24 Hour Girls’ Getaway in Chicago, Part 2

It was a very comfortable night at the Hyatt Centric the Loop in Chicago.

We were able to take our time in the morning and I was excited to find out my friend and fellow writer, Kristine Hansen, was in town. We met for breakfast at Cochon Valent Brasserie, just downstairs from the hotel.

Their blueberry pancakes were loaded with fruit and as delicious as everything always is there.

My Joan picked something up to eat and relaxed in the room. and we met up to head over to the Art Institute of Chicago.


I have been to the Art Institute many times. I try to check out all of their special exhibits as well as some of the smaller ones. The exhibition that brought me here this time was Manet and Modern Beauty. 

Edouard Manet was a late 19th century painter known for what was a modern style at the time. He especially flourished when painting women.

The collection, the first of its kind in 50 years, was well worth a trip, but we decided to spend some time looking around. I stopped at some of my favorite classics, including Edward Hopper’s “Night Hawk” and Georgia O’Keefe’s “Cow’s Skull with Calico Roses.” We also saw a temporary exhibit dedicated to artist Jeanne Spring.

Before we left the museum, we stopped to take a look through the powerful display, “The AIDs Crisis Is Still Beginning.” It included newspaper clippings from around the world, showing the history of the crisis. George Bordowitz, I want to Be Well (after 1977 Ramones song) artist 30 years, spent half of his life with AIDS Professor at University of Chicago. Many pieces were from his own collection.


We checked out of the Hyatt Centric Loop. I wish we had been able to check out the Aire Rooftop Bar, but it had been closed before we got back the night before and hadn’t opened yet when we left. Next time!

We chose a very unusual place for lunch. Pinstripes in Chicago is a welcoming place for families or adults to have a lot of fun at, while enjoying good food. Think Chuck E Cheese for gourmets!

You can start here with the activity, food, or drinks. Unfortunately, we didn’t have the time for the fun, but we did get to watch other people.

Pinstripes has bowling, even offering shoes for rent. There’s also bocce ball.

As for the food, we loved everything we had. The Stuffed Mushrooms were served warm and gooey, just out of the oven, and were stuffed with goat cheese, spinach, and zucchini.

For the main course, the wood fired oven, which is visible to guests, looked to good to pass up and we ordered pizzas.

I had the Eggplant Flatbread, which had pistachio sprinkled on top for extra flavor, and Joan went for the Margherita. We had plenty left to take home.

Joan agreed with the popular opinion that the Strawberry Shortcake, served in a jar, was fantastic.

Pinstripes Chicago has a full bar that includes many local beers, a selection of wine, and handcrafted cocktails. I sipped a Riesling while Joan thought the Limoncello Martini was great.

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