Le Méridien Chicago – Oakbrook Center:
- If you’re a jetsetter looking for a staycation, or a foodie anxious to try a hot new restaurant, discover Oak Brook’s newest chic hotel, Le Méridien Chicago – Oakbrook Center, 2100 Spring Road, Oak Brook, now open after undergoing a $25 million transformation. The brand new property boasts a spectacular new outer façade, which opens into the brand’s signature, award-winning arrival experience, Le Méridien Hub™. Re-interpreting the traditional lobby into a social gathering place, the Hub consists of four elements: large-scale artwork in high impact areas; the sensory experience, illustrated through Le Méridien signature scent, sound and use of light; UNLOCK ART™ programme, featuring artist designed key card collections that offer access to the hotel’s UNLOCK ART™ partner, The Elmhurst Art Museum; and a 24-hour curated soundtrack featuring the music of French Bossa Nova band, Nouvelle Vague. Le Méridien Chicago – Oakbrook Center also features an authentic Spanish restaurant, El Tapeo, located on the 9th floor with floor to ceiling, wrap-around windows. For more information or to make a reservation, visit www.lemeridienoakbrook.com.
Massage Envy Spa:
- If you’re in need of relaxation and want to give back at the same time, Massage Envy Spa and the Arthritis Foundation have joined forces to host the fourth annual Healing Hands for Arthritis on Sept 17. This is a one-day national event to build awareness and raise funds to fight arthritis and the 37 Massage Envy Spa locations in the greater Chicagoland area will donate $10 from every one-hour massage or facial to the Arthritis Foundation. Since 2011, this one-day nationwide event has raised over $2M for the Arthritis Foundation. To make an appointment for the Healing Hands for Arthritis event, visit www.massageenvy.com/regions/IL/Chicago. Reservations are now being accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis. All proceeds donated during Healing Hands for Arthritis will support the Arthritis Foundation’s nationwide efforts to prevent, control and cure arthritis. Murad®, Massage Envy Spa’s exclusive skin care partner, will donate 10 percent of all sales from their products sold at Massage Envy Spa locations during the event to the Arthritis Foundation. Additionally, Wyndmere and BioFreeze will donate 10 percent of all sales from their products from Massage Envy Spa locations.
- If a trip to New York this autumn sounds dreamy, you’ll be transported to The Big Apple by watching ON THE TOWN! From the bustling streets of “New York, New York” comes the first major Chicago production of the iconic musical comedy, ON THE TOWN, previewing August 13, opening August 20, and running through October 12 at The Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Drive, Lincolnshire, IL. With an unparalleled musical score by Leonard Bernstein and book and lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, ON THE TOWN tells the hilarious story of three American sailors on a whirlwind 24-hour leave in New York City. Based on Bernstein’s 1944 ballet, Fancy Free, sailors Gabey, Ozzie and Chip have only 24 hours to see the famous sights and find romance before they report back to the ship. From the Bronx to the Battery, the explosion of song and dance that ensues proves that “New York, New York, it’s a helluva town.” Eleven time Jeff Award winner David H. Bell directs, with choreography by Alex Sanchez and Music Direction by Ryan T. Nelson. ON THE TOWN features the classic hits “New York, New York,” “I Can Cook Too,” and “Lonely Town.” To reserve tickets, please call The Marriott Theatre Box Office at 847.634.0200 or visitwww.MarriotTheatre.com for more information.
- If you’re looking to bring the family to see a old-fashioned musical, THE KING AND I will sweep you off your feet. East meets West in the beloved Rodgers and Hammerstein romance, previewing October 22, opening Wednesday, October 29, and running through January 4, 2015 at The Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Drive, Lincolnshire. The friendship that grows between the lovely tutor Mrs. Anna and the larger than life King of Siam transcends their conflicting cultures. Set against the exotic backdrop of 19th century Siam, timeless classics like “Getting to Know You,” “I Whistle A Happy Tune” and “Shall We Dance?” spring forth with unforgettable grace and splendor. Journey with us to this captivating land of music, dance and enchantment. To reserve tickets, please call The Marriott Theatre Box Office at 847.634.0200 or visit www.MarriotTheatre.com for more information.
Drury Lane Theatre:
- If you love a good thriller, Drury Lane Theatre will present the winner of “Best Play” at the 2012 Mystery Writers of America Edgar Allan Poe Awards, THE GAME’S AFOOT, previewing August 28, opening September 4, and running through October 19. The Cleveland Plain Dealer raved that the production is “An inspired whodunit…a snappy, clever drawing-room mystery!” It is December 1936 and Broadway star William Gillette, admired the world over for his leading role in the play Sherlock Holmes, has invited his fellow cast-members to his lavish Connecticut castle for a holiday weekend of revelry. When one of the guests is stabbed to death, the festivities in the isolated house quickly turn dangerous. It is up to Gillette himself, as he assumes the persona of his beloved Holmes, to track down the killer before the next victim appears in this witty, suspenseful caper. THE GAME’S AFOOT is written by Ken Ludwig (Lend Me a Tenor, The Fox on the Fairway, Crazy for You, and Moon Over Buffalo) and directed by Drury Lane Theatre Artistic Director William Osetek (Drury Lane Theatre’s smash hit production of Spamalot and Jeff Award nominee for Best Director and Best Production for Thoroughly Modern Millie).
- For an enchanting, family-friendly outing, don’t miss CAMELOT, which journeys to the magical and mythical days of medieval England. Adapted from T.H. White’s novel The Once and Future King, the legendary characters King Arthur, Queen Guenevere, Sir Lancelot and Merlyn come alive in this exciting tale of love and chivalry. The classic production features a lush, romantic score including “If Ever I Would Leave You,” “Camelot,” “How to Handle a Woman,” and “Follow Me.” CAMELOT has been called “Majestic! Timeless!” by the Los Angeles Times and “One of the most beloved musicals of all time. Enchanting, enthralling, and exhilarating! A masterpiece!” by The Houston Chronicle. CAMELOT originally opened on Broadway in 1960 starring Julie Andrews and Richard Burton. The production spawned several revivals and an Academy Award-winning 1967 film version. CAMELOT won four 1961 Tony Awards and the 1961 original cast recording of CAMELOT was number one on the Billboard Pop Albums chart for 60 weeks. CAMELOT features a book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner and music by Frederick Loewe (My Fair Lady and Brigadoon). Alan Souza (World Premiere musicals The Little Hours and Exposure Time for New Jersey Repertory Theatre, and The Full Monty for Maltz Jupiter Theatre) will direct the production, which is previewing October 30, opening November 6 and running through January 4.
Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park
- With concerts continuing into September, there is still time to take advantage of the luxurious Chef in the Park experience at Millennium Park. Perfect for couples celebrating a milestone anniversary, big birthday, or to compliment the perfect proposal, the Chef in the Park experience takes the stress out of planning any special occasion. Guests will experience haute cuisine in the majestic atmosphere of this world-famous musical landmark. The Chef in the Park experience includes a pre-event menu consultation with a member of our Executive Culinary Team and Special Event Manager to develop a personalized picnic based on the couple’s favorite foods. The Chef will personally prepare and serve the couple’s selections before the concert and spend one-on-one time sharing culinary savvy with his guests. While reveling in one of Chicago’s quintessential summer celebrations, guests enjoy their favorite drink and delicacies from classic to extravagant salads, antipasti, or divine sushi from aria’s sushi bar. Once the concert starts, Chef will bid farewell and a member of Fairmont’s expert banquet team will handle the final details allowing guests to leave at their leisure. The Chef in the Park experience includes parking at the hotel and starts at $600 for two guests. The package is based upon availability and exclusive of tax and gratuity. To make a reservation, please contact Corinne Beede at Corinne.firstname.lastname@example.org or at 312-861-3798. For additional information, visit www.fairmont.com/Chicago.
Theatre at the Center:
- For a hilarious night out, don’t miss WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN. In its first professional production since its Broadway debut, the musical comedy WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN makes its Chicago area premiere in a brand new production at Theatre at the Center, 1040 Ridge Road, Munster, September 11 through October 12, with a press opening on September 14. With an irresistible Latin-infused score by Tony Award-nominated David Yazbek and book by Jeffrey Lane (the team behind past Theatre at the Center hit DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS) WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN is a touching and hilarious story of a group of women whose relationships with men lead to a whirlwind of emotions- love as they find them, confusion as they lose them and passion when they need them. This regional premiere is directed by William Pullinsi with Choreography by Danny Herman and Musical Direction and Orchestrations by William Underwood. To purchase individual tickets call the Box Office at 219.836.3255 or Tickets.com at 800.511.1552. Group discounts are available for groups of 11 or more and gift certificates are also available. For more information on Theatre at the Center, visit TheatreAtTheCenter.com.
First Folio Theatre:
- If you’re looking for a spooky fall outing, you’ll enjoy a trip to see THE GRAVEDIGGER at the stately Mayslake Peabody Estate. First Folio Theatre presents the World Premiere production from Oct. 1 through Nov. 2 at 31st St. & Rt. 83, Oak Brook. The Tudor Revival style mansion, built in 1921, serves as the perfect backdrop for the chilling new play. This tale of Frankenstein’s Monster takes place in the 18th century in one of Bavaria’s forgotten cemeteries, where the original novel leaves off and a lone gravedigger finds a hideously scarred man hiding in a fresh grave. Told from the Monster’s perspective, both men soon realize how interconnected they are as their shared, gruesome pasts slowly unfold. For tickets call 630.986.8067 or visit www.firstfolio.org.
- If you’re a wine enthusiast but can’t make it to Wine Country this fall, check out the September Winemaker Dinner at Geja’s Café. Enjoy world class wines at the Dosio Vigneti Winemaker Dinner on Monday, September 8th at 6:30 p.m at Geja’s Café, 340 Armitage Ave. The wines stem from Dosio’s philosophy: only quality grapes can make great wines. Exposure, slope, and the nature and structure of the soil are of fundamental importance, but must work together with a careful tending of vineyards that respects the region. The little use of technology without altering the natural processes optimizes the production process to produce beautiful wines. Paired with a delicious four-course meal featuring mouth-watering beef tenderloin and flaming chocolate fondue, the Dosio Vigneti Winemaker Dinner makes for the perfect night out. To make a reservation, visit www.gejascafe.com or call 773-281-9101.
- If you’ve got a bachelor or bachelorette party to plan, or just need a good laugh, consider going to see Cupid Has A Heart On: A Musical Guide to Relationships, which has been named a “must-see” by Time Out Chicago and feted as “full of wit and zest” by the Chicago Tribune. Backed by a lively pianist, the comic musical performers of The Cupid Players perform songs and scenes developed by the cast. The production’s sketches combine sharp writing and catchy songs with a witty take on relationships, love and life. The result is a musical sketch show that is raunchy, sweet, cynical, touching, smart, inane and – above all – very, very funny. Performances take place Saturdays at 8 pm at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit Stage773.com or call 773.929.7367.
All Chocolate Kitchen:
- If you’ve got an insatiable sweet tooth, world-class pastry guru and Chicago Culinary Museum’s 2013 Pastry Chef of the Year Chef Alain Roby’s brand new Exclusive Aroma Line is now available at the All Chocolate Kitchen. Featuring 20 exotic flavors from around the world, Roby’s newest creation showcases an assortment of beautiful, individually hand-painted rectangular truffles. From Georgia Peach and Caramel Cognac, to Banana Flambé and Vodka Cranberry, chocolate lovers can enjoy these unique flavors without feeling the guilt of consuming sweets. Studies show that chocolate in its purest form is significantly healthier than today’s commercial products, which is why Chef Roby uses only the finest Grand Cru chocolate to create his delicious – and healthy – products. Prices for the Exclusive Aroma Line range from $2 to $27 before tax and may be purchased by the piece or in a variety of different sized boxes. Visit the All Chocolate Kitchen store, 33 S. Third Street in Geneva, or call 630.232.2395 to purchase the truffles or for more information.
- If you’re in charge of making holiday plans, bring the family to see a classic annual tradition from Chicago’s oldest musical organization. Hailed as “Spirited!” by The Chicago Tribune, the Apollo Chorus’s rendition of Handel’s “Messiah” has been performed nearly every December since 1879—a track record unmatched by other city choral organizations. The annual performance is a beloved holiday tradition for Chicago families and includes some of the most joyful and memorable music from the Baroque period. This year, the chorus will perform Handel’s “Messiah” in two of Chicago’s most elegant spaces on the following dates: Sat., Dec. 6, 2014 at 3pm, Orchestra Hall & Sat., Dec. 20, 2014 at 3pm, Harris Theatre. Visit www.apollochorus.org for tickets.