NFT Chicago East Hyde Park / Jackson Park

East Hyde Park / Jackson Park

Welcome to the ritzier side of Hyde Park. Here, Victorian houses span Kenwood to the north down to the Museum of Science and Industry, housed in a building from the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition. Check out the modern interpretations on this architectural theme on Harper and Dorchester Avenues, climb the model tractor at the Museum, and don't forget the Japanese garden in Jackson Park.

The lakefront is calmer than Hyde Park proper; East Hyde Park is more tranquil, excepting the loud families flocking to the Museum of Science and Industry and the local beaches, site of all socializing in the warmer months. Stroll Promontory Point to keep tabs on the natives or to escape the summertime humidity. Or just drink it off at See more.

>The Cove.


This Neighborhood Featured in...
The Cheapskate's Guide to Chicago

By Dana Kaye
Dana Kaye sure said it straight when she declaimed: "You don’t have to be gay to enjoy all the drink specials on Halsted." But you do have to be on a budget. Chicago is no city for the thrifty, but Dana Kaye is not one for following the rules. Take heed as she stealthily discloses the secrets to getting by with no money.


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Posted By:  Hunter Hicks
Photo:  Hunter Hicks

The Snail Thai Cuisine
Feng Shui buff? Dollar-store Valentines Day decorations alongside a gigantic painted nautical scene alongside some abstract pieces of art alongside traditional carvings make for an adorably kitschy dining experience. Yet miraculously, nothing feels out of place; it's simultaneously as tacky and as comfortable as your grandmother's dining room. The Snail boasts one thing that your grandmother's dining room didn't have (unless of course your grandmother was a Thai restaurant)... orgasmic Thai dishes. If Curries to suit all tastes, adventurous noodle dishes topped with artfully carved carrots, and plates of Pad Thai generous enough to sate an emaciated University of Chicago student bring people to The Snail, it's the versatility of the menu that keeps people coming back. Sick of the same-old, same-old? Try it with shrimp instead (or scallops or beef or chicken or pork or tofu or duck or squid). Have them make it mind-meltingly spicy and then treat yourself to the soothing condensed-milk bliss that is Thai iced-tea. Looking for a real challenge? Order the chive dumplings and try to figure out exactly what's in them (besides unadulterated happiness). No matter what, you're sure to find great food, super friendly staff, and some hearty laughs at The Snail.

Posted By:  Jennifer Campbell
Photo:  Jennifer Campbell

Piccolo Mondo is a romantic restaurant located a few steps from the Metro stop in Hyde Park. Its close proximity to the Museum of Science and Industry makes it a convenient meeting spot for someone who is not familiar with all the various neighborhoods of Chicago. The décor is simple and elegant. The waiters are attentive; the fact that English is their second language helps create the fantasy that you’re dining in a foreign city. The cuisine is Italian, with traditional dishes like lasagna and ravioli. Prices are moderate. Carry-out and delivery is available, but stay for the atmosphere, which is very conducive to intimate conversation. You will feel like you are in your own “small world.”

Posted By:  Mark F. Armstrong
Photo:  Noel Henderson-James

Osaka Garden/Wooded Island
This 16-acre peninsula near Lake Michigan’s southern shore was developed to accommodate the Japanese and Korean attractions for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, but quickly evolved into a rendezvous for lovers shortly after the fair closed. Don’t be surprised to see very passionate and public frenching near the Japanese teahouse retained from the 1933 Century of Progress Exposition. And don’t be even more surprised to hear heavy horizontal breathing coming from among the lush varieties of flowers, shrubs, and trees on the paths to the Osaka Japanese Garden. The serenity and tranquility of the garden still make it worth visiting alone with its recently renovated entrance and layout provided by a $400,000 grant from Chicago’s sister city Osaka, Japan. The gains are a great variety of waterfowl that stroll and prance along the garden’s rocks that shore up the lagoon, and a view of the Greek revival former Palace of Fine Arts turned science and industry museum. This stretch of land also retains the purpose that landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, the father of New York City’s Central Park, originally envisioned for parks, instead of today’s prevailing image of overgrown playgrounds. Wooded Island is an emerald wonderland made to liberate urbanites from the blahs of overbuilt gridlock.

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Restaurants (6)
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