Chicago Spire Marches Toward Approval; Where Will Residents Eat?

What an excellent and timely question! Today, the Chicago Plan Commission recommended that Santiago Calatrava’s current design (at right) be approved by the city zoning committee. We think that’s pretty awesome, save for linger questions about financing and the ever-present dilemma of affordable housing (wouldn’t it be something if part of this building were Section 8?) Current estimates put building costs at $2.4 billion. Spread over 1,200 condos, the builders estimate they’ll have to sell apartments at $1,500 a square foot to break even; we don’t have to tell you that that’s a lot for Chicago. These residents are going to be entitled out-of-towners (and some locals, too) who are not particularly price-sensitive and will want to eat well, close by. At least, that’s the scenario we’ve concocted for the purposes of this post, which is…expensive restaurants within a short walk of The Spire. And furthermore, Google Maps has this nifty DIY feature. Click on it (seriously, do it):





Sweet, right? Well, let’s get down to business.

Cite is on the 70th floor of the Lake Point Tower, just a few hundred feet from The Spire. If you want to gaze at your apartment building over sea scallops with caramelized endive, wild mushrooms, butternut squash and truffled glacage (only $20!), you could do worse than Cite.

Copperblue is also in the Lake Point, but is more oriented toward the hip and happening crowd (of which we hope to one day be a part). It’s pan-Mediterranean, which will make Spire residents nostalgic for their seaside vacation homes.

DeLaCosta has come up on the blog a lot lately, but it certainly meets the criteria of being pricy and near The Spire. Living this close means not having to plan too far in advance for their Mon-Wed themed Counter dinners.

Fox & Obel is one place Spire residents are certain to frequent, for everyday grocery shopping (who cares that it’s more expensive than Whole Foods) and its consistently delicious cafe. Not having to deal with their new, invasive valet parking system (still free, though) is a plus, and such incredible proximity to hand-sliced smoked salmon is a major plus.

Heats is located on the second floor of the Holmes Place Health Club, and while we’re fairly certain that The Spire will house its own fitness center, it’s unlikely to have fresh and healthy Japanese post-workout grub. Not that Berry Mille Feuille with granny smith apple, pineapple, brie cream, and balsamic-macerated berries sounds so dietetic.

Riva’s the place to go if you absolutely have to eat expensively on Navy Pier. Seafood, steaks, wine, pageantry…has Phil Stefani ever led you that far astray? You’ll survive.

Financial questions tower over Spire’s political win [Tribune]

[Photo: Tribune]

[Map: Google Maps]

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Chicago Spire Marches Toward Approval; Where Will Residents Eat?