnings
1712 Sherman Ave, Alley 1, Evanston, 224-999-7722

Bookends & Beginnings opened in June 2014 in the space formerly occupied by the legendary Bookman’s Alley. They offer new, used, and bargain books; unique gift items and jewelry; literary events; and lots of local color. They literally have something for everyone but have quickly become known for their extensive cookbook section as well as their inviting children’s section which includes books written in other languages.

If we omitted one of your favorites, or there is a certain topic you would like to see covered, please leave us a comment! Additionally, we are happy to point out any of these locations as part of our Tour of the Shore, a must do for anyone considering a move to the North Shore. It’s a stress free way to familiarize yourself with the communities, schools, house values and amenities in the area. Call us at 847.881.6657 to find out more.

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Fun Things To Do on the North Shore: Feb. 20 – Feb. 22

potpourriThis weekend is a true potpourri of events. From princess pizza parties, Winter Carnivals and ice skating competitions to a Chinese New Year celebration, post WW2 European art lecture, daddy/daughter dance, and a night time nature hike. This weekend has got it all, where do we sign up?

Pizza with a Princess
Feb. 20: 6 pm
Winnetka Community House, 620 Lincoln Ave., Winnetka

Enjoy this funny tale as a real life princess reads the story about Princess Paulina and she invents pizza while trying to become the wife of Prince Dupert. Pizza, drinks, and photo ops with the princess and her castle, what could be better? Children are encouraged to dress as their favorite princess or prince. Click here for more info.

Winter Night Hike
Feb. 20: 7 – 8:30 pm
River Trail Nature Center, 3120 Milwaukee Ave., Northbrook

Learn about nocturnal animals that live at River Trail. Afterwards, warm up inside with snacks and hot chocolate. To register,  click here.

Chinese New Year
Feb. 21: 11 am – 3 pm
Chicago Botanical Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Rd, Glencoe

Celebrate Chinese New Year with a special family day featuring free programs and puppet performances by the Shaanxi Folk Arts Group. Click here for more info.

Northbrook Winter Carnival
Feb. 21: 11 am – 1:30 pm (makeup date)
Meadowhill Park, 1479 Maple Ave., Northbrook

Celebrate the season with sled dogs, ice sculpting, music, ice skating, snow shoeing, games, horse-drawn trolley rides, s’mores & more! Free admission.

Winnetka Park District Winter Carnival
Feb. 2: 11 am – 1 pm
The Skokie School, 520 Glendale Ave., Winnetka

Lots of opportunities for winter fun with activities, games, and entertainment. Light refreshments will be provided.

Freeze Basic Skills Figure Skating Competition
Feb. 20: 5 – 9:20 pm
Feb. 21: 9 am – 6:25 pm
Glenview Ice Center, 1851 Landwehr Rd., Glenview

Check out what the talented skaters have learned through the U.S Basic Skills Program. Click here for a full schedule of events and programs.

Daddy & Daughter Whimsical Wonderland
Feb. 21: 6:30 – 8:30
Highland Park Country Club, 1201 Park Ave., Highland Park

For those that want to continue the spirit of Valentine’s Day with their special little ladies. The magical evening will be filled with surprises, sweet treats, and some very special guests! Photos and a gift will commemorate your evening together. To register, click here.

European Art at the Time of the Great War
Feb. 22: 1:30 – 3 pm
Common Ground Center, 815 Rosemary Terr., Deerfield

The second decade of the 20th century was tumultuous both in history and art history. Learn much more about this exciting period from art historian Jeff Mishur as he examines the work of Picasso, Kandinsky, Duchamp, Boccioni and others and discusses how they established the dominant paths their successors would follow for a century. For more info.: www.cg.org.

North Shore Views is the most comprehensive online source for North Shore Chicago real estate and community information. Whether you are looking for market statistics, homes for sale or local events, North Shore Views has it all at your fingertips. Browse information regarding our communities, market data, luxury homes, lakefront property, schools and what you should know about making the move to the North Shore.

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Best High End Consignment Stores on the North Shore

consignment2With the return of the arctic temps, there’s no better time than the present to clean out your closets and cleanse your home of unwanted items that are taking up way too much space! Of course donating is a wonderful option, but for your higher end stuff, you may want to consider the consignment route first. It’s a great way to make a buck or two so you can buy more stuff! The North Shore has several high end consignment stores that make consigning easy and shopping for a great deal a whole lot of fun.

Please note, each store has their own unique consigning policies about the type of items they accept and how and when they should be brought in. Please check each shop’s website or call for complete details.

Women’s Consignment

The North Shore Exchange
372 Hazel Ave., Glencoe, 847-835-0026

The North Shore Exchange is a true upscale, resale shop featuring a well-edited collection of women’s luxury and designer clothing and accessories, as well as beautiful home furnishings and decor. This is by no means a thrift store. Coveted items sell quickly in this adorable storefront. Items that do not sell within 30 days are marked down further. Consignors receive 50% of the final selling price. If you choose to donate here instead, you can claim 35% of the full retail price as a tax write-off since all of the shop’s profits go to charities and non-profits benefiting children and families with the greatest need. It’s a win-win for all. Donations and consignments are accepted by appointment only. Store is closed on Mondays. Will pick up furniture.

Style Hunters
1510 Old Deerfield Road. Ste 215, Highland Park, 224-558-5303

Style Hunters is an upscale women’s consignment boutique offering personal consultation and an exchange option. They carry a fantastic collection of high-end designs and styles from the most popular North Shore boutiques and work with consignors on price setting to guarantee optimal return. Set in a warm and inviting setting, the store is open limited hours during the day, as they operate mostly by appointment for privacy and convenience. Free pick up available.

Loree’s Closet
1500 Old Deerfield Road, Ste 19/20, Highland Park, 847-748-8451

Lorees’s Closet is the premier luxury eBay store on Chicago’s North Shore for women and men. They consign and sell luxury goods for individual, retail and wholesale clients across the United States to shoppers around the world. Loree’s Closet will pick up the items directly from you or you can drop them off at their warehouse location, 10-3, M-F. Then they handle the rest, including taking photos and eBay/PayPal fees! You’ll receive a 50/50 split for items that sell for $500 or less; 60/40 for over $500. (60% to the client). They’ll even help you do a closet cleanse for free (inquire for details). You can check out their fabulous finds at: http://stores.ebay.com/Lorees-Closet.

Crowded Closet
808 Dempster St., Evanston, 847-475-1135

Crowded Closet has been in business since 1974. They offer a wide selection of upscale and mainstream women’s apparel and accessories. To consign, bring in 10 – 15 seasonal items on hangers, Tue – Sat, 11-3 pm. If you have more than 15 items, call to schedule a time. Split is 50/50. Accepting spring items beginning March 1.

Children’s Consignment

Princepessa Children’s Boutique
453 Roger Williams Ave., Highland Park, 847-926-0500

Princepessa Children’s Boutique carries fabulous upscale resale, designer consignment, party wear, baby gifts, and goodie gags for newborn to teens, both boys and girls. No need to pay retail, especially for special occasion items that may only be worn a few times, and for tweens and teens shopping for their own big occasion, they offer private fittings. Open Tue – Sat, 10 am – 5 pm, closed between 3 – 3:30 on weekdays, however, hours may vary due to school schedules and holidays. Items may be dropped off for consignment anytime during store hours, 15-item limit for first timers.

Still Adorable
995 Waukegan Rd., Glenview, 847-729-2488

Still Adorable is an upscale children’s and maternity clothing resale boutique. They buy and sell high-end children’s clothing, games, toys, accessories, and more. Store hours: 10 am – 6 pm, Tue – Fri., 10 – 5, Sat. Sunday hours vary. Please contact them for consignment details.

Hand Me Downs
614 Dempster, Evanston, 847-475-0803

Hand Me Downs is a children’s resale and consignment store featuring premium brand used children’s clothes, toys, gear and equipment for newborns to tweens. The store has been a part of the Evanston community since 1979 but has recently gone under new management. Hours: 10 – 5:30 pm, Tue – sat., 12 – 4, Sun. Please contact them for consignment details.

Furniture Consignment

Turn the Tables
1955 Cherry Lane, Northbrook, 847-272-9966

Turn the Tables specializes in upscale furniture consignments and custom painted furniture. Their goal is to bring new life to old pieces through finding them a new home or recreating them via decorative painting and architectural embellishments. They offer a unique, boutique atmosphere and take great pride in how items are merchandised. Standard consignment period is for 30 days. Consignors receive 50% of selling price and there is a 15% reduction after each 30 day period.

Village Treasure House
1460 Paddock Dr., Northbrook, 847-832-1030

Village Treasure House is a unique, not-for-profit furniture, home furnishings and housewares consignment shop with over 100 dedicated volunteers. From dishes to breakfronts, they’ve got it all. When you consign, donate and shop here, you are supporting an amazing group of 17 local agencies that benefit women and children in crisis. Hours: 10 am – 5 pm, Tue – Sat, walk-in consignments accepted Wed – Sat – 10 am – 2 pm. Please call for more details about larger items and furniture consignment. 90 day consignment period. 50/50 split, with items discounted 15% every 30 days.

Anna’s Antique & Art Consignment
531 Bank Lane, Highwood, 847-681-2111

Anna’s Antique and Art Consignment was established in 2000 to provide a platform for those who have a finer taste in furniture but are either not willing to pay or cannot afford the price that typically comes with this kind of workmanship. The store features a variety of furniture, home furnishings and unique accent pieces including vintage portraits, chandeliers and a whole lot more. Once items are approved, furniture pick up service available. Hours: Mon – Sat 10 – 5; Sun 12 – 5.

If we omitted one of your favorites, or there is a certain topic you would like to see covered, please leave us a comment! Additionally, we are happy to point out any of these locations as part of our Tour of the Shore, a must do for anyone considering a move to the North Shore. It’s a stress free way to familiarize yourself with the communities, schools, house values and amenities in the area. Call us at 847.881.6657 to find out more.

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